In an exclusive interview with DJBooth‘s DJ “Z,” Novel steps inside the booth to talk about his Rowdy/Capitol debut album, “The Audiobiography,” and following his family’s footsteps into the music industry, why it’s easy to pick up women in a recording studio, and what minimum-wage paying job he’d accept as long as he could continue to record music and support his children.
DJ Booth: Let’s talk about the debut album, The Audiobiography, set to be released later this year, hopefully October. According to your bio, the album is going to, quote, “let the world know who you are.” Are we talkin’ one-hundred-percent full disclosure, or a reserved/abbreviated version of this novel?
Novel: Just two chapters, just two chapters! Every other album, the chapters are gonna continue, so it’s just a few chapters of my life. I got a song that features Ben Folds, who’s a really incredible artist, “I Am”, with Talib Kweli and Spree Wilson. Most of the album was produced by me, but we have other producers like Green Lantern, Dallas Austin, No I.D. and Robin Thicke. It’s an interesting album; it’s gonna be different for everybody, all different spectrum’s. Check out the “Damn” track on Novel’s Myspace , sounds like a thicke production. Interview In Mp3
While making the rounds at the Javitts Center in New York for the New York Comic Con, Melvin James talking about the lastest films coming out this summer, he mentioned his cast for his next film, “Caramel”, a coming-of-age film similiar to ‘American Graffiti’. Melvin James: Right now, we have Chingy, the group Cherish, Teyana Taylor and we’re closing to having Lauren London and Meagan Good.
James, who had previously directed the indie films, ‘Honeybee’ and ‘A Miami Tail’ with Trina, also had directed the first season of BET’s College Hill. “Caramel” is a story that I wrote, based on an original story by Cris Cartier. It’s about two high school friends that grew up together in Jamaica Estates, Queens. They are best friends, and the coolest in school. It’s sort of a love story, a throwback to a film called ‘American Graffitti’. It’s about teenagers and their cars, and their cliques. It’s an all around coming of age story.
Kenna will be playing at Coachella this weekend during Mark Ronson’s set.
Saturday 4/26, 8:30 – 9:25 PM
Mariah Carey recently did an interview for Spain’s Shangay Express magazine and she took a few not-too-subtle digs at the one and only Madonna! When asked about Madonna (how dare that reporter mention that name infront of Mimi!!!) and how she feels about her Madgesty recording an R&B album, Mariah responds that it’s “interesting.” Then pauses, and continues, “It’s very interesting.” When the reporter mentions that Madonna worked with Pharrell (who also worked with Mimi), she asks if Mariah gave her some indirect inspiration. Carey responds, “I don’t know, I don’t have any idea about her intentions. I’ll just say that it’s very interesting.”
Johnny Cupcakes (John Earle) a Boston-bred designer will art & design stuff for Chester French album. “Are you guys hip to Johnny Cupcakes? He’s a Boston-bred designer whose line of Johnny Cupcakes t-shirts are KILLING it in the street wear world right now. We’ve been friends with him even before he opened his first shop and have sported his fresh wares for ages.
We’ve been hanging out the past few days and they’ve been nice enough to let me crash on their couch. We’ve been brainstorming logo’s and marketing ideas for their new album. In addition to that, we’ve been eating at some gourmet spots, like Subway.
Marcus Miller’s ninth and latest album is simply titled Marcus. Equally simply, Marcus has great jazz funk music on it. The CD showcases Miller’s skills as an electric bassist and the 14 songs include solos that reveal the talent of his band members, drummer Poogie Bell, trumpeter Patches Stewart, saxophonist Keith Anderson, keyboardist Bobby Sparks and harmonica player Gregoire Maret. Miller and his band cover a few classic songs—Stevie Wonder’s “Higher Ground,” Miles Davis’s “Jean Pierre” and Tower Of Power’s “What Is Hip?” and they also perform an instrumental version of “When I Fall In Love” that sounds jazzy and is highlighted by harmonica.
The album gets off to a wonderful start with “Blast,” which has a Middle Eastern vibe and jazz saxophone in its melody. Guest artist Corinne Bailey Rae’s vocals come as a delightful surprise on the third track, “Free,” after hearing the two instrumental tracks before it. The eighth track, “’Cause I Want You,” featuring Shihan The Poet, is the least melodic, mostly sounding like a spoken word poem accompanied by music. Two versions of Robin Thicke’s “Lost Without U” are also on the album, the second version featuring Taraji Henson and Lalah Hathaway.
Marcus Miller – Marcus (2008)
01 – Blast!
02 – Funk Joint
03 – Free feat. Corrine Bailey Rae
04 – Higher Ground (Stevie Wonder Cover)
05 – Milky Way feat. Keb ‘Mo
06 – Pluck (Interlude)
07 – Lost Without U feat. Lalah Hathaway (Robin Thicke Cover)
08 – Cause I Want You feat. Shiban The Poet
09 – Ooh feat. Lalah Hathaway
10 – When I Fall In Love
11 – Strum
12 – Jean Pierre (Miles Davis Cover)
13 – What Is Hip (Tower Of Power Cover)
14 – Lost Without U (Spoken Word) feat. Taraji P. Henson (Robin Thicke Cover)
Madonna’s “Sticky & Sweet” new album “Hard Candy” has leaked onto the internet. On “Hard Candy” Madonna has enlisted The Neptunes and man of the moment, Timbaland. Whilst Timbaland fails to live up to his hype, The Neptunes return to form and bring us their best work in recent years, as well as some true Madonna classics. Songs such as “She’s Not Me” and “Spanish Lesson” remind us how good The Neptunes sounds with live Instrumentation, and include some surprising N¤E¤R¤D-esque bridges. Shae even gives a guest vocal on the epic “Incredible“, and Pharrell brings back his falsetto singing on every song. Meanwhile tracks such as the 80’s influenced “Beat Goes On” brings back top class production which leaves us in no doubt that The Neptunes are back on form. And as always Pharrell & Chad have provided some top class singles, “Heartbeat” and “Give It To Me“.. Sorry Timbaland… you lost !
Madonna – Hard Candy (2008)
01 – Candy Shop feat. Pharrell (Neptunes)
02 – 4 Minutes feat. JT & (Timbaland) (1st Single)
03 – Give It 2 Me (Neptunes) (2nd Single)
04 – Heartbeat (Neptunes) (3rd Single)
05 – Miles Away feat. (Timbaland)
06 – She’s Not Me feat. Pharrell (Neptunes)
07 – Incredible feat. Pharrell & Shae (Neptunes)
08 – Beat Goes On feat. K. West (Neptunes) (4th Single)
09 – Dance 2Night feat. Justin Timberlake (Timbaland)
10 – Spanish Lesson (Neptunes)
11 – Devil Wouldn’t Recognize You feat. JT (Timbaland)
12 – Voices feat. Justin Timberlake (Timbaland)
– Ring My Bell (Neptunes) (Japan & ITunes Bonus Track)
– Let Me Do It feat. Pharrell
– Still Doin’ It
– Beat Goes On feat. Pharrell (UK Version)
May 3 2008 12:00P
Bandstand Festival London
May 5 2008 12:00P
Rock City With Nottingham
May 6 2008 12:00P
Wolverhampton Civic Center Wolverhampton
May 10 2008 12:00P
Bandstand Festival Liverpool
May 9 2008 12:00P
Trinity College Dublin
May 13 2008 12:00P
May 14 2008 12:00P
May 15 2008 12:00P
Live Music Hall Cologne
Yes Its Official ! Ashlee’s Wal-Mart Bonus Track from ITunes is produced by Chad Hugo and Written by Kenna.
A new television commercial for the Soul features music performed by talented singer-songwriter Robin Thicke. His first single, ‘Magic,’ will debut when the campaign begins running at the end of April. The commercial, titled “Imagination,” was directed by Vincent Ward, award-winning producer, and focuses on the understated, elegant design of Soul and portrays its magical touch feature as hero.
Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., a leading mobile phone and telecommunication equipment provider, today announced the launch of ‘Soul’, Samsung’s first half flagship product in 2008. Starting from France, UK, and Germany, Soul will be available through major European mobile operators and in most of GSM supporting open markets during April and May.
“Talked with Shae and Pharrell last week. They were in Sacramento. New album “Seeing Sounds” on the way. It won’t be on Virgin, Pharrell reveals. The single, “Everyone Nose” is exactly what you think it’s about (as if there was any doubt.) The VA Beach homeboys are, of course, on tour with Kanye. Pharrell said as the reviews are confirming that Kanye’s show is visually stunning one of the best he’s ever seen. It was great talking with Shae and Pharrell about music and Virginia Beach but it was when our conversation turned away from music I was really blown away. Remember maybe a year or so ago Pharrell was saying he was working to open a resource center for local kids? I asked him what was going on with that and he told me he’d been in talks with Al Gore to make it happen.
I could tell this project was something he was really passionate about, and how much he loves his hometown and how he really wanted to give back. What a great guy. Never mind all the Grammys and millions of albums and such. The guy’s working with the country’s former Vice President! Certainly this will make him a shoo-in for one of those little stars on the Legends of Music Walk of Fame honoring musicians from Hampton Roads, huh? A street sign or something in VA Beach right? Some sort of recognition of the amazing, super successful talent to come from this area? Speaking of Pharrell and N¤E¤R¤D shot up to D.C. this weekend.
Went to the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery to see Recognize!, their exhibit on hip hop. Go if you have a chance. There are some mega turbo large paintings by my current favorite artist, Kehinde Wiley. There are some photographs of artists including Erykah Badu, Public Enemy, and N¤E¤R¤D.
They opened with Anti-Matter, which sounded great. They then did a set consisting of Babydoll, Brain, Spazz, Everyone Nose, She Wants To Move, Rock Star, Lap Dance, a Drum-Off between their two drummers, and a cover/ medley of the White Stripe’s Seven Nation Army with P rapping and talking over it. Another cool thing they did was Pharrell and Shay split up the lyrics more so Shae would be doing more rapping. Chad added another incredible element to the performance with his energy and presence. Thanks To Big Nick !
N¤E¤R¤D’s Glow In The Dark Tour Set List
01 – Anti-Matter
02 – Babydoll
03 – Brain
04 – Spazz
05 – Everyone Nose
06 – She Wants To Move
07 – Rock Star
08 – Lap Dance
09 – Interlude (Drum-Off)
10 – Seven Nation Army (White Stripes Cover)
Ashlee Simpson’s ‘Bittersweet World’ sounds just plain sweet. There’s no reason to believe that Ashlee Simpson is living in a “Bittersweet World.” Jess’ fun-loving little sis is newly engaged, with a giant sparkler from Fall Out Boy’s Pete Wentz, and has been blissfully showing it off to the cameras. As it happens, the songs on Simpson’s third studio album sound more sweet than bitter.
Though the effervescent pop-punkster is growing up, with a maybe baby on the way, the disc retains the girly-tomboy vibe and sleek production of her previous albums. This time around, Simpson enlisted the sonic skills of megaproducer Timbaland and The Neptunes’ Chad Hugo, and it shows in beat-heavy songs like “Murder,” featuring rapper Izza Kizza, and “Boys,” the album’s best song, in which Simpson coyly croons: “Some say I make the guys/Hyptonized/When I bat my eyes/And walk past/They say I’m such a tease/But that’s just me.”
According To Beyoncé, Solange is releasing “I Decided” as her first Single. “It is not my time to put out new music. If you really want to hear some really great music now, you have to support my girls Kelly, Michelle and my sister Solange. Kelly just re-released her album digitally in the US, so check out “Ms. Kelly: Diva Deluxe.” Michelle is about to put out the first single, “We Break The Dawn,” from her album and Solange’s single, “I Decided,” is already one of my favorites.
According to Allmusic.com, Kenna Wrote/Co.Wrote 7 out of 11 tracks on Ashlee’s Bittersweet World and 2 out of 3 Chad Hugo tracks gets a *AMG Track Pick*
01 – Outta My Head (Ay Ya Ya)
(Harmon, Kenna, Logan, Simpson, White)
02 – Boys
(Beanz, Hugo, Kenna, Simpson)
04 – No Time for Tears
(Hugo, Kenna, Simpson)
07 – Bittersweet World
(Harmon, Kenna, Logan, Simpson)
08 – What I’ve Become
(Beanz, Harmon, Kenna, Logan)
09 – Hot Stuff
(Beanz, Hugo, Kenna, Simpson)
11 – Never Dream Alone
BallerStatus.com was leaked the cover of their upcoming June Issue. One of them at least. It’s a dual cover — one cover featuring eclectic duo Gnarls Barkley, which was leaked to Bossip earlier this week, and the other is of the Pharrell-led trio known as N¤E¤R¤D who is prepping a new album titled Seeing Sounds. In the magazine’s cover story, Pharrell talks about several things, such as the new music, his inspirations, and what inspires the average hip-hop head. “The average hip-hop head is inspired by different things too, which is a huge issue I have.
We allow media to think we’re for us, by us and only us and that’s not true,” the super producer tells The Source. “The average hip-hop head watches ‘The Sopranos,’ ‘The Price Is Right’ and ‘SpongeBob SquarePants.’ None of these have any hip-hop innuendos. We’re human beings, capable of being entertained and inspired by many different things. That’s one of the things I fight for.” In addition to cover stories with N¤E¤R¤D and Gnarls Barkley, The magazine’s June issue is expected to hit newsstands in the coming weeks.
N¤E¤R¤D followed with the night’s most rockin’ set. The band was lead by rapper/singer Pharrell Williams and included a hype man, three keyboard players (one of them Williams’ NEPTUNES production team partner, Chad Hugo), two drummers, a bassist, a guitarist and a couple of NFL-sized guys whose jobs consisted of bobbing their heads at either end of the stage. (Bodyguards? Or just friends who’ve landed a cake gig?)
Williams’ rocked out with dynamic, ska-style kick dancing as the band played hits “Rockstar,” “Lap Dance” and “She Wants To Move.” Unfortunately, Pharrell walked straight into a fog machine shooting fog out and caused some sort of damage to his voice. He apologized when they finished the set. I think they were planning on rocking the mic a bit longer but he really did apologize to the audience, which was sweet, According To Sol0492.
Read the whole Review Here.
It looks like two of the three Neptunes Tracks and the Eve Thicke collaboration made it on the album according to amazon.com
Eve – Here I Am (2008) (April 28th)
01 – Ain’t No Stoppin’ Me
02 – All Night Long (Neptunes)
03 – Cash Flow
04 – Fantasy feat. Robin Thicke
05 – Get That Money
06 – Guess Who’s Single (Neptunes)
07 – Here I Am
08 – Give It To You
09 – Step Back
10 – Tambourine
11 – Turn Me On
12 – We Belong Together
– Hey Girl feat. Eminem (Neptunes)
I made some pics but they’re bad quality… But I found this video on youtube, you can see other songs from this concert at http://youtube.com/watch?v=F7VUWbYMqiQ
This part was the best part of the concert!
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