Music News

Selena Gomez Says She's Over 'Being Silent' and 'Protecting People That Never Protected Me'. Selena Gomez released her critically acclaimed album, Rare, on Friday. Selena Gomez refuses to apologize for speaking -- and singing -- her truth. "I've said this before, but I used to be terrified of saying anything. I would find myself protecting people that never protected me or cared for me," the singer, who released her new album Rare on Friday, tells Billboard in a new interview. "I wouldn't want to say the wrong thing, and I wouldn't want people to think that I had any other motive, other than just being a kind person -- though that is who I am and I am proud of that. I was just done, you know?" she continues. "Just done being silent, and I felt like I deserved to have a moment for myself, after going through so much, and throwing that all into this album." In its second week of release, Gomez's vulnerable ballad, "Lose You to Love Me," became her first song to hit No. 1 on the charts. Seemingly inspired by her on-and-off relationship with ex-boyfriend Justin Bieber, the track was an emotional breakthrough for Gomez. "When I wrote the song 'Lose You to Love Me,' I was kind of a mess. It was really difficult for me," says the star, who previously revealed she co-wrote the hit in early 2019. "And by the time we shot the music video at the end of the year, it had a completely different meaning, and it was so freeing." Another standout track that fans have been embracing is the quietly empowering "Vulnerable," a song that sees Gomez, 27, wondering if a potential lover will handle her heart with care. "I turned bitter for a while. I was extremely bitter and very dry. I was just disconnected to my feelings for so long," she told Billboard about the song. "But I go to therapy ... I felt like, 'Why do I do this? Why do I give myself away to people, even if it's just friends or random people? Why do I do that?' And I realized it is because one of my strengths, that I thought was a weakness, is being vulnerable." And now with some of her most difficult days yet behind her, the entertainer says she's looking squarely ahead to her future. "I have all these different goals, and I feel like I'm in the happiest place I've ever been in my life, and I say that with such conviction," she says. "So, I think that the possibilities are endless." (People)

Ray J showed up late to his own party with 50 Cent -- but when he finally arrived, he made it worth the wait. Ray knows how to make an entrance ... when money's on the line!!! Fiddy and Ray were supposed to show up together at the recent L.A. meet-and-greet with fans. The plan was they'd shake some hands, take some pics and promote their respective brands -- 50 with his top-shelf Branson Cognac, his Le Chemin Du Roi Champagne and RJ with his Raycon earbuds. Well, 50 was on time, but Ray ended up rolling in about 90 minutes after things started. Not to worry though, he came prepared ... literally dragging in his own Raycon poster and stand into place for maximum visibility in photos. The whole scene was kinda ridic, and 50 probably summed it up best, saying ... "What the Ray J is going on?!?" Nothing to see here, folks ... just 2 masters of marketing making it work!!! (TMZ)

King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard Release Three Live Albums For Australian Bushfire Relief. King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard is fighting fire with psychedelic rock. The prolific Australian band on Wednesday (Jan. 15) released a third live album Live In Brussels 19, with all proceeds going to Wires Wildlife Rescue for bushfire relief efforts. The album was recorded live at Ancienne Belgique, on Oct. 8 and 9, 2019 and runs to 17 tracks. Earlier in the week, the Melbourne outfit dropped Live In Adelaide '19 and Live In Paris '19 at their Bandcamp account, with both raising money for animals affected by bushfire. Three recordings in as many days is exactly the type of output we've become used to with King Gizz, a group which released five full-length studio albums in the year 2017. King Gizz has now donated $25,000 to each of Animals Australia and Wildlife Victoria and "will keep donating as sales come in," a statement reads. Download Live In Brussels 19, Live In Adelaide '19 and Live In Paris '19 here. (Billboard)

M.I.A. Receives MBE From Prince William at Buckingham Palace. M.I.A. can now add another three letters after her name: MBE. On Tuesday (Jan. 14), the British-Sri Lankan hip-hop star was appointed a Member of the Order of the British Empire, or MBE to the rest of us, during a ceremony at Buckingham Palace. In a statement, M.I.A. (real name Mathangi Arulpragasam) said she accepted the honor in tribute to her mother, who had once worked hand stitching medals distributed by the palace. "Today I'm accepting this in honor for my mother who worked for minimum wage to give us a better life," she wrote in a social media post. "As a working class first generation immigrant it's great to be recognized for my contribution. Having freedom to speak my truth and to do it through music has helped me speak for those who do not have those privileges. I will continue [to] fight for those who are silenced or persecuted by others." The 44-year-old performer was last year recognized for her "services to music" in the annual Queen's Honours list, which singles out exceptional talents and endeavors by individuals in the United Kingdom across many fields. M.I.A.'s mom was at the ceremony, hosted by Prince William as a representative of his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II. In an Instagram post on the announced of her medal last year, M.I.A. shared how her mother -- who received asylum in the U.K. in 1986 after leaving Sri Lanka, then embroiled in civil war, with her young children -- found a job sewing these honors "because it was the only non-English speaking manual labor she could find." (Billboard)

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