Live: LMFAO Cause Panda-Monium At Pier 36

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LMFAO w/Swizz Beatz
Pier 36
Thursday, August 11

Better than: Watching the new episode of Jersey Shore.

It was a beautiful coincidence that LMFAO, holders of the No. 1 song on Billboard's Hot 100 for most of the summer of 2011, headlined the trade publication's end-of-summer blowout at Pier 36, a sponsor-laden affair that was carved out of what a real estate agent might call "raw space." The cab driver that brought me to the party wasn't quite sure of what I was talking about when I said "Pier 36"; Google Maps had initially sent me to the wrong address.

Eventually I found my way, though, and what awaited me was a spread that included two cars, a hot dog stand, slurpees, PopChips, and Swizz Beatz, who was racing through a medley of his hits while surrounded by a large group of people onstage. (I wonder if the plural form for "a musician and his many hypemen" could be "a Swizz"? It sure sounds nice: "A Swizz of guys.") He gave a particular shout-out to the dancing techniques of white girls, who apparently are appealingly exuberant in his eyes. "But this is not about race. This is about having fun," he noted, and I got the feeling that he came up with the idea for the track while watching old Seinfeld episodes. He eventually leapt into the crowd, coaxing the people around him to take pictures; "This is the shot right here," he said. And then his part of the night was over.


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Live: Joe Jonas Blazes Through Some Adult-Oriented Material

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@SoundDessert/Lockerz

Joe Jonas, Swizz Beatz
House of Vans
Wednesday, July 6

Better than: Not seeing Joe Jonas at a skate park in Greenpoint?

My companion described the House of Vans as the result of a Brooklyn-wide fever dream about the popular ideal of a "Brooklyn party," vomited into a warehouse. There were handlebar mustaches, short-shorts worn with ankle boots, and too many hair bows. Throwing Joe Jonas into the mix was walking the fine line of irony—would drinking sponsored booze while watching a member of the Jonas Brothers do his thing be too mainstream of an act, or would watching him perform set ironically complement said beer? The crowd seemed to be split 50-50 on the topic.

When Joe's band started to take the stage, my friend asked "Is that him, is that Joe Jonas?" about every guy that entered. No, we said in something of a defense, that dude in the horribly retro blazer could not be Joe Jonas—we then had to eat our words when Joe walked on stage in an equally horrible blazer that should have been mothballed 30 years ago.


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Who Will Be The Next Pop Star To Draw Inspiration From t.A.T.u.?


It probably shouldn't have come as too much of a surprise that the attention-seeking girl-kisser Katy Perry drew inspiration from the Russian pop duo t.A.T.u.; her recent creepy chart-topper "E.T." sounds as good as it does in large part because it's heavily inspired by the pair's still-dizzying 2002 Trevor Horn-produced single "All The Things She Said" (above). But now Lil Wayne and Swizz Beatz are getting in on the act as well; yesterday Weezy released the Swizz-produced song "Dear Anne," a ruminative epistolary track that's supposed to serve as a sequel of sorts to Eminem's letter-to-a-disturbed-fan smash "Stan" and that samples "30 Minutes," which appeared on the same album as "Things." Clips of the new song and the source material after the jump.


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Live: Rick Ross Lives Out His Dreams At Summer Jam

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Hot 97 Summer Jam
New Meadowlands Stadium
Sunday, June 5

Better than: Sitting at home and moping like 50 Cent.

Rick Ross closed out Summer Jam.

Just so there's no revisionist history here, let's remember how incredible that statement is. Three years ago, Ross was the punching bag of hip-hop, the laughingstock of the streets. After recording countless verses that fetishized Tony Montana fantasies, someone pinched him—Ross' cartoonish thought bubble vanished into thin air, and he was rudely snapped back to reality. He wasn't a druglord superhero; he was William Roberts, a grown man playing dress-up, a former correctional officer who wanted to be a rapper so badly that he rewrote his personal history. Two years ago, he wasn't being played on New York radio.

And here, onstage at Giants Stadium, was Rick Ross—his chest puffed out, his black-and-yellow Hawaiian shirt open wide but still somehow stretching tight—cheered on by fifty thousand strong. They welcomed his street anthem, "B.M.F.," chanting a chorus and cadence that, in various incarnations, has blasted out of car windows on 125th ever since it came out last summer: "I think I'm Big Meech, Larry Hoover." Rick Ross can make up a lot of things, but even he couldn't make this up.

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Live: Jay-Z and Eminem Bring Out Dr. Dre, Kanye West, Beyoncé, Nicki Minaj, Drake, Swizz Beatz, and Chris Martin (??!!) At Yankee Stadium








This actually happened

Jay-Z/Eminem
Yankee Stadium
Monday, September 13

Better than: The shows in Detroit, I have to think. Sorry, Detroit.

So let's start somewhere in the middle: Chris Martin! The dude from Coldplay! Seriously! Out he shuffles roughly halfway through Jay-Z's nearly-two-hour parade of star-studded absurdity, gingerly singing the hook to "Heart of the City (Ain't No Love)," and soon a bewildered sold-out Yankee Stadium crowd is cajoled into singing the whoa-oh-OH-oh-oh hook to "Vida La Vida," not quite comprehending how this happened, or why. Chris also sits down at a piano and taps out the riff to "Clocks," as Jay raps about how success is like suicide. Mercifully, they do not do "Beach Chair," which would've been actual suicide.

This show was incredible.


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Download This Bonkers Three-Disc Swizz Beatz Mix Immediately

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In honor of hip-hop super-producer Swizz Beatz' triumphant contribution to Kanye West's "Power" remix (seriously, go listen to that again), beloved friend-of-SOTC Sean Fennessey has compiled a homemade Swizz best-of, spanning two discs (from "Ruff Ryders' Anthem" to "On to the Next One") with a bonus disc subtitled Swizzy's Greatest WTFs. (Featuring Ruben Studdard, Maroon 5, and Limp Bizkit!) Sean's concoctions have a habit of not last too long (ask Just Blaze), so get this now, before your chance to listen to "Get Me Bodied" again is gone forever.

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