Category: Jonas Brothers

Paul McCartney to be feted with Gershwin Prize at White House


Paul McCartney-Gary Friedman

Stevie Wonder, Elvis Costello, Emmylou Harris, Jack White, Jerry Seinfeld, the Jonas Brothers and others will pay tribute to Paul McCartney at the White House on June 2 when the ex-Beatle is feted as the latest recipient of the Library of Congress George Gershwin Prize for Popular Song.

The performance will be hosted by President Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama, and also will include performances by Faith Hill, Herbie Hancock, Corinne Bailey Rae, Dave Grohl and McCartney himself during a presentation that will be recorded for airing July 28 on PBS stations.

McCartney is the third recipient of the Gershwin prize since its inception in 2007 to recognize “the profound and positive effect of popular music on the world’s culture.” The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame member follows Paul Simon and Wonder as the first two honorees.

Just one question: Jerry Seinfeld -- what's up with that?

-- Randy Lewis

Photo of Paul McCartney at the Hollywood Bowl in March. Credit: Gary Friedman / Los Angeles Times


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On the charts: Grammy artists, the Who see increases; Lil Wayne bombs

Ping_grammys  A little TV exposure continues to go a long way. Country trio Lady Antebellum tops the chart for the second straight week, leading in a week that saw big increases for acts that appeared on the Jan. 31 Grammy Awards. Artists such as Pink, Green Day, Taylor Swift and the Dave Matthews Band all saw large sales jumps, and the Who's appearance on Sunday night's Super Bowl seems to already be paying dividends.

Lady Antebellum's "Need You Now" racked up an additional 209,000 sales, according to Nielsen SoundScan. In just two weeks of release, the Capitol Nashville set has moved a total of 690,000. The group performed the hit title track on the Grammy telecast, and that cut was the second-bestselling digital track this week, shifting more than 212,000 downloads. It has sold close to 1.9 million downloads to date. 

SoundScan tracks sales through the end of the business day on Sunday, meaning the full impact of the Who's appearance on the Super Bowl won't be evident until next week's chart is released. Even so, sales are already increasing for the classic rockers, despite the fact that their performance wasn't among the best reviewed of Super Bowl halftime shows. 

The Who's "Greatest Hits" (Geffen) collection sold just under 8,000 copies last week, up from about 4,000 the week before. Additionally, "Baba O'Riley" appeared on the digital singles chart at No. 111. It sold 17,000 copies last week, a mighty increase over the 5,000 it moved in the prior week. 

The biggest beneficiary of the Grammys, in terms of a sales increase, was pop star Pink. Her "Funhouse" (LaFace) was up 235% over the prior week, selling a total of 31,000 copies. To date, it's sold 1.5 million, while the cut she performed on the Grammys in all its acrobatic glory, "Glitter in the Air," sold 114,000 downloads this week, which is the biggest sales week for the track. It sold about 9,000 last week, and 1.5 million to date.

Green Day went all Broadway on the Grammys, and fans don't seem turned off by the punk rock act turning its "21 Guns" into a "Glee"-friendly song. The version of the cut on the album sold 55,000 copies this week (up from 39,000), and an additional take, recorded with the cast of the Green Day-inspired musical "American Idiot," sold 15,000 copies this week (up from 5,000). Meanwhile, the Reprise album  "21st Century Breakdown" sold 7,000 copies, more than doubling its sales of around 3,000 last week.

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Nick Jonas staging guerrilla concerts around L.A. Tuesday -- next stop Disneyland

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Can you make it Disneyland by 5 p.m.? Short notice, we know, but teen star Nick Jonas will soon be performing live at the Happiest Place on Earth.

But if you can't get down to Anaheim, Jonas is streaming the concert on his Facebook and Ustream pages. Thus far today, Jonas has stopped in Sherman Oaks and at the Santa Monica Pier. You can watch those archived concerts on Ustream

Read the Pop & Hiss review of the album here, and our review of his show last week at the Wiltern is here.

-- Todd Martens

Photo: Nick Jonas at the Critics Choice Awards. Credit: Associated Press

Album review: Nick Jonas & the Administration's 'Who I Am'

Nick_Jonas_Who_240_  Give Nick Jonas credit. Despite being a member of one of the world's most well-known brands in the Jonas Brothers, he's willing to take some risks. How else to explain this collection of well-mannered, slightly funky, adult-leaning pop? Whereas most teen artists are looking to pair up with the hottest songwriters or producers, Jonas has recruited former members of Prince's New Power Generation to back him. 

Which means that he means business. Unfortunately, one shouldn't go looking for a groove; the backing band isn't given nearly as big a workout here as Jonas' falsetto. 

The youngest Jonas sings and yelps as if he's trying to will some rock 'n' roll whiskers or has something to prove. "She'll charge you by the hour for a straight trip down to hell," he sings with grown-up gusto over a '70s funk bass on "State of Emergency." He's best when he reins it in, as he does on the lovely and unadorned "Vesper's Goodbye."

But too often Jonas is 17 going on John Mayer, at least in spirit, crafting lightly adorned melodies that dip briefly into blues and soul. Despite the seeming stylistic leaps -- bar-band blues on "Conspiracy Theory," a noir-ish ballad on "In the End" and a minimalist keyboard-guitar strut on "Rose Garden" -- "Who I Am" all feels a bit tentative. Recorded, supposedly, in just two weeks, think of it as "Camp Soul." 

-- Todd Martens 

Nick Jonas & the Administration
 "Who I Am"
 Hollywood Records
 Two stars (Out of four)

Live review: Nick Jonas at the Wiltern

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"New year, new beginnings," pledged Nick Jonas on Tuesday night at the Wiltern. While that observation came amid a mushy monologue about the importance of overcoming your obstacles -- Nick knows in his heart that you can do it -- the pronouncement wasn't just a pop star platitude. Tuesday's show was the first of four the youngest Jonas brother is scheduled to play here this week (with his backing band, the Administration) in support of his solo debut, "Who I Am," due out Tuesday.

In addition, Jonas said, the concert also marked his first time performing at the historic Koreatown venue, an occasion the 17-year-old New Jersey native chose to honor with his debut of a sort of aging-bluesman patois he used to deliver stage-banter boilerplate you might expect to hear from someone three or four times his age.

"Let's take this thing back a minute," he suggested at one point; later, he asked, "Whatcha say we kick this thing up a notch?"

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Grammys embracing Nick Jonas' solo project

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Without a hit or even an album, Nick Jonas is getting a prime-time, Grammy-endorsed unveiling for his new band, Nick Jonas and the Administration. Though it won't be nominated for an award at the 2010 edition of the gala, the solo outing from Nick has been added to the Recording Academy's Dec. 2  CBS special, "The Grammy Nominations Concert Live!! -- Countdown to Music's Biggest Night," in which the 2010 Grammy noms will be revealed.

The teenager will join previously announced performers the Black Eyed Peas, Maxwell and Sugarland at the taping. The event will be held at downtown's Club Nokia, and will air live (tape-delayed for SoCal viewers) at 9 p.m. EST. Rapper LL Cool J will host the televised press-conference-turned-concert for the second year running.

Nick may be going it alone, but Kevin and Joe won't be completely left out of the taping. The latter two will introduce Nick Jonas and the Administration.

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Live review: The Jonas Brothers at Staples Center

The boy band delivers to the shrieking masses in a flashy and entertaining show at Staples Center. Popularity problems? Not here.

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The Jonas Brothers -- and everyone they employ -- can rest easy: Recent rumors regarding the death of Jonasmania have been greatly exaggerated.

On Friday night at Staples Center, in the first of three weekend shows there, the Jonases demonstrated that when it comes to America's boy bands, nobody inspires more devotion, triggers more flashbulbs or elicits more ear-destroying shrieks. (Trust me -- I'm still recovering.)

It's been a year of chattering-class speculation for Kevin, Joe and Nick, whose once-mighty commercial prowess has taken some dents of late. First, their hugely hyped 3-D concert film opened in February to less-than-spectacular numbers. Then, in June, their fourth studio album, "Lines, Vines and Trying Times," notched first-week sales that were about half of those for 2008's "A Little Bit Longer."

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Jonas Brothers: Is the magic still there? And chart news on Jay-Z, Pete Yorn and more

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Last summer, the Jonas Brothers sold more than half a million copies when they landed atop the U.S. pop charts with “A Little Bit Longer.” What a difference a year makes. The Disney powerhouse still lands at No. 1 with its latest, “Lines, Vines and Trying Times,” but a little of the magic appears to be gone.

First week sales for the newest topped off at 247,000 copies, according to Nielsen SoundScan. That gives the Jonas kids a healthy lead over the Black Eyed Peas' “The E.N.D.” (Interscope), which falls to No. 2 in its second week of release, but may cast some doubt as to just how much is left in the Jonas Brothers' tank.

Disney has had the boys working, as the Jonas Brothers have released four studio albums in less than three years. The brand has also spawned a 3-D concert film, a Disney Channel film in “Camp Rock” and a recent Disney Channel series, “Jonas.”

The marketing blitz has been designed to keep the Jonas Brothers in the lucrative tween-pop world, all while expanding their fan base to a more grown-up market. The Jonas Brothers partnered with Stevie Wonder at last year’s Grammys, and are gradually bringing on more adult themes in their music, but lead-off single “Paranoid” hasn’t been burning up the charts yet.

Fellow Disney peer Miley Cyrus, for instance, is still in the top 25 of iTunes’ bestselling singles with "The Climb,” which sees her making overtures to the country world, but “Paranoid” is languishing farther down – at No. 56 today. On Billboard's Hot 100, the cut hit No. 60 last week, which is down from its peak of No. 37, a high-water mark last month based on first week digital download sales. So far, it's sold 192,000 digital downloads.

Other notes on this week’s chart, including news on the Black Eyed Peas, Jay-Z and Pete Yorn below:

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Album review: Jonas Brothers' 'Lines, Vines and Trying Times'

Jobros240__ Plenty of young pop stars have grown darker on records after a fast career ascent. Though "Lines, Vines and Trying Times" has a touch of late-teen angst about it lyrically, the Jonas Brothers' third album of sprightly and eclectic pop is unexpectedly their most easygoing and enjoyable yet. 

The refreshing thing about "Lines" is the sense that the brothers have zero hang-ups about finding authenticity through traditional rock gestures. The Jonas' have the advantage of a young fan base for whom Neil Diamond was never hokey and for whom soul has no political ramifications. So it feels natural when the trio skips from falsetto-stretching funk on "World War III" to rhinestone-cowboy country on "What Did I Do to Your Heart." It's a clean synopsis of the "I listen to everything" philosophy of today's youth, and it's in service of some worthy songwriting. 
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Exclusive video: Jonas Brothers talk new tour, album, 'South Park'

Pop & Hiss sat down with the Jonas Brothers at the group's Los Angeles studio this week, and one thing's for certain: The Mouse won't let these boys rest for a minute. The Disney act, which recently released a 3-D concert film, will be back on tour this summer with a pair of new albums to draw material from, all to the delight of their devoted cadre of screaming young girls.

This summer, the Jonas Brothers will release a new full-length, as well as a soundtrack to their upcoming Disney Channel series. The latter will contain eight or nine original songs, and the new tour will see the Jonas Brothers performing in-the-round on an extremely mobile 144-foot stage, one that Kevin says will keep every audience member within 60-feet of at least one Jonas Brother.

Also, whereas last year's tour setup implemented shoots of fire, the boys say this year will emphasize the cooling powers of H20. Watch the video above to see some early renderings of the stage.

Pop & Hiss grilled the act on the TV series and the new album. "We've taken definitely a step in a new direction, added a lot of horns -- definitely getting a lot more funky" Kevin said of the upcoming set, due in June. He also hints that a cover of the Jackson 5's "I Want You Back" might be in the act's future.

The Jonas Brothers didn't seem bothered by what many considered were the poor box-office results of the 3-D film, speaking instead about what they learned from watching themselves on screen. But what did they think of the recent episode of "South Park," which had the boys fending off a fire-breathing Mickey Mouse?

"To be on an episode of ‘South Park’ is kind of an honor," said Nick.

--Todd Martens & Margaret Wappler

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