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Ronlop, February 2, 2018 in Create a Label
The live stream on lanadelrey.com and Lana’s Facebook page cut immediately to the inside of the Chinese Theatre in Hollywood, California following the Rosa music video being played in full. The crowd in the theatre cheered along, as a host representative from XOX Records came out onto stage and sat on a chair at the front of the stage before greeting the audience.
“Hello, and welcome to everyone joining us here at the legendary Chinese Theatre in Hollywood, and of course to those of you watching at home. Hopefully you caught it - that was the incredible Rosa music video premiere. What did you all think?” The crowd responded, of course, enthusiastically as the host chuckled. “I thought so. Well, we’re not gonna waste any time here. What do you say we bring her out?” The crowd cheered once again as the host introduced Lana, who walked out, looking hot in a simple black dress as the instrumental to the chorus of Rosa played in the theatre. The host greeted her as Lana sat in the chair opposite, as the audience applause slowly died out.
Host: Lana, huge congratulations on the video. It’s really an experience. And thank you for bringing us all out here tonight!
Lana: (Smiles and laughs as audience cheer again) I want to thank everyone for coming out to watch the video tonight, not to mention everyone at home. And to you for being here to facilitate this whole thing!
Host: Not at all! The pleasure is mine. Now, there is a lot to unpack with this video - it’s very bold, and I really want to talk about that literally explosive ending, but we’ll go from the beginning. Where did the initial inspiration for this video come from, because the lyrics of the song aren’t necessarily related to the story?
Lana: You’re right, and I’m actually glad that you brought it up. The nature of the record this song comes from, Midnight, is extremely narrative driven. The whole thing is a story of its own, from start to finish. And I already put that story together in a visual with the film Nights In A Motel Room which contains four songs from the album, so I felt like any future videos from the album would have to be totally separate from that, otherwise following the story told in the lyrics... it would just almost feel like making what could be looked at like a deleted scene from that short film. So with this song, I decided to take a slightly different spin on the character while still retaining that sexuality, power and attitude that you get from her in the song.
Host: Very interesting. And what a spin it is. The video is divided into three acts introduced to us by title sequences - ‘Suffering’, ‘Rehabilitation’ and ‘Revenge’. Is there any significance with this and how you pieced the story together?
Lana: Oh, definitely. Those three acts - or stages - are based on the principle theory of how the narrative structure for films within the rape and revenge exploitation films from around the 60s and 70s are constructed. That genre was definitely the main inspiration behind this take on Rosa’s story, and including those titles as ‘acts’ of the video is, I guess, a really obvious homage to those movies and filmmakers.
Host: You directed this yourself, after working with David Lynch on the Nights In A Motel Room for your previous singles. Was it important for you to take on this female-driven story yourself?
Lana: The decision wasn’t really taken in regards to that, although it definitely feels more appropriate that I did it myself as a woman, rather than having a man tell the story of a group of women’s revenge on a group of men. Plus, there were a lot of women on set, too. I’ve done a bit of directing in the past but never really anything totally on my own, but I had a very specific and clear vision of how I wanted this to go, so I just kind of took the plunge.
Host: I have to say, it was very well done. How long did it take for you to conceptualise the whole thing, do the treatment for the video, and then actually get done filming?
Lana: Oh gosh… Well, the outline for the whole story came to me very quickly. The idea came to me out of the blue one day - we hadn’t even decided on Rosa being the single - and then I outlined the treatment literally on a flight later that day, and that was it. I told my management I had this great idea and that we needed to tell the label this song was next. So for me, this entire single now is very much revolving around this video and the story in there. I want it to give people another angle on the song. Yes, it’s about a very sexually empowered woman who’s maybe feeling herself and getting up to all kinds of things in the middle of the night, but also there’s maybe a darker side to why she’s using that power, or what she’s using it for.
Host: Two sides of the same coin.
Lana: Right. And that theme of duality is really present on the Midnight record as the whole. This idea of living a secret double life. That kind of ying-yang thing is there, all the way through the album. And it just connected with this idea of a revenge film for me, the way there is such a clear beginning and such a clear end - the female protagonist is weak and broken in the first act, but by the end she’s developed into the power position, towering over the man or the men that put her down. I thought of movies like Kill Bill when this all came to me - the way The Bride loses everything, and then invests her energy into this badass attitude, intent on revenge. The rehabilitation out of the coma is a nod to that, too.
Host: It’s really fascinating to hear about this process and how all of these pieces connect not just to the song, but to the whole album as a project. The nature of this genre and the story obviously involves some violent moments in this video. Do you worry about the reaction to that?
Lana: I mean… The thought of how people will perceive it did cross my mind. But violence is so predominant on television and in movies - I don’t see why it should be censored any differently in a music video. As far as I’m concerned, there is no mindless or gratuitous violence in the video - it all serves a purpose of pushing the story forwards. The scene in the private booth of the club, for example, was particularly difficult to shoot. And we edited that in an attempt to avoid it being too upsetting, but that kind of situation is sadly a reality for a lot of women. Of course, that seems like a particularly relevant conversation to have at this moment in time, too.
Host: I could sit here and talk to you all day about this, but there are certainly some fans in the audience who I know have got some burning questions for you, too! So let’s take it to the floor and see what they want to know.
AUDIENCE QUESTION #1: Hey, Lana! First of all, thank you so much for doing this - I love you and admire your work so much, it’s amazing to hear you talk about it in person. With the prominence of movements like Me Too and Time’s Up going on right now, the premise of the video - a group of women overcoming powerful men - seems incredibly relevant. Were these links intentional?
I’m actually really glad that you brought it up. It wasn’t intentional. But with that being said, when we were on set, filming, and beginning to put the pieces together, I started to kind of put the link together in my mind. I don’t want this video to be connected to that movement, because I think that the violence and the dramatics that we put out are not to be taken seriously - I don’t condone any of that. But I can see how the sentiment of the video relates - a group of women downtrodden by men overcoming that power barrier. I really applaud all of the brave women - and men - coming out and creating difficult but necessary conversations.
AUDIENCE QUESTION #2: I can’t believe I’m talking to you! I love you so much, this is crazy! Well, my question is basically to check if you’re okay - that new lady from Sony was calling you out, do you have any kind of response to that?
Aww, sweetheart - first of all, I love you too. Secondly, don’t worry about me. I have a great team around me who do an expert job of blocking out that outside noise. Obviously I’m aware of it, but I’ve never spoken to that woman nor have I got any clue why she’s been talking about me in a negative light... I won’t get into legal things now, but my switchover in label was totally normal and fair. I wish all the good people I worked with at Sony the absolute best! Thanks for your concern, sweetheart, but everything is just fine.
AUDIENCE QUESTION #3: Oh my god, Lana! I loved the video! Are there any more videos to come from Midnight?
Thank you so much! I’m glad you enjoyed it. I’m really proud of this one. And I sure hope so! I’ve got plenty of ideas bubbling around for some of the songs that still don’t have visuals, so we’ll see. I definitely intend on doing at least one or two more.
AUDIENCE QUESTION #4: Rosa video is amazing! How do you rank it in terms of your other videos?
(Laughs) Well I have to say, I’m probably quite bias when it comes to answering these kind of questions because I always feel particularly attached to what I’ve done most recently. So obviously I love Rosa so much, I love Nights In A Motel Room… I love all of my videos, really. It’s a hard question to answer! I guess I love them all for different reasons. Rosa is special because of the message it conveys and the amount of sexual power on display is something that I haven’t really explored too much before in such a visual and explicit way.
After the audience questions, the host introduced Lana to the stage for her special performance. With her live band and backed by a large LED screen displaying visuals mostly taken from the Rosa video as well as Nights In A Motel Room, Lana tore through a short set consisting of her hits from Midnight including Rosa, as well as a few past favourites. Backed by her two female dancers, the simple performance was a nice treat for the audience in the Chinese Theatre as well as the audience viewing the online live stream at home.
Now He’s Gone
Down For It
1 hour ago, Harry_CAL said:
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23 minutes ago, Ronlop said:
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Eaux! Shit! I won’t be home for a little while can we pretend that it is plz
Zayn is back! After the underperformance of his previous album, “To Know Me Is To Love Me”, which was met with critical acclaim, the singer took a break. In the meantime, the album got a nomination for Best R&B Album while the lead single, “Strain”, got a nomination for Best R&B Song. However, this did not seem to give the singer enough reasons to stay at his past label, hence why he signed with Holy Tongues Recordings, the label known for managing names such as Christina Aguilera and Britney Spears. Now, after all the planning, the singer is back in the game with a new single. Titled “Nights Go By” and produced by Frank Dukes, the song takes the listener on an emotional rollercoaster. Besides the new single, his upcoming album, “Identity Crisis”, has been made available for pre-order. To start the era correctly, Zayn took on a promotional schedule for the release week. Today, he’s decided to visit the Z100 radio station in order to promote his single and discuss what to expect from this era.
Interviewer: Today we have in our studio a very talented young man… it’s Zayn!
Zayn: Hey guys.
I: It is very nice of you to come here and visit us. You’re not so much into doing this interview thing, right?
Z: Haha, not really. I am used with working hours in the studio, but when it comes to going from station to station, I tend to get really anxious about it. It comes and goes, though, once I get into the rhythm of talking and things like that.
I: Just so you know, you don’t have to be anxious, we’re very friendly here haha.
Z: Oh, no, no. It’s not about me being afraid of getting judged, it is more like… I question what I’ll answer when I’m asked certain things, you know. But yeah, as I said, it only takes a little for me to open up and I’m fine.
I: Okay, okay, haha. Let’s talk about the main reason you’re here… your new single. Can you tell us more about it?
Z: Yes, of course! It is titled “Nights Go By”, um, I worked with Frank Dukes and Doc McKinney and my friend, Christina Aguilera on it… it is a special song for me. I wrote it as a sad high school student in its last year a few years ago. It was an acoustic guitar track at first, you know, it wasn’t anything like the version you’re hearing today. We had to rewrite it a little because some of the lines were just not appropriate for a 20-something adult [laughs]. And I am proud of the result, to be honest. Frank and Doc did a great work at transposing the melody and the vibe of the song in the instrumental.
I: Yeah, I gotta admit that it is a really good track. Did you chose it as a lead single for a specific reason?
Z: Hm… I guess so. The overall sound of the album it is very R&B-oriented. I didn’t want to have to put the whole project in a box, though, so I tried to be a little more experimental with everything. I tried to get out from my comfort zone and that is why I chose “Nights Go By” as the lead single. Putting everything together for it wasn’t the usual work I put in songs in the past, you know.
I: That is fair, I agree. If we’re at it, tell us more about the album. Why is it called “Identity Crisis”?
Z: I chose that title for multiple reasons. One, I feel like the overall record talks about all the type of struggles I went through my life and how all of these made me feel empty, you know, made me question everything that I am. Another reason would be that, for the past years, my musical career has been everywhere. Switching labels, going from writing with Emma Roberts to writing with Christina Aguilera after I worked with Belinda. I think all of these events were a tan too damaging for who I am as an artist which, once again, made me question everything. I am good now, though. That break after the release of “To Know Me” was really good for me.
I: Well, I am glad to be hearing that! Is the album finished though?
Z: Well, yes and no. The tracklist is mainly made of rejects and old songs that I reworked in order to fit. But there are also brand new songs I created while reworking the rejects. There is one specific song that I hope can get on the album but I start to doubt it. It’s a collaboration, that’s the reason why I’m unsure.
I: But why are you doubtful of its future?
Z: Haha, I don’t know. The person featured is a sweetheart but her team is… complicated. We didn’t even record the track, but there are already things that various conditions her side wants to throw at us. My label is alright but I’m just too tired of signing contracts and sh- stuff like that. This industry is tiring man.
I: All you want to do is make music.
Z: Yeah, exactly. All I want to do is create music and put it out there for some people to enjoy it. I’m not the type of person who is desperate for money, fame. I love my privacy, you know I love to keep things for myself. I’m not the type of person who opens up through words. I do that through music, you know. And I also feel like it’s better, I can express more emotion that way.
I: That is true. Alright, Zayn, thank you for coming today and for sharing this bomb song with the world.
Z: [laughs] My pleasure, man. I had a great time here, really. Promise I’ll return sometime.
I: Haha, we hope so. Everyone who listens don’t forget to pre-order “Identity Crisis” and stream the song on Encore and CALTube and wherever you want to do it. Would you like to leave a message to the listeners before you go?
Z: For sure! Hey, it’s Zayn and you are listening to my brand new single, “Nights Go By”, here on Z100.
Zayn visits Z100
@Ronlop change Harry's & Christina's CALT icon & banner to these please:
HARRY STYLES UPDATES TWITTER LAYOUT IN SUPPORT OF UPCOMING CAMPAIGN
From the urban jungles of New York City to the wavy beaches of California, gave birth to many extraordinary and unique artists with a sound of their own inspired by the breathtaking scenery and the magic of every towns and cities yet still managing to keep their own identity and niche. Along the way comes Jhené Aiko, the 23-year-old had been writing her music since the age of 15 and recently taken on producing her own music and started to collaborate with other producers to perfect her flowing, breezy, chill but somewhat intense musical style. She was discovered by an executive of W.A.Y.S. Recordings while singing on the streets, letting her soul run wild and captivating the audience with her relaxing chill vocals and intricate lyrics describing different moments of her life or feelings she might have for a potential love interest, it is her carefully-woven-together that caught the ears of the executive. In her up-coming promo track - Say (I Need You To Know) she coos about how her lover is a neglectful lover and never tends to her needs while only caring about his own feelings, Aiko urges him to start changing soon and informs him that even though she may have a lot of other options to choose from, she will not leave him and will wait for him to change. The vocals in the song are very simple and sometimes multilayered, but it is the simplicity that makes it so infectious towards the audience and you can definitely feel the emotions Aiko is singing about, if you are a big fan of the likes of Tinashe ,Cassie or H.E.R., you will be an instant fan of Aiko. Following the promo track will see the release of Aiko’s debut EP, containing music that combines the soul of old school rhythm and blues with the groovy beats of the R&B music nowadays.
From Jhené: Hello world, I’m Jhené Aiko, but you can call me Penny, it is a nickname given to me by my fiancé who passed away earlier this year because of cancer, I want to connect to my fans and create a bond that is stronger than others and I hope through my music, which I poured my heart and soul into can seep through to your soul and make you feel emotions that you can relate to. I love you all. Penny xoxo
I legit was going to do a MAP concept!
I just read 2Fish on my flight here!
[demo site for now; i hate it bc i lost my other site so i made this one in legit 6 minutes to post this article; more than likely wont use again ever]
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