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Jazz Trumpeter Irvin Mayfield Scheduled For Sentencing in Charity Fraud Case

Irvin Mayfield, the jazz trumpet player who became a symbol of New Orleans resilience after Hurricane Katrina, was scheduled to be sentenced in federal court Wednesday (Nov. 3) for steering charity money meant for public libraries to his personal use. Mayfield and his musical and business partner, pianist Ronald Markham, each pleaded guilty in November of last year to a single charge of conspiracy to commit fraud.

Prosecutors alleged they steered more than $1.3 million from the New Orleans Public Library Foundation to themselves, largely by funneling it through the New Orleans Jazz Orchestra, which Mayfield founded. Book One, an album by Mayfield and the Jazz Orchestra, won a Grammy in 2010. But the library foundation scandal led to his resignation as artistic director of the orchestra in 2016 while scrutiny of his role with the library grew following investigative reports by WWL-TV.

Markham and Mayfield each faced a possible 5-year prison sentence. Mayfield was among musicians who took a high-profile role in promoting New Orleans after levee failures and catastrophic flooding during Hurricane Katrina in 2005. Mayfield’s father died in the floodwaters. Mayfield was also a founding member of the Afro-Caribbean jazz ensemble Los Hombres Calientes.

Prosecutors said that in addition to orchestra operating expenses and salaries for Mayfield and Markham, library foundation money went into Mayfield’s personal bank accounts and toward the purchase of a gold-plated trumpet. Prosecutors said the men also took steps to mislead the library foundation and others about their money transfers, including falsifying foundation board meeting minutes. Prior to his indictment and guilty plea, Mayfield had outlined grand plans for the city’s libraries in an AP interview in 2008.

“A library is democracy inside four walls, the freedom to information,” he said then. “Jazz is democracy we hear.”


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Two Men Dead , One Woman Injured in Accident Before ABBA Tribute Concert

Two men died when one of them jumped or fell from the 7th floor of a culture center in Sweden and landed on the other, police said. The 80-year-old man who crashed into the lobby of the Uppsala Konsert and Kongress venue Tuesday night (Nov. 2) died at the scene north of Stockholm, and the 60-year-old man he struck died later, police said.

A woman who was with the 60-year-old man was hurt but her injuries were not considered life-threatening, police said. A tribute concert to the two male members of ABBA, Bjorn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson, had been scheduled at the culture center on Tuesday night, but the event was canceled, according to Swedish media.

The culture center in the city of Uppsala hosts concerts and other meetings in an eight-story building with a mirrored façade and angled metal sheets reminiscent of crystal. The venue’s website said it would be closed from Wednesday until Friday because of the deaths. “We are all shocked by the tragic accident and our thoughts go to the deceased, their relatives and their families,” a message on the website said. Police said they have no reason to suspect foul plan in the 80-year-old’s descent from the 7th floor.

After a four-decade hiatus, ABBA mania is sweeping the globe again thanks to the quartet’s first new songs since the 1980s, “Don’t Shut Me Down,” “Just a Notion” and “I Still Have Faith In You,” which will both appear on the bands upcoming album, Voyage, due out on Friday (Nov. 5). The Swedes will appear in ABBA Voyage, a virtual residency housed at a custom-built arena in east London next spring.


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Normani Shows Her ‘Wild Side’ in New Airplay Arena: R&B/Hip-Hop

Since going solo in 2018 after Fifth Harmony’s hiatus, Normani has charted several pop hits including “Love Lies” and “Dancing with a Stranger,” her respective duets with Khalid and Sam Smith and “Motivation.” But with her latest single, “Wild Side” featuring Cardi B, Normani is establishing her foothold in a new arena with her first major R&B/hip-hop success as the song scales to the highest ranks of mainstream urban radio airplay.

Released in July through Keep Cool/RCA Records, “Wild Side” cracked the charts on what had been Normani’s home format – pop – with nine weeks on Billboard’s Pop Airplay list. But it peaked at No. 28 in late August, the lowest rank of the singer’s four solo entries to date. Prior to that, Love Lies” reigned at No. 1 for two weeks on Pop Airplay while “Stranger” peaked at No. 2. Her last solo single, 2019’s “Motivation,” reached No. 15.

However, on the Mainstream R&B/Hip-Hop Airplay chart, “Wild Side” made a strong initial impact with a No. 28 entrance in early August and has continually pushed upward in the weeks thereafter. It broke into the chart’s top 10 in early October and on the latest published chart (Nov. 6), climbed three spots to a new peak of No. 3.  Interest isn’t leveling off – in the latest available tracking week (Oct. 25-31), “Wild Side” improved by more plays on monitored U.S. mainstream R&B/hip-hop radio stations compared to the week of Oct. 18-24 than any other song on the 40-position list.

After having reached No. 20 on the Rhythmic Airplay chart in September, “Wild Side” fell in subsequent weeks. But now the single is reviving on that radio format — a middle ground that mixes pop fare and R&B/hip-hop tracks — with a 31-25 rebound in the latest ranking.

“[‘Wild Side’] is a real moment for Normani to show a different side,” says her manager Brandon Silverstein, founder and CEO of S10 Entertainment. “She wants to show her roots, where she came from and the music that inspired her while she was growing up. We’re certainly seeing those results on TikTok, in clubs and now in introducing herself to a radio format we’ve never impacted before.”

Aiding the singer-songwriter’s transition to R&B/hip-hop radio, in part, is the nostalgic vibe of the track itself, reminiscent of the 1996 hit “One in a Million” by Aaliyah —  whom Normani has cited as a favorite inspiration growing up. Samantha Selolwane, RCA’s co-head of promotion (R&B, hip-hop, mixshow) also notes that the song’s visual is a nod and ode to Aaliyah, Janet Jackson and Ciara.

But those aren’t the only elements contributing to the song’s airplay success at mainstream urban radio.“’Wild Side’ is in line with what R&B/hip-hop stations are playing,” explains Selolwane. “It has the grimy grittiness of Cardi B. Normani was also in Cardi’s ‘WAP’ video [with Megan Thee Stallion] so there’s a real relationship there — it’s not a label maneuver. Normani has always had Black girl magic. And Black girls want to see her win.”

WGZB in Louisville, Kentucky is one of the mainstream urban radio stations where Normani is winning. The outlet posted the most plays for “Wild Side” in the past week. Additional mainstream urban stations playing the song in high rotation include WJLB in Detroit, WRNB in Philadelphia and WQNC in Charlotte, North Carolina.

“Hearing what Cardi B was going to be doing with Normani on this particular single and how the song was going to pull up on the charts sparked my interest,” says WGZB radio content director Armand “DJ Q” Flowers. “What’s really standing out aside from the vibe is the content of the lyrics. Everything is more direct and upfront. It really reflects this generation and how they deal with relationships.”

Growing radio reach may also be helping the song in other sectors, namely streaming. Though “Wild Side” debuted at No. 1 on the R&B Streaming Songs chart upon release, it slipped from the perch in the ensuing weeks and briefly dipped out of the top 10 in September. As the song has lodged itself in the Mainstream R&B/Hip-Hop Airplay top 10, however, it has likewise secured a consistent run in R&B Streaming Songs’ upper tier.

“We’re breaking Normani into a new format,” says Selolwane, “But her star power is not new. She’s got R&B roots and I think she’s going to continue down this path.”

Between Normani’s show-stopping performance of “Wild Side” with Teyana Taylor on the MTV Video Music Awards in September, her Allure cover that same month and increased R&B/hip-hop airplay momentum, Silverstein says the perfect storm has resulted in “getting exposure for Normani in a world that she hasn’t spent a lot of time in. The community is becoming aware of who she is. She’s creating her sound right now; not trying to alienate any audiences or genres. She’s just going to create Normani — a triple threat able to live on urban, rhythm and pop radio.”

Additional reporting by Trevor Anderson. 


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A2IM Adds 3 to Board of Directors, Elects New Executive Committee

The American Association of Independent Music (A2IM) has solidified its 2021/22 board of directors and elected three to the executive committee, the organization tells Billboard.

On the executive committee — all three of whom were elected by the A2IM board — Partisan Records global managing director Zena White will serve as chairperson, Hopeless Records president Louis Posen will serve as secretary and Robbins Entertainment vp digital & product management Lisa Levy will serve as treasurer.

The organization has also brought on three new board members: Mariah Czap, co-general manager of Yep Roc; Victor Zaraya, COO of Concord; and Heather Johnson, CEO of Ninety9lives, who will move to the full A2IM board from the advisory board. Outgoing board members from the prior year are Laura Ballance, co-founder of Merge Records; Tony Kiewel, president of Sub Pop Records and current chair of the A2IM board; and Rosie Lopez, president of Tommy Boy and previous chair of the A2IM Board.

In a statement, White praised A2IM for being “at the forefront of the issues that matter most to the independent community, advocating for its members and striving for the betterment of the sector as a whole.” Posen added, “The music industry is in a critical juncture, and I believe A2IM’s efforts in advocacy, education, networking and member services are most important at this time.” In her own statement, Levy noted her creation and leadership of the A2IM Mentor Program and added that she looks forward “to diving deeper and contributing more to the inner workings of the board.”

“This year as every year, A2IM is grateful to have the guidance of such experienced senior music executives,” said A2IM CEO Richard James Burgess. “Especially as the music industry continues to move through a time full of challenges and unexpected pivots, we appreciate these leaders stepping forward to offer their perspective, their advice, and their time to help support independent music.”

A2IM’s 2021/22 board of directors:

Marie Clausen – Ninja Tune
Mariah Czap – Yep Roc
Steven Hill – Warp Records
Heather Johnson – Ninety9lives
Lisa Levy – Robbins Entertainment
Madeline Nelson – Heads Music
Martin Mills – Beggars Group
Louis Posen – Hopeless Records
Darius Van Arman – Secretly Group
Zena White – Partisan Records
Victor Zaraya – Concord

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Rey Nambatac signs 3-year extension with Rain or Shine

MANILA, Philippines—Rey Nambatac is set to stay with Rain or Shine for another three years after he signed the maximum deal for a contract extension Wednesday. Edgar Mangahas, Nambatac’s agent, posted the development on his Instagram page. Nambatac has been with the Elasto Painters since 2017 after the team drafted him seventh overall from Colegio […]

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PSC evaluating sports facilities as training for SEA Games resumes

The Philippine Sports Commission has been thoroughly assessing the facilities inside the Rizal Memorial Sports Center and Philsports Complex before opening their doors to the national athletes bound for the Southeast Asian Games. Philippine Sports Institute national training director Marc Edward Velasco said they are checking out if the structures of these venues still conform […]

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Mariah Carey Shares Snippet of Snow-Dusted Power Ballad ‘Fall In Love At Christmas’

That sound you’re hearing is the distant patter of perfectly lacquered reindeer hooves. Which means that we’re just days away from Christmas Queen Mariah Carey dropping her new holiday classic ballad, “Fall in Love at Christmas.”

The swooning track featuring Khalid and gospel icon Kirk Franklin got a surprise preview early Wednesday morning (Nov. 3) when MC dropped a 25-second taste of the tune. “Hi guys, I am so excited for you to hear a little snippet of my new song ‘Fall in Love at Christmas,’” Mariah said in the TikTok video, in which she wears a sparkly red Christmas gown and holds up the cover of the single, which features adorable throwback pictures of the three singers as holiday youngsters.

“I hope you like it, I’m obsessed with it,” she added as the sound of the trio’s voices intertwining over the swelling orchestration bled through in the background while Mariah busted out some of her signature mega-high notes. And, she noted, there’s a reason to stick around for the end of the track. “Don’t think it’s over before you listen to the outro.”

“Fall in Love,” due out this Friday (Nov. 5), will get its first and only performance on on Apple+ next month on Mariah’s new holiday special, Mariah’s Christmas: The Magic Continues, on which the men will join in the cheer. It is, of course, also getting close to Mariah stepping into her favorite role: the world’s biggest Christmas cheerleader.

The star’s perennially popular holiday hit, “All I Want For Christmas Is You” made its annual return to the Billboard Hot 100 songs chart back in November 2020, launching at No. 29 on its way to No. 1. Over nearly 27 years since its 1994 release, Carey also expanded the jolly melody into a range of Christmas content, from books to films.

Check out Mariah’s tweet below.

#FallInLoveAtChristmas ❤️

Out this Friday! ❤️@thegreatkhalid @kirkfranklin @tiktok_us

— Mariah Carey (@MariahCarey) November 3, 2021


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Tupac Shakur Life, Legacy to Be Subject of Massive Exhibit

Tupac Shakur’s handwritten lyrics from classic songs such as “California Love” and “Dear Mama” along with galleries that pay homage to his upbringing and late mother are among the features in a massive touring museum exhibit. The Shakur Estate announced Tuesday that the “ Tupac Shakur. Wake Me When I’m Free ” will open Jan. 21 in Los Angeles.

The exhibit is described as a fully immersive, thought-provoking museum experience that explores the life and legacy of the late rapper.Shakur, one of the most prolific figures in hip-hop, died in 1996 from gunshot wounds. He was 25. The exhibit is expected to spend six months in Los Angeles with the hopes of touring other cities.

“There are thousands of pieces of paper, handwritten pieces of paper – which is everything from his lyrics to all of the songs and poetry that you know down to a grocery list for a birthday party,” said Arron Saxe, president of Kinfolk Management + Media, who is working with Shakur’s estate. Saxe has worked with estates for other iconic music artists including Otis Redding and Donny Hathaway.

“The whole point of this exhibit was to not only show the kaleidoscopic nature of Tupac, but also show how he is relatable,” Saxe continued. “There are incredible pieces of clothing. This exhibit is also a mix of contemporary art and technology too. Many of the artifacts have never been seen before.” The 20,000-square foot exhibit will showcase Shakur’s music, poetry, wardrobe, activism journey and other items in galleries. One of the galleries will be dedicated to the rapper’s late mother, Afeni Shakur, the former Black Panther who inspired the work of her son. She died in 2016.

Saxe said Shakur’s mother is the “guiding light” of the exhibition.“Afeni was the baddest Black woman to walk the planet,” said Jamal Joseph, the rapper’s godfather and special advisor to the estate, in a statement. “She raised awareness and shifted the atmosphere wherever she went. Tupac’s brilliance shined brighter than the sun. He lived and moved with creative – revolutionary – fearless-passion fueled speed of a comet. Afeni and Pac challenged, re-imagined, and transformed history.”

Shakur’s estate-sanctioned museum experience is produced in partnership with Universal Music Group, CAA, Round Room Live and Kinfolk Management + Media. “Tupac Shakur was my Malcolm; he was my Martin, and to build an experience that honors such a prolific man, cannot be summed up in words,” said Jeremy Hodges, whose firm, Project Art Collective, is working with The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on the creative portion of the exhibit. “We wanted to create a memorable experience that will inspire you to be better than when you walked in, all while leaving you with the knowledge that he was a true revolutionary spirit.”


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Donaire on All-Filipino headliner vs Gaballo: ‘Monumental’

MANILA, Philippines—The Philippines has always been a haven of boxing talent but the fight between WBC bantamweight champion Nonito Donaire and mandatory challenger Reymart Gaballo is only the eighth time that two Filipinos are pitted for a World title. Donaire is making his first defense of the title that he won from Nordine Oubaali in […]

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Horse riding to be dropped from modern pentathlon–report

Modern pentathlon’s governing body has voted to remove horse riding from in its program at the Olympics after the Paris 2024 Games, British media reported. The Guardian said the decision was taken by the UIPM governing body after Germany’s modern pentathlon coach Kim Raisner hit a horse at the Tokyo Games when it refused to […]

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Coldplay, Justin Bieber and more announced for Capital’s Jingle Bell Ball 2021

Coldplay and Justin Bieber are among the acts announced for Capital’s Jingle Bell Ball 2021.

Dubbed “the UK’s biggest Christmas party”, the annual event will return to The O2 Arena in London on December 11 and 12. Tickets go on sale here at 9am GMT this Friday (November 5).

READ MORE: The NME Big Read – Coldplay: “This is our period of having no fear”

Today (November 3) organisers have revealed the line-up for the first night, which will see Justin Bieber deliver a European exclusive show. Coldplay are due to appear in the sub-headlining slot.

Also on the bill are Years & Years, SigridJax Jones, Clean Bandit, Becky Hill, Jesy Nelson and Mimi Webb. Elsewhere, there will be a performance from The Capital Weekender Live With MistaJam And Friends alongside Billen Ted, 220 KID & Riton.

“The long-awaited return of Capital’s Jingle Bell Ball with Barclaycard will see the biggest hit music artists take to the stage and we can’t wait,” said Ashley Tabor-King OBE, Founder & Executive President of Global.

Coldplay’s Chris Martin performs in New York. CREDIT: James Devaney/GC Images

“With global superstars and some of the hottest UK talent set to play the Ball this Christmas, we have another phenomenal weekend of live performances in store.”

The line-up for the Sunday edition of Jingle Bell Ball 2021 will be announced on Capital Breakfast With Roman Kemp from 8am GMT tomorrow (November 4).

Capital VIPs and Barclaycard customers can access a ticket pre-sale from 9am GMT tomorrow.

Justin Bieber hasn’t played in the UK since he delivered a special acoustic set at London’s Indigo at The O2 in February 2020. Before that, he performed at Hyde Park’s British Summer Time in 2017. The singer’s latest album, ‘Justice’, arrived in March.

Coldplay, meanwhile, released their ninth record ‘Music Of The Spheres’ last month (October 15).

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Barry Gibb’s legacy is being celebrated with new Royal Mail stamp collection

Barry Gibb‘s music career is being celebrated with a new collection of stamps from the Royal Mail.

READ MORE: The Bee Gees: How Can You Mend a Broken Heart review – a smart and poignant look at a cultural phenomenon

The collection, which was made in close collaboration with the Bee Gees man and the Isle Of Man Post Office, is released today (November 3). You can order the stamps here.

Gibb was born at the Jane Crookall maternity home in the Isle Of Man’s capital Douglas on September 1 1946, and lived on the island until 1955 when the family moved first to Manchester, then emigrated to Australia in 1958.

“I’m very proud of my Manx roots,” Gibb said. “I was born and bred on the ancient, mystical, magical Isle Of Man, and I have very fond memories of growing up there, so to appear on a set of its stamps is not only a wonderful surprise, but also an honour and a privilege.”

Barry Gibb stamp collection Credit: Getty

The set of seven stamps feature Gibb at various stages in his musical career from 1969-2019.

The Bees Gees singer is the fourth artist to be celebrated with a dedicated stamp issue following on from the late David Bowie in 2017, Elton John in 2019 and Paul McCartney earlier this year.

Meanwhile, Dolly Parton joined Gibb recently for a new version of the Bee Gees classic ‘Words’.

The reworking of the 1968 track appeared on his recent album ‘Greenfields: The Gibb Brothers Songbook, Vol.1’, which features new versions of songs from the Gibb family’s discography.

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