Blog Posts by Lyndsey Parker

  • 7 Actually Great Singles By 'RuPaul's Drag Race' Contestants

    On Feb. 19 at 8 p.m. PT/11 p.m. ET, Yahoo Live will live stream the "RuPaul's Drag Race: Battle of the Seasons" concert from the House of Blues in Chicago. Tune in HERE to watch!

    The competing queens on RuPaul's Drag Race are known for lip-synching for their lives, but sometimes, when they try to sing live, they #$%& it up, to semi-quote Ru. Many Drag Race alums have released aggressively Auto-Tuned singles after sashaying away from the show, but only a few of them have proven to have the charisma, uniqueness, nerve, and talent to become real-life pop stars.

    But interestingly, two of this last season's Drag Race finalists, Courtney Act and Adore Delano, are talented live singers — in fact, before making it to the Drag Race top three, they competed on Australian Idol and American Idol, respectively.

    So to celebrate this week's RuPaul's Drag Race Battle of the Seasons live stream concert on Yahoo Live, here's a party playlist of actually decent singles by actually musically talented

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  • Exclusive: Little Jimmy Scott's Widow Responds to Grammys 'In Memoriam' Snub in Emotional Open Letter


    photo: Redferns

    Little Jimmy Scott, a jazz great popularized by Twin Peaks, The Cosby Show, and Michael Jackson, who performed at two Presidential inaugurations during his six-decade career, was one of many artists shockingly omitted from the In Memoriam segment at Sunday’s 57th Annual Grammy Awards.

    Now the legend’s widow, Jeanie Scott, has penned a heartbroken open letter to the Grammy committee — which Yahoo Music has exclusively obtained — about this surprising snub.

    Read Jeanie Scott’s full missive below:

    To say I was disappointed in the Grammy board not mentioning Jimmy’s passing onto glory on June 12, 2014 in the memorials is putting it mildly.

    I was crushed and heartbroken for Jimmy. Here is a man who was cheated in career omissions in life by industry slicksters omitting his name from his own recordings, from songs he wrote or co-wrote, from Savoy Record label owner blocking his masterpiece album produced on Ray Charles's Tangerine label when Ray asked him to be his first

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  • Grammy Mysteries Solved! Katy's Hair, Sam's Heartbreak, Taylor's Date & More

    We may never figure out why Madonna thought it was a good idea to flash her derriere on the red carpet, or why the Staples Center audience was so incredibly unenthusiastic about Electric Light Orchestra’s actually amazing performance. But thankfully, other Grammy Awards mysteries are more easily solvable.

    [Related: Grammy Highs and Lows: Annie Lennox, Sam Smith Take America to Church; Madonna Doesn’t]

    Here are some of your 2015 burning Grammy questions, answered.

    photos: WireImage

    How did Katy Perry’s hair go from lavender to brown in one night?
    All signs indicate that Perry’s shaggy lavender ‘do on red carpet, which earned rave reviews from fashion critics, was a wig. By the time she took the stage for her “By the Grace of God” performance, she was back to brunette. So which is the real deal? Given the fact that she was photographed at a Grammy event earlier in the week with long brown hair, our money is on the brunette tresses.  

    What was the deal with that Shia LaBeouf poem?
    When

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  • Phillip Phillips Suing to Escape 'Oppressive' Idol Contract


    Photo: Getty Images

    According to a shocking new story by The Hollywood Reporter, American Idol Season 11 winner Phillip Phillips is suing 19 Entertainment to get out of his “oppressive,” “manipulative,” and “fatally conflicted” contract. 

    "I am very grateful for the opportunities provided to me through appearing on American Idol,” Phillips said in a statement. “The value that the fans and the show have given to my career is not lost on me. However, I have not felt that I have been free to conduct my career in a way that I am comfortable with. I look forward to being able to make my own choices about my career and to being able to make great music and play it for my fans.”

    Among Phillips’s complaints, listed in a petition filed with the California Labor Commissioner on Jan. 22: that 19 hired a producer, Greg Wattenberg, for his first two albums that compromised his interests; that 19 lied to him about Wattenberg’s mechanical royalty rates; that 19 withheld information regarding his

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  • Citi Culinary Beats: Ella Henderson Enjoys Some Sqirl Talk With Chef Jessica Koslow

    On Jan. 13 at 6 p.m. PT/9 p.m. ET, Yahoo Live will live stream Ella Henderson's special birthday/record release concert from the Diamond Horseshoe Theatre in New York. Tune in HERE to watch!

    Ella Henderson (photo: Syco Records)Ella Henderson (photo: Syco Records)Music fans across the pond already know Ella Henderson, a finalist and fan favorite two years ago on The X Factor U.K.: Her song "Ghost," which was co-written by Ryan Tedder, entered the British singles chart at No. 1 and became the U.K.'s fastest-selling debut single of 2014 so far. In America, of course, Ella is just getting her start; however, with talent like hers, the 18-year-old songstress has a great chance of enjoying the same Stateside success as X Factor U.K. alums like Leona Lewis, Cher Lloyd, and One Direction.

    While recently in America to promote her forthcoming debut album, Chapter One, Ella revisited the Los Angeles studio, NRG, where some of that album was recorded — and met up with Chef Jessica Koslow of the trendy Echo Park restaurant Sqirl. Ella is used to working with others —

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  • The Best Holiday Videos Ever!

    Why should we celebrate with stale-as-fruitcake holiday Muzak, when we can rock the halls with festive modern fare that’ll jumpstart our positive vibrations faster than Frosty learned to speak English? Many rock, pop, and R&B stars have recorded holiday music videos that make for even more awesome Chrismukkah viewing than A Very Brady Christmas on a constant loop. We’ve compiled our favorites here. Watch ‘em all and have a not-so-silent night.

    15. Destiny's Child - “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer”
    They split long ago, but DC co-exist in Christmas peace every holiday season in claymation form, thanks to this darling clip. We still feel the comfort and joy every time they snuggle up to the stop-motion Rudolph. It’s almost as cute as the original Rudolph TV special scene when Rudolph and Clarice first fall in love:

    14. The Superions - “Fruitcake” 
    Leave it to pop’s biggest nutcake, B-52’s jester Fred Schneider, to come up with the ultimate ode to Xmas inedibles, aka fruitcakes. This

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  • And 'The Voice' Season 7 Winner Is…

    The odds may have been stacked in Adam Levine’s favor on this Tuesday’s The Voice finale, since three of the four finalists were members of Team Adam. But in the end Adam’s archrival, Blake Shelton, scored again, guiding his one remaining contestant, country crooner Craig Wayne Boyd, to a Season 7 victory.

    Despite the odds, it wasn’t a huge surprise that Craig was this season’s winner. It was actually more surprising that the country veteran had to go on The Voice to become a household name or land a major recording contract. An incredibly polished and charismatic performer, Craig had been knocking around Nashville for a decade, playing with the likes of Jamey Johnson, Bryan White, and Randy Houser and signing a publishing deal with EMI, but never getting his big break. But the Texas-bred 35-year-old’s perseverance finally paid off. Clearly Craig meant business when he titled his 2013 independent album I Ain’t No Quitter.

    This was the fourth Voice victory for Blake Shelton, who

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  • Gwen Stefani: 'Making Music Isn't the Same After Kids'

    When Gwen Stefani made a surprise appearance last April during Pharrell Williams’s set at the Coachella festival — looking absolutely fabulous less than two months after giving birth to her third child at age 44, and right before she accepted a high-profile coaching job alongside Pharrell on The Voice — that famous mommyspeak phrase, “I don’t know how she does it,” certainly came to mind.

    Now, with two new singles — “Baby Don’t Lie” and “Spark the Fire,” her first solo songs since 2008 — released in the middle of this Voiceseason, and more music on the way, Gwen tells Yahoo Music she wouldn’t be able to do it all without some help from her famous friends… namely Pharrell, the man she calls “the best producer/songwriter of our generation.” 

     

    “Making music is just not the same, and it’s never going to be the same after having kids,” Gwen says frankly over the phone from her Los Angeles home, interrupting the interview for a moment to attend to her 6-year-old son, Zuma, who has just

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  • Big Machine's Scott Borchetta Replaces Randy Jackson, Jimmy Iovine as 'American Idol' Mentor


    Scott Borchetta with ‘American Idol’ judge Keith Urban (photo: Rick Diamond/Getty Images)

    Universal Music honcho Jimmy Iovine was a savvy in-house mentor on American Idol, guiding champs Scotty McCreery and Phillip Phillips to platinum success during his tenure. But then he backed off — initially during Season 12, the first year that the runner-up (Kree Harrison, if you’ve forgotten) didn’t also automatically receive a record deal, and then completely in Season 13, when ex-judge Randy Jackson took over as mentor and was largely useless in the role. The careers of those seasons’ respective winners, Candice Glover and Caleb Johnson, greatly suffered as a result.

    So it’s fantastic news for whoever wins Season 14, and for the Idolfranchise in general, that Scott Borchetta, the CEO and president of the Big Machine Label Group, will be the show’s new mentor — andwill release the next winner’s music.

    Big Machine, it should be noted, is the label that made Taylor Swift a megastar; other big,

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  • Pete Doherty Writes About Addiction, Recovery in Touching Personal Essay


    Pete Doherty at the Hope Rehab Centre (photo: Facebook)

    Pete Doherty was once one of rock ‘n’ roll’s most notorious junkies. His Britpop band, the Libertines, got off to a promising start, with their 2002 debut Up the Bracket (produced by Mick Jones of the Clash) going to No. 1 on the U.K. album chart and their sophomore album (also helmed by Jones) declared the second-best album of 2004 by NME magazine. But then the Libertines stalled, and eventually split, due to Doherty’s serious problems with drugs.

    He unsuccessfully underwent multiple (usually court-ordered) rehab stints. He spent time in prison — once for breaking into his on/off bandmate Carl Barat’s flat. He was even blamed for nearly wrecking the career of his then-girlfriend Kate Moss, after she was scandalously photographed in 2005 doing drugs in his recording studio.

    Many Doherty detractors might be surprised to learn that the long-troubled rocker, now age 35, is still alive. They’d be even more surprised to read an

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