Tongue-in-cheek tweets by Kanye West fans stirred a minor panic among Beatles fans who thought that some young tweeters actually didn’t know who Kanye’s latest collaborator—Paul McCartney—is. Both The Mirror U.K. and Good Morning America stirred the pot by reporting on the the story. “WHO IS PAUL MCCARTNEY?” read a GMA feed. “KANYE’S FANS DON’T KNOW THE BEATLE.” Maybe some don’t, but Billboard dug a little deeper and found that every tweet cited in the news reports was “clearly joking.”
Meanwhile, the son of McCartney’s former collaborator Michael Jackson might be collaborating with Justin Bieber. According to Page Six, Jackson’s 17-year-old son Paris has been “making music with new pal Justin Bieber, sampling the Hollywood club scene, juggling multiple girlfriends and generally disregarding his guardians.” Of course, that comes from a “Jackson family source,” and given that the Jackson family is one of the most famously contentious in all of entertainment, the hot tip should be taken with a grain of salt.
As long as we’re sharing rumors, though, here’s another one: a new album by Florence + the Machine may be almost complete: a fan site shared a photo that allegedly showed the album being mixed in a studio. (NME)
Sting‘s Broadway musical The Last Ship couldn’t even be saved by the Police frontman himself joining the cast of the show about shipbuilding. With ticket sales running low, the show’s investors are losing $75,000 a week and the production will close after its 105th performance on Jan. 24. (Rolling Stone)
Madonna continues to face criticism after posting photos of Martin Luther King, Jr., Nelson Mandela, and Bob Marley to her social media accounts; the photos had been altered to resemble the cover of Madonna’s album Rebel Heart, with their faces bound in cords as Madonna’s face is on the album cover. Madonna said the image alterations were made by fans, though the images were subsequently posted to her official accounts. “I’m admiring and acknowledging their Rebel Hearts,” Madonna wrote on Facebook. “This is neither a crime or an insult or racist!” (BBC)
Is this really Malia Obama wearing a shirt from the rap collective Pro Era? The Brooklyn hip-hoppers say so and shared the pic via Instagram, but there’s as of yet no confirmation from the White House. (Billboard)
The most successful projects on Kickstarter last year were music-related, with Neil Young‘s Pono campaign garnering more individual donors than any other. 18,220 people signed on to support Young’s high-def music service. (Billboard)
Universal Music and advertising firm Havas are launching the Global Music Data Alliance, which Advertising Age reports to be “a partnership both companies hope will create new revenue streams by mining the data provided by consumer behavior around Universal’s artists.” By making use of sophisticated data analysis, the partnership hopes to “identify new marketing opportunities for brands and artists” such as Universal’s “Taylor Swift, Kanye West, Lady Gaga, Adele, BB King, Cher, Elton John, Katy Perry, Pearl Jam, and U2.”
Thom Yorke‘s BitTorrent experiment seems to have gone pretty well: SPIN reports that the Radiohead frontman could have “easily” made as much as $20 million by releasing his new album Tomorrow’s Modern Boxes via the digital sharing site.
Rapper Danny Brown says he’s writing a children’s book, inspired by Dr. Seuss, “about self-esteem in black girls.” It’s an unexpected tack for an artist who allegedly engaged in an obscene act on the stage of the Triple Rock Social Club, but then, green eggs and ham are pretty unlikely too. (Rolling Stone)