#SoCynthiaMorganLied: Social Media Agog After Jude Okoye Shares Singer’s Contract Details

 

Hours after music producer Jude Okoye made public the details of his Northside Records’ contract with dancehall star, Cynthia Morgan, music fans trooped to social media to criticise the singer for “lying” against his former record label.

Morgan, who now goes by the name ‘Madrina,’ had laid the blame for her misfortune in the music industry on the doorstep of Northside Records, alleging that the music label denied her access to the Cynthia Morgan brand.

Speaking during an Instagram Live chat ‘Upfront With Sandra’ last Sunday, the singer, who looked barely recognisable, said she moved back to Benin after battling depression and illness due to her music misadventure.

Morgan first spoke about her run-in with Jude Okoye’s Northside Records during a 2018 interview with Channels Television, where she claimed the latter, among other things, made her adopt a wild persona which brought her a lot of criticisms.

“As an entertainer, sometimes you need time for yourself to restructure, rebrand, restrategise whatever you are doing,” she said at the time.
When she was asked about her deal and relationship with the brand, she explained, “My contract actually expired last year (2017) in like August, legally, because I signed for four years.

“Even before then, we were obviously already apart because a lot of things went wrong with the deal”.

However, on Tuesday, when Jude Okoye shared details of Morgan’s contract with Northside Records with an Instagram influencer, Tunde Ednut, social media went agog with fans lambasting the ‘German Juice’ star for being economical with the truth.

Read Also: Davido, Other Celebrities Pledge Support For Cynthia Morgan’s Comeback


The contract in question, which had a 4-year lifespan with an option for a 2-year renewal, showed that Morgan and Northside Music would split any income generated 50/50.

Being that she was a newbie at the time the deal was struck, the label agreed to put up 100 per cent of the expenses which will be eventually deducted from her earnings.

Earlier, during his Instagram Live chat with Ednut, Jude Okoye denied preventing Morgan from the continued usage of her stage name.
“I never took that name from her. I don’t have that power.”

He added that she still had access to social media accounts two years after the contract was over.

Morgan had also claimed that Okoye failed to promote her work.

“Why are people not asking questions- how come this girl has been down this so long and not even one colleague came up to her rescue?” Okoye asked Ednut.

“Not rescue as in giving her money or sponsoring her. Rescue, as in, identifying with her.”

The Northside Records boss said Morgan had questioned his value in her career while ruining all the relationships he had helped her build.

“Cynthia Morgan looked me in the eye and asked me ‘what the f**k have you done for me?,” he said.

African Music Legend Mory Kante Dies At 70

This file photo, taken on August 15, 2008, shows music veteran Mory Kante playing the Kora while performing with the ‘Yeke Yeke Anniversary Tour’ band on the the ‘world stage’ on the Hajogyar (Shipyard) Island of Budapest, the Hungarian capital. Attila KISBENEDEK / AFP

 

Guinean singer Mory Kante, who helped introduce African music to a world audience in the 1980s, died on Friday in the capital Conakry, his son Balla Kante told AFP.

Kante is best known for his dance song “Yeke Yeke,” which was a huge hit in Africa before becoming a No. 1 in several European countries in 1988.

Nicknamed the “electronic griot” — a play on the name for traditional West African musicians and storytellers — Kante died in hospital at the age of 70 after succumbing to untreated health problems.

“He suffered from chronic illnesses and often travelled to France for treatment, but that was no longer possible with the coronavirus,” Balla Kante said.

“We saw his condition deteriorate rapidly, but I was still surprised because he’d been through much worse times before,” he added.

Born into a celebrated family of griots, Kante played guitar, the kora harp and balafon, in addition to being a singer.

And along with Mali’s star singer Salif Keita, his songs were among the first from West Africa to achieve widespread success elsewhere of the world.

‘African culture in mourning’

Kante spent much of his youth in Mali, which neighbours his native Guinea, where in the early 1970s he joined the renowned Rail Band in which Keita was also a singer.

Leaving the band in the 1980s, Kante revolutionised the West African repertoire by going electric and blending traditional Mandingo music with urban grooves.

It was his upbeat single “Yeke Yeke” that catapulted him to fame, and brought Mandingo dance music to nightclubs across Europe.

The album on which the song was included, “Akwaba Beach,” later went on to become one of the best-selling records in sub-Saharan history.

Kante performs during the 46th session of the International Carthage festival at the Roman theatre in Carthage, near Tunis, on July 14, 2010. Fethi Belaid / AFP

 

Kante moved away from his electric sound during a lull in popularity during the 2000s, opting for accompaniment from more traditional string orchestras.

His 2010 album “La Guineenne” — his first in eight years at the time — drew on the large-orchestra sound from West African music’s golden age, in the years following independence from former colonial power France.

As well as making music, Kante also used his influence for social causes.

He was a goodwill ambassador for the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and sang in support of the fight against the 2013-2016 Ebola epidemic in Guinea, which killed some 2,500 people.

On Friday, Guinean President Alpha Conde tweeted Kante had been “exceptional” and “a source of pride”.

“African culture is in mourning,” he said.

His son echoed the sentiment. “He leaves a huge legacy for culture, too vast to allow us to mention everything,” said Balla Kante.

“He also did a lot for culture in his country by building studios, cultural facilities. Above all, he promoted Guinean and African music by making it known throughout the world”.

AFP

Youtube Tweaks ‘Video Watch’ Page On Mobile, Gets New Features

In this file photo taken on November 21, 2019, the Google and YouTube logos are seen at the entrance to the Google offices in Los Angeles, California. Alphabet is the parent company of Google and Youtube. Robyn Beck / AFP
In this file photo taken on November 21, 2019, the Google and YouTube logos are seen at the entrance to the Google offices in Los Angeles, California. Alphabet is the parent company of Google and Youtube. Robyn Beck / AFP

 

YouTube’s video watch page on mobile has received a facelift.

The new design comes after Google announced that both Android and iOS apps will receive the updates soon.

One of the latest updates that many users will notice is the positioning of the comment box.

Mobile users of the app can now view and post comments by tapping on the comment box just underneath the channel bar with subscribe button – unlike before where users had to scroll down to the very end of the video page to post or view comments.

With the update, the comment bar on any video page is now prominently visible to both Android and iOS users of the YouTube app.

Google, in a blog post last month said that the tech company found that more people were “writing comments with the new design.” Even more, Google has introduced larger thumbnails in the “Up next” feed, noting that users will “see more info about each video at a glance.”

“You’ll also notice channel icons below each video to help you recognise your favourite creators while you scroll through the feed,” the company said while explaining the YouTube update.

Lastly, Google in April had said that the YouTube Android and iOS app will display “new types” of content alongside the videos in Up Next feed of a video page.

These include “Community Posts, “YouTube Mixes”, and more. This feature has also been added to the video-sharing platform.

Meanwhile, there’s also a new ‘Explore tab’ in the YouTube Music app waiting to help users discover more songs. It also allows users get song lyrics such that they can sing along to their favourite songs.

According to Google, the update is “now available” for both Android and iOS users of the app.

 

Vibez: M.I’s Bollywood Romance, Wizkid’s Album And Olamide’s Big Deal

 

Tonto Dikeh, Churchill Bring Back The Drama

Grab your popcorn guys! Because it appears the drama between actress, Tonto Dikeh and her estranged husband, Olakunle Churchill is far from over.

The latest twist in the bitter breakup, see them claim the number five spot on our trends this week.

Remember last year when Tonto made shocking allegations in a YouTube interview that Churchill was an internet fraudster as well as a ritualist?

Well, Churchill has now slammed her with a N500 million lawsuit for what he described as her ‘malicious statements’ which he claims have ruined his political ambition.

Tonto has not directly responded to the lawsuit, yet, and we’re just as curious as you are to see how this all unfolds.

 

US Rapper Pop Smoke Killed

At number four is the sad news of the killing of yet another musician, pop smoke.

The 20-year-old New York rapper was killed after two men wearing hoodies and masks invaded his home and fired multiple shots at him.

Pop smoke is the latest in a spate of us rappers to be violently killed.

XXXtentacion was killed in a similar manner in June 2018, while Nipsey Hussle was shot dead in 2019.

 

‘Queen Of Katwe’ Actor Dies At 15

It was more gloom for the showbiz world and we are sad to see the number three spot on the trend occupied by news of another death – this time, a brilliant child star.

15-year-old Nikita Pearl Waligwa, one of the young stars of Disney’s critically acclaimed Queen Of Katwe died after a 4-year battle with brain cancer.

Although she died on Saturday, February the 15th, news of her death made the rounds on Sunday, opening the week with sadness as stars paid tributes to her.

The actress played Gloria in the 2016 film, based on the life of chess prodigy Phiona Mutesi, which also starred Madina Nalwanga, Lupita Nyong’o And David Oyelowo.

Our condolences go to the family and friends of the young departed souls.

 

BBNaija’s Nina Gets Engaged

To some more cheery news at number two, wedding bells are ringing and this time it’s for Big Brother Naija reality star, Nina.

While many hoped that the Miracle, Nina #MINA love story from the BBNaija house would blossom into something more serious, it appears that ship never really got going.

An excited Nina took to social media to share photos of her traditional marriage ceremony while stating that her bride price was paid in full.

Although she has yet to disclose the identity of her husband, congratulatory messages have been pouring in from friends and fans of the reality tv star.

 

Olamide Signs Deal With Empire Distribution

Just last week, Nigerian rapper Olamide, dropped his latest project ‘999’ to the delight of his fans. This past week, he’s served up more good news, making it to our number 1 spot.

The YBNL boss has signed a joint-venture deal with American music distribution and record label, Empire Distribution.

He made the announcement on Twitter, declaring that he’s now ready to take the world by storm.

Olamide’s new feat puts him among Nigerian artistes aiming to take over the global music industry by signing international deals.

Those are our top five stories for the week. We also have some exciting news in the movies, music and fashion world.

 

Wizkid Completes ‘Made In Lagos’ Album

If you have been waiting for some new music from Wizkid, your wait may end any moment now as Wizzy is set to release his long-awaited album, ‘Made In Lagos’.

Star boy who has been a bit off the radar, took to Twitter to announce that he’d been working on the album and he is finally done.

In addition to hitting you with the music, the singer says he’s also been working on his spirit and he’s happy for his growth.

While we’re not exactly sure what that means, we probably can expect a new improved version of him.

 

Falz, Charly Boy Take Shots At Fake Pastors

Meanwhile, veteran artiste Charly Boy has dropped the visuals for his Falz-assisted track ‘God Of Men: Fake Pastors’.

On the track, the duo draw attention to the evil deeds of false pastors and prophets.

The video for the uptempo track features actor Segun Arinze portraying the titular fake pastor.

 

M.I Aims For Bollywood With ‘Namaste Wahala’

Sensational rapper M.I Abaga is about to set lights and cameras rolling with his movie production debut, a Bollywood/Nollywood collaboration.

Nollywood is set to meet Bollywood with a new movie titled ‘Namaste Wahala’.

M.I. Who is an associate producer on the film shared the news on Instagram, while also revealing that Richard Mofe Damijo, Ini Dima-Okojie and Osas Ighodalo are amongst the cast.

Director Hamisha Daryani Ahuja, says the movie which is set to hit theatres on April 24 tells a story with a lot of laughter and a few tears about love and family.

 

Nollywood’s First-Ever Time Travel Film ‘DOD’

Away from M.I’s Bollywood romance, we’re set to take a trip back in time with one of Nollywood’s latest feature films titled ‘DOD’.

The adventure drama produced by Anthill Studios is based on two teenagers who through magic, are able to go back in time and reverse the financial situation of their family.

The cast includes a rich array of actors such as Jide Kososko, Nobert Young, Ireti Doyle, Ini Dima- Okojie, Blossom Chukwujekwu, Denola Grey among others.

 

Burna Boy, Stormzy Shine On Brit Awards Red Carpet

Top music talents and international acts graced the 40th edition of the Brit Awards, looking all glam.

Nigerian artiste Burna Boy, who was nominated for best international solo artist, but lost to Tyler The Creator, walked the red carpet dressed aptly for winter, wearing a striking aquamarine coat.

Others who made the best-dressed list include Eva Apio, Joy Crookes, Lizzo, Vick Hope and Stormzy.

Veteran Singer Victor Olaiya Is Dead

This screenshot shows the Veteran music star, Victor Olaiya on the set of Baby Mi Da music video sang in collaboration with Tubaba.

 

Veteran highlife singer Victor Olaiya has died at the age of 89 at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH).

His death was confirmed to Channels Television by Michael Odiong of Premiere Music, the record label that holds his music repertoire.

According to Odiong, the Baby Jowo crooner died around noon on Wednesday.

Papingo Dalaya, as the highlife maestro is called, was born on the 31st of December, 1930 in Calabar, Cross River State but hails from Ijesha-Ishu, Ekiti State.

He retired from his long music career in 2017 and had some hit tracks like Omopupa, Aigana, Pambotoriboto, Opataritius, Mo fe Muyan, Jemila, Kosowo l’ode, Odale Ore, So fun mi, Omolanke, Tina Mate, among others.

The highlife legend featured Innocent Idibia called Tubaba in the remix of Baby Jowo in 2013.

Olaiya formed his band, the Cool Cats in 1954 but later renamed it the All-Star.

I Am The ‘Jesus’ Of Nigerian Music – Terry G

 

Nigerian singer, Gabriel Amanyi, fondly called Terry G, has described himself as the “Jesus” of Nigerian music, saying he set the pace for the present trend in the industry.

The “Free Madness” crooner who has been silent in the musical scene for some years, claimed that Nigerians have now embraced his kind of music.

Terry G who spoke to Channels Television on Tuesday, admitted that he was criticised and discriminated because he smokes, and for his kind of music when he started out years ago.

“I’m the Jesus of Nigerian music, I’m not the Christ. The Christ is the savior, Jesus is a name, and for the fact that Jesus is the most popular name that died for us and sacrificed for us,” the singer explained.

He added, “It took me a while to take this risk that a lot of persons discriminated against me for and now, they see people smoking, doing stuff and nobody is talking. There must be a pace-setter.”

According to Terry G, he is the “Jesus” of the Nigerian music industry who set the pace and sacrificed for his artistic genre.

He, however, claimed many Nigerians were hypocritical, adding that they have embraced and supported most of the things they criticised him for in the past.

Comparing himself to rave of the moment, Naira Marley, Terry G admitted that it was not in his place to decide whether he was more influential than the UK-trained artiste.

Marley, the singer said, is only trying to ‘archive’ him, although he sees both of them “making the world go crazier.”

The “Akpako Master” also revealed that he once rejected a deal with Sony Music, claiming that it did not pay.

He, therefore, called on Nigerian singers to ensure they understand the details of every agreement before they sign deals.

In addition, Terry G urged artistes to take advantage of their fame, saying it does not last forever.

“When the lights are shining on you, do not think that they would be forever. My own fame was full of pressure, controversies,” he decried.

Grammys Kick Off As Kobe Death Stuns Los Angeles

 

 

 

The Grammy awards got underway Sunday with superstars Lizzo, Billie Eilish and Lil Nas X primed for glory — as grief over the death of NBA legend Kobe Bryant cast a pall on music’s marquee night in Los Angeles.

Sorrow casts a shadow over the show held at the Staples Center — the same venue where the basketball icon led the city’s Lakers to multiple championships.

Dozens of people, many of them in tears, gathered near the arena to mourn the 41-year-old Bryant, who died Sunday in a helicopter crash in the hills west of the California metropolis. Flags were flying at half-mast.

The evening nevertheless still promises rollicking performances from the trio of Grammy frontrunners, as well as tributes to the veteran rockers Aerosmith and the late rapper Nipsey Hussle.

Early prizes handed out at the pre-gala event went to Lady Gaga, who won two for her soundtrack for the hit film “A Star Is Born,” and Beyonce, who nabbed the prize for best music film for “Homecoming.”

“Rest in peace Kobe, we love you,” Steve Pamon, a “Homecoming” director, said in accepting the trophy.

Overnight country-rap sensation Lil Nas X, up for six awards, snagged his first Grammy for the music video of his smash earworm “Old Town Road.”

“Um, thank you!” the bubbly 20-year-old told the audience with a wide smile glimmering below his white 10-gallon hat.

Eilish’s debut studio album won its first award of the night in the engineering categories.

Pop’s new guard is poised to usher in a new era — but scandal backstage has threatened to tarnish the glitz.

Just days before the gala, the Recording Academy’s suspended CEO Deborah Dugan — the first woman to lead the embattled institution behind the Grammys — filed an explosive discrimination complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

She says she was suspended after raising concerns over sexual harassment, voting irregularities and other misconduct within the Academy — one of music’s most influential organizations, but one long accused of favoritism and a lack of diversity.

Dugan also alleged that her predecessor, Neil Portnow, had raped a foreign female musician — an allegation he has rejected as “ludicrous and untrue.”

‘We need transparency’

The backstage storm has threatened to cloud the Grammy celebration, despite a diverse slate of nominees that celebrates a mix of established and budding stars.

On Saturday night at the annual pre-Grammy gala hosted by industry legend Clive Davis, hip-hop mogul Sean “Diddy” Combs railed at the Academy.

“Black music has never been respected by the Grammys to the point that it should be,” Combs told a star-studded audience as he was honored as an industry icon, according to Variety.

“We need transparency, we need diversity.”

The magnetic Lizzo, 31, is poised to be this year’s queen bee, leading the Grammy pack with eight nominations, including in all the top four categories (album, record and song of the year plus best new artist).

Lil Nas X, the 18-year-old goth-leaning pop iconoclast Eilish and the enigmatic 22-year-old R&B prodigy H.E.R. are also formidable contenders.

The establishment’s newcomers will square off against veteran powerhouses including Ariana Grande and Beyonce, as well as alt-leaning acts Lana Del Rey, Bon Iver and Vampire Weekend.

Often remembered as much for its performances as its winners, the Grammys will feature Lizzo, Eilish and Grande, along with a genre-blending rendition of “Old Town Road” that will feature K-pop sensation BTS, country star Billy Ray Cyrus and the eclectic DJ Diplo, among others.

Artists including John Legend, Meek Mill and DJ Khaled — all up for Grammys this year — will perform a tribute to Hussle, who was shot dead last year and is up for three posthumous awards.

The British country-soul revivalist Yola, up for four Grammys including the prestigious best new artist prize, said she’s still soaking in all the glamour.

Upon learning of her nominations, the bluesy singer with a big voice told AFP on Friday that she “cried for days.”

“It was hilarious and emotional and I’m just so thrilled to be here,” she said.

Key Nominees For The 2020 Grammy Awards

 

Here is a list of nominees in the major categories for the 62nd annual Grammy Awards, which will be handed out on Sunday in Los Angeles:

Album of the Year –

Bon Iver, “i, i”

Lana Del Rey, “Norman Fucking Rockwell!”

Billie Eilish, “When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?”

Ariana Grande, “thank u, next”

H.E.R., “I Used To Know Her”

Lil Nas X, “7”

Lizzo, “Cuz I Love You (Deluxe)”

Vampire Weekend, “Father Of The Bride”

Record of the Year, recognizing overall performance on a song –

Bon Iver, “Hey, Ma”

Billie Eilish, “Bad Guy”

Ariana Grande, “7 Rings”

H.E.R., “Hard Place”

Khalid, “Talk”

Lil Nas X featuring Billy Ray Cyrus, “Old Town Road”

Lizzo, “Truth Hurts”

Post Malone and Swae Lee, “Sunflower”

Read Also: Burna Boy Nominated For 2020 Grammy Awards

Song of the Year, recognizing songwriting –

Lady Gaga, Natalie Hemby, Hillary Lindsey and Lori McKenna, “Always Remember Us This Way” (from “A Star Is Born”)

Billie Eilish and Finneas O’Connell, “Bad Guy”

Brandi Carlile, Phil Hanseroth, Tim Hanseroth and Tanya Tucker, “Bring My Flowers Now”

H.E.R., Ruby Amanfu, Sam Ashworth, D. Arcelious Harris and Rodney Jerkins, “Hard Place”

Taylor Swift, “Lover”

Lana Del Rey and Jack Antonoff, “Norman Fucking Rockwell!”

Lewis Capaldi, Tom Barnes, Pete Kelleher, Benjamin Kohn and Sam Roman, “Someone You Loved”

Lizzo, Steven Cheung, Eric Frederic and Jesse Saint John, “Truth Hurts”

Best New Artist –

Black Pumas

Billie Eilish

Lil Nas X

Lizzo

Maggie Rogers

Rosalia

Tank And The Bangas

Yola

Best Music Video –

The Chemical Brothers, “We’ve Got to Try”

Gary Clark Jr, “This Land”

FKA twigs, “Cellophane”

Lil Nas X and Billy Ray Cyrus, “Old Town Road”

Tove Lo, “Glad He’s Gone”

Best Rap Album –

Dreamville, “Revenge Of The Dreamers III”

Meek Mill, “Championships”

21 Savage, “I Am > I Was”

Tyler, The Creator, “Igor”

YBN Cordae, “The Lost Boy”

Best Rock Album –

Bring Me The Horizon, “Amo”

Cage The Elephant, “Social Cues”

The Cranberries, “In The End”

I Prevail, “Trauma”

Rival Sons, “Feral Roots”

Best Pop Vocal Album –

Beyonce, “The Lion King: The Gift”

Billie Eilish, “When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?”

Ariana Grande, “thank u, next”

Ed Sheeran, “No. 6 Collaborations Project”

Taylor Swift, “Lover”

Best Alternative Music Album –

Big Thief, “U.F.O.F.”

James Blake, “Assume Form”

Bon Iver, “i, i”

Vampire Weekend, “Father of the Bride”

Thom Yorke, “Anima”

Best World Music Album –

Altin Gun, “Gece”

Bokante & Metropole Orkest conducted by Jules Buckley, “What Heat”

Burna Boy, “African Giant”

Nathalie Joachim with Spektral Quartet, “Fanm D’Ayiti”

Angelique Kidjo, “Celia”

Surprise Eminem Album Urges Gun Control, Sparks Anger Over Bomb Lyric

 

 

Guess who’s back?… Rapper Eminem surprised fans Friday by dropping a new album featuring a strong anti-gun violence theme but also stoking the kind of controversy that brought him fame.

On the album, one track called “Darkness” tells the story of a loner going on a shooting spree, while another song, “Unaccommodating,” has triggered outcry and muddied the veteran singer’s call for gun control.

The song references the 2017 deadly bombing at an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, Britain, which left 22 people dead.

“But I’m contemplating yelling ‘bombs away’ on the game like I’m outside of an Ariana Grande concert waiting,” the 47-year-old artist, born Marshall Mathers, raps on the track.

READ ALSO: Whitney Houston, Biggie Among Rock Hall Of Fame Inductees

The lyric was met with scorn on social media, with some users dubbing it “disgusting” and “trash.”

The new album, called “Music to be Murdered by,” features appearances from the late rapper Juice WRLD, along with Q-Tip, Ed Sheeran, Anderson. Paak and regular collaborator singer Skylar Grey.

Dr. Dre is credited throughout as a producer.

Eminem released his last album “Kamikaze” in 2018 in a similar sudden fashion. That album included several attacks on President Donald Trump.

The rapper also released Friday a video for “Darkness” that featured audio and footage from the 2017 mass shooting in Las Vegas, the deadliest US gun massacre carried about by an individual in modern history.

It ends urging viewers to register to vote: “Make your voice heard and help change gun laws in America,” closing text reads.

Legendary German Tenor Peter Schreier Dies Aged 84

In this picture from September 24, 2011, German singer and conductor Peter Schreier speaks after he was awarded the Mendelssohn prize in Leipzig, eastern Germany. PETER ENDIG / DPA / AFP

 

 

German singer and conductor Peter Schreier, widely regarded as one of the leading lyric tenors of the 20th century, died on Thursday at the age of 84 after a long illness, his secretary said.

Schreier, one of the few international stars to emerge from former communist East Germany, passed away in his beloved home city of Dresden.

Although Schreier retired from opera at the age of 65 in 2000 because he felt too old to be playing young lovers on stage, he continued to give “Lieder” or song recitals for a few more years and then focussed on teaching and conducting until his health problems became too severe.

Schreier suffered from back and hip problems and had diabetes, according to German media.

In a career that spanned decades and encompassed more than 60 different roles, Schreier performed regularly in some of the world’s most prestigious opera houses and festivals, from Berlin, Vienna and Salzburg to New York and Milan.

He was perhaps most famous for his interpretations of Bach and Mozart, but his repertoire also included Wagner and he even sang at the legendary Bayreuth Festival in 1966.

“A day without music is a wasted day,” DPA news agency quoted him as saying.

Born on July 29, 1935 in the small town of Gauernitz near Dresden in Saxony state, Schreier’s singing talent soon became apparent to his father, a church cantor.

At the age of eight, Schreier joined Dresden’s famous Kreuzchor boys’ choir and went on to study singing and conducting in the city which was heavily destroyed by Allied bombing during World War II.

Mozart breakthrough

Schreier made his operatic debut in the role of First Prisoner in Beethoven’s “Fidelio” at the Dresden State Opera.

But his breakthrough came a little later in two key Mozart roles — Belmonte in “The Abduction from the Seraglio” and Tamino in “The Magic Flute”.

While critics did not always describe his voice as beautiful, they praised the intensity and intelligence of his performances.

A pivotal member of the Berlin State Opera at Unter den Linden in then East Berlin, Schreier enjoyed rare privileges in the tightly-controlled GDR — without being a member of the ruling SED communist party.

In 1972, he took up the baton and went on to conduct some of the world’s leading orchestras, including the New York Philharmonic and the Vienna Philharmonic.

But Schreier always insisted his heart belonged to Dresden.

“I would be missing something if I couldn’t live in Dresden,” he used to say.

He finally took his leave from the concert stage in 2005 at a performance of Bach’s Christmas Oratorio in Prague, when he both conducted and also sang the role of the Evangelist.

That same year, he told German media he was looking forward to relaxing at his countryside villa on the outskirts of Dresden and cooking for his wife Renate.

“I’ve really sung enough and would just like to enjoy a few more peaceful years now,” he said.

Rising Rap Artist Juice WRLD Dies At 21

In this file photo taken on September 21, 2019 Juice Wrld performs onstage during the 2019 iHeartRadio Music Festival and Daytime Stage at the Las Vegas Festival Grounds in Las Vegas, Nevada. BRYAN STEFFY / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / AFP

 

 

Chicago-born rapper Juice WRLD, one of a wave of young artists who made a name on streaming platforms before breaking out as chart-toppers and social media celebrities, died on Sunday at the age of 21, according to local authorities.

A spokeswoman from the Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office in Illinois told AFP that it had been notified of the rapper born Jarad Higgins’ death. An autopsy had not yet been carried out.

Police confirmed to AFP that a 21-year-old man had suffered a medical emergency at Midway International Airport after getting off a private jet.

Celebrity news outlet TMZ reported that Higgins had suffered a seizure.

Juice WRLD’s breakout single “Lucid Dreams,” rose to Number 2 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 2018, with his follow-up album “Death Race for Love” debuting in first place on the Billboard 200 the following year.

The rapper was of a generation known as the “SoundCloud rappers” — a subgenre that takes its name from the streaming platform where its artists find fame.

The crop of rappers in recent years has become a disruptive movement in hip hop, combining a lo-fi underground sound with raw, often emotionally laden lyrics leading some to dub them “emo rappers.”

These musicians whose careers are built on internet stardom often rap about popping drugs, notably Xanax, an anti-anxiety medication.

Along with prescription medication the subculture’s aesthetic includes face tattoos and neon-dyed hair.

‘I have a lot going for me’

The scene has launched careers and sales figures but the lives of its figures are often volatile: XXXTentacion was murdered in 2018, while Tekashi69, seeking leniency on serious racketeering and weapons charges, this year was a star government witness at the trial of alleged former gang associates.

And in 2017 the SoundCloud rapper Lil Peep died at age 21 of what was declared an accidental overdose of fentanyl and Xanax.

Speaking to The New York Times in 2018, Juice WRLD said that he used Xanax heavily as a teenager but was aiming to curb his drug use.

“I have a lot going for me, I recognize it’s a lot of big things, a lot of big looks. I want to be there, and you don’t have to overdose to not be there,” he told the Times.

Music and industry insiders took to social media to pay tribute to the rapper upon learning of his shock death.

“Wow, I can not believe this. Rip my brother juice world,” tweeted fellow rapper Lil Yachty.

“rip juice,” tweeted breakout star Lil Nas X.

“so sad how often this is happening lately to young talented rising artists.”

The Beautiful Epiphany Of Johnny Drille’s Count On You

 

It isn’t a far stretch to imagine that every piece of music is an expression of love for something, whether it is money, drugs or abstract things like hate and justice.

Johnny Drille, perhaps Nigeria’s most impressive vocalist recording now, makes music that is an expression of love for love. In Johnny Drille’s world, love is as it is in a rom-com, a rollercoaster of highs and lows, heartbreak and epiphanies, grief and joy, but with a happy ending.

When it doesn’t end happily, it leaves a throbbing ache behind, of regret, of sadness, that is maybe even more beautiful than the former’s joy.

On Wednesday, Drille, who was born John Ighodaro, took to Twitter and announced that he was soon releasing “The greatest love song ever”.

He repeated the phrase in caps. When Count On You dropped on Friday, he tweeted “you can count on me to always deliver good music” and urged his fans to help promote the new single.

By Saturday morning, Count On You had racked over 100,000 views on YouTube.

Read Also: #BamTeddy Tie The Knot In Johnny Drille’s New Music Video

For an artiste who is yet to really break into the mainstream, the numbers seemed to be adding up, slowly.

Count On You is a typical Drille song: the lyrics are poetic, heavy with layered meaning; the rhythm is designed to start slow and pick up into something of a crescendo and climax; and, of course, Drille’s unique voice which caresses the ears like a stick of soft wool.

The song is another point for Drille in the imaginary race to become this country’s musical love connoisseur.

Now, on to the appearance of Bambam and Teddy in Count On You’s video, which, at first, appears to be a stroke of marketing genius. But it is more than that. Drille is also tapping into the strange chemistry of one of the most unexpected public love stories in 2019.

No one gave the duo a chance, after their Big Brother sultry rendezvous. “Nobody thought we’d ever come this far,” Drille crooned.

The BamBam and Teddy romance is a vivacious rejection of Nigeria’s conservative idea on how marital love develops and Drille appears to agree with their story of lasting love. “Baby this is day one of forever,” he sang.

Count On You is a beautiful work of art, if not for its realism, but for its evocation of a world where love triumphs over everything, including societal expectations. It is an ode to the power of trust and vulnerability in a world low on faith.