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Launch of The Maestro Cares Foundation PDF Print E-mail
Written by Staff   
Saturday, 28 January 2012 08:07


International pop superstar Marc Anthony and entrepreneur Henry Cardenas announced today the creation of the Maestro Cares Foundation (MC), a non-profit organization established to benefit charitable organizations in developing Latin American countries. Maestro Cares seeks to offer assistance to orphaned and disadvantaged children while supporting social services and other development programs.

"I'm blessed to be a part of this project," said Anthony. "There are millions of children suffering throughout Latin America. Maestro Cares seeks to make a positive impact in their lives. I'm grateful to [co-founder] Henry Cardenas for his contributions to this initiative and we are both eager to get started. I hope Maestro Cares will inspire others to do the same."

Initial projects involve assisting in the development of orphanages in Puerto Rico, Colombia, and the Dominican Republic by providing food, school supplies, dorm rooms, classrooms and clinics so that children are surrounded by a healthy environment for learning. By providing children with education, recreation and other development programs within an orphanage, Maestro Cares seeks to instill a culture that includes a strong work ethic, confidence, discipline and hope.

"Our mission is to help Latin American children in creating healthy and safe environments, but a major priority is also supporting their academic needs," said Cardenas. "Education is key for Maestro Cares because it will bring the children closer to their dreams. They are our future leaders."

The Maestro Cares Foundation will work in association with other organizations to help fund programs that directly improve the wellbeing of children. The first of the orphanages that will benefit from Maestro Cares is Orfanato Niños de Cristo in La Romana in the Dominican Republic, where 40 boys are in need of housing.

"The creation of Maestro Cares is a testimony to the wonderful spirit of Mr. Anthony and Mr. Cardenas," said Sonia Hane, Founder of Orfanato Niños de Cristo Orphanage. "The commitment of these gentlemen is an inspiration to us, and I am confident that the impact of Maestro Cares will be felt by the children in this country for many years to come."

For more information, visit maestrocares.org. You can also follow Maestro Cares on Twitter @MaestroCares and Facebook (Facebook.com/Maestro Cares).

A special account in the name of the Maestro Cares Foundation has been set up to receive donations and individuals will also be able to contribute to Maestro Cares through a series of concerts in 2012 to support the work of the Foundation.

Last Updated on Saturday, 28 January 2012 08:07
2012 GRAMMY Nominees Album PDF Print E-mail
Written by Staff   
Saturday, 28 January 2012 07:08


The 18th edition: 2012 GRAMMY Nominees album was released digitally and in stores January 24, 2012. The album features 22 hits that represent nominees for many of the most widely recognized GRAMMY categories, including Record of the Year, Album of the Year, Best New Artist, Best Country Album and Best Pop Duo/Group Performance. Artists include Adele, Katy Perry, Amy Winehouse, Rihanna, Nicki Minaj, Lady Gaga, Foo Fighters, Foster The People and many others.

Universal Republic Records and The Recording Academy have paired together to release the album. This will be the 18th edition of the best-selling collection. A portion of the proceeds from the album benefits the MusiCares Foundation and the GRAMMY Foundation – both of which were established by The Recording Academy.

This year’s GRAMMY Awards will take place on Sunday, February 12 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles hosted by hip hop artist and actor LL Cool J and air on CBS.

2012 GRAMMY Nominees Album Tracklist:

1. Adele: “Rolling In The Deep,” nominated for Record Of The Year and Album Of The Year.

2. Bruno Mars: “Grenade,” nominated for Record Of The Year and Album Of The Year.

3. Katy Perry: “Firework,” nominated for Record Of The Year.

4. Maroon 5 featuring Christina Aguilera: “Moves Like Jagger,” nominated for Best Pop Duo/Group Performance.

5. Nicki Minaj: “Super Bass,” nominated for Best New Artist.

6. Rihanna featuring Drake: “What’s My Name?” nominated for Album Of The Year.

7. J. Cole: “Work Out,” nominated for Best New Artist.

8. Lady Gaga: “You and I,” nominated for Album Of The Year.

9. Foster The People: “Pumped Up Kicks,” nominated for Best Pop Duo/Group Performance.

10. Skrillex: “Scary Monsters And Nice Sprites,” nominated for Best New Artist.

11. Coldplay: “Paradise,” nominated for Best Pop Duo/Group Performance.

12. Foo Fighters: “Walk,” nominated for Album Of The Year.

13. The Band Perry: “If I Die Young,” nominated for Best New Artist.

14. Mumford & Sons: “The Cave,” nominated for Record Of The Year.

15. Bon Iver: “Holocene,” nominated for Record Of The Year and Best New Artist.

16. Lady Antebellum: “Just A Kiss,” nominated for Best Country Album.

17. Taylor Swift: “Mean,” nominated for Best Country Album.

18. Blake Shelton: “Honey Bee,” nominated for Best Country Album.

19. Eric Church: “Drink In My Hand,” nominated for Best Country Album.

20. The Black Keys: “Dearest,” nominated for Best Pop Duo/Group Performance.

21. Jason Aldean with Kelly Clarkson: “Don’t You Wanna Stay,” nominated for Best Country Album.

22. Tony Bennett and Amy Winehouse: “Body and Soul,” nominated for Best Pop Duo/Group Performance.

Last Updated on Saturday, 28 January 2012 07:09
Rhapsody Acquires Napster International PDF Print E-mail
Written by Staff   
Friday, 27 January 2012 13:29


Rhapsody has announced its European expansion through the acquisition of Napster International, the first music subscription service (flat rate) in Europe. Rhapsody will own and operate the service Napster in Germany and United Kingdom.

"The acquisition of Napster and its subscribers in the United Kingdom and Germany gives us an ideal entry to the European market," said Jon Irwin, CEO of Rhapsody. "Through the benefit of scale, the strength of our editorial program and strategic partnerships can be now Napster service to more consumers in a variety of platforms".

The news of the acquisition was very well received by the executives of the the music industry in Europe, who have been ardent supporters of Rhapsody and its business model.

"Rhapsody has played a key role in the definition of music services, which are essential for the future of the entire industry," said Rob Wells, CEO of global digital business of Universal Music Group. "I welcome the arrival of Rhapsody to Europe, where I hope to see its successful to attract subscribers of payment in United States they doubled".

Rhapsody maintains all Napster International employees and carry out its operations under the Napster brand in Germany and United Kingdom, where account wide recognition based on an independent study of brand awareness. Napster subscribers will migrate to the infrastructure of Rhapsody in March, time which will enjoy new features, including improved whilst maintaining the music libraries that have built a new web experience and speed and performance.

"We have always been committed, and will continue to remain so, offering fans the music of a more flexible and convenient way to consume and discovering music - anywhere and at all times wishing", said Thorsten Schliesche, responsible for Napster International general. "The acquisition is another important outstanding achievement." "The combination of Napster International subscribers with the broad base of Rhapsody in United States will serve to strengthen our position as the main music subscription service".

Napster subscribers will benefit immediately from various improvements in the product. In the coming months, consumers will see the improvements of the web clients and mobile applications, improved mainly in offline playback quality and with a greater capacity to manage playlists.

Rhapsody was the first music subscription service, launched in December 2001. Currently, it's the music service subscription premium of larger size in United States, with more than 1 million subscribers of payment and more than 14 million tracks in about 600 genera. The Rhapsody service is available in more than 70 electronic instruments of consumption, including all platforms for smart phones; more than the other services of its kind. Rhapsody subscribers enjoy also contained original Publisher since staff of music composers of prestige, including reviews, features, scheduled playback and more than 200 radio stations and radio playlists.

Last Updated on Friday, 27 January 2012 13:30
IFPI Publishes Digital Music Report 2012 PDF Print E-mail
Written by Staff   
Friday, 27 January 2012 13:45

The digital music business saw unprecedented global expansion in 2011, while key steps forward were taken in several markets to help tackle digital piracy.

With rapid expansion into new markets by services such as iTunes, Spotify and Deezer, the major international digital music services are now present in 58 countries, compared to only 23 at the start of 2011.

Consumers are benefiting from a widening choice of services for experiencing digital music. In 2011, subscription services expanded and linked with new partners to reach new audiences. Meanwhile cloud technology is helping transform the way fans manage and store their music.

Global revenues to record companies grew by an estimated 8 per cent to US$5.2 billion in 2011 - a faster rate than 2010 - with strong consumer demand for both single track downloads (up 11 per cent by volume), digital albums (up 24 per cent by volume) and fast-expanding subscription services. The number of users paying to subscribe to a music service leapt by 65 per cent in 2011 to 13.4 million worldwide, according to IFPI estimates.

In the US, the world's largest music market, digital channels have overtaken physical formats to become the primary source of revenues for record companies. Globally, 32 per cent of music industry revenues come from digital sources, far surpassing the film, newspaper and book sectors. New services launched across Latin America, while in China record companies are working in a landmark partnership with the largest internet company Baidu.

IFPI's Digital Music Report 2012 is published today, providing a comprehensive overview and analysis of the global digital music business at the start of 2012.

Commenting on the Report, Frances Moore, CEO of IFPI, said: "As we enter 2012, there are good reasons for optimism in the world of digital music. Legal services with expanding audiences have reached across the globe and consumer choice has been revolutionised. Meanwhile momentum is building in the fight against piracy as governments and a growing circle of intermediaries engage with our industry.

"Any complacency now, however, would be a great mistake. Our digital business is progressing in spite of the environment in which it operates, not because of it. In 2012 the momentum needs to build further. We need legislation from governments with coordinated measures that deal with piracy effectively and in all its forms. We also need more cooperation from online intermediaries such as search engines and advertisers to support the legal digital music business."

Positive momentum but legal environment remains a huge problem

Piracy remains an enormous barrier to sustainable growth in digital music. Globally, one in four internet users (28%) regularly access unlicensed services, according to IFPI/Nielsen. This is rigging the market for legitimate services, stunting growth and jeopardising investment in music. IFPI advocates an inclusive combination of graduated response, site-blocking and other measures to tackle the problem.

There has been positive momentum in the fight against piracy in 2011. In France, the introduction of the new Hadopi graduated response law has seen peer-to-peer (P2P) piracy levels decline by 26 per cent, with around two million P2P users stopping the activity since warning notices were first sent out in October 2010 according to IFPI/Nielsen.

A newly-published academic study finds evidence that Hadopi has had a positive impact on iTunes sales in France. The analysis, by Danaher et al¹, found that iTunes singles sales were 23 per cent higher than they would have been in the absence of Hadopi.

In the US, a groundbreaking ISP cooperation deal was signed in 2011 and a graduated response program will be implemented in 2012, with most major ISPs signing up to a "copyright alert system". The move follows the closure of the illegal service LimeWire in 2010, which has helped cause a dramatic drop in levels of P2P piracy in the US market.

There was important progress elsewhere too. In New Zealand, a new graduated response law took effect in September 2011, with early indications of impact. In Europe, a string of court judgments has helped reduce copyright infringing activity on major sites like The Pirate Bay. In Belgium and Italy visits to the infringing sites dropped by 70-80 per cent in each case. In Spain a new law came into force to allow the blocking of illegal websites - a positive step, though disappointingly limited in its scope.

Stepped-up cooperation with online intermediaries

The recorded music industry is now working directly with advertisers, payment providers, search engines and website hosts to tackle digital piracy. A partnership struck in 2011 between IFPI, the City of London Police and payment providers MasterCard, Visa and PayPal has prevented more than 60 illegal websites from abusing payment services since it began in March 2011.

Better cooperation is being sought with search engines, which are a major channel for consumers to access music. Research in several countries indicates that between a quarter and a half of people illegally downloading access infringing music via search engines. However, many of the top results provided by search engines are linked to unauthorised content or sites which regularly infringe copyright.

Rihanna Goes THUG LIFE PDF Print E-mail
Written by Westside   
Friday, 27 January 2012 13:11


Many hip hop, rap and pop stars have gotten a THUG LIFE tattoo in honor of one of hip hop’s best rap artists Tupac Shakur, but when pop princess Rihanna got one; and then Tweeted about it – many were surprised. Comment boards and message boards lite up with ‘this girl is no thug’, apparently missing the point of the Tupac inspired tattoo.

Rihanna’s twitter tweets started with -

"I #LOVE my new tattoo!!! Can't wait for yall to see it!!! I got it in 'Tibetan' this time!!! #approved," she wrote of her white-toned tat, an homage to rapper Tupac.”

"I'm thinking I shoulda got a tear drop instead!!! #THUGLIFE maybe next time," Rihanna later tweeted, joking about the possibility of getting the traditional prison tat on her famous face. "All eyes on Rih, betta picture me rollin' #THUGLIFE."

And even on Twitter fans and followers started to tweet "You're not a thug. stop it."

Granted most of Rihanna’s fans were probably born after 2Pac was assassinated, but the meaning of THUG LIFE is not a thug. Since she said it was in homage to one of hip hop’s greatest MC’s Tupac Shakur THUG LIFE would mean by 2Pacs definition: THE HATE U GIVE LITTLE INFANTS F*CKS EVERYONE. It is more of a social statement than a statement of thugism.

Later on Rihanna tweeted "#RIHPac back!!!," she continued to go on her tat-driven Twitter spree, adding, "I can't deny it, ima riot..u don't wanna f--- with me!"

In another tweet, the star said, "NEVER!!! RT @Fiend4sports: @rihanna Thug Life!! Don't let Pac memory ever die."

Rihanna met most criticism with "Chill babes #noshade. Err'body has an opinion, but yall know what yall can do with them!!! #THUGLIFE," she wrote, showing a humorous side to the whole thing.

I don’t see the big deal. Rihanna has many other tattoos. She has 15 now as a matter of fact, so why the big deal over THUG LIFE? To me it brings back a more memorable time in hip hop when the G.O.A.T. – Tupac Shakur (2Pac) walked among us. ---- Peace

Last Updated on Friday, 27 January 2012 13:12
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"This site is dedicated to the legacy of Tupac Shakur and all the other souljahs who dare to struggle; alive & dead"

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