Music News

*NSYNC reunion: Lance Bass is overwhelmed with gratitude, Justin Timberlake has a rude suggestion

John Shearer/Getty Images for MTV

It's finally happened: There's a new *NSYNC song out in the world. And Lance Bass, for one, is grateful people are excited about it.

Reflecting on the release of "Better Place," recorded for the Trolls Band Together soundtrack, Lance wrote on his Instagram Story, "This song is truly a love letter to all of our fans who have been our incredible support system. You guys have stood by us through it all, even when our fashion choices were, well, let's just say 'unique.'"

"You guys have always thought that this would happen again, even when we didn't," he continued. 

Addressing his bandmates, Lance wrote, "There's a unique magic that happens when we come together, and I wouldn't want to do this with anyone else ... I'm overwhelmed with gratitude for the journey we've shared and the one that lies ahead."

Justin Timberlake, meanwhile, isn't quite so serious about this momentous occasion. In a blooper reel all the guys have posted on their Instagram pages, he, Lance, JC Chasez, Joey Fatone and Chris Kirkpatrick try to record a joint announcement about the song, but keep messing up.

"Hi, we're *NSYNC," they start. "And you're listening to our new song," says Joey. "Let us know if you like it," adds Justin. "And if you don't, go f*** yourself."

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Music notes: Jonas Brothers, Pink and more

The Jonas BrothersNick, Joe and Kevin – wished a happy birthday to the “bonus Jonas,” their younger brother, Frankie. They all shared photos to their social media in celebration of Frankie turning 23 on Thursday, September 28. “Happy birthday to one of the coolest people I know,” Joe captioned his post. Frankie responded, “I wouldn’t know how to be cool if I didn’t have you to look up to.”

He may produce scary movies for a living, but Blumhouse founder Jason Blum says one thing scares him more than anything. "The one thing that scares me to death is Taylor Swift!" he jokes to Entertainment Weekly. So much so that he "bowed his head" and changed the release date of The Exorcist: Believer so it wouldn’t compete with Taylor’s Eras Tour concert film. Exorcist now comes out October 6, while Taylor’s movie comes out October 13.

And speaking of Taylor, "Cruel Summer" has become her longest-leading number one on Billboard’s Pop Airplay chart. It tops the chart for the eighth week, surpassing her seven-week chart-topper "I Knew You Were Trouble" in 2013.

Pink’s collaboration with country star Chris Stapleton, “Just Say I’m Sorry,” took home the Crossover Song of 2023 award at the inaugural People’s Choice Country Awards Thursday night.

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Pink cancels Friday show in Texas: "So deeply sorry"


Pink is sick.

The star took to Instagram on Friday, September 29, to tell fans she won't be able to do her scheduled concert at Globe Life Field in Arlington, Texas, because she has a bad sinus infection. 

"The doctor advised me not to perform tonight. I am so disappointed," she wrote. "You know I do everything in my power to never miss a show."

The show will be rescheduled for November 26, and all tickets will be honored on that date.

"It will be a phenomenal show," she adds. "I hope to see you then, and again, am so deeply sorry for the inconvenience this has caused. It is never my intention. Send you all love."

Pink's next scheduled show is Tuesday in San Diego, California. The current North American leg of her tour was set to wrap up November 19 in Orlando, but will now go to at least November 26.

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Christina Aguilera plans musical based on 'Burlesque' film

Anita Bugge/WireImage

Back in 2010, Christina Aguilera and Cher co-starred in the movie Burlesque — and Entertainment Weekly has learned that Xtina is working behind the scenes to reimagine the film as a stage musical.

Christina is an executive producer on the show, called Burlesque: The Musical. It's written by the movie's director, Steven Antin, and includes songs that were written for the movie by Christina, Sia and Diane Warren. Additional songs were written by Todrick Hall and Jess Foley. It's expected to debut in the U.K.

A few years ago Antin told EW he was working to turn Burlesque into a "hybrid television event/series," but it appears he's now settled on a musical.

The original movie starred Christina as a young woman named Ali who becomes friendly with Cher's Tess, the owner of an LA burlesque club. It was a flop when it was released, but has since done well on home video and now has a cult following. 

The soundtrack album also did well: it was nominated for a Grammy and one of the songs Cher performs, "You Haven't Seen the Last of Me," won the Golden Globe for Best Original Song in 2011. The album features Christina's songs "Show Me How You Burlesque," "Express" and her rendition of Etta James' "Something's Got a Hold on Me."

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New Music Friday: Ed Sheeran, AJR and more

Aside from *NSYNC's first new song in 20 years, "Better Place," here are some other notable new releases out Friday:

Ed Sheeran has said that his new album Autumn Variations doesn't have any official singles, but when it arrived on Friday, it came with a live performance video of one of the album's tracks, “American Town.” In the clip, Ed's sitting by some railroad tracks in the middle of the woods, playing the song — inspired by his wife, Cherry — on an acoustic guitar.

AJR has released a new song called "Yes I'm a Mess," a track off the band's upcoming album, The Maybe Man. The song follows the singles "The Dumb Song," "The DJ Is Crying for Help" and "I Won't" as well as the song "God Is Really Real," which the brother trio wrote about their late father. The Maybe Man, the follow-up to 2021's OK ORCHESTRA, arrives November 3.

Former Fifth Harmony member Ally Brooke has returned to pop with her new single "Gone to Bed." In a statement, Ally says the song marks her new era. “'Gone to Bed' for me is this delicate dance between emotions and logic," she explains. "It is that constant inner struggle we face every day. We as humans are ruled by our emotions, which is a beautiful way of living yet a dangerous one at times."

Goo Goo Dolls are out with a live performance of their breakthrough song "Name," recorded in 1995 in New York City. It's the first release from their upcoming album Live At The Academy, due out October 20. The 32-track album includes the band's soundcheck, full set and encores from what, at the time, was their biggest New York City show to date.

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Watch Jung Kook team up with Jack Harlow for new single and video, "3D"


Jung Kook of BTS scored a hit with help from Latto, so now, he's hoping lightning will strike twice with some help from Jack Harlow.

Following the success of Jung Kook's Latto-featuring track "Seven," he's released "3D" with the "First Class" rapper. The track is a modern spin on mid-2000s hip-hop/dance that hears Jung Kook singing, "If you're ready/
And if you'll let me/I wanna see it in motion/in 3D." 

In the video, Jung Kook sings and dances on a giant mirror and climbs up a white staircase while rocking an oversized white suit. Jack shows up to play chess with Jung Kook, rap about "ABG's" — "Asian Baby Girls" — and brag, "I'll fly you from Korea to Kentucky/And you ain't gotta guarantee me nothin'/I just wanna see if I get lucky."

"I thought it was a really fun song when I first heard it," says the BTS star in a statement. "I’m ready to show a different side of myself that I hadn’t shown with ‘Seven.'”

He adds that Jack is "a great artist that I like and have followed for a while," noting, "I had a lot of fun working with him. His voice fit ‘3D’ perfectly and really added to the sensual vibe of the song.”

“I felt a bit of pressure having received so much love with ‘Seven,’ but it also gave me a big boost of courage to take on a new challenge," Jung Kook concludes. "I’ll keep working hard to continue to share great music in the future.”

(Video contains uncensored profanity.)

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Sam Smith performs '80s classic at designer boyfriend's fashion show

Kay-Paris Fernandes/Getty Images

If you're a fashion designer and your boyfriend conveniently happens to be a global pop star, then you've got the entertainment for your latest show all set.

On September 28, designer Christian Cowan presented his first show for Paris Fashion Week, and his rumored boyfriend Sam Smith provided a musical moment in the middle of the event. According to Fashion Network, Sam took the stage wearing a huge black faux fur cape and hat, and carried a fur-covered cane. They posted photos of their look on Instagram.

Sam performed the hit song "You Spin Me Round (Like a Record)" by the '80s British dance pop group Dead or Alive, in tribute to the group's late singer, LGBTQ icon Pete Burns. Cowan's entire spring/summer 2024 women's collection was called Freak Unique, which was the title of Burns' autobiography.

On Instagram, Cowan wrote, "I’d like to capture the punk, British, glamorous and experimental nature of Burns within this collection. To bolster this, there could be no greater choice than a performance by @samsmith to evoke this spirit. As they have done through their incredible and boundary pushing career."

Back in June, Sam and Christian were seen kissing each other in New York City. They've been linked since they were first spotted together in January.

In other Sam Smith news, a podcast they narrated was named Podcast of the Year at the British Podcast Awards, the BBC reports. The podcast, A Positive Life: HIV from Terrence Higgins to Today, is named after one of the first people in the U.K. to die of an AIDS-related illness, and covers the history of HIV in the U.K. over the last 40 years.

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Ed Sheeran gets drunk during six-hour NYC bar crawl celebrating new album release

Ignat/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images

Thursday night in New York City, drinks were on Ed Sheeran.

On the morning of Friday, September 29, Ed posted a video on Instagram documenting a bar crawl he undertook on Thursday to celebrate his new album, Autumn Variations.

“Right, to celebrate my album release I’m gonna pub crawl, go in random bars and drinks are on me for the next six hours… let’s… GO!” Ed announces in the video. It then cuts to Ed in on his first drink in his first bar, where he notes that things aren't really popping off. "We're not there yet," he complained, in terms of level of excitement.

He then announces that he's "going to the f****** place where people wanna go for it!" and hops on the subway, where he chats with a guy while mostly being ignored by everyone else. Next, we see him in a much more active establishment, playing beer pong and setting up shots on the bar, surrounded by a fairly lively crowd.

In the last 90 minutes, Ed heads down to New York's Greenwich Village and finally finds the vibe he's been looking for. He lines up shots for the excited crowd and serves them on trays while people chant, "Ed! Ed! Ed!"

At the end of the night — and the video — Ed sums up his experience.

“When we started out, the place… they weren’t feeling it,” he says. "The next place? Weren’t feeling it either. We got on the subway, and then… here we are. I’m very drunk right now. Very drunk. Autumn Variations out right now!"

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Taylor Swift's record label denied request to play her music during Chiefs-Bears game, producer says

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While Taylor Swift was frequently on camera last weekend during FOX's coverage of the Chiefs-Bears game at Arrowhead Stadium, you didn't hear any of her music played. As a FOX NFL producer reveals, it wasn't for lack of trying.

In a blog post, NFL lead producer Richie Zyontz reveals that late in the morning of September 24, he and his team were notified that Taylor would indeed be at the stadium to watch Travis Kelce and the Chiefs. Since they'd heard that it might happen, Zyontz explained, they had attempted to prepare but failed.

"Earlier in the week, amid the avalanche of rumors, our bulldog associate producer Rich Gross had sought permission to use some of Swift's music," Zyontz writes. "Not a chance. Per the FOX music department, Swift’s record label and publishing company denied our request 'in conjunction with speculations on or about her private/personal/dating life.'" 

At that point, Zyontz writes, the director Rich Russo decided not to "take gratuitous live shots" of Taylor in Kelce's VIP box. Instead, he decided to focus on putting the cameras on her when she reacted to the action on the field.

"Her joyful expression after Kelce scored a touchdown was the image of the day, captured beautifully by our low end-zone cameraman Andy Mitchell," Zyontz writes.

Rumor has it that Taylor will be at MetLife Stadium in New Jersey on Sunday to watch the Kelce and the Chiefs take on the Jets.

Meanwhile, someone who knows both Travis and Taylor approves of their possible romance. When Extra asked singer Kelsea Ballerini about it at the People's Choice Country Awards, she said, "I love Travis. We did SNL together. I love Taylor. We were close for many years. I want happiness for everyone, so ... vibe!”

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Britney Spears reassures fans after knife dance: "No one needs to worry"

Britney Spears wants her fans to know that they shouldn't worry about her -- even if she's dancing with what look like real, very sharp knives.

ABC News confirmed that this week, deputies from the Ventura County Sheriff's office performed a wellness check on Britney after a division of LAPD received a call from someone who knew the star personally, expressing concern after she posted video of herself dancing with the knives.  They determined that Britney wasn't in danger after speaking to her head of security and her attorney.  Now Britney herself says everything is fine.

On Instagram, she posted yet another video of herself dancing with the knives, and wrote, "know I spooked everyone with the last post, but these are fake knives that my team rented from Hand Prop shop in LA. These are not real knives."

"No one needs to worry or call the police," she added. "I’m trying to imitate one of my favorite performers Shakira … a performance I was inspired by !!!Cheers to us bad girls who aren’t afraid to push boundaries and take risks."

Britney had previously said that Shakira's knife dance at the MTV VMAs inspired her own dance.

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*NSYNC fans, rejoice! New song, new JT movie have arrived

Cr. Netflix ©2023

It's a great day to be an *NSYNC fan. The group's long-awaited reunion single, "Better Place," has finally been released — and there's a new Justin Timberlake movie streaming on Netflix.

"Better Place" is from the soundtrack to the upcoming movie Trolls Band Together, which hits theaters November 17. In it, Timberlake's character, Branch, goes on a quest to reunite the boy band that he and his brothers used to be in. It's no wonder Justin decided to reunite his *NSYNC brothers for their first new recording in more than 20 years.

While each *NSYNC member gets a chance to shine, Timberlake carries the chorus of the upbeat pop track, singing, "Just let me take you to a better place / I'm gonna make you kiss the sky tonight / Yeah, if you let me show the way / I'm so excited to see you excited.”

As for the new JT movie that's now streaming, Reptile is a neo-noir crime thriller starring Benicio Del Toro and Alicia Silverstone. Justin plays Will, a real estate agent whose girlfriend/colleague is murdered. The two fought the previous night, giving Will a motive — but in this film, everyone seems to have one.

Reptile director Grant Singer, who's helmed music videos for The Weeknd and Ariana Grande, can't say enough about Justin's talents.

"He's very special in many ways, primarily because he's not just an actor. He's not just a musician, he's not just a singer. He's, like, one of the greatest living entertainers," Singer tells ABC Audio. "He's, like, the most phenomenal dancer and performer. He's like this very multifaceted ... multidimensional renaissance man."

"I've never seen Justin in this, in a role that's so vulnerable," Singer adds. "I thought he inhabited it so well. He brings such a nuance to it. It's such an incredible performance."

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Ed Sheeran says 'Autumn Variations' is "gentle-sounding album ... for the fans"

Gingerbread Man Records

When Ed Sheeran announced his second album of 2023 -- Autumn Variations -- some thought it might be the start of a new series of seasonal-themed records, like the math-themed releases he's been doing since 2011.  But no -- Ed says it's really more like a "gift."

On his Instagram Story on September 28, Ed posted a series of videos responding to fan questions, including one about whether he now plans to make Winter, Summer and Spring Variations

"The next series is not this. This is just something that I wanted to put out at the end of tour as sort of a gift to fans," he explained. "But we'll be starting the next series next year."

Ed said that when he made Autumn Variations, his thinking was, "I'm only putting this out for my fan base ... I'm not trying to like break records or change the world ... I just want to make a really gentle-sounding album that can be my fans' favorite record -- that everyone in the world has to know about it."

"It just feels like an album for the fans," he adds.

It's also got a cool concept.

"The album was inspired by [the] classical composer [Edward] Elgar, who made this thing called Enigma Variations," Ed explained. "Which was 14 songs about 14 of his friends, and he didn't say what friends they were about."

"I just thought it was such a cool idea and no one's done a modern spin on it," he added. "So it's basically 14 songs about my mates, in autumn."

Going forward, Ed said he'd like to alternate between making "indie" albums like this one with "big pop records."

He noted, "I don't want to just feel like I have to do one thing because that's what people know me for."

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Dean Lewis releases new single and video, "Trust Me Mate"

Isaac Anthony

For his latest release, Dean Lewis turned to the same guy with whom he co-wrote two of his biggest hits: "How Do I Say Goodbye" and "Be Alright."

Dean and Jon Hume co-wrote both songs and have teamed up again for the new song "Trust Me Mate." It's the second track released from his upcoming third album, following his Julia Michaels collaboration "In a Perfect World."

"It was probably the most stressful song we’ve ever had to write," Dean says of the song. "It took us about five days to write it ... we just spent a lot of time perfecting it. But we’re both really proud of it, because similar to our other songs, it really means something to the both of us, and we think it will really resonate with others who are going through a hard time.”

The song is about wanting to help a friend who's descended into addiction. Dean sings, "Trust me, mate, you've got this/ You always were the strongest/ But I'm not gonna promisе that this won't hurt/ You were lying in the bathroom/ Wе almost thought we lost you ... I'm not giving up on you."

In the video, Dean finds himself in a series of life-threatening situations — he's in a burning room, he's drowning, he's about to walk into the path of a truck — but each time, he's "rescued" by seemingly anonymous people. At the end of the clip, he's struck by lightning on a hilltop, but a dozen people run up to help him.

Dean is currently out on the U.S. leg of his The Future Is Bright World Tour, which wraps up in Hawaii on November 4.

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Music notes: Kelly Clarkson, Stephen Sanchez and more

Kelly Clarkson had to dash off the stage to deal with a wardrobe malfunction during a performance in Minnesota recently. She was about to start singing "Catch My Breath" when she began adjusting her lacy black dress. “Am I good? Wait, hold on! Should I fix it?” she's heard saying in fan-captured video. “I think my boob’s showing!” She then quickly ran offstage to adjust her dress before coming back out and finishing the performance.

Stephen Sanchez will debut Angel Face: The Live Visual Album on his YouTube channel October 3. The "Until I Found You" singer worked with Lenovo to create a visual representation of his new release, Angel Face, a concept album set in the late '50s and early '60s. In addition to a "truly cinematic" performance of the album's songs, fans will get a behind-the-scenes look at how it was created.

It sounds like Taylor Swift may be supporting Sophie Turner with more than just dinner dates. Page Six reports Taylor is letting Sophie stay in her NYC apartment with her two kids while Sophie and Joe Jonas work out their custody arrangements amid divorce proceedings.

Taylor also showed her support for her "Karma" remix collaborator Ice Spice, gushing over the rapper in a new Variety article. “I relate to Ice in many ways, but I think her dedication and focus is what blew me away from the very start,” she said in part.

BLACKPINK's Lisa just set a mark recognized by the Guinness World Records. Her solo song "Money" is now the first K-pop track by a solo artist to reach 1 billion streams on Spotify.

Check out the newly edited trailer for the Britney Spears 2002 cult classic Crossroads, which is being rereleased in theaters next month.

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Ed Sheeran sets NYC 'Autumn Variations' pop-up with corn maze, pumpkin painting

Gingerbread Man Records

Ed Sheeran is going all in with the fall theme of his new album, Autumn Variations, which comes out on Friday, September 29.

He's partnering with American Express for a pop-up Autumn Variations experience, which will take place on Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at New York City's Rockefeller Plaza. In addition to the normal exclusive merchandise, fans will enjoy a corn maze and pumpkin painting, as well as various photo ops.

On his Instagram, Ed posted a video of himself saying that he's really excited about the release of Autumn Variations. He says, "I haven't released a record independently since I was, like, 19, so I'm super excited to just put an album out for the sake of putting an album out and not having the commercial pressures around it."

"So yeah: no singles, no videos and I hope you love it," he continues. "It's meant to just feel like a warm hug."

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