Author Archives: M Fund

Watch Mike Tyson Talk Meeting Tupac Shakur for First Time

Mike Tyson detailed the genesis of his friendship with Tupac Shakur in a new interview with DJ Whoo Kid. The last time the boxer saw the rapper, it was September 7th, 1996 prior to his boxing match in Las Vegas; hours later, Shakur was shot. He died of his wounds six days later. While Tyson has talked often about hanging out with the rapper – once, Shakur tried to convince Tyson to smoke weed – he’s now revealed the chance meeting that sparked their friendship, Billboard reports. Tyson and Whoo Kid discuss Shakur at the 13-minute mark in the video above.

As Tyson tells it, he first met Shakur by accident. The boxer was at an upscale club when some guy he knew asked if he could get him in, which Tyson allowed, only to find out the person had an entourage of 50 people. One of them was Shakur, who “was rocking the club. The club was off the hook,” Tyson said. However, he didn’t connect that the rapper at the club was Tupac until Shakur’s mother wrote Tyson in prison, thanking him for getting her son into the club.

“I didn’t know that was him! I didn’t know who he was. He wasn’t famous then,” Tyson said. “Then he’s famous when I get locked up, so he wrote me … He appreciated me getting him in, and he wanted to come visit me. So he came and he visited me. And that’s how we met each other.”

Tyson also said of Shakur, “He’s just a different person. You know when you see some people in our life, ‘they’re like us but they’re not like us, they’re different.'”

Weezer's Rivers Cuomo Details Weird Pill Stories Behind New Song

Weezer frontman/chief songwriter Rivers Cuomo has offered the illuminating, often awkward, inspiration behind the band’s blistering love-via-drugs ode “Do You Wanna Get High?,” their second new song in as many weeks. “This is about me and my darling girlfriend in 2000/2001 – the same girl that inspired ‘O Girlfriend’ from the Green Album (“taking pills and mellowing out”),” Cuomo writes on lyric annotation site Genius. “Those were some incredible nights,” he continues, also noting, “I remember hanging out with [Limp Bizkit singer] Fred Durst around that time too.”

Cuomo breaks down roughly half the words from the pill-centric, Pinkerton-leaning hard rock jam, explaining that the songs reflect a past mindset – not a current one. “I try to avoid pills now at all costs,” he writes. “Even when I had knee surgery in 2013, I refused anything but Advil. I love Advil now, though, I’ll tell you.”

The song opens with the lyric, “Crush up the blue / And inhale through your nose.” Cuomo admits, “I don’t know if it works any better, but it makes you feel cool, like you’re taking a more serious drug.” Later, he writes that the line “with our face in a knot” refers to the pain of breaking his drug habit: “I was rough to be around in those days. When you’re coming off of pills, you can be grumpy.”

Cuomo also breaks down the song’s most memorable lyric, “We can listen to Bacharach / And stop at any point,” writing, “I’ll stop at 2 pills, max. I have a milligram scale to measure any kind of addictive substance I might be taking, for example, caffeine. I keep track of it all in google docs and taper my withdrawals to minimize discomfort.”

Elsewhere, he speaks in Spanish, says he hopes to visit Mexico on Christmas vacation and shares some creepy parental advice he once received (“My mom once told me that your souls combine if you sleep with someone overnight”).

“Do You Wanna Get High?” and the more playful “Thank God for Girls” mark Weezer’s first new material since last year’s LP Everything Will Be Alright in the End, widely praised as a return-to-form for the alternative rock veterans. 

After premiering “High?”, Cuomo spoke with Beats 1 radio host Zane Lowe about the flexible state of Weezer. “We don’t have a record deal anymore so we’re kind of on the loose and experimenting and nobody’s in charge anymore,” he said. “We’re just doing what we want to do.”

Jennifer Nettles, CMT Champion the Next Women of Country

It was two hours of grownup girl power at City Winery in Nashville yesterday when the third class of CMT’s Next Women of Country initiative was showcased with live music, special guests and big announcements.

The third annual event is part of CMT’s initiative to “increase the exposure of female artists on all platforms,” said Leslie Fram, Senior Vice President of Music Strategy for CMT and the country music industry’s fairy godmother for women trying to get their music heard.

“Female artists have something to say, but it is tougher in in some platforms,” Fram expounded. “Initially we started Next Women of Country (NWOC) as a way to give exposure for female artists on all platforms. There has been a time when terrestrial radio was not on board.”

The concert featured a mix of up-and-comers and more seasoned singers. Kelsea Ballerini, one of last year’s NWOC inductees, co-hosted the event with Fram, having had a big year with the success of “Love Me Like You Mean It” (which made Ballerini the first solo female country artist to score a Number One hit with her debut single since Carrie Underwood and “Jesus, Take the Wheel”).

“I made it my goal to be part of this [NWOC group] when I was just songwriter,” Ballerini said.

American Idol runner up Lauren Alaina kicked off the performances with a medley of hits by female artists — ranging from Reba’s “Fancy” to Britney Spears’ “Baby One More Time” and Beyoncé’s “Single Ladies,” a choice which then set the tone for the day. Across the board, the performers, who also included Cam, Ashley Monroe (with Striking Matches’ Sarah Zimmerman) and Maren Morris — chose songs that embraced women’s strength.

“It is currently tougher for women to break through, but the winds are changing because Leslie made a commitment,” said presenter John Esposito, president and CEO of Warner Music Nashville.

The standing-room crowd applauded the 2016 class of inductees, including Ashley Campbell, Courtney Cole, Sara Haze, Morris, Carly Pearce, Rainey Qualley, Aubrie Sellers and Tara Thompson. But they went wild when surprise guest, Grammy-award winner Jennifer Nettles took the stage and wowed them with what is sure to be her next hit, the working mom’s lament “Drunk in Heels.” The crowd loved the lyrics, which Nettles wrote with Brandy Clark while nursing her son on a tour bus, particularly the refrain: “I ain’t saying it is easier to be a man, but let’s get real. When we get drunk, we do it in heels.”

Nettles was introduced by the head of her new label, Big Machine Records founder Scott Borchetta. Borchetta knows a little something breaking female artists, such as the label’s (and entire industry’s) powerhouse Taylor Swift. “There is not a problem with female artists,” Borchetta told the audience, citing Swift and Adele’s various record-breaking achievements.

“We had a lull in female voices for awhile,” Borchetta told Rolling Stone after the event, “but now there are a lot of important voices out there. What Leslie identified as a need is becoming a movement.”

The crowd was moved when former Sugarland frontwoman Nettles brought Clark on stage to sing what will be the first single off her sophomore album next year, “Girl Next Door,” a cheeky empowerment song .”If you want the girl next door, a cardboard cutout, go next door.” Click here to hear the song in its entirety.

Nettles also announced that the she will headline the second Next Women of Country Tour with Clark, Lindsay Ell and Thompson.

“We did a tour 2015 with just 10 small club dates. We want to more than double that in 2016,” Fram said.

The tour will start in January with 30 dates in the U.S. and Canada. Tickets go on sale December 4th.

Eric Church Releases Surprise Album 'Mr. Misunderstood'

Members of Eric Church’s fan club the Church Choir were treated to a surprise yesterday afternoon, when copies of Mr. Misunderstood — a new studio album from the Chief himself, with unfussy production by Outsiders producer Jay Joyce — arrived in their mailboxes. Unannounced and thoroughly unexpected, the record appears to be the official follow-up to Church’s best-selling 2014 album, The Outsiders, although Church has yet to announce any plans to release it to proper retailers. In fact, Church hasn’t formally acknowledged Mr. Misunderstood‘s existence at all. 

Thus far, his record label is also keeping a tight lid on the album’s material. YouTube footage featuring audio from Mr. Misunderstood has already been blocked, and no tracks have shown up on digital platforms like Spotify. Church did perform one of the record’s 10 songs, “Three Year Old,” during his July 30th solo show at Nashville’s Ascend Amphitheater, introducing the track as a tribute to the lessons he’s been taught by his oldest son, Boone McCoy. A fan-shot video of the July performance shows Church strumming a hollow-body guitar, rattling off bits of toddler wisdom like “Nothing turns a day around like licking a mixing bowl” and Why go inside when you can go behind a tree?” 

According to members of the Church Choir, Mr. Misunderstood has been delivered in vinyl, CD and digital formats. Although he’s apparently keeping mum about the project on social media, Church will hit the CMA Awards stage tonight, kicking off the annual show alongside Hank Williams Jr.

Here’s the tracklist for Eric Church’s Mr. Misunderstood:
1. Mr. Misunderstood
2. Mistress Named Music
3. Chattanooga Lucy
4. Mixed Drinks About Feelings
5. Knives of New Orleans
6. Round Here Buzz
7. Kill a Word
8. Holdin’ My Own
9. Record Year
10. Three Year Old

Against Me!'s Laura Jane Grace Talks 'Really Different' New Album

After spending two years on the road touring their excellent 2014 LP Transgender Dysphoria Blues, Against Me! were ready to take this fall off. “We thought maybe it would be good to have a break to address personal issues, or just unpack your apartment – normal shit,” singer-guitarist Laura Jane Grace tells Rolling Stone. “But then we realized that we’ve been writing songs all this time, and we’re really tight right now. It didn’t make sense to lose that momentum. We just wanted to go for it.”

So as soon as they wrapped their final dates of 2015, the punk crew headed straight to a Michigan studio run by their tour manager and front-of-house engineer, Marc Hudson. They’ve spent the last month there laying down tracks for their next LP, which they hope to release in 2016. “We’re at a good place,” Grace says. “We’re going to spend the rest of the year working on the record, and we’re hoping next year will be a busy one.”

As busy as she’s been with other projects in recent years – in addition to touring and releasing a live album with Against Me!, Grace has made a documentary web series and written a book – she says it’s been a prolific period of songwriting. “In a weird way, because I have so many other things going on, it turned writing songs again into an escape,” she says. “‘Oh, I should be doing this, but fuck it, I’ll pick up my guitar again.'”

She says the new album already feels “really different” from Transgender Dysphoria Blues. “The last record was an isolating experience and a solo endeavor in a lot of ways – not to diminish anyone else’s roles, but it was a really personal record,” she says. “I want this one to feel like we’re all in it equally. We’ve been having a really good time playing with each other. We’ll see what that means sonically, but that’s the vibe.”

Patti LaBelle, la cantante ganadora del premio Grammy, se asocia a LUNG FORCE de la American Lung Association para educar al público acerca del cáncer de pulmón

CHICAGO, 4 de noviembre de 2015 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — Para dar inicio al Mes de Concientización sobre el Cáncer de Pulmón, que se celebra este noviembre, la iniciativa LUNG FORCE de la American Lung Association, presentada a nivel nacional por CVS Health,…


Premier Vaporizer Brand PAX Announces Partnership with R&B Sensation The Weeknd

Weeknd PAX 2 - DeviceLimited edition The Weeknd PAX 2 launches in conjunction with kickoff of the musician’s North American “The Madness” Fall Tour

SAN FRANCISCO, Nov. 4, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — PAX Labs, Inc., a leading vaporization company, announces the release of a limited edition PAX 2 vaporizer…


Carmel Heats Up The Holidays

LOS ANGELES, Nov. 4, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — This holiday season, sultry songstress Carmel and legendary rocker Eddie Money bring their brand of class to a classic Christmas song.

The two artists blend her youthful soul and his vocal finesse in a rendition of “Baby It’s Cold Outside,” to…


Romanian Prime Minister Resigns Over Fatal Nightclub Fire

Several key members of the Romanian government have stepped down in the aftermath of the Bucharest nightclub fire that claimed the lives of 32 people and injured over 180. Prime minister Victor Ponta and Cristian Popescu Piedone, mayor of the district where the Colectiv nightclub was located, both resigned Wednesday amidst protests in the Romanian capital about the corrupt government that allowed these unsafe venues to remain open.

“I’m handing in my mandate. I’m resigning – and implicitly my government too,” Ponta said of his Social Democratic party after 20,000 protestors swarmed the capital. “I am obliged to take note of the legitimate grievances which exist in society. I hope handing in my and my government’s mandate will satisfy the demands of protesters.” The protests are also seeking the resignation of Romanian interior minister Gabriel Oprea, The Guardian reports.

On Monday, three Colectiv club owners – Costin Mincu, Alin George Anastasescu and Paul Gancea – were arrested and charged with suspicion of manslaughter after stage pyrotechnics ignited a piece of flammable foam insulation during a Goodbye to Gravity concert at the venue. Prosecutors claim that the nightclub was over capacity, defied safety measures like non-flammable foam paneling and lacked available exits. When the fire did start Saturday, the crowd of 400 was forced to bottleneck through only one door, causing a stampede.

Two members of Goodbye to Gravity, guitarists Vlad Telea and Mihai Alexandru, were killed in the fire, while singer Andrei Galut and bassist Alex Pascu were hospitalized with serious injuries. The death toll grew from 31 to 32 Tuesday as roughly 90 attendees remain hospitalized in serious condition with smoke- and stampede-related injuries.

The nightclub fire is viewed as the breaking point – but not the sole reason – for Ponta’s resignation: The politician is facing a litany of corruption charges stemming from both before and after he took the prime minister’s office. Those charges include tax evasion, money laundering, conflict of interest, forging expense claims and more. Ponta was indicted in July, when his assets were seized; prosecutors allege the prime minister – Ponta was elected to that office in 2012 – used the money to buy two luxury apartments and an SUV.

The fire sparked a social media movement in Romania – #CorruptionKills – which culminated in the Bucharest protests. “I understand what is being asked and what is expected, and they are right, someone has to take political responsibility,” Romanian president Klaus Iohannis – a political rival of Ponta’s having defeated the now-former prime minister in a presidential race in 2014 – wrote on his Facebook (via The Guardian). “The next step is for politicians, who cannot ignore this sentiment of revolt.”

Maddie & Tae on 'Writing Fever,' New Single 'Shut Up and Fish'

Maddie & Tae may have three nominations at tonight’s 49th CMA Awards, along with a performance slot on the telecast, and a new single, “Shut Up and Fish,” but that doesn’t mean the buzzed-about duo — who have a solid shot at upsetting the Vocal Duo of the Year category — have stopped working on new material.

“With our songwriter brains, we are always thinking about writing,” says Tae Dye, who, along with Maddie Marlow, make up the duo. “Whenever we get to be creative, we get writing fever. We get in there and write two in a day.”

Most recently, the duo, who are also nominated for New Artist of the Year and Video of the Year for “Girl in a Country Song,” spent time in the studio with acclaimed writer Brett James, the songsmith behind Carrie Underwood’s “Jesus, Take the Wheel” and Miranda Lambert’s “Somethin’ Bad.”

“We wrote two songs accidentally with [him] the other week,” says Marlow. “We wrote one, and then Tae busts out this amazing concept and we were like, ‘We can’t leave this room without writing this.'”

“Writing fever — it’s a real thing,” adds Dye.

“Shut Up and Fish,” off their debut LP Start Here, is currently the most added song on country radio — and, with its unapologetic knock on men who hope to bait them, not a smallmouth bass, it’s a refreshing flip on a narrative that often casts women in the passive role. Turns out, the track’s whole scenario is based on a real-life encounter, down to the “salmon-colored” shorts.

“We grew up fishing and we take it seriously,” says Marlow. “We had the whole ‘I was fishing/he was wishing’ part, and we were like, ‘That’s the money line.’ We told [co] writers [Aaron Scherz and Pete Sallis] the situation and wrote it to the T, exactly how it happened. And we wanted it to be country — you can’t write a fishing song without a really country melody. So we went with the good ole three chords and the truth.”

Which is exactly where Maddie & Tae say they’ll stay. “We are excited to work on the second record,” says Dye. “And hopefully go a little more country with it, too.”