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Archive for February, 2011

Usher, Justin Bieber discuss their mutual respect

Photo: Steve Granitz/WireImage.com

Photo: Steve Granitz/WireImage.com

Usher, looking cool in shades and a black slouchy jacket, was happy to talk about his protégé, Justin Bieber, and said while he wishes the young singer would have won best new artist, he’s sure the heartthrob will get another Grammy shot.

“It’s a testimony to continue to be the best you can, and he will. His fans define who he is as an artist. His musical journey is part of his story. As he gets older, he’ll tell it and hopefully we’ll be back here again.”

When a white tuxedo-clad Bieber nearly tackled Usher on the backstage platform, the mentor graciously stepped away from the microphone to allow his protégé the spotlight.

“This month and this year have been absolutely amazing,” Bieber said. His future ambitions include doing stadiums.

“My fans have brought me to this position and I don’t know what I would do without them,” he said.

He also shot down a rumor that he’s moving to Los Angeles, and said he likes …

Continue reading Usher, Justin Bieber discuss their mutual respect »

Train talks Howard Stern

Train just arrived an hour after winning best pop performance by a duo or group for “Hey, Soul Sister.” 

Photo: Steve Granitz/WireImage.com

Photo: Steve Granitz/WireImage.com

The band has been on Howard Stern’s radio show numerous times over the years, but still, a shout-out from the stage to the King of All Media was a little unexpected.

I asked Pat Monahan how much he credits Stern for Train’s comeback.

“Howard has been supportive from the time we were little to winning awards like this to the time that we didn’t really exist as a band or know if we wanted to continue,” he said. ”I sang at his wedding; he always treated me with respect. I probably should have thanked my wife instead of Howard Stern, but she understands. Howard definitely deserved a thank you.”

Continue reading Train talks Howard Stern »

A couple of legends come backstage

Photo: Alberto E. Rodriguez/WireImage.com

Photo: Alberto E. Rodriguez/WireImage.com

Buddy Guy, in pink suit and black and white Puma sneakers, pulled a business card out of his back pocket and told the room of journalists, “Any time you’re in Chicago, give me a call. I’ll show you a good time!”

Guy’s award, for best contemporary blues album for “Living Proof,” was the sixth of the legend’s career.

Herbie Hancock, who helmed a collaboration of “Imagine” with India.Arie, Seal, Pink and others, won for best pop collaboration with vocals.

Backstage, Hancock said of his next project, “I have several ideas bouncing around in my head, one pertains to classical music, but I’m not sure if it’s going to be that. There are a couple of other ideas, but I’m not ready to expose them.”

Continue reading A couple of legends come backstage »

Zac Brown Band stops by to chat

Photo: Alberto E. Rodriguez/WireImage.com

Photo: Alberto E. Rodriguez/WireImage.com

The Zac Brown Band just popped up in the press room. Well, most of the band.

Drummer Chris Fryer couldn’t attend the ceremony, so Clay Cook carried a photo of him on a stick to represent.

Asked to compare last year’s Grammy wins to this year’s (up for four, the band has so far lost best country song and won best country collaboration), Brown said, “Both awards are amazing. It solidified our presence in music. This is the highest honor we can receive.”

He also noted that the wrote “As She’s Walking Away” specifically to collaborate with fellow Georgian Alan Jackson.

And how are they going to celebrate tonight?

“It’s gonna be ugly!” Brown said, cracking up the rest of the band.

Continue reading Zac Brown Band stops by to chat »

Ryan Bingham adds Grammy to his award shelf

Photo: Alberto E. Rodriguez/WireImage.com

Photo: Alberto E. Rodriguez/WireImage.com

Ryan Bingham is halfway to one of Tracy Jordan’s coveted “EGOT” ’s now that “The Weary Kind” has won an Oscar and a Grammy.

The signature song from last year’s “Crazy Heart” scored as best song written for motion picture, television or other visual media, while the soundtrack also won.

Bingam, slighly shaggy and casual in a brown jacket and open-necked shirt, said his life hasn’t changed much in the past year, despite the attention.

“Business-wise, our music has been exposed to a lot of people who wouldn’t have heard us before, and we’ve had a lot of opportunities to play some bigger shows and gotten some new fans,” he said. “But day-to-day is wake up and put your pants on one leg at a time. I still live in the same house and do the same thing.”

Continue reading Ryan Bingham adds Grammy to his award shelf »

Greetings from backstage at the Grammy Awards

Hey, kids!

Keep checking this space all evening for backstage gossip from the 53rd annual Grammy Awards.

You can also follow me on Twitter @ajclifestyle.

Continue reading Greetings from backstage at the Grammy Awards »

Babyface & Eric Benet Croon Soulful Love Songs Saturday Night At The Civic Center

It was a night of soulful love songs and romance as Kenneth “Babyface” Edmonds, Eric Benet and Kevon Edmonds displayed their R&B crooning talents at the “Ultimate Valentine Weekend Celebration” Saturday night at the Atlanta Civic Center.

AJC photographer Robb Cohen covered the show with his camera. Check out the 20-photo online gallery: ‘Babyface’ Edmonds performs at Valentine gala. What did you think of the show? Who do you think was the best performer? What is your favorite Valentine’s concert ever?

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(Photo Credit: Robb D. Cohen/ www.robbsphotos.com)  For other concert photography linked to Access Atlanta, please visit  Atlanta Concert Photography Galleries.)

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Waka Flocka Flame & Wale Headline A Friday Night Of Hip Hop At The Tabernacle

Headlining a Friday night feast of Hip Hop at the Tabernacle were co-headliners Waka Flocka Flame and Wale. Also performing were Gucci Mane, Black Cobain, Favo, Danny Vola, Young Chris and Young R.

AJC photographer Robb Cohen covered the show with his camera. Check out the 19-photo online gallery: Waka Flocka Flame and Wale perform at the Tabernacle. What did you think of the show? Who do you think was the best performer?

(Photo Credit: Robb D. Cohen/ www.robbsphotos.com)  For other concert photography linked to Access Atlanta, please visit  Atlanta Concert Photography Galleries.)

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Continue reading Waka Flocka Flame & Wale Headline A Friday Night Of Hip Hop At The Tabernacle »

Barbra Streisand honored as Person of the Year in L.A.

Photo credit: Scott Kirkland

Photo credit: Scott Kirkland

LOS ANGELES — It’s not as if anyone expected conviviality from the notoriously press-averse Barbra Streisand.

But the eye-rolling was cued when we were informed by a suit-clad gentleman, security earplug firmly in place, that Ms. Streisand would not be giving any interviews on the red carpet… before she even stepped foot on it.

At a random Hollywood gathering, sure, understood.

But at a Grammy-related event where you’re being honored as the Person of the Year for a well-regarded charity?

A simple, “It’s wonderful to be here,” would have sufficed.

Instead, Streisand, escorted by suave hubby James Brolin, Neil Portnow, president of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences and a phalanx of others, not only shirked simple interviews, but barely posed for photos as she swept by under the protective grasp of Brolin.

She looked lovely in a floor-length black gown and matching cape with fur trim, her hair straight and glistening, …

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Live music picks: Feb. 11-16

Former Jayhawk Mark Olson brings his solo work to Smith's Olde Bar. Photo: Krissie Gregory

Former Jayhawk Mark Olson brings his solo work to Smith's Olde Bar. Photo: Krissie Gregory

TODAY
Mark Olson

Olson was co-founder of one of alt-country’s finest combos, the Jayhawks. After leaving the Jayhawks in the mid-1990s, he formed the Creekdippers, which included then-wife Victoria Williams. His latest solo work is the 2010 album “Many Colored Kite,” but seek out his first proper solo album, “The Salvation Blues,” a beautiful album haunted by two spectres — Gram Parsons and the end of the Olson-Williams marriage. It’s poetic, poignant and, ultimately, uplifting, and it’s one of alt-country’s finest moments of the past decade.
8 p.m. Feb. 11. $12; $10 in advance. Smith’s Olde Bar — Atlanta Room, 1578 Piedmont Road, Atlanta. 404-875-1522.

SATURDAY
Yonder Mountain String Band

This exuberant acoustic-based group has a rootsy sound, but the band is just as popular with jam-band fans as it is with traditional bluegrass lovers. The quartet’s latest …

Continue reading Live music picks: Feb. 11-16 »