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Thursday
Apr192018

Arctic Monkeys reference The Strokes in opening line of new album 

ABC/Randy HolmesThe opening line on the upcoming Arctic Monkeys album Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino contains a reference to The Strokes.

Lead-off track "Star Treatment" begins with the lyric "I just wanted to be one of the Strokes," reps for the band confirm to Pitchfork.

The British rockers' admiration for Julian Casablancas and company makes sense, as both bands got their start during the 2000s indie rock scene. AM frontman Alex Turner has been particularly vocal about his love for The Strokes' 2001 debut album, Is This It.

Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino, the first Arctic Monkeys album since 2013's AM, will be released on May 11.

Meanwhile, The Strokes' most recent release is the 2016 EP Future Present Past, but they haven't come out with a full-length album since 2013's Comedown Machine. This year has seen new albums from Casablancas and guitarist Albert Hammond Jr.'s respective solo projects, though.

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Thursday
Apr192018

"I said I like it like that": Cardi B earns first top 10 debut with "I Like It"

Jora FrantzisCardi B has earned her first top 10 debut on the Billboard Hot 100 with her song "I Like It," which entered the chart at number eight. 

The track comes from the Grammy nominated rapper's album Invasion of Privacy, which debuted at number one on the Billboard 200 earlier in the week. 

It's also her fifth Hot 100 top 10 to date.

Cardi's smash hit "Bodak Yellow" made its way to number one on the Billboard Hot 100 in September of last year.   

She then scored three other top 10 hits on that chart, all features: "Motorsport," with Migos; "No Limit," with G-Eazy; and "Finesse," her collaboration with Bruno Mars.

Cardi B is nominated for eight Billboard Music Award trophies, including Top New Artist, Billboard Chart Achievement Award and Top Female Artist. 

The 2018 Billboard Music Awards air May 20 on NBC, live from Las Vegas. 

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Thursday
Apr192018

'Paul Rodgers – Free Spirit – Celebrating the Music of Free' due out June 22

Harry Herd/RedfernsNearly a year ago, former Free frontman Paul Rodgers played a sold-out show at London's Royal Albert Hall, celebrating Free's 50th anniversary as part of his 2017 Free Spirit tour.  Now the promised record of that concert is almost here.

Paul Rodgers -- Free Spirit -- Celebrating the Music of Free will be released June 22 by Quarto Valley Records in multiple formats -- on CD, DVD and Blu-ray, on vinyl and digitally.

The 16-song collection features Rodgers performing Free's best-known songs, including "Wishing Well," "Fire and Water" and their signature hit, "All Right Now," as well as deep tracks, some of which were never performed live by the original band.

Blu-ray and vinyl extras include exclusive footage of the London show, as well as extra tracks by Paul's multi-instrumentalist daughter, Jasmine Rodgers, and rock and blues singer Deborah Bonham, sister of the late Led Zeppelin drummer John Bonham.

Rogers is widely considered to be one of rock's premier vocalists.  In addition to fronting Free, he was also lead singer for Bad Company and The Firm before going solo.

Rogers has a seriously busy road schedule right now.  He'll play a handful of Bad Company dates beginning May 11, then embark July 18 on his joint Stars Align tour with Jeff Beck and Heart's Ann Wilson.  You can check out Paul Rodgers.com for dates and details.

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Thursday
Apr192018

"Weed, Whiskey, and Willie": The holy trinity of Brothers Osborne

EMI Records NashvilleThe wait is almost over for the sophomore album from Brothers Osborne, Port Saint Joe, which arrives on Friday. And if you're wondering if the record’s release date, 4/20, is a coincidence, just consider the title of the latest advance track from the project: “Weed, Whiskey and Willie.”

“I’ve got bottles and vinyl stacked to the ceiling/I get stoned for survival, it helps with the healing,” TJ and John sing. “When it all goes to hell, the only thing I believe in is weed, whiskey, and Willie.”

If you check the length of the song, the numbers synonymous with pot come up again. “Weed, Whiskey and Willie” clocks in at exactly 4:20.

You can stream or download the track now, in advance of Port Saint Joe’s Friday release. You can also check out the tune’s lyric video on YouTube.

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Thursday
Apr192018

Troye Sivan talks Ariana, Taylor & boyfriend who inspired his new album 

Hedi SlimaneTroye Sivan's upcoming album is so personal that he wasn't sure he wanted any guest artists on it, but he realized he needed just one: Ariana Grande.

Ariana sings on a dance track called "Dance to This," and speaking to Australian GQ, Troye says, "She’s a really good friend...I had this one song and I thought, 'This song really needs Ariana Grande on it.' I hate asking people for things, but I plucked up the courage to ask, and I had it like two days later.”

Troye's also gotten some help from another female pop superstar: Taylor Swift

"[She's] always been really lovely to me – super-kind and generous," he tells GQ. "We have hung out only a couple of times, but she’s just been so open and forthcoming and answered all my questions, because I’m always really interested in what it’s like to be Taylor Swift.”

As for why the album is so personal, it was inspired by Troye's boyfriend, an American model named Jacob. Troye says, “I was in a writing mode and writing about everything, my personal life included."

He notes, "If I had it my way, it would be something that was almost completely private. But I think it’s just so obvious that we’re together. So I’m completely fine with everyone knowing who I’m in a relationship with, but then it’s up to me to protect the ins and outs."

"People see photos of us together, but the relationship itself – the conversations, or the way we talk to each other or the way we look at each other -- the actual substance is almost completely private," he explains. "And that is comforting to me.”

So far there's no release date or title for the album, which has already produced the hit "My My My."

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Thursday
Apr192018

Kenney Jones' autobiography, 'Let the Good Times Roll,' due out May 31

Blink PublishingWe've got a publication date for former The Who drummer Kenney Jones' autobiography, and it's just around the corner.  Titled Let the Good Times Roll, it'll be out May 31.

Subtitled My Life In the Small Faces, the Faces and The Who, the book covers exactly that -- Jones' time with three of rock's most influential bands.  "In a career spanning six decades, Kenney was at the epicentre of many of the most exciting moments in music history and has experienced everything the industry has to offer," declares the book's publisher.  "He jointly created some of the world's most-loved records, hung out with the StonesBeatlesDavid BowieKeith Moon and Rod Stewart, and suffered the loss of close friends to rock 'n' roll excess and success."

Jones writes about "the people, the parties, the friendships, the fall-outs, the laughter, the sadness, the sex, drugs, and a lot of rock 'n' roll, while also opening up about his own deeply personal battles and passions, too," according to the publisher.

Jones of course was a founding member of Small Faces, which changed to Faces when lead singer and guitarist Steve Marriott left the band in 1969, and Rod Stewart and Ronnie Wood stepped in to cover vocals and guitar, respectively.  Three years after Faces disbanded, Pete Townshend in 1978 invited Jones to join The Who in the wake of drummer Keith Moon's death.  Jones left the band around 1988, though he's performed with them occasionally since. 

You can order Let the Good Times Roll: My Life In the Small Faces, the Faces and The Who now on Amazon.co.uk.  And yes, they do ship to the U.S.

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Thursday
Apr192018

Beyoncé fan gets in "Formation," shows off flawless Coachella performance choreography

Larry Busacca/Getty Images for CoachellaThe love Beyoncé gets from her BeyHive never fails to impress.

A Bey fan named Brianna Bundick-Kelly, known as  "Briyonce" on Twitter, posted a video of herself dancing flawlessly to the choreography from the singer's breathtaking Coachella performance this past weekend. 

Viewing the split screen she posted of her moves alongside Beyoncé's, it's seasy to see that Briyonce barely missed a step.   

Her video's earned her over 240,000 likes and more than 62,000 retweets on Twitter.

"If you thought I was about to sit here, learn choreo & dance like I'm one of Beyoncé's backup dancers ... YOU'RE ABSOLUTELY RIGHT! #BeyChella," Bundick-Kelly wrote.

Beyoncé made history with her Coachella performance as the first black woman to headline the popular music festival. 

She was forced to cancel her appearance last year when she announced she was expecting twins with husband JAY-Z. Her friend Lady Gaga stepped in for her. 

During her appearance on Saturday night, Bey reunited with Destiny's Child, performed a dance break with her sister Solange and shared the stage with her hubby JAY-Z, performing their duet, "Crazy in Love."  

According to social media analytics firm Talkwalker, Beyoncé's Coachella concert earned 2.8 million social mentions. 

It's the most viewed Coachella performance ever on YouTube, and the most-viewed live music festival performance, period, on YouTube. 

458,000 simultaneous global viewers tuned in to watch Bey in action. 

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Thursday
Apr192018

John Travolta says working with Fred Durst "may be [his] favorite experience" making a movie 

Chiaki Nozu/WireImageFred Durst is directing a new film called Moose, which stars John Travolta. When asked about the experience by TMZ, Travolta had nothing but nice things to say about the Limp Bizkit frontman.

"It may be my favorite experience I've had," Travolta said of making the film. "He's so generous, and he's such an artist."

Considering the actor has worked with directors including Quentin Tarantino, Nora Ephron and Oliver Stone, that's certainly high praise. 

In Moose, Travolta plays a character who's obsessed with a celebrity action star to the point of wanting to destroy his hero's life. The plot is based on Durst's own experience with a stalker.

"He allowed me to create a character that nobody else would allow," Travolta said. "I mean, it's really a wild character, and I felt very free to do that."

Moose is Durst's third feature film directorial effort, following 2007's The Education of Charlie Banks and 2008's The Longshots.

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Thursday
Apr192018

Melissa Peterman spills the tea on the new man in Reba's life

Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagicReba McEntire’s been very open about the new man in her life, Anthony “Skeeter” Lasuzzo, posting photos on social media and even taking him on the red carpet at awards shows.

Now, Reba’s former sitcom co-star and good friend, Melissa Peterman, is shedding more light on the country icon’s relationship with the 68-year-old retired oilman, who she met last year on vacation in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.  

“I see her completely at ease with him,” Peterman tells Closer. “He adores her wholeheartedly, which is what we all want, right?”

The actress, who played Barbra Jean on Reba, says Lasuzzo seems adept at handling the high-profile situations the Country Music Hall of Famer finds herself in.

“I don’t think it even causes a stir,” Peterman adds. “He’s a confident guy. And when you’re hanging with the crazy crew that Reba has, you gotta be a good sport and be able to roll, and he totally does!”

Reba and her husband of 26 years, Narvel Blackstock, split up in 2015.

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Thursday
Apr192018

Pearl Jam's Jeff Ament details new album, "Heaven/Hell"; shares "Safe in the Car" video 

Jeff Ament/Monkeywrench RecordsPearl Jam bassist Jeff Ament's will release a new album called Heaven/Hell with his solo project Ament on May 10. The album includes the previously released single "Safe in the Car," which also features Pearl Jam's Mike McCready and Matt Cameron, plus indie folk musician Angel Olsen on vocals. 

Speaking to Rolling Stone about the origins of the album, Ament says, "I usually end up having a group of songs that goes to [Pearl Jam], and then there are songs that don't feel right, or they feel too personal."

"Maybe I get too far down the road with them lyrically, and I'm either apprehensive to give them to [Eddie Vedder], or it just feels better for it to be in my voice," he adds. "You keep working on these songs, and all of a sudden, you have maybe a little group of three or four."

Rolling Stone is also premiering the video for "Safe in the Car," a grindhouse-like visual that stars Ament manically driving through a variety of natural disasters.

Here is the Heaven/Hell track list:

"The Noise the Noise"
"The Door"
"Safe in the Car"
"Hyperphagia"
"Drugs"
"Moment of Impact"
"The Voices"
"Somewhere"
"Are you Truing?"
"Choose Your Colour"
"Only One"

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Thursday
Apr192018

Love+1: Thomas Rhett's wife Lauren creates a necklace to help the children of Uganda

Nicola Harger Thomas Rhett’s wife, Lauren, is launching her own line of jewelry to help the children of Uganda.

It's called Lauren Akins X Ladybird, and features your choice of seven necklaces, which all come with three charms: a heart, a plus sign, and the number 1.

The money Lauren raises will go to Love One International. That organization grew out of 147 Million Orphans, which was instrumental in TR and Lauren’s adoption of their daughter Willa Gray last year.

"The impact Love One International is making on kids’ lives in Uganda is truly indescribable,” Lauren says. “We’re helping shape communities and rebuild families through these children.”

“Their bellies are full and more importantly, so are their hearts,” she explains. “I know it is impossible to care for every child’s needs in the world, but we each can love one. This is the idea behind Love+1 and why we created this jewelry line.”

Lauren’s necklaces range from a $99 sterling silver option to a gold-and-diamond version that runs $749. You can check them out at LaurenAkins.com.

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Thursday
Apr192018

Maroon 5 to perform “Wait” on "The Voice" next week 

Travis SchneiderAdam Levine’s Maroon 5 band mates will be joining him on The Voice next week.

The band is set to perform their latest single “Wait” on the show’s live episode Tuesday, April 24 at 8 p.m. ET on NBC. That night will also mark the first elimination from the top 12.

On Monday, The Voice kicks off themed weeks. The first week’s theme is “Story of the Song,” during which the contestants will reveal the story of what the song they're performing means to them.

The 12 remaining contestants include Sharane Calister, Rayshun LaMarr and Jackie Verna from Team Adam; Britton Buchanan, Christiana Danielle and Jackie Foster from Team Alicia Keys; Pryor Baird, Spensha Baker and Kyla Jade from Team Blake Shelton; and Brynn Cartelli, D.R. King and Kaleb Lee from Team Kelly Clarkson.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Thursday
Apr192018

Elton John's long-awaited biopic, "Rocketman," has finally landed

Matt Baron/ShutterstockRocketman, the long-in-the-works Elton John biopic, has finally landed a deal with a studio and production is expected to begin this summer.

Deadline reported that Paramount Pictures will finance and distribute the movie, which will feature Taron Egerton, star of the Kingsmen: The Secret Service movies, as Sir Elton.  Egerton, who provided the voice for one of the characters in the hit animated musical Sing!, has plenty of vocal talent, and according to Deadline, he'll be singing Elton's songs himself in the movie.

Dexter Fletcher will direct Rocketman; coincidentally, he'll also be directing a biopic about another flamboyant, iconic British rocker: Queen's Freddie MercuryLee Hall, with whom Elton collaborated on the award-winning musical Billy Elliott, wrote the Rocketman script.

Rocketman will follow Elton's life from his days as child prodigy at the Royal Academy of Music, though his initial meeting and subsequent partnership with Bernie Taupin, to his success and global superstardom.  Deadline describes it as an "unvarnished rock ‘n’ roll biopic with John’s life stripped...of the glitter."

No word on when Rocketman will hit screens.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

 

Thursday
Apr192018

Prince death investigation closed with no criminal charges filed

Kristian Dowling/Getty Images for Lotusflow3r.comNo criminal charges will be filed in Prince's overdose death and the investigation has been closed, officials revealed during a press conference Thursday.

Speaking at the Carver County, Minnesota Justice Center in Chaska, county attorney Mark Metz said Prince thought he was taking the painkiller Vicodin, for which he did not have a prescription, and was unaware he was actually taking counterfeit pills that had been illegally laced with the prescription painkiller fentanyl, which is some 50 times more powerful than heroin. 

Despite an "intensive investigation," Metz said officials were unable to determine who provided Prince with the drugs that killed him, and so were ending their investigation. 

The announcement comes just two days before the two-year anniversary of Prince's death on April 21. 2016.  His body was discovered at his Paisley Park residence and studios in Chanhassen, located in Carver County, about a half-hour southwest of Minneapolis.  Six weeks later, his cause of death was ruled to be a fentanyl overdose.

Earlier Thursday, Dr. Michael T. Schulenberg agreed to pay a $30,000 civil fine and submit to two years' monitoring by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency.  Investigative records unsealed in April of 2017 revealed Schulenberg allegedly prescribed oxycodone for Prince but put the prescription in the name of the artist's longtime friend and bodyguard, Kirk Johnson, “for Prince’s privacy.”  He was consequently facing alleged violations of the Controlled Substances Act.

Both officials and Schulenberg noted that the settlement isn't an admission of liability.  Federal officials also noted they "did not make any concessions regarding the legitimacy of the claims."

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved. 

Thursday
Apr192018

Lykke Li announces new album, "so sad so sexy"; listen to single "deep end" now 

Credit: Chloe Le DrezenLykke Li has announced the details of her next album. The Swedish musician's fourth studio effort is called so sad so sexy -- written in all lower-case letters -- and will be released on June 8.

For a preview of what so sad so sexy has to offer, you can download lead single "deep end," plus another track called "hard rain," now via digital outlets.

So sad so sexy is the follow-up to 2014's I Never Learn. Here's the new album's track list:

"hard rain"
"deep end"
"two nights" (feat. Aminé)
"last piece"
"jaguars in the air"
"sex money feelings die"
"so sad so sexy"
"better alone"
"bad woman"
"utopia"

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Thursday
Apr192018

Rihanna and Cardi B make "TIME"'s 100 Most Influential People 2018 list

Peter Hapak for TIMETIME magazine's Most Influential People list this year includes two chart-topping artists fans just can't get enough of these days: Rihanna and Cardi B. 

In the issue, RiRi and Cardi are each the subject of an essay written by a fellow star.

"Hello" singer Adele wrote her thoughts about Rihanna, noting, "I actually can't remember the first time I met Rihanna; I was probably numb from the shock of it." 

The British pop superstar then describes Rihanna as "the most gracious, loyal and funny goofball of an icon," adding, "She glows like when someone’s taken a picture with a flash and you’re dazed for a few minutes after....she’s fearless and full of all the right kind of attitude to be everything that she is and will be forever."

Empire actress Taraji P. Henson takes the reigns to write about Cardi, saying that she relates to the Grammy-nominated rapper.

"When you are cool with who you are, no one can use it against you. I identify with Cardi B, because she knows that too...she talked openly about being a former stripper. And she was proud of it -- like, 'So what, I was on the pole, look what I parlayed that into,'" writes Henson. "When she showed her soul like that, I hit the 'Follow' button." 

The Empire star adds, "When her mixtape came out, I thought, 'That's it. She found it! She's clear on her talent, and she's not trying to get in anybody's else's lane.'" 

"She recorded 'Bodak Yellow' because it's what she loved. Now she's the biggest thing in music." 

"Cardi B's here to stay, baby, and I'm happy to be a witness."  

Other big names who made the list include Oprah WinfreyTiffany HaddishIssa RaeChadwick Boseman and NBA superstar Kevin Durant.  

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Thursday
Apr192018

Arctic Monkeys add new shows to US tour

DominoArctic Monkeys' upcoming U.S. tour just got a bit bigger.

The British rockers have announced two shows in San Diego taking place May 2 and 3, as well as dates in Brooklyn and Canandaigua, New York on May 9 and July 25, respectively.

Tickets go on sale this Friday, April 20 via ArcticMonkeys.com.

Arctic Monkeys will be touring in support of their forthcoming album Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino, the long-awaited follow-up to 2013's AM. The new effort will arrive on May 11.

Here are Arctic Monkeys' North American tour dates:

5/2 -- San Diego, CA, The Observatory North Park*
5/3 -- San Diego, CA, The Observatory North Park*
5/5 -- Los Angeles, CA, Hollywood Forever Cemetery
5/9 -- Brooklyn, NY, Brooklyn Steel*
6/16 -- Raleigh, NC, Red Hat Amphiteater
6/18 -- Nashville, TN, Ascend Amphitheater
6/19 -- Atlanta, GA, Coca Cola Roxy Theatre
7/24 -- Queens, NY, Forest Hills Stadium
7/25 -- Canandaigua, NY, CMAC*
7/27 -- Boston, MA, TD Garden
7/28 -- Washington, DC, Anthem
7/31 -- Pittsburgh, PA, Petersen Centre
8/1 -- Detroit, MI, Masonic Temple Theatre
8/5 -- Toronto, ON, Air Canada Centre

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Thursday
Apr192018

Doctor who treated Prince pays $30k fine to settle alleged controlled substance violations

Kevin Mazur/WireImageThe doctor who wrote painkiller prescriptions for Prince's drummer, despite allegedly knowing the drugs would actually be taken by Prince, has agreed to a civil settlement with federal investigators.

Dr. Michael T. Schulenberg has agreed to pay a $30,000 civil fine and will be monitored by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency for two years, according to United States Attorney Gregory G. Brooker.

In a statement provided to ABC News, Schulenberg's attorney says his client agreed to settle "alleged civil claims in order to avoid the expense, delay, and unknown outcome of litigation." Schulenberg was facing alleged violations of the Controlled Substances Act.

Investigative records unsealed in April of 2017 revealed Schulenberg allegedly prescribed oxycodone for Prince but put the prescription in the name of the artist's longtime friend and bodyguard, Kirk Johnson, “for Prince’s privacy.” 

Schulenberg's attorney statement also declares: "The United States Attorneys’ Office for the District of Minnesota has confirmed that he is not a target in any criminal inquiry and there have been no allegations made by the Government that Dr. Schulenberg had any role in Prince’s death. Dr. Schulenberg affirms his previous statement that he did not prescribe opiates to any patient with the intention that they be given to Prince."

"After he learned of Prince’s addiction, [Schulenberg] immediately worked to refer Prince to a treatment facility and to transfer care to a chemical dependency specialist," the statement says.

The agreement was revealed fewer than two hours before a scheduled news conference during which Carver County, MN officials are expected to announce what, if any, criminal charges will be brought in Prince's death, and against whom.

Prince died April 21, 2016 at age 57 of an overdose of the powerful painkiller fentanyl.  Where Prince obtained the fentanyl is still apparently unknown.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved. 

Thursday
Apr192018

Foo Fighters jam with fan in KISS makeup during US tour opener 

Credit: Brantley GutierrezA Foo Fighters fan got the chance of a lifetime at the band's U.S. tour opener in Austin, Texas Wednesday night.

During the show, Dave Grohl invited the fan, who was wearing full Gene Simmons of KISS makeup and a Motorhead t-shirt, on stage to play the Foo classic "Monkeywrench."

"What's your name, KISS guy?" Grohl asked the fan, who was too amazed to answer. Grohl then continued, "F*** it, I don't even wanna know. Your name is 'KISS Guy' right now."

Grohl then handed KISS Guy his guitar and they launched into a seven-minute rendition of "Monkeywrench." Recognizing his opportunity, the new Foo guitarist shredded a few impromptu solos, much to Grohl's delight.

At the end of the song, Grohl gave KISS Guy the Wayne's World "We're not worthy" bow. You can watch fan-shot footage of the performance now on YouTube.

Foo Fighters are on tour in support of their new album, Concrete and Gold. The trek continues Thursday night in Houston.

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Thursday
Apr192018

Elton, Cher, John Mayer and Adele pen essays about "TIME" mag's "Most Influential People 2018"

David LaChappelleTIME magazine has unveiled its annual list of Most Influential People, and has recruited some pretty big names to pen essays about those influential people.  Among those taking pen in hand to salute them: Elton John, Adele, Cher and John Mayer.

Adele did the honors for one of this year's honorees, Rihanna.  She describes the pop superstar as "the most gracious, loyal and funny goofball of an icon," adding, "She glows like when someone’s taken a picture with a flash and you’re dazed for a few minutes after....she’s fearless and full of all the right kind of attitude to be everything that she is and will be forever."

John Mayer writes about his pal Shawn Mendes, another of TIME's "Most Influential. "The more undeniable a heartthrob he becomes, the more he insists on staying grounded," writes John. "He knows that music is good shelter from its own associated nonsense, and his devotion to his craft is exactly why people twice his age are welcoming him into their lives and playlists."

Elton writes about Prince Harry, "What a joy it has been to see that young boy grow to inherit his mother’s warmth, sense of humor and courage to stand up and champion the causes he truly believes in."  He praises Harry's work fighting AIDS and removing the stigma from mental illness.

Cher, meanwhile, salutes Olympic skater Adam Rippon.  She writes, "He isn’t just a beautiful skater. He has humility, grace and an incredible sense of humor....Adam shows people that if you put blood, sweat and tears into what you’re doing, you can achieve something that’s special. You can be special. And I think that’s very brave."

Both Shawn and Jennifer Lopez, who also made the list, will perform at the 2018 TIME 100 gala on April 24.

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