A Tribute to Loretta Lynn |
It's been 50 years since Loretta Lynn made her chart debut with "I'm a Honky Tonk Girl" and 40 years since she scored a No. 1 country hit with her signature song, "Coal Miner's Daughter." So it's a fitting time to pay tribute to the 76-year-old legend. As a testament to her decades of impact, this loving salute spans generations of country songbirds with stars such as Carrie Underwood
, Faith Hill
and Reba McEntire coming up strong. But the breadth of Lynn's influence extends beyond Nashville with surprising turns by Paramore, Kid Rock and the White Stripes. The latter-whose frontman Jack White produced Lynn's Grammy-winning last album, 2004's Van Lear Rose-make one of the coolest twists with a gritty, garage-y spin on "Rated X."
Even with all the hits they've produced for others as the Neptunes, Pharrell Williams and Chad Hugo continue to save some of their best beats for themselves in N.E.R.D. Reliably, there are ultra-funky grooves like the aptly titled "Hot-N-Fun" (with Nelly Furtado) and "Party People" (with T.I.). But they can also take you on a psychedelic trip with intoxicating tracks like "Hypnotize U."
Opening with 1,047,000 copies sold of Speak Now, Swift notches the first album to top the magic million mark since Lil Wayne's Tha Carter III in 2008. In fact it's the best debut since 2005!
KINGS OF LEON
Come Around Sundown
The follow-up to 2008's hit Only by the Night, Sundown is no letdown. Cuts like the arena-ready anthem "Radioactive" cement the Followill boys' place as new rock royalty.
Sale El Sol
With Shaki singing mostly in Spanish, her radiant latest (translation: The Sun Comes Out) ranges from melodic ballads to punchy rockers and rhythmic fiesta-starters.
ELTON JOHN & LEON RUSSELL
It's 1970 all over again when these long-ago tourmates reunite on dueling pianos. Neil Young and Brian Wilson also join this old-timers' love-in.
On her third studio set, the Scottish singer-songwriter delivers on more funky folk-pop such as "Come On, Get In." But the tortured ballad "Lost" demonstrates that this tiger can purr as well as bite.
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COMPILATION OF THE WEEK
NORAH & FRIENDS
While she's definitely a solo star, Norah Jones has always excelled at collaboration. Indeed she won two Grammys with Ray Charles, including Record of the Year, for "Here We Go Again." That 2004 cut is among the 18 genre-hopping groupings on ... Featuring. Whether mingling in rock (Foo Fighters) or hip-hop (Q-Tip), jazz (Herbie Hancock) or bluegrass (Dolly Parton), Jones really makes these musical connections stick.
BEHIND THE HITS WITH ...
"IN THE AIR TONIGHT" (1981)
It's one of the earlier [solo] songs I wrote. I was going through a divorce, and it was a pretty bitter, angry song. It just has endless lives-I liked Mike Tyson [singing it] in The Hangover!
I was trying to write a dance song, and this word "sussudio" sort of fit into the rhythm. In the song it's kind of someone's name. But it's nonsense.
"AGAINST ALL ODDS" (1984)
I wrote it at the time of my first solo album but didn't think it was good enough. I had it sitting around, and [director] Taylor Hackford asked if I'd do a song for [Against All Odds], so I rewrote the lyrics. It was my first No. 1 record in America.
"YOU CAN'T HURRY LOVE" (1982)
It was meant to be a Motown tribute, but I've done it more thoroughly with Going Back.
"LAND OF CONFUSION" (1986)
A TV program used a puppet to parody me, so to have Genesis as hideous puppets in the video was fun.