2016 certainly was one for the books. I admit feeling terribly guilty every time someone claimed how horrible the year was when I secretly felt otherwise! Whether it be the amazing Films I saw, singling-out LA LA LAND, which I will say is the one of the finest to be released in the past decade, or songs on the radio – we love a return to strong melancholy melodies – the year gave us many memories to hold on to. And to think we used to scoff at Justin Bieber, Ariana Grande, Bruno Mars and The Weeknd … now they’re on repeat on our Spotify account.
If there was a big name in town, we were there and this will be defined as the year we met our faves Gwyneth Paltrow, James Corden, Anne Hathaway, Taraji P. Henson, Rooney Mara and Emma Stone. We admit, we’re a bit mortified we’ll run out of heroes to meet!
And let’s not forget my love of horses. My travels to New York and California brought me together with icons like California Chrome, Beholder, Lady Eli and star of tomorrow, Classic Empire – the early favourite for May’s Kentucky Derby. My favourite horsey moment though? Meeting “Princess” aka A Pic by MrWill, my own namesake, for the first time back in February! I will miss her as she enjoys the sun and sand in Florida this winter, but look forward to her being a tough machine in the spring after her winter training.
Join me on a walk down memory lane one more time! And check back this weekend as we check-in with Team Mr. Will including Justin Waldman, Jon Godfrey, Dave Baldwin, Siobhán Rich, Amanda Gilmore + George Kozera as they give us their Best-Ofs!
TOP TEN FILMS
1. La La Land
3. Bridget Jones’s Baby
4. Nocturnal Animals
7. A Bigger Splash
9. Florence Foster Jenkins
Into You – Ariana Grande
Don’t Let Me Down – The Chainsmokers ft. Daya
Let Me Love You – DJ Snake ft. Justin Bieber
Starboy – The Weeknd
24k Magic – Bruno Mars
Cheap Thrills – Sia ft. Sean Paul
Dangerous Woman – Ariana Grande
No – Meghan Trainor
7 Years – Lukas Graham
Lifted – CL
All About Us – Jordan Fisher
Love Like That – Mayor Hawthorne
Just Like Fire – P!nk
This is What You Came For – Calvin Harris ft. Rihanna
Lost Boy – Ruth B
Treat You Better – Shawn Mendes
Spirits – The Strumbellas
Let it Go – James Bay
Work from Home – Fifth Harmony
City of Stars – Ryan Gosling
Audition – Emma Stone
2015 has been a phenomenal year for New Jersey native Halsey, née Ashley Frangipane. The 21-year-old Singer/Songwriter’s debut disc Badlands has garnered critical acclaim and a growing legion of fans. Her electronic-alternative edge has a pop familiarity to it and in addition to being rebellious and confessional, her music possesses a sophistication and poetic elegance to it.
Record retailers like HMV in Canada have given her the greatest vote of confidence even offering a money-back guarantee on the purchase of Badlands should you not be satisfied with it. In an era of declining physical album sales, this says a lot.
I had the pleasure of seeing Halsey live at The Phoenix on her first ever self-headlining tour. She also will be opening for Toronto’s The Weeknd‘s The Madness Fall Tour on select dates. In fact, he also had a show in the city tonight at Air Canada Centre, one of two this week.
The colourfully-haired chanteuse who decidedly is blonde right now, told the packed crowd, “The Weeknd told me all about Toronto love!” before telling fans she would perform a one-city exclusive, a cover of Justin Bieber‘s smash What Do You Mean specially for Toronto.
Enhanced by LED visual displays, while being dimly-lit in blues and reds for added intrigure, Halsey performed for about an hour, sounding absolutely solid. The short length of tracks presented some pacing issues as things would get moving and stop multiple times, though Halsey was pleased to talk to fans with great personability about her excitement touring in-between.
Halsey recorded a duet with Bieber recently titled The Feeling, to appear on his upcoming new disc Purpose. Although making mention of it, she wouldn’t perform any of it with several speculating Bieber would show up.
Listen to her talk about her experience working with Justin Bieber below:
See her live cover for Toronto only, of What Do You Mean (NSFW):
Halsey was amazingly-nice after her show to stop to snap Selfies in a crowd of hundreds of fans wrapping along Sherbourne Street. Despite not being able to get to all, she did her best and had a handler manage expectations.
Unfortunately, Halsey had some press lined-up for tomorrow including a live set at radio station The Edge, which was cancelled as she is to fly-out. We did manage to meet her quickly and she was the sweetest and despite panic when she came out, she kept it all calm especially after some incidences at her previous shows.
Glassy-eyed and smiling, the first official Mugshot following fallen Teen Pop Star Justin Bieber has been released following his arrest late last night in Miami for Driving Under the Influence and Drag Racing. Bieber later admitted after his incoherent arrest, that he had been intoxicated with a combination of Marijuana, Alcohol and Prescription Pills.
Bieber with his offences could face up to six months in prison, although we’re unsure if he’s aware of the seriousness of his actions or if he’s at all remorseful about the potential danger he could’ve caused to others.
Bieber‘s Arrest Report:
Much speculation has been made about Bieber‘s bankability, recently announcing on a whim that he would be retiring from Music soon via Twitter. Support from Bieber‘s Fanbase also appears to be dwindling. By comparison, his last Documentary, Never Say Never grossed over $99 million worldwide. His Christmas-released Documentary Believe, to date has earned only $6 million internationally.
In the bigger picture perhaps, we should be asking the all-important question, where are the Singer’s Parents Jeremy Bieber and Patti Mallette in all of this?
The former is busy inspiring his two-million-plus Followers on Twitter to “lead by example”:
The latter is busy currently launching her own Blog and aspiring to win a Kids’ Choice Award:
19 years old certainly is not too old to be told. Inasmuch as it isn’t nice to criticize others’ parenting skills or blame them for Bieber‘s missteps, stepping-in and intervening is much needed right now before matters further take a turn for the worse. Racing along the road of Fame comes with great glamour and perks, but it is important to remember the expensive costs to be paid. We all want to see Bieber do well but getting there means being surrounded by people who have his back and that should mean first and foremost his Family.
Put aside the Blog for now Pattie and lead your own Son by example yourself, Jeremy. Family first.
Happy New Year, Wongsters! I admit it’s been a while since we’ve spotted a Celeb in these parts, but what better way to kick-off ’14 than with a Fresh Face?
Justin Bieber Fans – or Beliebers as you call yourselves – need little introduction to Maejor Ali, the 26-year-old Singer/Songwriter who reached the Top 20 this Fall with his Track, Lolly (ft. Justin Bieber and Juicy J.). After spending New Year’s Eve in Paris, the Detroit-born Talent, flew into Toronto last night to spend the day with Bieber, with whom he is said to be working on new Music in addition to his own upcoming Album. He also is responsible for producing Teen Sensation Austin Mahone‘s Single Say Somethin‘.
Ali, who currently is signed to Bieber‘s Schoolboy Records (Universal Music), strutted the streets of Toronto New Year’s Day like a Champ in a jacket and robe in these frigid temperatures!
See Ali’s Video for Lolly, which has amassed over 50 million views on YouTube:
After much speculation sparked after a radio interview on Los Angeles’ POWER 106 last week, Justin Bieber has officially dropped a Christmas Bomb, confirming his retirement on Christmas Eve at 10:22 PM EST.
The Entertainer is back home in Stratford spending the Holidays with Family, flying-in to the City earlier this week. Knowing certainly how to capitalize on Publicity with a Documentary Believe, which looks at a darker side of the Singer’s fame, being in theatres Christmas Day, his Fans certainly will be combing the Film for clues to this sudden announcement.
Leaking early, the brand new One Direction Disc Midnight Memories is set to hit stores next week! Showcasing a much more mature sound with a stronger Rock-edge, their brand new Track Diana is an indication of their next phase and it’s a great Track! The ’80s influences are there and it sounds like a fresh Descendant of the Sting and Rick Springfield line. Their Arena-filling Hooks in a short time have become unmistakable.
The Track even has Justin BieberTweeting his praises: “that new 1d song diana is well written well done boyzzzzzz”. If that doesn’t light the fire, I don’t know what will!
Within 24 hours of release, the Promotional Single rocketed to #1 on iTunes Charts around the World including Canada, the U.S., Italy, the UK, Australia and more. It would be no surprise if this wound-up being an official Single!
Although it’s been a bit challenging finding it online, you can hear Dianahere.
Taking place Sunday, November 3, 3013, the first-ever YouTube Music Awards will take place in New York City at Pier 36! Performers at the star-studded Awards include the likes of Eminem, Lady Gaga, Avicii, M.I.A., Arcade Fire and several more. Funnyman Jason Schwartzman and Musician Reggie Watts will host the Event.
Nominees for six categories were announced earlier today and they include:
Video of the Year:
· Barack Obama vs Mitt Romney – Epic Rap Battles Of History
· Demi Lovato – Heart Attack
· Girls’ Generation – I Got A Boy
· Justin Bieber (feat. Nicki Minaj) – Beauty And A Beat
· Lady Gaga – Applause
· Macklemore & Ryan Lewis (feat. Mary Lambert) – Same Love
· Miley Cyrus – We Can’t Stop
· One Direction – Best Song Ever
· PSY – Gentleman
· Selena Gomez Come & Get It
Artist of the Year
‣ Epic Rap Battles of History
‣ Justin Bieber
‣ Katy Perry
‣ Macklemore & Ryan Lewis
‣ Nicki Minaj
‣ One Direction
‣ Taylor Swift
Response of the Year
‣ Boyce Avenue (feat. Fifth Harmony) – Mirrors
‣ Jayesslee – Gangnam Style
‣ Lindsey Stirling and Pentatonix – Radioactive
‣ ThePianoGuys – Titanium/ Pavane
‣ Walk Off the Earth (feat. KRNFX) – IKnew You Were Trouble
‣ Gangnam Style
‣ Harlem Shake
‣ I Knew You Were Trouble
‣ Thrift Shop
‣ Kendrick Lamar
‣ Macklemore & Ryan Lewis
‣ Naughty Boy
Innovation of the Year
‣ Anamanaguchi -ENDLESS FANTASY
‣ Atoms For Peace – Ingenue
‣ Bat For Lashes – Lilies
‣ DeStorm – See Me Standing
‣ Toro Y Moi – Say That
The 2013 Billboard Music Awards were held in Las Vegas at the MGM Grand tonight and winning top honours tonight was Taylor Swift with a total eight awards including Top Artist and Billboard Hot 200 Album with her Disc, Red. Poking fun at herself, Swift accepted her Award, stating, “you’re the longest and best relationship I’ve ever had!”.
Not to be outshone, Rihanna and Gotye both picked-up four awards each – the former doing extremely well in the R&B Categories winning Top Album, Song and Artist, while also nabbing Top Radio Songs Artist. Gotye was victorious in the categories: Hot 100 Song, Rock Song, Radio Song and Streaming Song (Audio) based on the strength of his Smash with Kimbra, Somebody That I Used To Know.
Two Pop Legends were honoured also in Prince and Madonna. The former not only performing tonight a Medley which included Let’s Go Crazy, received the Icon Award for his lasting career which has seen ten Diamond Albums and 30 Top 40 Hits. The latter, whom we spotted in New York City last week at the Met Gala, won Top Touring Artist for her MDNA Tour.
Canada’s Carly Rae Jepsen even was recognized with the Award for Top Digital Song with Call Me Maybe.
Although the evening was highlighted by some dazzling performances from the likes of Bruno Mars, Justin Bieber, Selena Gomez, Jennifer Lopez, Christina Aguilera, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis and Pitbull, it was Miguel who stirred-up the most controversy apparently kicking two female Fans when crowdsurfing into the audience during his performance of Adorn.
Avril Lavigne covers this week’s issue of Hello! Canada, featuring their 50 Most Beautiful Canadians. Set to return with her current single Here’s to Never Growing Up, Editor-in-Chief Alison Eastwood released a statement saying, “Unveiling our annual Most Beautiful issue is as thrilling as giving a close friend a big, beautiful birthday present. And this year is especially exciting. Avril and her Fiancé Chad Kroeger have been great friends to HELLO! Canada, their Wedding is just around the corner, and our exclusive (and rare) Photo Shoot, on the eve of Avril’s return to the pop charts, was nothing short of magical.”.
The List ranges from Media, Ballerinas, Singers to Movie Stars with some surprises and some names you have to do a quick Google Image search for. Selected this year by the Magazine are:
Actor: Arrow, CTV
Actor: Arrested Development, Netflix
Carly Rae Jepsen was the big Winner at tonight’s JUNO Awards in Regina. The 28 year-old-Singer/Songwriter swept in three major categories for which she was nominated, including: Album of the Year (Kiss), Single of the Year (Call Me Maybe) and also Pop Album of the Year (Kiss). The Awards were hosted by Crooner Michael Bublé.
Beliebers, as much as they have supported Jepsen after their Idol helped expose her internationally, would not be shut-out however with Justin Bieber was named Winner of the Fan Choice Award.
Canadian Icon Leonard Cohen also took him some prestigious honours this year, including Artist of the Year and Songwriter of the Year – the latter repeating his feat in 1994, winning the same Award.
Toronto-based Rapper The Weeknd was rewarded handsomely for his work on Disc Trilogy, winning Breakthrough Artist of the Year and R&B/Soul Record of the Year.
Mariana’s Trench (fronted by Josh Ramsay who penned Call Me Maybe) was awarded Group of the Year, while Mumford & Sons won International Album of the Year with their Disc, Babel.