#popmusic

Janet Jackson & Madonna Release New High-Style Music Videos, Plus A Cher/Madonna Remix

It was quite the week for music royalty.

As we lost our indisputable “Queen of Soul,” Aretha Franklin, the two “Queens of Pop” – Janet Jackson and Madonna – dropped new music videos that are singularly unique to the two artists visual and musical style.

Jackson teamed with the oh-so-sexy Daddy Yankee for her latest music video, “Made For Now.”

Visually reminiscent of “When I Think of You” and “Escapade,” the video (directed by Dave Meyers) is classic Janet as she celebrates among the folks of Brooklyn appearing all over the NYC borough in bold, high-style fashion.

Featured throughout are a mélange of international dancers that hail from Nigeria, Ghana, Grenada, Trinidad and the U.S.

In an interview with iHeartRadio, Jackson shared she’s “always loved Latin music, and obviously, the African music is there and always been an influence.”

“Coming from what Daddy Yankee does in reggaeton, it’s inspiration,” she added. “It’s reggae music, which brings you back to the African vibe, the whole bit. It was really nice working with him,” Jackson said.

Jackson and Yankee also performed the song live on The Tonight Show Friday night, marking her first late-night appearance in 14 years.

Watch below.

 

 

On Thursday, her 60th birthday, Madonna released a stunning, long-form music video from her performance at the MET Gala earlier this year.

The video begins with bold, dynamic visions of religious imagery and Gregorian chanting leading into, of course, “Like a Prayer.”

After making her way down a huge stairway, Madge and company do a quick costume change at the 6:05 mark as she launches into “Beautiful Game.”

After a choreographed assault by her dancers that leaves her prone of the steps of the MET, the Queen of Pop performs Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” while slowly making her exit.

The dramatic final frames of the video (would we expect anything less?) focus on a concrete angel with the rumbling of thunder in the distance.

Quite the message.

At the time, Madonna told the Associated Press, "Religion and spirituality has informed my work for my entire career, and fashion also, and combining the two is the perfect marriage."

"And then we bring in Jean Paul and it's the perfect three-way!" she added.

Watch Madonna and company below.

 

 

In related Madonna news, can we say god bless the gay DJs?

The new Cher cover of ABBA’s “Gimme! Gimme! Gimme!” dropped last week and within 24 hours DJ Alex Simpson, based in Toronto, shared his fierce remix of Cher’s new track and Madonna’s 2005 hit “Hung Up,” which samples the ABBA classic.

I believe this is, technically, the first time the two divas have sung together before…?

Listen below.

 

 

Unflopped: The Hottest New Podcast on the Block!

We at Instinct are always in the business of supporting our fellow gay guys in their endeavors. We are the queens of advocating, but we will only share with our readers the tip top of excellent gay content, which is where Unflopped comes in.

Unflopped is a Podcast that pits two forgotten pop gems against eachother, with the hosts Stuart, Sean and Joe going into great detail as to why they deserve a second chance, slugging it out until one song eventually becomes officially Unflopped.

If you've not yet gotten into the podcasting gig, then this is the perfect entry point, especially for those who love their pop bangers. We met up with the hosts of the podcast, Stuart, Sean and Joe for a quick chat, as we have become completely obsessed with the fortnightly pop boxing matches, and lets face it, they're not bad to look at either!

Good afternoon guys, a pleasure to speak with you today! So, for our readers, who am I speaking with?

We are Stuart, Sean and Joe, hosts of the Unflopped podcast.

 

Straight off, tell us a little bit about the premise of Unflopped.

Stuart: It’s basically a celebration of forgotten pop music. In every episode, Sean and I each choose a flop single from the ‘80s to the present day that we think deserved to do better in the charts. We make a pitch for its rehabilitation from the pop wilderness, telling the story of the artist and the song, what it means to us, why we think it didn’t do well and why it should have done better. Judge Joe (who knows a thing or two about music) does an analysis of each of the tracks, then at the end of the show he picks one winner to be officially unflopped.

Joe: I try and ignore all the history around the track and the artist (as well as bribes from Sean and Stuart). Instead I stick to the song itself - the craft.

 

The podcast has been quite the success, particularly with the gay community. Why do you think that is?

Stuart: Pop music is such a major part of the queer experience.

Joe: It was certainly a big part of our queer experience…

Stuart: Maybe that’s because pop is often the soundtrack of the gay spaces where we make connections and feel free to express ourselves. You only have to look at some of the biggest pop-stars on the planet like Britney, Beyoncé and Gaga, to see the power of their gay fanbases, but it’s still seen as a bit femmy to love some of those artists, and pop music is often derided as simplistic or juvenile compared to “real” music. We wanted to create a place to celebrate it, free from shame or music snobbery. Plus, there are so many amazing pop songs that didn’t make it to the top ten or become pop classics!

Joe: Totally! I’ve been introduced to so many great songs I didn’t know by these boys.

Stuart: We’ve had an amazing response from LGBT+ people all over the world. We now have listeners in more than 62 countries including places like Kuwait, the UAE and Kenya where being gay is illegal.

Sean: Exactly!  While we are primarily a music podcast, the songs intertwine with our personal stories and experiences as gay men, so our listeners get a double hit!

You’re all very opinionated. What’s the biggest thing you have disagreed on in the podcast?

Joe: Opinionated? Us?

Stuart: Well obviously Sean and I regularly disagree with Joe on which track should win the episode! Sean has a brilliant sense of humour but that ends when it comes to any criticism of Britney Spears, and don’t get me started on New Jack Swing, but mostly we’re on the same page when it comes to pop.

Sean: Usually if we’re still torn over a result (*stares at Joe*) we head to our local gay bar in and resolve it over a few pints. We are, after all, Brits!

 

How did you guys all meet?

Stuart: Joe is the glue that connects us all together.

Joe: Sean and I met on a drunken night at The Joiners Arms (RIP) in London in the early naughties.

Stuart: I met Joe through a mutual friend in 2012 while Sean was living overseas and so he was just this big character that I would hear hilarious stories about. We eventually met and became friends when Sean moved back to London in 2015.

Sean:  I don’t remember meeting either of them!  Haha, joking although I have to say the naughties were a blurrrr.

Joe: And you think she’s joking…

 

What made you decide to start this podcast together?

Stuart: I’d been thinking about doing a podcast for a while but my ideas were all really lofty and probably quite boring.

Joe: There’s nothing wrong with ‘lofty’ Stu… *Puts on some Beethoven*…

Stuart: I’d always loved talking about songs with Joe because he studied music and he can explain why a certain track makes you feel a certain way, or how things are put together. Then when we were all away on holiday together for Joe’s birthday, Sean and I had a funny conversation on the beach about Shola Ama’s follow-up singles and this forgotten girl band called Vanilla who had a semi-hit single called “No Way No Way” based on the Muppets theme tune. I hadn’t realised he was a pop-music geek like me. Then one morning a few weeks later I woke up and the idea for the podcast was there in my head, fully formed!

 

 

Will we be hearing any special guests on the podcast any time soon?

Stuart: We’ve  just recorded a Madonna special to mark Her Majesty’s 60th birthday (out on 10th August) and that episode features our first ever guest – a real Madonna expert. We had a lot of fun recording it so if listeners enjoy it then I’m sure we’ll have more guests in the future.

 

Madonna’s 60th birthday is coming up, and you’re doing a special Madge episode next. What songs will we be seeing competing?

Stuart:  Our lips are sealed! You’ll have to listen to find out. But what was interesting about that one is that she had a pretty unmatched period of chart success – she really didn’t have many flops for the first 25 years of her career.

 

Let’s do some quick fire questions next! Favourite song?

Stuart: Oh God. Impossible to answer. Depends on my mood, But ‘Better The Devil You Know’ by Kylie is probably my favourite pop song of all time.

Sean: Easy. ‘I’m Not A Girl, Not Yet A Woman’ by Britney Spears. I want it played at all my major life events.

Joe: Um… The biggest Diva anthem EVER – ‘Der Hölle Rache kocht in meinem Herzen’ sung by the Queen of the Night in Mozart's opera The Magic Flute. (Something by Kylie probably comes a close second).

 

Spice Girls or All Saints?

Stuart: All Saints. The songs have aged better.

Sean: Really Stuart?! Has to be the Spice Girls for me.  Viva Forever, urm FOREVER!

Joe: You’re both wrong. It’s Girls Aloud. Wait, what?

 

Whitney or Mariah?

Stuart: I’d go for Mariah’s music but Whitney’s voice. Is that cheating?

Joe: Yes. But that’s my choice too and as the judge, my opinion rules!

Sean:  Whitney. Hands down. I had ‘Run To You’ played at my engagement party as my Fiancé (now Husband) and I entered the room.

 

And finally, what’s next for Unflopped?

Joe: I’m gagging for the movie. But who would play us all?

Sean: We have some great ideas for future episodes -  usually driven by our listeners who are constantly in touch about artists and songs they want to hear Unflopped. Our new website will be going live soon….there’s some lol merchandise in the pipeline following a huge demand from our fans. And who knows, we maybe even a LIVE show down the line….watch this space!  

Make sure to follow Unflopped on Twitter @Unfloppedpop, and download the podcast on Apple Music here!

Unflopped is available on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher or wherever you find your podcasts.

Images from Twitter @Unfloppedpop

Christina Aguilera & Demi Lovato's Powerhouse Duet "Fall In Line"

Easily the most anticipated track from Christina Aguilera’s upcoming album Liberation is the #MeToo empowerment anthem “Fall In Line” featuring Demi Lovato released today.

If plans hold up, we may get a live performance of the duet by the two powerhouse pop stars on this Sunday’s 2018 Billboard Music Awards.

Reminiscent of Aguilera’s “Fighter” and “Can’t Hold Us Down” and Lovato’s “Confident” and “Sorry Not Sorry,” the two divas urge women to stand up for themselves, and in doing so, find their inner strength.

From the get-go, Christina has a message for young women: “Little girls, listen closely/ No one told me, but you deserve to know/ That in this world you are not beholden/ You do not owe them your body and your soul.”

Lovato steps up in her verse as well: “Show some skin, make him want you/ Cuz god forbid you know your own way home/ Ask yourself why it matters/ Who it flatters, you’re more than flesh and bone.”

Both ladies celebrated the final product on Twitter:

The potent performances are exactly what you’d expect from the two vocal virtuosos. Their scorched earth, ad-lib approach leaves few notes untouched.

Check out their stunning collaboration below. Pre-order Christina Aguilera’s new album Liberation (due out June 15) and instantly download “Fall In Line” featuring Demi Lovato.

 

Years & Years Perform Futuristic Cabaret In "If You're Over Me" Video

The last music video for synth-pop trio Years & Years introduced us to an imaginary society where androids control the world and humans exist for the purpose of entertaining the androids.

The pop group returns to that dystopian world for the second video, “If You’re Over Me,” from their upcoming album Palo Santo.

The music video begins by explaining the role that humans in this futuristic society play. “The human cabarets of Palo Santo are attended by androids, all hoping to experience real emotion,” reads the text. “Human performers can find themselves dancing the same routines for weeks … months … years …”

In a glittering, sci-fi cabaret, out frontman Olly Alexander presents a choreographed, sexy three-way number while fellow band members Emre Turkmen and Mikey Goldsworthy present a magic trick. The talent show is meant to help the androids attempt to experience real emotion.

The song itself is an bouncy, electro-pop jam about getting straight with an ex-lover. “This is a song about trying to stay friends with an ex,” Alexander told NME. “Spoiler alert -- it doesn’t often work. In fact, in my experience, the relationship often ends up ruined.”

 “Yesterday you said I’m the one, but now you say you’re done,” Alexander sings. “Stop telling me what I need baby, if you’re over me.”

Watch "If You're Over Me" below. You can check out the new album Palo Santo (due out July 6) at most digital download sites.