NEWS ROUNDUP: Cardi B Makes Grammy History, Ryan Adams is a Creep, and MORE

Cardi B and Offset make their reconciliation official on the red carpet at the 61st Annual Grammy Awards.

Cardi B Makes Grammy Moves

Cardi B made Grammy history on Sunday night with a huge win in the Best Rap Album category for Invasion of Privacy (she had five nominations total). She’s the first solo female rapper to take home the award – the only other woman to have received a Grammy for Best Rap Album is Lauryn Hill, when her group The Fugees nabbed the 1997 honors with their iconic album The Score. Cardi appeared on the red carpet dressed in vintage Thierry Mugler and husband Offset on her arm, signifying the end of a tense hiatus for the couple following rumors of Offset’s infidelity. Cardi also made fast friends with Lady Gaga, who offered support in the face of a backlash D, she also spent time on the red carpet chatting with Lady Gaga, who was quick to support the rapper in the face of backlash from haters following the award ceremony. Cardi took a brief break from Instagram but, never one to rest on her laurels, capped off the week by releasing “Please Me,” a duet with Bruno Mars.

Donald Glover also had a big night, though he didn’t attend the awards ceremony; Childish Gambino’s “This is America” won both Song of the Year (distinctly given to songwriters) and Record of the Year (which goes to the performers, producers, and engineers). It was the first rap single to do so.

Other big winners included Brandi Carlile, who won three of the six awards she was nominated for (Best Americana Album for By the Way, I Forgive You LP and two awards for its single “The Joke”); Kacey Musgraves, who won overall Album of the Year for Golden Hour as well as three additional awards in Counrty categories; Lady Gaga, who won an award for “Shallow” as well as “Joanne” despite it being released two whole years ago; Ariana Grande who nabbed the Best Pop Vocal Album; St. Vincent who won Best Rock Song for “Masseduction;” Greta Van Fleet who won for Best Rock Album; and Best New Artist Dua Lipa.

We’re Not Surprised Ryan Adams is a Creep

“If people knew they would say I was like R Kelley lol.” This is a pretty damning text coming from a 40-year old man who’s soliciting nudes from a teenager, and they came from none other than Ryan Adams, according to an investigative article by the New York Times. The report details the online relationship between Adams and a woman they call Ava, who was just fourteen when the two began to exchange messages that eventually culminated in phone sex less than two years later. The piece has prompted an FBI investigation into the singer-songwriter, though the alleged victim never disclosed her actual age during their relationship and never met in person.

Whether his actions are criminal or not is somewhat beside the point, though, as the rest of the piece establishes a pattern wherein Adams promised young female musicians – including Phoebe Bridgers, Courtney Jaye, and his ex-wife Mandy Moore – a boost in their careers via collaboration, mentorship, production, tour spots, releasing music via his label Pax-Am (an offshoot of Capitol), et al, but then attempted to shift the relationship to something sexual, even exposing himself to women who came to his studio to develop their projects. In instances where consensual relationships resulted from his advances, they often became obsessive and abusive, and he allegedly held collaborative work hostage as a means of keeping contact open. After remaining vague in a profile in Glamour earlier this year that prompted him to refer to her as a “soggy piece of cardboard,” former teen-pop-star turned actress Mandy Moore went into much greater detail about the control Adams wielded over her career and their relationship, admitting that he was psychologically abusive.

It’s no secret that Adams has penned vindictive tunes about his exes; one of his most beloved songs, “Come Pick Me Up,” from his 2000 solo debut Heartbreaker, is said to be inspired by the end of his relationship with music publicist Amy Lombardi (another track on the record is titled with her first name alone). And though his back to front cover of Taylor Swift’s 1989 was critically praised, it certainly raised eyebrows for some. Since the NYT article was published, Liz Phair, Karen Elson, and others have hinted that professional endeavors with Adams went awry due to similar behavior, which through the years has often been seen as erratic, owing to drug abuse an mental health issues. But in an industry that (as many have pointed out) still needs to have its #MeToo reckoning thanks to the seemingly inextricable tangle of sex, drugs, and rock ‘n’ roll, Ryan Adams’ creepitude is a whole new layer of yikes.

That New New

This delightfully bizarre video for “Under The Sun” has got us so pumped for Spellling’s new record Mazy Fly, which drops February 22 via Sacred Bones.

Pecas are all about the smooth grooves on their latest single “T-Shirt.”

Watch an adorable turtle monch some kale in the new Mal Blum video ahead of their tour in support of Lucy Dacus.

This Robyn video is equal parts promotion for her 2018 album Honey and her new clothing line.

Bebe Rexha shared a video for “Last Hurrah” as a teaser for her yet-unannounced sophomore record.

Lizzo shared a video for the epic title track from her forthcoming album, out April 19.

Lydia Ainsworth returns with “Can You Find Her Place,” from the upcoming LP Phantom Forest, out May 10.

Wet shared a video for “Old Bone” as well as another song, “Trust No Man,” before heading out on tour with Kilo Kish.

Rare DM (formerly known as Ermine) release their debut album Vanta Black on April 12 and have shared a video for “Caracal.”

Cold Cave have released a new one-off single ahead of their tour with Adult.

Tim Hecker is releasing more music from his Tokyo sessions with Japanese gagaku musicians, which resulted in 2018’s gorgeous Konoyo. The companion album, titled Anoyo, will be out May 10 via Kranky; Hecker will do a series of sold-out performances with the Konoyo ensemble at National Sawdust next week.

Julia Holter shared a video for “Les Jeux to You,” which appears on last year’s Aviary LP.

Hand Habits’ sophomore album placeholder comes out March 1 via Saddle Creek; the video for latest single “what lovers do” follows clips for “can’t calm down” and the LP’s title track.

Flock of Dimes and Madeline Kenney are releasing a split 7″ after working together on the latter’s 2018 LP Perfect Shapes; Jenn Wasner’s other musical project, Wye Oak, just released a track called “Evergreen” for Adult Swim’s singles series.

Potty Mouth are back with SNAFU, out March 1, and have a new video for “Starry Eyes” to get us psyched.

Gangster Doodles mastermind Marlon Sassy shared a collab between Madlib and Oh No called “Big Whips,” which will appear on his curated comp Gangster Music Vol. 1.

Take a listen to previously-unreleased Tom Petty track “For Real,” which will appear on a posthumous collection called The Best of Everything on March 1.

End Notes

  • Kenny G spent his Valentine’s Day serenading Kim Kardashian at the behest of Kanye West.
  • A shooting at Westlake Recording Studio in Hollywood on Tuesday jeopardized the recording sessions of Usher and Rich the Kid; members of the latter’s entourage were pistol whipped in the apparent robbery, but no one was shot.
  • Katy Perry has pulled a controversial pair of shoes from her website and other retailers after facing backlash from critics who say the design is a little too reminiscent of blackface.
  • Capcom has uploaded the soundtracks to some of their classic video games, like Mega Man and Street Fighter, to Spotify.
  • Louisville, KY’s Forecastle Fest announced their lineup for this year, which includes The Killers, The Avett Brothers, Anderson .Paak, Maggie Rogers, Chvrches, and more, and will take place July 12-14.
  • Ozzy Osbourne is reportedly doing much better after being hospitalized for complications of the flu.
  • Democratic nominee contender Kamala Harris failed at an attempt to seem cool when she claimed to have listened to Snoop Dog and Tupac while smoking reefer in college… before either had released music.
  • Record Store Day has named Pearl Jam its official ambassadors for RSD2019. The esteemed position has previously been held by the likes of Metallica, Foo Fighters, St. Vincent, Run the Jewels, Jack White, Iggy Pop, and Chuck D.

SHOW REVIEW: Kitty Pryde w/ Deniro Farrar

After having my mind blown by Tinariwen, I was probably better suited for laying around on some grass looking at stars than catching another show, especially one so hyped as hip-hop chanteuse Kitty Pryde’s NYC debut at the Knitting Factory. Opener Deniro Farrar hit the stage late, his style classic and mostly laid-back with spurts of aggressive rhyme. The true highlight of his set was his ultra-chill DJ, whose jams tempered Farrar’s more unabashed outbursts. Even if Farrar, who has been plugging away at the rap game for a while now from his home base in Charlotte, North Carolina, was a bit stung that he had to open for a teenage white girl from Daytona Beach, there was no sign of it; Kitty related a story in which Farrar gave her a backstage pep talk and he was actually far better at hyping her performance than her hype man (who was actually her brother).

Kitty appeared onstage in a pink ruffled prom dress that she claimed to have bought at Kohl’s and a pair of black patent leather combat boots adorned with diamond studded cats.  Even during her more awkward moments, Kitty has that attitude specific to nineteen year olds in which they feel they can pretty much do whatever they please without a second thought of being judged. Kitty Pryde is actually very aware of what judgements are passed on her and simply doesn’t let it affect her; even her raps are rife with jokes made at her own expense which has got to cut down on plenty of naysaying right off the bat. In fact, she’s so self-aware and so good at tongue-in-cheek references to things like online dating and Justin Beiber that it’s hard to believe she’s only nineteen. She looks and acts like it, sure, but could someone that young make such acerbic and often very funny observations about pop culture? A healthy teenage bravado and her awkward Skillex-haired brother tagging along are really the best pieces of proof that she is as young as she claims, and besides that I guess it would be a pretty silly marketing ploy to fake your age and not make yourself old enough to drink even if you’ll get served alcohol regardless.

We weren’t really sure what to make of Kitty Pryde’s flirtatious anthems. Sometimes they border on scandalous, and considering her (supposed) age and coquettish attitude that leaves us just a wee bit queasy. As a rapper she’s not nearly as talented as other ladies in the biz, relying more on her wit and cutesy personae more than anything else. It was hard for her to get through a verse without giggling, some of which is actually written into her lyrics, but most of which was probably an “adorable” way of covering her fuck ups.  She basically exists in a sweet spot created by Kreayshawn, the only heir apparent to that particular throne, though she cites a slightly wider range of influence that includes several members of Odd Future and Kid Cudi among others.

The one thing that really irked me more than any other detail was the laziness behind her production. Granted, she’s been sitting in her bedroom making YouTube videos and basically only has access to beats not made specifically for her. If you have to borrow from someone, you could certainly do worse than the genius of Madlib, but that’s a guy who digs through crates upon crates of 45s and has an encyclopedic knowledge of soul and funk that would probably rival Wikipedia itself. So it’s kind of cheating when you just nonchalantly coo over “Accordion” or whatever (and also call that song “Accordion” on your demo). On the latest EP she’s posted to bandcamp, entitled Haha I’m Sorry, she gets some production help and samples some Carly Rae Jepsen, so maybe the lack of imagination will be less of a fault as DJs come out of the woodwork to get a piece of her pie, which hopefully doesn’t have to be a sexual innuendo.

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What Kitty has going for her (other than tons and tons of buzz) is her fearlessness and her clever charm. For someone who essentially raps about getting a crush on everything, her delivery is slightly more badass and a lot smarter than Britney Spears or Christina Aguilera were able to provide ten years ago (when Kitty Pryde was nine, for those of you not-so-quick with the math). According to the demo for “Thanks Kathryn Obvious” her trajectory went something like this: “I thought I was Sheena – you know? A punk rocker… til I grew into wanting to be Flocka” so maybe being a pop sex kitten was never totally her thing, but she’s certainly feeling out similar territory. She’s also been very quick to build friendships with influential artists, which of course won’t hurt her hype.

After Kitty’s set we moseyed over to a Lazerpop party at Glasslands where Pictureplane was DJing some not so choice cuts, but when he announced he was playing a show at a warehouse pretty damn close to Queens if not actually in it, we thought that we might as well attend. The loft was super sweaty and crowded with kids who had likely waited all night to see him perform. Once he started the floor felt like it was going to cave in so we pretty much called it a night just a few jams in. Then again it was close to 4am at that point so I guess we were actually calling it a morning.[/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]