Category: Auto-Tune

Live review: Britney Spears at Staples Center



   Spears 1
In the video interludes between songs on Britney Spears’ Femme Fatale tour, which landed at Staples Center on Monday night, she’s under surveillance by a creepy Bond-villain type with a curious habit. He’s constantly sucking on bright red lollipops.

The candy quirk was a weird and funny flashback to a more innocent time in Spears’ career, back when she wore pigtails and cardigans and dominated the teen-pop spectrum of the late ‘90s and early 2000s.

There was something Freudian to it as well: Pop culture had made a safari sport of Britney-hunting, and spent most of 2007 watching a beloved young female pop star’s life and family (and, as some speculated, her health) unravel in spectacularly public fashion.

In another twist to the video, she eventually slinks in, binds and gags the villain in a way that he might not have been wholly displeased with.

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First Miley, and now T-Pain: Taylor Swift to slowly take over all of pop music?

Taylor_miley_grammys

First Miley Cyrusthen John Mayer and now T-Pain? Everyone seems to want to partner with country superstar princess Taylor Swift, and Swift seems happy to play along. 

When Swift teased via Twitter that she might be in the studio with T-Pain, which came a few months after Mayer teased he was in the studio with Swift, we were either being fed trinkets from what would surely be one of the oddest and warped mainstream duet albums in history, or simply watching a pair of young media masters do their work. The latter appears to be the case with the T-Pain announcement, as Swift will indeed be working with the Auto-Tone kingpin, but there may or may not be music involved, and if there is, it may or not be a novelty number for a sketch at the "Country Music Television Music Awards," which air Tuesday night.

The folks at CMT have shared a photo to generate some hype for the pairing. But this is well played, Mr. T-Pain, well played. While the CMT Music Awards aren't exactly the cream of the crop, they do kind of mark the unofficial start of the music award season. Yes, it's here. 

With the Grammys having shifted their eligibility period from the last day of September to the last day in August, now is the time to take part in a stunt to get your album back in the minds of Grammy voters, a notoriously unadventurous lot. Swift doesn't have anything to worry about, but T-Pain's "Thr33 Ringz" drifted off the U.S. pop chart a few weeks ago, and the time is ripe for the artist to get back on the campaign trail. 

Additionally, let's not forget that there's precedent. Shoring up the country base worked well, come Grammy time, for Lil Wayne, who appeared with Kid Rock at the Country Music Assn. Awards in 2008.

-- Todd Martens

Photo: Miley Cyrus and Taylor Swift at the 2009 Grammy Awards. Credit: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times

T-Pain's Auto-Tune app for the iPhone is in progress

T-Pain

At the end of this now-boilerplate "Intro to Auto-Tune for Frightened Boomers" story in Time is a small glimpse at a future in which drunken phone fights with your ladyfriend can precisely replicate "808s & Heartbreak." T-Pain and Antares are collaborating on an Auto-Tune app for the iPhone, with which you can use the company's vocal-transforming software to pitch-shift your own voice via cellphone.

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