Monthly Archives: February 2012

Adam Lambert to front Queen? Not so fast . . .

Adam Lambert has cleared up reports he is the new frontman of Queen, insisting remarks he made about joining the band were “taken out of context.”

In a recent interview, Lambert appeared to confirm he was heading on the road with original group members Brian May and Roger Taylor for a tour later this year. However, Lambert claims he was actually referring to a previous performance he and the rock icons gave at the MTV European Music Awards in November.

In a post on, he writes, “Oooh them clever reporters takin [sic] my quotes outta [out of] context… I haven’t confirmed any guest appearances. I was talking about the EMAs.

“That being said, I’m truly flattered by your jump to such glorious conclusions Mr Journalist!!”

A spokesperson for Queen’s label, Hollywood Records, admits there have been discussions about Lambert teaming up with the band, but no official deal has been inked. The representative tells Rolling Stone, “Adam may perform with Queen at [European music festival] Sonisphere. This is not confirmed. Nothing has been signed.”



The Grammy Hosts

When LL Cool J hits the Grammy stage on Feb. 12, it will mark the first time the Grammys have had a host since Queen Latifahhosted the show in 2005. (In the intervening years, they’ve gone with what they call a “host-less format,” where various celebrities open and close the show and fulfill other host functions. It’s supposed to be save a little time, but it always just looks like they couldn’t find a host.)

Both LL and Latifah are former Grammy winners. LL won Best Rap Solo Performance for 1991’s “Mama Said Knock You Out” and 1996’s “Hey Lover.” Latifah won in the same category for 1994’s “U.N.I.T.Y.” It’s interesting that both of the last two hosts started out as rappers, though both are now multi-media stars. Since 2009, LL has been one of the stars of NCIS: Los Angeles. Latifah has appeared in many movies, including Jungle Fever, Hairspray and Chicago, for which she received an Oscar nomination.

Three previous Grammy hosts had also won Grammys prior to their hosting stints. Kenny Rogers, who hosted the show in 1980 and 1986, had won Best Country Vocal Performance, Male, for his 1977 hit “Lucille.” He won in that category again for “The Gambler” on the night he first hosted the show. (It’s the only time that a host has won a Grammy that same night.) Rogers went on to win a third Grammy for a 1987 collabo with Ronnie Milsap.

Paul Simon, who hosted the show the show in 1981, is true Grammy royalty. He had won 14 Grammys at that point and has since won two more.

Whoopi Goldberg, who hosted the Grammys four times, starting in 1992, had won a Grammy for Best Comedy Recording for her 1985 album Whoopi Goldberg. The album documented her one-woman Broadway show which ran for 156 performances in 1984-1985.

Two Grammy hosts won Grammys only after their hosting years. Jon Stewart, who hosted the show in 2001 and 2002, won for his 2004 album America: A Citizens Guide To Democracy Inaction and his 2010 album Earth (The Audiobook). The albums are similar in format, but won in different categories. The first won for Best Comedy Album; the second for Best Spoken Word Album.

The other Grammy host to win only after his hosting years was John Denver, who hosted six times, starting in 1978. Sadly, his only Grammy win came four months after he died in a 1997 plane crash. That posthumous award came in February 1998 (20 years and two days after he first hosted the show) for Best Musical Album For Children for All Aboard!

All the other Grammy hosts have yet to hear their name called out as a Grammy winner.


Madonna Dazzles in Super Bowl Half-time Show

Madonna on Sunday dazzled the Super Bowl crowd with an high-octane half-time show that started with an army of Roman gladiators and ended with plea for world peace written in lights.

The glittering 12-minute performance at Lucas Oil Stadium featuring several guest stars had legions of fans racing to Twitter to give their thumbs-up, with some going so far as to declare it one of the best in Super Bowl history. “Now THAT was a halftime show!” said @michaelsette7 of Toronto in a typical tweet of approval. “All hail the queen. Bow down everyone, bow down!” Entertainment Weekly critic Ken Tucker agreed, calling Madonna’s performance “joyous, unironic, open-hearted … She was both in full command and full of generosity towards her massive audience.”

With a new album titled “MDNA” out March 26, the 53-year-old Madonna teamed up with choreographer Jamie King and Canada’s Cirque du Soleil for the most-watched musical interlude of any major sporting event in the world. Her challenge was to redeem last year’s dismal showing by the Black Eyed Peas, whose futuristic performance failed to impress spectators already put out by Christina Aguilera botching the lyrics of the US national anthem.

With muscular spear-wielding gladiators in gold marching onto the field, Madonna — styling herself as a Roman empress with a diamond-studded crown and kinky thigh-high boots — kicked off the show with her 1990 dance hit “Vogue.” She then shifted into hip-hop mode, bringing out breakdancers — and an impressive tight-rope walker — for “Music” from 2008, accompanied by electro duo LMFAO who sampled their 2011 hit “Sexy and I Know It.” Rap queen Nicki Minaj and irreverent M.I.A. then joined Madonna for the just-released “Give Me All Your Luvin” set to a “Glee”-like cheerleader theme, complete with golden pom-poms and marching band.

In a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it moment, M.I.A. — real name, Mathangi “Maya” Arulpragasam — flipped a middle finger to the camera while singing a four-letter word that is part of “Luvin”‘s original lyrics. The image on the screen then scrambled just as briefly, suggesting that NBC television — the official broadcaster of this year’s Super Bowl — was caught off-guard.” We apologize for the inappropriate gesture that aired during halftime,” NBC spokesman Christopher McCloskey said. “It was a spontaneous gesture that our delay system caught late.”

For the finale, Madonna rolled out her 1989 hit “Like A Prayer” with crooner Cee-Lo Green, a black-robed gospel choir and the stadium illuminated with thousands of tiny lights, concluding with the words “world peace” set against the darkness of the field — and Madonna disappearing in a puff of smoke.

Half-time at the Super Bowl has been one of the most coveted gigs in American pop music since the late Michael Jackson performed with a 3,500-child choir in 1993, but hit a bump with his sister Janet Jackson’s infamous “wardrobe malfunction” in 2004.

“This is a Midwestern girl’s dream to be performing at the half-time show,” said Madonna, a Michigan native, prior to Sunday’s show.

Performing the national anthem before kickoff was “American Idol” winner Kelly Clarkson, with country stars Blake Shelton and Miranda Lambert adding to the patriotic mood with a duet version of “America the Beautiful.”