Chingy taking on ringtone game

 |  November 22, 2006

By Quibian Salazar-Moreno

      Unfortunately, this personalized ring tone is only available to Sprint and Nextel customers, who can set it up as Ringers (ringtones) or Call Tones (ringback tones) by downloading it from their phones. Sprint will also begin streaming the first two videos from Chingy’s album, Hoodstar, "Pullin’ Me Back" and "Dem Jeans," as well as an exclusive interview Chingy did with one of Sprint’s VJ’s on Channel 33 or Channel 35 on Sprint TV, which is available on Sprint Power Vision phones.

      With the success of his latest single, "Dem Jeans", Chingy is taking it a step further. The young emcee has recorded 123 personalized ringtones using the hook "Damn Girl, how’d you get all that in Dem Jeans?" from the single, but replacing "Girl" with 123 different female names. Chingy laid down each hook in the studio using names like Jalisa, Lakeisha, Mariah, Oprah, Beyonce and others.


      Eminem clinched the "Favorite Male Rap/Hip-Hop Artist" award at this year’s American Music Awards held last night (November 21) at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, California. Both Kanye West and Chamillionaire were nominated for "Favorite Male Artist" and "Breakthrough Artist" respectively, both failed to win. 
Below is a complete list of winners from the 2006 AMAs:
 • Pop-Rock:
Male artist: Sean Paul
Female artist: Kelly Clarkson
Band, duo or group: Red Hot Chili Peppers
Album: "All the Right Reasons," Nickelback
• Soul-R&B:
Male artist: Jamie Foxx
Female artist: Mary J. Blige
Band, duo or group: The Black Eyed Peas
Album: "The Breakthrough," Mary J. Blige
• Country:
Male artist: Toby Keith
Female artist: Faith Hill
Band, duo or group: Rascal Flatts
Album: "Greatest Hits Volume 2,"
Tim McGraw
• Rap/Hip-Hop:
Male artist: Eminem
Band, duo or group: The Black Eyed Peas
Album: "Monkey Business," The Black Eyes Peas
• Adult Contemporary:
Artist: Kelly Clarkson
• Latin Music:
Artist: Shakira
• Alternative Music:
Artist: Red Hot Chili Peppers
Contemporary Inspirational: Kirk Franklin
 Breakthrough (New Artist): Carrie Underwood

A.G. joins 2KSports Mixtape Live Tour

 |  November 22, 2006
      Veteran emcee A.G. (aka Andre the Giant), of the much lauded hip-hop group, Show & A.G., has announced that he’ll be joining the 2KSports Mixtape Live Tour. The tour, which celebrates the connection between hip-hop and video games, also features Dan the Automater, Chali 2na (of Jurassic 5), Casual (of Hieroglyphics) and Common Market.
      A.G. will be promoting his new album, Get Dirty Radio, which features production from J. Dilla, Madlib, Lord Finesse, Show, Tommy Tee, Oh No, DJ Design, Jake One, Cochise with appearances from Aloe Blacc, Party Arty and Lil Roze.

Here’s the tour dates:
11/29/06 – SLO Brewing Company – San Luis Obispo, CA – 18+
11/30/06 – Mezzanine – San Francisco, CA – 21+
12/01/06 – The Catalyst – Santa Cruz, CA – 16+
12/02/06 – Senator Theatre – Chico, CA – All ages
12/04/06 – Berbati’s Pan – Portland, OR – 21+
12/05/06 – The Nightlight – Bellingham, WA – 21+
12/06/06 – Neumo’s – Seattle, WA – All ages
12/08/06 – Suede – Park City, UT – All ages
12/09/06 – Belly Up – Aspen, CO – All ages
12/10/06 – Fox Theatre & Cafe – Boulder, CO – All ages
12/12/06 – Sunshine Theater – Albuquerque, NM – All ages
12/13/06 – Orpheum Theatre – Flagstaff, AZ – All ages
12/14/06 – Canes Bar & Grill – San Diego, CA – 21+
12/15/06 – El Rey Theatre – Los Angeles, CA – All ages

      It’s one of the biggest questions on the minds of Nas’ fans, as we get closer to the release date of his Def Jam debut Hip-Hop Is Dead. Jay-Z has already fired back at Cam’ron and Jim Jones via "Dig a Hole" and "Brooklyn High." On the latter, Jay-Z even admits that "Ether"—Nas’ rebound to the Jiggaman’s "Takeover"—strengthened him in the battle department.
      Will Nas, a certified lyrical warrior, follow suit when Hip-Hop is Dead drops on December 19? "I’m trying to uplift the unity," Nas told MTV News recently. "You listen to Cam’ron’s dis, that was just pieces of "Ether" put together. You have to make a certain amount of albums to be in the ring with me. You can’t have one album or two albums or went platinum one time, or you may have performed in front of 6,000 people once in your life. You have to be somebody in my weight class. You can’t fight like that. That’s not really a battle.
      "But there are spankings I can do," he continued. "Lyrical, verbal assaults I can do on some of you clowns. But the take on this album is more of a unity thing. I don’t really know if I’m gonna let some of those records fly where I do answer a thing or two. Maybe, maybe not…"

Kanye West sponsors Formula race car

 |  November 21, 2006
           Kanye West and marketing agency TAOW Productions announced that West will be sponsoring a race car in the Formula BMW World Finals from November 24-26 in Valencia, Spain. West’s car has his famous bear logo along with the logos of the Kanye West Foundation and the United Nations World Food program. The car will be driven by 17- year old racer Philip Major.
          "Creating opportunities for people to dream and achieve is part of the core focus of the Kanye West Foundation," West said. "The Kanye West Foundation is glad to partner with Philip Major for such a global event. We view our participation as a race to help humanity and hope to raise awareness about my Foundation and the United Nations World Food Program."
          The Formula BMW World Finals is a competition between the best drivers from the world’s regional Formula BMW series. The second annual event will include 38 drivers from 18 countries. For more information check out formulabmwusa.

          After a successful 2006 and a strings of hits Bad Boy Records has announced that they have renewed their relationship with Block Enterprises, the label home to Yung Joc and Boyz N Da Hood and headed by Russell ‘Block’ Spencer.
      "As we have continued to expand the musical scope of Bad Boy, we knew we had to be plugged into the creative and vibrant Southern scene,” Diddy said.  “When Block and I first met, I realized he had an ear for the streets of the South and that he would be the perfect person to be our partner in developing and breaking new talent. The success of Boyz N Da Hood and Young Joc proves that our instincts were right, and there is much more fantastic music in the pipeline from the Block/Bad Boy South team.  I am thrilled that we have renewed our commitment to this great relationship."
      Bad Boy and Block Enterprises are currently hard at work on new albums from Boyz N Da hood and Yung Joc plus debut albums from Boyz member Big Gee and a debut album from Gorilla Zoe.
      "As the South market grew, Diddy and Bad Boy realized they needed to be involved,” Block said. “I was looking to take the music we make in the South to another level, and the collaboration between Block Enterprises and Bad Boy South was the perfect avenue for both of our companies.     Look at the success we have already attained.  When the machine is working successfully, you don’t look to fix it, but to add to it to make it better. The renewal of our deal is going to make the Block/Bad Boy South partnership even bigger."

          In an interview with the New York Daily news, Russell Simmons said that he’s heading to South Africa and Botswana to take a look at the diamond mines, factories and the African side of the diamond industry. Simmons currently works with diamond industry giant DeBeers on his own line of jewelry.
      "I’m making a lot of money by selling diamonds," Simmons told the New York Daily News. "I want to give my money back to the people in Africa. We’re starting the Diamond Empowerment Fund to teach Africans how to cut and polish diamonds on the continent, instead of taking the diamonds out. We want more of black Africans to become executives. The diamond industry should be the leader of African empowerment."
      For years various African rebel organizations in different African nations mined and sold diamonds to fund their wars. These diamonds were called “blood diamonds” or “conflict diamonds” which for the most part led to the massacre of hundreds and thousands of Africans since the 1980’s. In the late 90’s however, the diamond industry instituted a ‘Certificate of Origin’, a sort of engraving showing that the diamond came from a legitimate mining business. For the past five years, the existence on blood diamonds on the market has been drastically reduced. Now Simmons is hoping to help those who have been hurt by the value of the diamond.
      “[I hope] Americans will know that, when they buy a diamond, it doesn’t make you an a-hole with money, it can make you a person who’s empowering Africans," Simmons said.

Universal Goes After MySpace

 |  November 20, 2006
      Universal Music Group has filed a lawsuit against, alleging that the online social-networking site illegally engenders copyright infringement on music and videos.
      UMG also claims that the News Corp-owned MySpace attempts to shield itself from liability by making users agree to grant the website a license to publish the content they upload to the site. According to Universal, users have no such authority over works they don’t own.
      The lawsuit states that MySpace "facilitates and participates in the unauthorized reproduction, adaptation, distribution and public performance," singling out the feature on the website that enable users to save/share music and videos to their profile.
      Universal Music is the world’s largest recording company, is home to recording artists such as Jay-Z, Akon, and Kanye West.
MySpace responded to the lawsuit via a statement, saying that it is in full compliance with copyright laws and is confident it will prevail in court
      Last month, Universal Music filed lawsuits against online video-sharing sites Grouper Networks Inc. and Bolt Inc., seeking damages up to $150,000 for each incident of copyright infringement plus costs.

          According to the New York Post, The Game was arrested in New York over the weekend for impersonating a police officer. Apparently the rapper told a cab driver to run red lights because he was an undercover cop in a hurry. They drove 13 blocks before a real officer pulled them over for reckless driving. But Game’s lawyer Jeffrey Lichtman said the charges are ridiculous and is a new low for the NYPD.
          "This harassment of The Game and other hip-hop artists by the NYPD has got to stop – and a painful loss at trial may be just the solution," Lichtman told the New York Post.
          Lichtman also said that the cab driver was passing the buck so he could get out of a ticket. Apparently, NYPD had been following The Game the entire time he’s been in New York.

      We already talked about Jay-Z taking over Sirius and XM Radio, but now Jigga is setting his sites on MTV. Still promoting his album, Kingdom Come, which drops next week MTV will air various Jay-Z programming in the next couple of weeks.
      First off MTV has launched, fan site that not only include the latest news and info on the rapper, but also a “Jay-Z Video Vault” that features all 35 of Jay-Z’s videos plus a bunch of live performances and dozens of live interviews. And starting on November 18, fans will be able to get updates and watch clips of Jay-Z’s one-day “Hangar Tour”.
      MTV will then air a half special on the Hangar Tour on November 19. On the same day on MTV2, “The Diary of Jay-Z: Water For Life” will air where Jigga will share his experiences as he traveled the world to spread awareness about the water crisis in third world countries.
      Finally fans can enter the “The Jay-Z  Platinum Experience” contest at mtvjay-zplatinumexperience for a chance to live like a hip-hop superstar including a private helicopter trip to NYC, a private tour of the Island Def Jam offices, a personalized JAY-Z platinum album, NJ Nets tickets and more!  Contest runs from November 18, 2006 through December 9, 2006.

      Michael Jackson took the stage in the U.K. for the first time in nine years. His performance at this year’s World Music Awards, hosted in London, was met with a great deal of disappointment, according to BBC News.
      Jackson, 48, was expected to perform his hit song "Thriller," a responsibility he designated to young R&B singer Chris Brown. Jackson, who scooped a tribute award for selling over 100 million albums throughout his career, told the media that there was a misunderstanding that he would perform "Thriller."
      He didn’t perform "Thriller," but his rendition of "We Are The World" was also slammed by critics. MJ reportedly struggled to hit the high notes and inexplicably stopped the performance midway. He then left the stage amidst boos from the crowd.
      Fans, who paid as much as $200, expressed their disappointment after the performance. "I should have just stayed at home and watched it on TV… We should definitely get a refund," griped one fan.
      Organizers of the World Music Awards said that they were not aware fans had complaint regarding the event. They also offered some explanations for ending Jackson’s performance abruptly, saying that the show was running too long and breaking the venue’s noise curfew.

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