Ariana Grande Honors A “Simple, Beautiful Love” On New Track “Imagine”

“I wanted to mix up the energy a lil bit as both of those themes are equally prevalent on the album / in my life rn.”

 

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Grande wrote of the track on Wednesday, “I would say if ‘Thank U, Next’ = acceptance… ‘Imagine’ = denial. Hope that makes sense.” She continued in response to a fan, “Kind of like… pretending it never ended. Denial. But I look forward to you hearing it and having your own experience with it. You may take away something totally different and specific to your life! Love u.”

Knew you were perfect after the first kiss / Took a deep breath like ‘Oooh’ / Feels like forever, baby, I never / Thought that it would be you / Tell me your secrets, all of the creep s–t / That’s how I know it’s true,” the lyrics continue.

“A lot of this album mourns failed yet important, beautiful relationships in my life (as well as celebrates growth / exploring new independence),” Grande wrote on Instagram Stories. “But for those of you asking about ‘Imagine’: I would say if ‘Thank U, Next’ = acceptance… ‘Imagine’ = denial. Hope that makes sense.”

Grande had revealed on Twitter on Thursday that her Thank U, Next album contains 13 tracks. The title song, which references her past relationships with the likes of the late Mac Miller and most recently, ex-fiancé Pete Davidson, dropped in early November. At the end of that month, she released a music video for it. The clip parodies four hit early ’00s films—Mean GirlsLegally BlondeBring It On and 13 Going on 30.

Grande’s Thank U, Next album, her fifth major record, is expected to be released next year.

“We’re finalizing these mixes and arrangements now,” Grande tweeted on Wednesday. “I’m very happy with all of it. Lots of strings so. You know me. My heart meltssss.”

Did Madonna Just Try To Reignite Beef With Lady Gaga?

Did Madonna just take a shot at Lady Gaga? Is there still some bad blood between the two pop legends? Well, after a post on Madonna’s Instagram story, that’s what’s what the internet is thinking!

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People have been quick to point out that Gaga’s word sound strikingly similar to Madonna’s, and now Madge herself has taken notice and posted about it.

The pop icon previously feuded with Lady Gaga over the similarity of chord progressions between her “Express Yourself” and Gaga’s “Born This Way,” but, as Gaga had pointed out at the time, “It’s the same [chord progression] that’s been in disco music for the last 50 years. Just because I’m the first fucking artist in 25 years to think of putting it on Top 40 radio, it doesn’t mean I’m a plagiarist, it means that I’m fucking smart.”

“The only time I ever criticised Lady Gaga was when I felt like she blatantly ripped off one of my songs,” she said. “It’s got nothing to do with ‘she’s taking my crown’ or ‘she’s in some space of mine.’ She has her thing. I do think she’s a very talented singer and songwriter. It was just that one issue.”

But, did these posts try to reignite the beef? Even if so, as Jezebel points out, Lady Gaga has way better things going on right now and, likely, has no time to pay any mind to whatever Madonna is up to on the internet.

Gaga responded with a veiled insult in a 2016 interview with Zane Lowe on Beats 1, disputing Lowe’s claim that she and Madonna are alike by seemingly criticising Madonna for not playing instruments or writing music.

“Madonna and I are very different,” Gaga said. “Just say, ‘we’re very different.’ I wouldn’t make that comparison at all and I don’t mean to disrespect Madonna, she’s a nice lady, and she’s had a fantastic huge career, biggest pop star of all time. But I play a lot of instruments. I write all my own music. I spend hours a day in the studio. I’m a producer. I’m a writer. What I do is different.”

L’FREAQ Gets Freaky In New Video

“This song is about concealing oneself; it could be from a lover or a friend, but in my case I wrote it about those who don’t know the ‘real’ me over social media, only a self that I choose to project,” L’FREAQ tells BUST of the track, called “Moonlight.”

 

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The artist’s upcoming EP was mixed and produced by Mike Irish. L’FREAQ’s mom, photographer Kelly Cappelli, shot all the cover and promotional art and executive produced the video. The album focuses on themes of self-discovery, liberation, and adventure, and shortly after its release, L’FREAQ will be on tour.

Keep up with the artist on FacebookTwitter, and Soundcloud, and check out the video below, exclusively on BUST.

I had the pleasure of interviewing L’FREAQ, which is the alias of Brooklyn-based singer/songwriter Lea Cappelli…

Thank you so much for joining us! Can you tell us a story about what brought you to this specific career path?

Igrew up an only child in Arizona with a fantastically artistic mother. She painted me, photographed me, and let me watch her create. This naturally led me to seek my own talents, which instead of using my hands to create art, was my voice. My mother brought me to vocal lessons at a very young age, where originally I was convinced I would be an opera singer. Then, at 12 years old, I discovered jazz. And at 16, started writing my own music. It was a long progression.

Can you share the most interesting story that occurred to you in the course of your music career?

When I performed for Muhammad Ali at a small dinner party of eight, I was nervous. I sang and played guitar for him, and we sat down to eat dinner together. At the time the only thing he could eat after dark was ice cream. I couldn’t believe I was in the presence of such a legend. I was nervous to look at him the whole night, so I kept my head down while the guests chatted. Finally, I mustered the courage to look up at him. He turned to me and winked.

What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now?

My new five song EP, Weird Awakenings, has been an incredible journey to create. We’ve made a detailed music video for each of the three singles, with the upcoming single “New Skin” as one of my favorites. I’m very visually inclined so it’s fun to watch the songs come to life. We went through a lot to make each one, especially “Moonlight,” where I was hanging in rope bondage for hours. That was a shoot I’ll never forget. It became so painful after so long of being suspended that I had to have all six people on set help hoist me down.

You are a person of great influence. If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger.

Acceptance! There is too much intolerance in this world nowadays. Being raised with the internet is both a blessing and a curse. There is unlimited knowledge at your fingertips, but so much hatred that comes with it. Part of the L’FREAQ name, like anti-bullying and access to the arts, is also simply about accepting people for who they are.

 “Don’t be surprised if the song strikes you as a fitting intro to a certain franchise of action films; “After listening multiple times, the song started sounding more and more Bond-like,” says Cappelli. “We wanted to pay homage to the original Bond intros while still keeping the emotional integrity of the track.”

Apparently, Cardi B Is Too Busy To Go To Court

Rapper Cardi B couldn’t hide her emotions in Queens criminal court Friday morning, rolling her eyes, sticking out her tongue — and eventually leaving with arms raised when a judge released her without bail.

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The judge stuck with the warning and Cardi’s lawyer said the message was “received loud and clear,” but still was outside saying Cardi is just simply too busy being a star:

“You all need to understand this is not about her saying, ‘Screw going to court. I got things to do. I’m important.’ She has managers, she has business people, she has things scheduled. So it’s not like we can just say, ‘Hey you got to come to court on Monday.”

I’m going to try to use that “I’ve got manager, I’ve got business people, I’ve got things scheduled” bullshit excuse the next time I get called for jury duty. Let’s see how far I get. And when the all-important (in her head) Cardi B finally gets to court, she’ll probably throw a shoe at the judge when she says something he doesn’t like, which will result in him throwing the book at her by throwing her in the slammer, which will lead to her coming out with a new album: Belcaliz Of Vernon C. Bain Correctional.

The 26-year-old, born Belcalis Almanzar, surrendered to police in October after two bartenders at a Queens strip club accused her of attacking them. Cardi had just performed at the BET Hip Hop Awards in Miami Beach (she likes it here, obviou).

Well, here’s to hoping she doesn’t blow off Friday’s hearing.

“You should inform her that if she doesn’t show up to the arraignment on December 7, that unless the circumstances change, then it’s very likely the court will issue a bench warrant for her arrest,” the judge reportedly told her lawyer, Jeff Kern.

The Only Good Thing On The Internet Is Britney Spears’ Instagram

You might not follow your mom on Instagram, but you should definitely follow someone else’s mom, that specific mom being Britney Spears, owner of the most joyful Instagram feed ever to exist.

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In Britney’s world, fame isn’t an evil, it just is. It is the background condition to her life. And so she’s opened up the process of pop manufacture in a way that’s bizarrely authentic. Before Jennifer Lawrence turned the concept of relatable celebrity into a competitive sport, there was Britney Spears.

pears’ Instagram first became a widespread object of fascination in 2017, when she posted a video of herself—ponytail perched high on her head, cleavage perched high on her chest—painting in her backyard, a non-diegetic Mozart concerto tinkling in the background. The caption? “Sometimes you just gotta play!!!!!!” (I remember approving her use of an even number of exclamation points since I think using an odd number is a minor—and annoying—act of aggression.)

And so while loving Britney Spears is, currently, a popular thing to do, it’s important to distinguish those professing their love for her sincerely from those doing so ironically. Those who love her ironically probably do so because it is easier to keep Spears at arm’s-length, lest they too fully realize how close to her they are. It’s a little bit like loving your mother, or an idea of your mother; you can’t help but worry that love will transform into becoming her, or that idea of her. It’s not—not really—very cool.

But if there’s one thing Spears’ Instagram can teach us, it’s that being cool is not a means to an end, nor is it necessarily the end itself. The reason Spears continues to dominate is because she is consistently, almost decadently, herself, and she is so in a way that feels liberating to witness, so difficult it is to be that way in our own lives. So as we struggle to make sense of who we are, who we want to be, who we’ll allow ourselves to become, it is nice to have an online oasis of sorts, a relief from the constant posturing that exists everywhere else, a place where we can’t help but be reminded that it’s boring to pretend to be normal, we should all just, as Spears reminds us, go back to being ourselves.