Justin Bieber and Skrillex sued over vocal loops on Sorry

28 May

Justin Bieber and Skrillex sued over vocal loops on Sorry

Casey Dienel, who records under the name White Hinterland, claims her riff was sampled without permission for the pair’s hit single

Justin Bieber and Skrillex sued over vocal loops on Sorry
‘Received warnings’ … Skrillex and Justin Bieber. Photograph: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images

Justin Bieber and Skrillex are being sued by the indie artist Casey Dienel, according to reports by TMZ.

Dienel, who records under the name White Hinterland, claims the duo used one of her vocal loops without permission on their track Sorry. The eight-second snippet in question is used repeatedly through her 2014 song Ring the Bell. Dienel reportedly claims that the “unique characteristics of the female vocal riff” have been copied. According to TMZ, Bieber’s team received warnings not to use the part but ignored them.

Sorry was a huge hit for Skrillex and Bieber, topping the charts in several countries including the US and the UK. It has been streamed over 6.5m times on Spotify. Ring the Bell, meanwhile, is White Hinterland’s most popular song, with 500,000 streams on Spotify.

Other songwriters on the Bieber track – Julia Michaels, Justin Tranter and Michael Tucker – are reportedly included in the lawsuit.

28 May

Gucci Mane released early from Indiana prison

Rapper Gucci Mane is released months early after serving sentences for aggravated assault and possession of a firearm

Gucci Mane released early from Indiana prison
‘Excited to be going back to his life’s calling’ … Gucci Mane. Photograph: John Amis/AP

Gucci Mane has been released early from prison after serving a federal firearms sentence.

The 36-year-old rapper was due to be released in September but secured an early release after his lawyer, Drew Findling, filed a series of motions claiming that he hadn’t received credit for previous time served.

Mane, whose real name is Radric Davis, had been imprisoned in the Federal Correctional Institution in Terre Haute, Indiana. In 2014 he pleaded guilty to aggravated assault for attacking a fan at an Atlanta nightclub. He was handed a sentence that ran concurrently with a 39-month federal sentence for possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.

According to Findling: “The original computation didn’t give him that credit. We had to file a series of motions. Ultimately, the judge signed an order acknowledging he was entitled to that credit. Then the bureau of prison immediately gave him that credit.”

He added: “He’s trimmed. He’s fit. He’s very excited to go back to his life’s calling, which is being a recording artist.”

28 May

Johnny Depp’s alleged iPhone attack on wife Amber Heard during violent rage 'was not a one-off'

The actress Amber Heard has accused the star of physically assaulting her before she filed for divorce


Johnny Depp’s alleged iPhone attack on Amber Heard was not a one-off, a source close to the actress claimed last night.

The 30-year-old has accused her estranged husband of launching a string of assaults during their stormy 15-month marriage.

Depp denies the claims and friends of his accused her of lying. His lawyer said: “Given the brevity of this marriage and the most recent and tragic loss of his mother, Johnny will not respond to any of the salacious false stories, gossip, misinformation and lies about his personal life.”

But Amber was last night granted a temporary restraining order on the Hollywood icon after sensationally claiming 52-year-old Depp threw an iPhone at her during a violent rage at their Los Angeles apartment last Saturday.

US website TMZ published a picture of Amber with a bruise on her face and she later showed a judge a series of photos with other similar injuries she claims the Pirate of the Caribbean star inflicted on her.

Johnny Depp’s alleged iPhone attack on wife Amber Heard during violent rage 'was not a one-off'
It is reported Amber has filed for a temporary restraining order

The source claimed: “This was not an isolated incident, this was only the latest incident. Amber did what she had to do to take care of herself.”

But police who were called to the apartment after the alleged phone attack reported no signs of injury to her face.

Amber claims Depp went on the rampage and shattered various objects in the apartment.

She alleged she was on the phone to a friend and when Depp grabbed her phone she screamed to the pal: “Call the cops.”

When police arrived at their home, Depp was said to have left. They took a report from her but she reportedly refused to give a full statement.

TMZ reported law enforcement sources said she never alleged any brutality and just complained of an argument. Officers said they had no reason to believe Depp struck Amber with his phone.

According to US reports, Amber wanted the restraining order as there is an “immediate threat of harm”. There were also claims she even has video of one of the alleged beatings.

The judge told Depp to stay 100 yards away from his wife – who has filed for divorce – at least until a hearing next month. Amber was also given the right to live in the family home.

According to legal documents obtained by TMZ, Depp was verbally and physically abusive because of drug and alcohol abuse through their entire relationship.

Amber claimed he showed up “inebriated and high” for her birthday party last month.

Johnny Depp’s alleged iPhone attack on wife Amber Heard during violent rage 'was not a one-off'
Amber Heard leaves court in LA after claiming Johnny Depp physically assaulted her

She claims after the guests left, they argued and he threw a magnum-sized bottle of champagne at the wall and a wine glass at her. He then allegedly grabbed her by the shoulders and pushed her on to the bed. She also claims he grabbed her by the hair and shoved her to the floor. Amber said she didn’t see Depp again for a month, until Saturday night. She claims he was drunk and high again and they were talking about the death of his mum Betty Sue, 81, the day before.

The court documents allege he “suddenly began obsessing” about something, got mad, grabbed the phone, “wound up his arm like a baseball pitcher and threw the cell phone at me, striking my cheek and eye”.

Amber claims Depp also pulled her hair and struck her, then she alleged he grabbed a magnum of wine, drank some and then used it to break objects around the house. According to TMZ, the judge rejected many other requests by Amber – including an order keeping him away from at least one of their dogs, saying there was “an insufficient showing to protect the pet dog”.

But friends of Depp accused Amber of making up the domestic abuse claims. The actor insists she was tagged in a picture on Instagram showing she was partying with friends on Sunday.

Johnny Depp’s alleged iPhone attack on wife Amber Heard during violent rage 'was not a one-off'
The couple confirmed their split this week

Reports of the alleged attack comes amid speculation he is a heavy drinker.

In 2013, he admitted to Rolling Stone that he felt he got on with booze “too well”, but denied he was an alcoholic.

At the time, he had not hit the bottle for 18 months, and said: “I just decided that I’d pretty much got everything I could out of it. I investigated wine and spirits thoroughly, and they certainly investigated me as well.

“I don’t have the physical need for alcohol. No, it’s more my medication, my self-medication over the years to calm the circus.”

Johnny Depp’s alleged iPhone attack on wife Amber Heard during violent rage 'was not a one-off'
Amber filed for divorce this week

Depp and Amber wed in February 2015, after meeting on the set of 2011 film The Rum Diary.

In her divorce documents, which were filed on Monday, she requested spousal support but he is seeking to deny her bid for financial help.

He divorced his first wife, make-up artist Lori Anne Allison, in 1985 after just two years of marriage. He split from French actress partner Vanessa Paradis – who he has daughter Lily-Rose, 16, and 13-year-old son Jack with – in 2012 after 14 years together.

Amber was in a three-year relationship with girlfriend Tasya van Ree until 2011.

27 May

Moby credits a green smoothie with still being alive after his party-hard lifestyle

Moby: “Offsetting the vodka and cocaine I was putting in my system every night.”

Moby credits a green smoothie with still being alive after his party-hard lifestyle
© Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic for Electric Forest

Ever since the release of his autobiography Porcelain earlier this month, Moby has been candid about his once-extreme lifestyle.

The LA-based electronic musician revealed that he had even concocted an “elaborate green smoothie” to negate his party-hard ways.

“I’ve been sober for eight years now, but back when I was a crazy, dysfunctional alcoholic, I used to have this same smoothie every morning as a way of offsetting the vodka and cocaine I was putting in my system every night,” the 50-year-old told The New York Post.

“I think it might have been one of the only things that kept me from dying. It’s about as nutritious and complete as anything could possibly be, with various greens, anti-oxidants, healthy omega-3 fats and more fibre than your average person in Tulsa, Oklahoma probably eats in a lifetime.”

To recreate the ‘Why Does My Heart Feel So Bad?’ singer’s daily drink, mix parsley, kale, a little broccoli raab, a banana, mixed berries, cranberries, flaxseed, chia seeds and DHA [omega-3] oil into a blender.

The self-confessed health food junkie, also extols the virtues of organic white peony tea, explaining: “The tea plant has anti-oxidants, catkins and polyphenols that are really remarkable and don’t exist anywhere else.

“I’m such a fan that I used to co-own, with an ex-girlfriend, a little tea shop on Rivington Street on the Lower East Side called TeaNY, but it closed last year.”

Moby credits a green smoothie with still being alive after his party-hard lifestyle

Moby previously told Digital Spy about the shuttering of his New York café: “I learned that I’m a terrible businessman.

“When public figures think they can open a business even though they’ve got no business experience, it’s a bad idea.”

27 May

Justin Bieber Goes on Dinner Date With Transformers Actress Nicola Peltz

Justin Bieber Goes on Dinner Date With Transformers Actress Nicola Peltz

Do we have a possible new couple on our hands?

Justin Bieber, who has recently been going through some difficult times in the spotlight, was spotted stepping out to enjoy a delicious steak dinner at the popular Mastro’s Steakhouse in Beverly Hills, but he wasn’t alone. The Biebs (who had apparently got a bit sunburned while soaking in the rays earlier this week) was joined by a beautiful blond for the outing.

Does she look familiar? She should.

The singer was accompanied by actress Nicola Peltz, who starred in films such as Airbender and Transformers: Age of Extinction as well as the hit TV series Bates Motel. If that still doesn’t hit the nail on the head, she also recently starred in Zayn Malik’s black and white music video for “It’s You.”

Yes, she was the gorgeous girl by the pool.

“Justin walked out of the car and opened the door for her like a gentleman and they got out and walked in,” an eyewitness tells E! News of the pair’s dinner date. “There were two security guards with them. Justin’s face looked like he had been in the sun.”

Another source tells E! News, “They are not a couple, they just went on a date. Justin thinks she is really pretty, though,” adding that, “Justin is single at this moment.”

Earlier in the week, Bieber enjoyed some R&R with his musician pal Martin Garrix. The duo and videographer Rory Kramer spent a night under the stars together on the beach and in a luxurious spa and hotel, an experience Bieber shared with fans on Instagram and spoke highly of.

“I had one of the best nights of my life last night,” Bieber wrote on one of his posts, while another said, “These are the nights I live for.”

And apparently, it was all on a whim. Garrix wrote, “‘Let’s just get out of here.’ so we jumped in @rorykramer his car, bought a bunch of camping stuff and went camping @justinbieber // these are the nights I live for.”


27 May

Gwen Stefani Teases "Misery" Music Video and Is the Epitome of Old Hollywood Glamour

She looks anything but miserable.

Gwen Stefani teased the forthcoming music video for her single “Misery,” Thursday, and she looks stunning. Dressed like an old Hollywood starlet, Gwen wears a sheer gown outfitted with black feather-like accessories. The No Doubt songstress looks anxious and alone as she belts her heart out, but she isn’t totally alone—there are also two dancers featured.

As they say, misery loves company.

“It’s coming! #Misery music video…” she wrote on Twitter. “#ThisIsWhatTheTruthFeelsLike.”

That’s not the only thing Stefani debuted Thursday, either! The “Hollaback Girl” changed her Twitter avatar to a promotion of Blake Shelton’s new album, If I’m Honest. Talk about love! Although these two have been serious for a while now, their love was more obvious than even during both performances of their duet “Go Ahead and Break My Heart.”

Gwen Stefani Teases "Misery" Music Video and Is the Epitome of Old Hollywood Glamour

Blake Shelton and Gwen Stefani first performed their romantic track on The Voice, where they couldn’t help but stare at each other with besotted eyes. Those gaga-looking eyes made a grand return when they took the stage at the 2016 Billboard Music Awards and performed the song again.

“They looked very in love during the song and after,” an eyewitness told E! News. “And when Blake grabbed her hand, it was like he was very proud to be up there with Gwen. He looked at her like he is crazy about her.”

Both singers have gushed about how much the song means to them. “This is one of my favorite songs I’ve ever written or recorded,” Blake Shelton said when the performance was first announced. “It came from a time and place when Gwen and I were beginning our journey together and both experiencing a hard time letting our guards down with each other.”

Naturally, Gwen felt the same way.

“Yeah, it feels like, ‘Wow, that happened.’ I can’t believe I wrote a song with that guy.” Gwen shared with E! News at 102.7 KIISFM’s Wango Tango. “And then we got a chance to sing it together on The Voice. Like…and everyone got to see that. It was a miracle. It was incredible.”

27 May

Leona Lewis to replace Nicole Scherzinger in Cats musical

The X Factor winner Leona Lewis will take over the Pussycat Doll’s role as Grizabella in the Broadway revival of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s musical

Leona Lewis to replace Nicole Scherzinger in Cats musical
Leona Lewis. Photograph: Frank Micelotta/Getty Images

The X Factor winner Leona Lewis will replace Nicole Scherzinger as Grizabella in the Broadway revival of Cats.

The singer announced the news on Twitter, saying: “Can’t even believe this. I’m thrilled & honoured to announce I’ll be playing the part of Grizabella in CatsBroadway!”

The part had been played by former Pussycat Doll Scherzinger in London and she was due to return to the theatre for the Broadway version but pulled out just before rehearsals began.

Andrew Lloyd Webber confirmed she dropped out to return to the UK’s X Factor judging panel and admitted he was “furious” about it.

At the time he told The Economist Radio: “I mean, she’s crazy. But the American producers just took a view – ‘Well, fine, we’ll get somebody else,’ because she’s actually not very well known in America, amazingly. She’s much better known here.”

The musical theatre supremo said Scherzinger’s move had made him look foolish.

He said: “I’m furious, because I really believe she’s the most fantastically talented girl, and I went out on a limb to get her for the London Palladium here, and it makes me look like an absolute twot with them all.

“But never mind, there’ll be another girl on Broadway and Nicole will not get her Tony award.”

Lloyd Webber tweeted: “Very excited to welcome @leonalewis to the CatsMusical family in CatsBroadway. #TeamALW.”

Lewis won the third series of The X Factor in 2006 and went on to achieve success with singles including Bleeding Love, Run and Better in Time.

26 May

Contract that helped bring Bach's St Matthew Passion to the world to be auctioned

The contract for the first ever publication of Bach’s Matthew Passion – the work that Mendelssohn rediscovered and which introduced Bach to a modern audience – is to be auctioned today at Sotheby’s.

Contract that helped bring Bach's St Matthew Passion to the world to be auctioned
A statue of JS Bach in front of the Thomas Church in Leipzig, Germany, where his St Matthew Passion was first performed in 1727. Photograph: Peter Usbeck/Alamy

When JS Bach died in 1750, his music was virtually forgotten. Only a few of his compositions were published in his lifetime. His music survived in handwritten copies prepared by himself and his pupils, and as a result many works were lost, or survive incomplete. In the circumstances, we should be fortunate that so much has survived.

It was early in the 19th century, thanks to the young Felix Mendelssohn and others, that Bach’s works began to be noticed. On 11 March 1829, one of his towering masterpieces, the St Matthew Passion, was thrust on an unsuspecting world. Mendelssohn, barely out of his teens, conducted a performance, heavily cut and in part re-orchestrated by him, at the Berlin Singakademie, a building and institution that survive still today. Two further performances followed there on 21 March and 18 April, the latter conducted by Mendelssohn’s teacher CF Zelter.

These performances were revelatory sensations. The St Matthew Passion was relaunched to a modern audience. But Mendelssohn’s concerts took place using manuscript parts as there was nothing yet in print.

Contract that helped bring Bach's St Matthew Passion to the world to be auctioned
The 1829 contract for the publication of Bach’s St Matthew Passion. Photograph: Courtesy Sotheby’s

A new document has recently been discovered that sheds light on the first publication of the work. The document is completely unknown and unrecorded in the extensive literature on Bach and his Passion and it reveals how quickly the work was edited and printed after Mendelssohn’s concerts. It is the contract between the musician and journalist Adolf Bernhard Marx and the publisher Adolf Martin Schlesinger.

The publication of the Matthew Passion was a stunning success and …propelled Bach’s masterpiece to the wider world.

It is dated 8 April 1829, that is to say, between the second and third performances of Mendelssohn’s version. The contract is signed by both Marx and Schlesinger and was retained by the publisher in his archive, where it remained for almost two hundred years, until its recent discovery.

The document provides a lot of detail about the background to the Passion’s publication. Schlesinger charged Marx with making a vocal score, for voices and piano (he also published one for full orchestra and chorus). He specified fees, including a down-payment, the rest on completion. If Marx used the services of others, presumably Mendelssohn and Zelter, it was up to him to pay them, not Schlesinger. We have to be especially grateful to Marx that he did not use Mendelssohn’s heavily cut, revised and re-orchestrated version. Instead he went back to Bach’s original found in the earliest manuscripts. Had he not done so, the world might easily have lost the St Matthew Passion as conceived by Bach.


The publication of the Matthew Passion in 1830 was a stunning success and the mass-printing of the vocal and full scores propelled Bach’s towering masterpiece to the wider world. It could now be performed anywhere in Germany or where German was spoken and sung. The explosion of interest in Bach, ignited by Marx, Mendelssohn, Zelter and Schlesinger, dates from this publication. It established Bach’s reputation worldwide. Without the St Matthew Passion, the world would be a much less interesting place.

26 May

Paul McCartney: I was depressed after the Beatles broke up

McCartney spoke about Kanye (‘I love him – he’s a monster’), writing a love song for John Lennon and Wings (‘we were terrible’) before a star-studded Mastertapes audience

Paul McCartney: Beatles’ disbandment sent me into depression
Paul McCartney: Beatles’ disbandment sent me into depression

Paul McCartney has revealed that he started drinking heavily and came close to quitting music altogether after the Beatles disbanded in 1970.

Discussing his career at a recording of Mastertapes for Radio 4, the songwriter described how he formed the group Wings. “I was depressed. You would be. You were breaking from your lifelong friends,” he said. “So I took to the bevvies. I took to a wee dram. It was great at first, then suddenly I wasn’t having a good time … I wanted to get back to square one, so I ended up forming Wings.”

“It was difficult to know what to do after the Beatles. How do you follow that?” he asked presenter John Wilson.

McCartney also touched on the criticism aimed at Wings, agreeing that he and his wife Linda, who died in 1998, “weren’t that good”.

He said: “We were terrible. We knew Linda couldn’t play, but she learned, and looking back on it, I’m really glad we did it … I could have just formed a supergroup, and rung up Eric Clapton and Jimmy Page and John Bonham,” McCartney said, before adding: “But you still remember the names of the people who gave you really bad, vicious reviews: Charles Shaar Murray shall ever be hated!”

The audience in the BBC’s Maida Vale studio, which included Brad Pitt, James Bay and Paul Weller, were also privy to discussions about his relationship with John Lennon. “I was really grateful that we got it back together before he died. Because it would have been very difficult to deal with if … well, it was very difficult anyway.”


McCartney played a few bars of Here Today, the song he wrote about Lennon in 1982, and said: “I’m quite private and don’t like to give too much away. Why should people know my innermost thoughts? But a song is the place to put them. In Here Today, I say to John, ‘I love you.’”

“I couldn’t have said that to him unless we were extremely drunk – I love you, man! – but you can put these emotions, these deeper and sometimes awkward truths, in a song.”

McCartney also spoke about collaborating with Kanye West on Rihanna’s song FourFiveSeconds. “I love Kanye and he loves me. He’s a monster. He’s a crazy guy who comes up with great stuff, so he inspires me. It was definitely different, because we never appeared to write a song. A lot of what we did was just tell each other stories.”

The episode of Mastertapes will be broadcast on BBC Radio 4 at 10am on 28 May, and a filmed version will be available on BBC iPlayer.

26 May

Madonna answers critics of her Prince tribute at Billboard music awards

Tonight Show bandleader and Roots drummer Questlove defends singer’s performance, writing on Twitter that ‘the Purple Standard is hard boots to fill’

Madonna answers critics of her Prince tribute at Billboard music awards
‘I love Prince 4 ever’ … Madonna on stage at the 2016 Billboard music awards. Photograph: JB Lacroix/WireImage

Madonna has come to her own defence after her much-criticised tribute to Prince at the Billboard music awards on 22 May. Anyone, regardless of “age, gender or skin colour” is entitled to celebrate the late musician, the singer wrote on Instagram.

Madonna performed Nothing Compares 2 U and a duet with Stevie Wonder of Purple Rain. Her interpretation of the late artist’s music was met with disdain in some circles. “Anyone who wants to do a tribute to Prince is welcome to,” Madonna posted the following day on Instagram. “If you loved him and he inspired you then show it!!!! I love Prince 4 ever.”


Not everyone was critical of the tribute. Questlove, who helped to orchestrate the Prince section of the Billboard ceremony, praised Madonna’s performance. In a series of tweets, the Roots drummer and the Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon bandleader said people who were sceptical of Madonna’s moment were still processing the pop icon’s death. “Because of P’s well-known love for the *poof* vanishing act, a lot of us are left feeling incomplete in the act of saying goodbye.” He added: “Naturally, there will be folded arms & shade thrown because the Purple Standard is hard boots to fill & a lot of us don’t wanna come 2 grips.”

He said that fans should be prepared for an onslaught of tributes at other awards shows over the coming year. “Every Prince rendition will not be a life changing orgasmic xperience. Just to SING his work is brave enough. Again feeling are on high.”

Prince played guitar on three songs from Madonna’s 1989 album Like a Prayer. Their relationship, however, was considered tumultuous. During a concert in London in 2007, Prince said: “I got so many hits y’all can’t handle me. I got more hits than Madonna’s got kids.”

26 May

Alesha Dixon and 5ive pull out of Brexit gig

Acts cancel performances Alesha Dixon on discovering that BPop Live gig a few days before referendum is endorsed by Leave.EU

Alesha Dixon and 5ive pull out of Brexit gig
Alesha Dixon’s management said the singer ‘has no political allegiances either way on this issue’. Photograph: Mark Robert Milan/GC Images

Alesha Dixon has joined boyband 5ive in pulling out of a gig after discovering it is a political rally.

Both acts had been billed to join Sister Sledge and East 17 at the Bpoplive gig in Birmingham days before the 23 June EU referendum.

But they have withdrawn after discovering the gig is being put on by the Leave.EU campaign, which was founded by businessman and Ukip donor Arron Banks.

The concert has already been hit by a number of line-up changes as acts discovered its political nature.

Drum’n’bass act Sigma pulled out, telling BuzzFeed they were “in no way supporting the event” when asked if they were in favour of Britain voting to leave the EU.

Dixon, a judge on Britain’s Got Talent, announced she had pulled out of the gig hours after 5ive declared they had.

Her management said: “When Alesha was approached to perform at this event it was on the understanding that this was a multi-artist pop concert in a fantastic venue in the heart of the UK and Alesha would be there purely as an entertainer.

“It has now come to light that this is more of a political rally with entertainment included and we have decided to withdraw Alesha from the event. We wish to apologise to any fans who may have purchased tickets for this event. I would like to make it clear that Alesha has no political allegiances either way on this issue.”

Earlier on Tuesday, 5ive had announced two of its members – Ritchie Neville and Scott Robinson – had cancelled their performance. The band’s third member, Sean Conlon, was never due to perform at the gig because he was not available.

In a statement 5ive said: “When Rich and Scott agreed to play the event they understood that it was a pop concert funded by one of the Brexit organisations and not a political rally. As it has come to light that this is more of a political rally with entertainment included they have both decided to cancel their involvement.

“They would like to make it clear that as a band 5ive has no political allegiances or opinions for either side. Their allegiance is first and foremost to their fans.”

26 May

Neil Young permits Trump to Keep on Rockin'

Young excuses Donald Trump’s use of Rockin’ in the Free World on campaign trail, saying: ‘Once the music goes out, everybody can use it’

Neil Young – a confessed Bernie Sanders supporter – has approved Donald Trump’s use of his music on the campaign trial.


Almost a year after the Canadian artist protested against the Republican representative’s use of Rockin’ in the Free World at a rally, Young has adjusted his position on the situation, saying that he has “nothing against him” but simply wanted to be given approval of the decision. Referring to the claim Trump’s team made about an agreement with the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers for the right to play the track from his 1989 album Freedom, Young said:

“He actually got a licence to use it. I mean, he said he did and I believe him. So I got nothing against him. You know, once the music goes out, everybody can use it for anything. But if the artist who made it is saying you never spoke to them, if that means something to you, you probably will stop playing it. And it meant something to Donald and he stopped.”

He added: “The fact that I said I was for Bernie Sanders and then he didn’t ask me to use Rockin’ in the Free World doesn’t mean that he can’t use it.”

In June 2015, Young released a statement about the use of his song at Trump’s campaign rally. “Had I been asked to allow my music to be used for a candidate, I would have said no,” he said. “I am Canadian and I don’t vote in the United States, but more importantly I don’t like the current political system in the USA and some other countries. Increasingly democracy has been hijacked by corporate interests. The money needed to run for office, the money spent on lobbying by special interests, the ever increasing economic disparity and the well-funded legislative decisions all favour corporate interests over the people’s.”

It’s likely that Trump has since lost interest in using the track anyway. Following Young’s initial statement last year, he tweeted:

Neil Young permits Trump to Keep on Rockin'

26 May

Calvin Harris cancels second concert after car crash

British DJ Calvin Harris and producer pulls out of festival in Alabama after going to hospital with cut nose sustained in collision in Los Angeles


Calvin Harris cancels second concert after car crash
Calvin Harris, real name Adam Richard Wiles. Photograph: Rich Fury/Invision/AP

Superstar DJ Calvin Harris has pulled out of a second concert following a car crash in Los Angeles.

The Scottish producer was taken to hospital with a cut to his nose after the collision at around 11pm local time on Friday.

Harris was a passenger in a Cadillac when the vehicle collided with a Volkswagen Beetle in Coldwater Canyon, near Beverley Hills, a Los Angeles police department (LAPD) spokeswoman said.

She said: “A vehicle crossed the centre line and collided with an SUV which Harris was a passenger in.

“He was transported to a local hospital for a cut to his nose.

“In the other vehicle a juvenile was ejected from the vehicle for not wearing a seatbelt and suffered a broken pelvis. All the passengers in the car were juveniles.”

The driver was reportedly a 16-year-old girl, according to celebrity news website TMZ.

The Feel So Close singer, who is dating Taylor Swift, was forced to pull out of a performance at the Omnia nightclub in Las Vegas as doctors recommended he take a few days off to recover.

And the 32-year-old, whose real name is Adam Richard Wiles, will also miss a headline slot at the Hangout festival in Alabama on Saturday night.

A spokeswoman for the DJ said on Saturday night: “Adam was a passenger in a vehicle that was struck in a serious collision last night in Los Angeles. He was examined by doctors and sustained a number of injuries.

“He has since been checked out of hospital and is now recovering. We wish all the other passengers involved in the incident a fast recovery.

“As a result he was not able to perform in Las Vegas at his Omnia residency and will be unable to perform tonight at Hangout festival in Gulf Shores, Alabama.”

On Friday, a statement on his official Facebook page said: “Adam’s transport was involved in a collision this evening on the way to the airport. As a result he will be unable to perform at Omnia tonight.

“He has been examined by doctors and told to rest for a few days.”

Other musicians sent messages of support on social media.

Hangout festival tweeted: “Calvin Harris is unable to perform tonight. All of us at Hangout wish him and everyone involved in last night’s collision a speedy recovery.”

American band Panic! At the Disco, who moved their set to fill in for the headliner, said: “Wishing all involved in last night’s accident a speedy recovery and hope we do you proud, Calvin.”

26 May

One person killed and three wounded in shooting at rapper TI's New York show

Reports suggest an argument backstage escalated into a fatal shooting at the hip-hop star’s Irving Plaza concert

One person killed and three wounded in shooting at rapper TI's New York show
TI … no statement on shooting. Photograph: Omar Vega/Invision/AP

One person was killed and three others wounded in a shooting inside a concert venue in New York City, where hip-hop artist TI was scheduled to perform, police said.

It happened around 10.15 pm Wednesday in a third-floor green room area at Irving Plaza, a 1,025-capacity ballroom-style music venue near Manhattan’s Union Square.

Police said a 33-year-old man was shot in the stomach. He was taken to a hospital, where he died a short time later. A 34-year-old man was shot in the chest. He was listed in critical condition. A 26-year-old woman and a 30-year-old man were both shot in the leg. They were expected to survive.

Police said they were unsure who had been in the venue’s green room at the time, and it was not immediately known who had access to that area. Though there were metal detectors at the entrance to the club, the perpetrator was able to avoid them to bring a gun into the venue.

One person killed and three wounded in shooting at rapper TI's New York show
Police outside Irving Plaza, near Manhattan’s Union Square in New York after the shooting. Photograph: Dana Schimmel/AP

The New York Daily News reported that an employee of the venue said the shooting was the result of “a beef between two rival crews”, associated with different rappers – not TI – who had credentials to get to the green room.

A separate witness who was in the green room, Johnny Wilkins, told the Daily News: “It was a fight over a push, it was some bullshit. It was like 50 or 60 people in the VIP room. It was crazy. It’s crazy more people didn’t get shot.”

Ayo Fagbemi, a 21-year-old student, told the New York Times he heard two gunshots “and right after there was a stampede”. After people began trying to flee the venue, he said he heard a third shot.

Another witness, Paul Cantor, told the New York Times he had seen a fight spill from the backstage area on to the stage, with one man falling backwards. “There was a body that came across the stage, sort of with flailing arms,” he said, adding there was a gap of seconds between him seeing the fight and hearing gunshots.

Elijah Rodriguez was attending the concert with his sister and they were in the VIP area by the stage. He said TI was supposed to go on stage at 9 or 9:30 pm but “he never showed up”. At or around 10pm he said the venue started playing music again, and at about 10.15pm, he saw a line of people coming out from where the performers were coming onstage.

“All the sudden I heard someone saying that there was a shot, that someone got shot,” Rodriguez said.

One person killed and three wounded in shooting at rapper TI's New York show
TI performing at Madison Square Gardens in New York, 2015. The hip-hop stars representatives are referring all questions about the shooting to police. Photograph: Scott Roth/Invision/AP

Rodriguez didn’t actually hear the shots himself, but heard people saying that someone had gotten shot.

“It was scary to deal with. When I got outside, like literally across the street, there were a few girls having panic attacks. One girl thought she saw someone get shot in front of her,” Rodriguez said, adding that TI was not on stage when the shots were fired.

Video shot inside the venue showed a chaotic scene as concertgoers rushed to the sides trying to leave the area as a group of people tended to a person on the floor.

Representatives for TI, whose real name is Clifford Joseph Harris Jr, said they were referring all questions about the shooting to police. No arrests have yet been made.

26 May

Kanye West’s use of N-word in song is justified, says Paul McCartney

Ex-Beatle McCartney says US rapper’s use of racial term in melody he originally wrote ‘made it seriously urban’ saying he is pleased with its use in this context

Kanye West’s use of N-word in song is justified, says Paul McCartney
Paul McCartney performs with Kanye West at the Grammy Awards in 2015 – the former Beatle has defended the US rapper’s use of the N-word in lyrics. Photograph: Frank Micelotta/Rex

Paul McCartney has said Kanye West’s repeated use of the N-word was justified in the context of the “urban generation” the rapper talks about in his lyrics.

Describing the rapper fondly as a “monster” and “a crazy guy who comes up with great stuff so he inspires me”, McCartney told a star-studded audience at a Mastertapes session at the BBC’s Maida Vale studios about a recent collaboration in which West used a melody by the former Beatle.

“I get this track back, a thing called All Day: he’s taken my melody and he’s made it seriously urban, which is funny because the lyrics use the N-word – a lot! ‘How long have you been at the mall?’ ‘All day, -word!’,” said McCartney, according to a report by the Radio Times.

“It’s a great record, sonically it’s brilliant, but quite a few people said, ‘You can’t be connected with this, there’s, like, 40 N-words!

“People like Oprah, who’s a little conservative about that stuff, said, ‘You shouldn’t do it, even black people shouldn’t use that word. I said, ‘Yeah, but it’s Kanye! And he’s talking about an urban generation that uses that word in a completely different way.’ It’s the context. So I was actually pleased with it.”

West debuted All Day in a heavily censored performance at the Brits in February 2015. The melody McCartney played West is reportedly from an unreleased song from 1969 which McCartney was inspired to write, and play with two fingers on the guitar, after seeing a Picasso painting.

McCartney also told the audience, which included Brad Pitt and Paul Weller, that he “took to the bevvies” after the band split up.

He said: “I took to a wee dram. It was great at first, then suddenly I wasn’t having a good time. It wasn’t working. I wanted to get back to square one, so I ended up forming Wings.

McCartney added he was glad he had reconciled with John Lennon before his death after his relationship with his former bandmate had soured over the group’s finances in the 70s. He said his 1982 song Here Today, recorded two years after Lennon was murdered, was his way of telling his friend he loved him.

He said: “I was thinking of all the things I never said to him. I’m quite private and don’t like to give too much away. Why should people know my innermost thoughts? But a song is the place to put them. In Here Today I say to John, ‘I love you’.

“I couldn’t have said that to him unless we were extremely drunk – ‘I love you, man!’ But you can put these emotions, these deeper and sometimes awkward truths, in a song.”