As he’s done so often on The Late Show, Stephen Colbert went live after President Biden’s big speech. The President had his first joint address to Congress Wednesday night, and Colbert’s live monologue gave him the edge (and the clips) to break it down for us. Whereas Jimmy Fallon had to do an guestimate impression of what he thought the address might be like, Colbert was able to riff on the speech itself. Biden’s speech set forward ambitious goals for the country, including investing in science and increasing government aid to its citizens. Colbert included a supercut of every time Biden said “jobs,” which was incredibly, tediously, wondrously long. Colbert was also able to talk more specifically about the raid on Rudy Giuliani’s. Colbert unveiled a new title card with a fart sound effect, so you know the news is important. … [Read more...] about Watch Stephen Colbert’s Live Post-Biden Speech Monologue
Photo: Apple The past week was bookended by two major developments pertaining to the rise of podcast subscriptions on the platform level, between Apple’s head-turning announcement last week and Spotify’s big detail push this morning. There’s a lot baked into each piece on its own and in relation to each other — too much for me to go over comprehensively — so I’m only going to go over what I think are the most important beats. During its spring event last Tuesday, Apple announced Apple Podcasts Subscriptions, a new set of features that will give podcast creators the opportunity to create premium or freemium subscription products for their shows over the Apple Podcasts platform, still widely understood to be a major driver of all consumption in the medium even as Spotify cranks up the competition for listen share. Creators can set their own pricing, and they’ll be able to sell subscriptions to individual shows or a group of shows. Those tools are expected to roll out to the general public next month. No beating around the bush here: This is a potentially tectonic development, given Apple’s historical status as a highly influential though fairly hands-off ward of the podcast ecosystem. From a platform standpoint, the story of the last few years was defined by Spotify actively taking a hatchet to Apple’s position as the default center of the podcast universe while Apple mostly stood still. Strategically, Apple Podcasts was thought to be in a tricky in-between space: Podcasting wasn’t big enough to warrant much focus from the trillion-dollar corporation housed in a spaceship, but the notion of Apple potentially losing its dominant position over an increasingly hot media category — one that it had inadvertently cultivated — is certainly troublesome. The way I see it, Apple Podcasts’ push towards facilitating subscriptions is both a smart hedge and perhaps one of the few things the platform could do without directly distorting the balance of the … [Read more...] about Apple and Spotify Are Ready to Take Your Podcast Money
Peaceful protestor Abel Tesfaye. Photo: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for TW The Grammys governing body voted to eliminate the use of anonymous expert committees on Friday, a process that has longed spurred controversy. The anonymous committees, made up of music professionals, review 61 of the 84 categories, determining the nominees from selections made by the academy’s thousands of voters. Committees will no longer be used for the top four awards or genre categories, but remain for 11 “craft” categories for production, packaging, album notes, and more. The board of trustees also reduced the number of genre categories an academy member may vote on from 15 to 10 and added two new awards: Best Global Music Performance and Best Música Urbana Album. Ahead of this year’s Grammys, the Weeknd announced he was boycotting the awards going forward. “Because of the secret committees,” the Weeknd told The New York Times , “I will no longer allow my label to submit my music to the Grammys.” He joined a loud chorus of largely Black artists in hip-hop and R&B who have been shut out of general categories, locked in genre categories, or, in the case of his record-breaking album After Hours , completely snubbed . The legitimacy of the nominations process was called into question last year when Deborah Dugan , the academy’s former chief and first female president, accused committee members of having conflicts of interests. In one example from the legal complaint about her removal from the job, per the Times , an artist who was up for Song of the Year was allowed to sit on the committee and was further represented by a board member. Last year, the Grammys added a requirement that committee members sign disclosure forms noting connections or direct ties to nominees. These changes will take effect for next year’s 64th annual Grammy Awards on January 31, 2022. We’ll be there, but will the Weeknd? Sources new york times … [Read more...] about The Grammys Ditch Controversial Anonymous Nominating Committees
This year’s $205,000 consolation prize. Photo: Courtesy of Distinctive Assets Last weekend’s Oscars left us all with a few gifts — Daniel Kaluuya’s homage to sex , Youn Yuh-jung being Youn Yuh-jung , and that clip of Glenn Close dancing to “Da Butt ” — but some of stars went home with literal presents via an “Everybody Wins” gift bag from Distinctive Assets, a company that is unaffiliated with the Academy and in its 19th year of giving. While stars often receive gifts at other awards shows, the Oscars bags tend to attract special attention for their sheer opulence. Forbes estimated that this year’s freebies — which include celebrity-trainer workout sessions, a liposuction procedure, a three-night retreat on a Swedish island, and a card for a commemorative gold NFT of Chadwick Boseman’s head — total $205,000 a bag. For a chance at the exposure that a celebrity’s name can bring (and the annual fascination over what expensive things the rich people got this year), brands pay thousands to donate their products and services if they are chosen to be featured in the bag. While the Academy is no longer involved with the annual gift-giving, that wasn’t always the case. In fact, up until 2006, the organization played a key role in the gift-giving on Hollywood’s biggest night. Here’s the full history of the lavish gifting tradition, including a tax dispute with the IRS, a Bette Midler award loss, a lawsuit over trademark infringement, and a man known as the “Sultan of Swag.” In 1989, Taylor Swift was born, George H.W. Bush was sworn in as the 41st president, and, according to Reuters , the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences was quietly beginning to give out thank-you gifts to the presenters and performers at its annual Oscars awards show. The practice continued for years, becoming increasingly competitive as brands (who were not charged a fee to donate) realized the power of celebrity exposure. One company told the LA Business Journal … [Read more...] about The 2021 Oscars Gift Bag Was Worth $205,000. How Did We Get Here?
April 29, 2021 - 12:56 BST Georgia Brown Calling all Aperol Spritz lovers, Morrisons has just launched the ultimate Aperol Cocktail Box just in time for the bank holiday weekend. Ah, there's nothing quite like the first May bank holiday of the year. Summer is just around the corner, and with garden parties and outdoor gatherings officially allowed to go ahead under the government's roadmap out of lockdown – why not celebrate this weekend with a refreshing glass of Aperol Spritz? RELATED: Prosecco tables and garden bars are seriously trending on Etsy right now Morrisons is answering spritz lovers’ prayers as it launches a new Aperol Cocktail Box . Landing just in time for the bank holiday, the box makes it easy for cocktail lovers to whip up the ever-popular aperitivo, the Aperol Spritz. Aperol Spritz Box, £35, Morrisons SHOP NOW With international travel off the cards for now, we can at least pretend we're kicking back and relaxing in a Mediterranean holiday resort, right? Even if Britain isn't set to bask in warm sunshine this weekend, that doesn't stop you from enjoying a socially distanced soirée. Transform your outdoor space with garden décor, a pop-up bar, outdoor lights and enjoy a cooling cocktail alfresco – you're already half way there. READ: The best outdoor lights to make your garden truly magical this spring SHOP: 31 best patio heaters and firepits for your garden The box includes everything required to create the ultimate summer cocktail - including a 70cl bottle of Aperol to mix up with the light and refreshing Mionetto Prosecco, before being topped with Morrisons Soda Water. There’s even a loose orange included to garnish the spritz. Aperol Spritz is the cocktail of the summer To accompany the drinks, the box also includes foodie treats to keep your guests (and you) topped up. Enjoy gruyere & poppy seed … [Read more...] about Morrisons’ new Aperol Spritz cocktail kit perfect for this Bank Holiday
April 23, 2018 - 19:34 BST Jessica B Prince Harry’s fiancée Meghan Markle carried a special gold Naeem Khan Zodiac clutch bag, embellished with Swarovski crystals detailing her star sign constellation, when she attended the Queen’s 92nd birthday celebrations at the Royal Albert Hall It’s been a busy few days for soon-to-be royal Meghan Markle as she gears up to marry her fiancé Prince Harry next month. On Thursday the former Suits star was seen at a Women's Empowerment reception in London , part of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting which brings together charities and organisations working to promote global gender equality through girls' education, where she stunned in a chic black knee length Jackie O-inspired dress by Halo. Then on Saturday she attended the Invictus games reception alongside Harry , where she wowed in a gorgeous green floral frock by celeb favourite designer Self Portrait. Meghan delighted fashion fans with her Stella McCartney frock Later that evening she squeezed in another public appearance attended the Queen's 92nd birthday , scoring full style points yet again in a midnight blue Stella McCartney cape gown . She accessorised the chic look with a glamorous gold zodiac clutch bag by Naeem Khan, which retails for £3,054. Eagle-eyed royal watchers might want to take a close look at the design on the bag, which features a horoscope constellation made out of gorgeous Swarovski crystals. The design in fact shows the constellation for the Leo sign, which happens to be Meghan's star sign – her birthday falls on 4 August. Leos are know for being kind, energetic, loyal and headstrong. Her fiancé is a Virgo, and while these two signs are not traditionally thought of as compatible, they can work well as a partnership depending on individuals' rising and moon signs. READ MORE: Prince Harry reveals the sweet nickname he has for Meghan Markle The evening … [Read more...] about The hidden meaning behind Meghan Markle’s gold Naeem Khan Zodiac clutch bag