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First Spin: The Week’s Best New Dance Tracks From Baauer, Kaytranada & Anderson .Paak, Bklava & More

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This week in dance music: We caught ODESZA’s comeback show in their hometown of Seattle, Beatport announced a new CFO, Beyoncé dropped three very excellent “Break My Soul” remixes and hit No. 1 on Dance Mix/Show Airplay with that same track, we spoke to Kevin Aviance on the drag icon’s appearance on Renaissance, Domino Records launched a new electronic imprint, the legend Claude VonStroke answered 20 questions and Calvin Harris released his long-awaited album, Funk Wav Bounces Vol. 2.

That’s a lot! But is there more? There’s so much more! Let’s dig in.

Baauer, “Let Me Love U”

There’s no play button we press harder and faster than a new hit from Baauer, and the hitmaker’s latest showcases the groovier, disco-ier side of his production prowess. “Let Me Love U” is full of summer funk and romantic sentiments. The chipmunk vocal sample is enough to have us dance in the streets, which is exactly what folks are up in the official music video. Directed by Leia Jospé, the clip is described by Baauer in a Tweet as “a love letter to New York City <3 aka the #1 city in the world.” We see the music man wandering the Big Apple with a big boom mic in hand, capturing close-ups of real NYC characters up to their best and worst behavior. It’s hilarious, and it makes you feel good — almost as good as the track’s infectious hook. – KAT BEIN

Kaytranada & Anderson .Paak, “Twin Flame”

In 2016, Kaytranada and Anderson .Paak collaborated on the confidence-swelling song “Glowed Up” for the former’s debut album, 99.9%. Since then, both have been pretty busy, from making more LPs and winning Grammys to collaborating with Bruno Mars, H.E.R., Lucky Daye and Kendrick Lamar between them. Six years later, they’ve reunited on new single “Twin Flame,” which according to Kaytra has been in the vaults for at least two years. “Twin Flame” shows both parties at their peak: Kaytra samples a deep cut from disco greats Sister Sledge and gives it an irresistibly cool lean and punch with his signature swinging drums, along with some chopped vocal croons and celestial synth textures. Meanwhile, .Paak raps on the beat like he’s gliding down Hollywood Blvd in a luxury whip, soulful and smooth as hell. “Twin Flame” is best enjoyed in music-video form, complete with statement fits and both artists’ rock star presence. — KRYSTAL RODRIGUEZ

Bklava, Anywhere With You

Since appearing on Billboard’s Top 10 Dance Artists to Watch list earlier this year, multi-hyphenate Bklava has been making the rounds on some of dance music’s most iconic and buzziest labels, from FFRR and Defected sub-level D4 D4NCE to Elkka’s femme culture. Her latest release, on Danny Howard’s Nothing Else Matters label, is Anywhere With You, a double-single packed with catchy vocals and the sounds of U.K. club culture. On the title track, Bklava delivers sugary, love-lorn vocals with anthemic force over a house rhythm pumped with high-speed percussion and pure adrenaline. The B-side, “Hide,” sounds and feels like the polar opposite. It’s slower, darker, broodier U.K. garage with groaning bass, sharp block hits and a rumble looming ominously in the background while Bklava cries out: “Baby, it’s too late… You don’t know what you got till it’s gone.” These two songs, with their totally different moods, prove that this rising artist is only getting better with each release. — K.R.

DJ E-Clyps feat. Tasha LaRae, “Celebrate”

DJ E-Clyps returns with a supremely breezy summer jam that fully evokes its titular celebratory vibe. A spirited pop/dance hyprid with just a hint of R&B, “Celebrate” features the Indiana-based producer on vocals that reflect on the many reasons to celebrate on this fine day — COVID didn’t take you away, BBQs are happening, the sun is out, etc. “Celebrate” follows E-Clyps recently released “Love Quake” — out via Green Velvet’s Cajual Records — and has already gotten rinsed from heroes like MK, Louie Vega, and Blessed Madonna, which is reason indeed to celebrate. — KATIE BAIN

Brijean, “Take A Trip”

Let’s take a trip to outer space, where the cocktail lounges are decorated with fuzzy couches and everyone still dresses like a retro-futurist from the 1960s. If we can’t escape gravity’s pull enough to escape Earth’s orbit, the next best thing is a jam session to Brijean’s latest single “Take a Trip.” This is smooth disco drip served on ice, and it’s just one of nine tracks on the delightful music duo’s (the L.A.-based Brijean Murphy and Doug Stuart) latest EP Angelo, out now on Ghostly International. – K. Bein

NGHTMRE, “Trials”

Who says the golden age of trap is over? The ever consistent NGHTMRE scores again with the large AF “Trials,” a collaboration with Baltimore rapper/producer/director IDK that’s steeped in high hat and hits hard with style and grandeur. The track is the third single from NGHTMRE’s forthcoming LP DRMVRSE!, set for release on September 9. “The instrumental for ‘Trials’ is something I actually wrote a while ago,” the producer says. “It took a long time to find someone I felt could match the energy of the record. Once I listened to IDK’s music for the first time, I knew he would be amazing on it. He’s not only an impressive lyricist, but an incredible singer/vocalist as well. He really nailed the vibe perfectly on this one!” — K. Bain

DJ Tennis & Ashee feat. Lady Donli, “On My Own Now”

CircoLoco Records, the imprint from the techno party brand currently enthralling the masses this summer over in Ibiza, strikes again with this slinky heater from the legend DJ Tennis and producer Ashee. Together the duo create an increasingly urgent production over which Nigerian vocalist Lady Donli drops a smooth, fast flow about, she says, “finally being able to move on from a failed relationship and embracing solitude.” You’ll indeed be nodding to yourself with your eyes closed to this pure late night vibes deep house jam. While the release features a more compact 3:48 minute edit, it’s this six minute extended version that we’re feeling most — because more of a good thing is never a bad thing. — K. Bain



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Bobby focuses on creating higher margins while investing in society. He believes that our World has room for improvement, and one of his goals is to be part of the evolutionary process. What makes him successful is the collaboration with founders and partners. Bobby has a successful track record in envisioning and creating deals and opportunities from scratch in various industries.

Music

New Music Releases Aug. 12: Megan Thee Stallion, Nicki Minaj, Anitta, Maluma and More

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Happy New Music Friday! It’s every audiophile’s favorite day of the week, and some of our favorite artists from all different genres have blessed us with new tunes.

Megan Thee Stallion thrilled the Hotties with the release of her new album, Traumazine, with features from Latto, Rico Nasty, Jhene Aiko and more. Nicki Minaj made it a one-two punch for the rap queens with her highly anticipated new single “Super Freaky Girl.” And Beyoncé gave fans a bonus following her RENAISSANCE release, collaborating with Ronald Isley on a reimagined Isley Brothers track, “Make Me Say It Again, Girl.”

Anitta and Maluma teamed up for passionate duet on “El Que Espera,” Ed Sheeran joined Paulo Londra for a bilingual release, “Noche de Novela,” and JID recruited Kenny Mason for his new track “Dance Now.”

Plus, new music from Rex Orange County, Cordae, Ari Lennox, NIKI, First Aid Kit, Broken Bells and more!

Read on to check out some of our favorite recommendations for new songs and albums to listen to this week — plus, where you can stream them now!

Traumazine – Megan Thee Stallion

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Make Me Say It Again, Girl” – Ronald Isley & Beyoncé

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“El Que Espera” – Anitta & Maluma

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Super Freaky Girl” – Nicki Minaj

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“THREAT” – Rex Orange County

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


Beautiful Mind – Rod Wave

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Dance Now” – JID feat. Kenny Mason

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Noche de Novela” – Paulo Londra feat. Ed Sheeran

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Unacceptable” With That” – Cordae

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Hoodie” – Ari Lennox

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Smoke Slow” – Joshua Bassett

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


Nicole – NIKI

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Better Love” – Little Big Town

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Seamless” – Babyface & Kehlani

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


Seasick – AUGUST08

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Saturdays” – Broken Bells

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Out of My Head” – First Aid Kit

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Charlie” – Tones And I

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“The Look” – Ali Gatie feat. Kehlani

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


Chaos in Bloom – Goo Goo Dolls

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


No Rules Sandy – Sylvan Esso

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


You Might Not Like Her – Maddie Zahm

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“I Hope That It Hurts” – Nicky Romero feat. Norma Jean Martine

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Dear Alcohol” – Dax feat. Elle King

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“People Ain’t Dancing” – Billen Ted feat. Kah-Lo

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


Hotel Kalifornia – Hollywood Undead

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Sci-Fi” – EDEN

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


Dolls EP – Bella Poarch

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Wild Girls” – Sorana

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


Vibrating – Collective Soul

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Keep Her” – Jake Miller

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Superspreader” – Ber

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


Unwanted – Pale Waves

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Never End Up Broke Pt. 2” – Symba feat. Pusha T

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


Songs From Bell Bottom Country – Lainey Wilson

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Worth It” – Hailey Kilgore

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Boogie Woogie” – CRAVITY

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Gasoline” – Hayley Orrantia

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Girl in Mine” – Parmalee

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


teaching a robot to love (additional data) – Amelia Moore

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Hard Candy” – The Summer Set

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Better Off Alone” – Justice Carradine

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Forever Drunk” – Peach PRC

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Fast Car” – Have Mercy

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“NO!” – Poppy Ajudha

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


Make a Little Room – Steve Moakler

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Habits” – Genevieve Stokes

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Normal To Feel” – YDE

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Playing Chess” – Giolì & Assia

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Celine” – Quinn Christopherson

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


Beautiful Dangerous – Heart of Gold

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Something” – Lulu Simon

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Time Is A Healer” – Jessie Baylin

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Do It” – Hallie

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


“Business of Breaking Up” – Casi Joy

Stream it now: Apple / Spotify


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Michelle Branch Arrested for Domestic Assault

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Michelle Branch was arrested for domestic assault, the Nashville police department confirmed to Variety. The arrest took place following the announcement that Branch was splitting from her husband of three years, “The Black Keys” drummer Patrick Carney. TMZ first reported the arrest, adding that court documents revealed Branch had slapped Carney in the face “one to two times.” Branch’s bail was set at $1,000.

Branch and Carney married in 2019. Branch said in a statement to TMZ while announcing the split: “To say that I am totally devastated doesn’t even come close to describing how I feel for myself and for my family. The rug has been completely pulled from underneath me and now I must figure out how to move forward. With such small children, I ask for privacy and kindness.”



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Pro Tips On How To Join the Recording Academy From Six Membership Managers

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Over the last several years, the Recording Academy has increased its efforts to make its membership more inclusive. In 2018, the Academy switched to a community-driven model that introduced a peer-review process requiring two professional recommendations. And in 2019, the organization’s Task Force on Diversity and Inclusion released a report that found the Academy could improve its outreach to underrepresented communities. That same year, the Academy announced its aim to double female voters by 2025 — it is 60% to that goal.

“All of us have seen a push in making sure communities are reflected,” says Ashley Thomas, director of member and outreach systems for the Academy. She and Kelley Purcell, the Academy’s vp of membership & industry relations, oversee six membership managers, who are tasked with supporting — and expanding — their assigned chapters and musical genres. “We’re actively seeking women, we’re actively seeking different genres and different disciplines,” Thomas says. “And so when the outreach managers are doing this work, it’s always at the forefront of what they’re doing.”

The Recording Academy’s current membership includes more than 12,000 voting members and an additional 3,000 non-voting, “professional” members. It has increased the number of invitees each year — from 1,300 in 2019, 2,300 in 2020 and 2,700 in both 2021 and 2022 — and looking ahead, Thomas says, there is an emphasis on global membership.  “This year, we’ve invited over 200 music makers from the global music community. Our outreach team works on finding global music makers and professionals within all of their genres. This is a big priority.”

Below, Billboard asked each membership manager about their specific genres and chapters. Their answers are condensed for clarity and space.

Janette Becerra / Membership Manager
Latin, Visual Media, Music Video/Film
Chapters: Florida, Atlanta

Becerra started at the Academy as an intern in 2015. She previously worked at Sony/ATV Latin, Magnus Media and Hollywood.com

Janette Becerra

University of Miami

The Academy stated 56 percent of the invitees were from underrepresented communities. How did that play into your outreach efforts?

As a Latina, I am very passionate about reaching underrepresented communities, and ensuring that these folks feel that they have a place at the Academy is a priority for both me and the organization. Personally, it’s been useful for me to work alongside the Chapter teams to recruit and identify creatives and professionals that represent all corners of the music industry. Working collectively with our internal team and alongside our members helps drive continued progress toward diversifying our membership.

The Grammy Awards added a best score soundtrack for video games and other interactive media category this year. What opportunities does that open up for increasing membership in that sector since they now have their own category as opposed to being part of Best Score Soundtrack for Visual Media?

The global shift towards recognizing video games as a mass cultural movement is here to stay. By paving this pathway to recognition specifically for the global Gaming/Interactive media industry, we’re able to connect with and recognize a vast community of creatives and professionals. It allows for more visibility for them in this space and I feel strongly that it will encourage membership growth.

Laura Crawford / Sr. Membership Manager
Country, American Roots, Gospel/CCM
Chapter: Nashville

Crawford worked as a publicist in both the contemporary Christian and country genres before joining the Recording Academy 11 years ago. The Nashville native moved into membership in 2014.

Laura Crawford

Laura Crawford

Greg Travis

Brandi Carlile and Kacey Musgraves both expressed unhappiness over their entries being moved out of the Americana and Country categories in which they were submitted for the most recent Grammy Awards. Was that a concern among Americana and Country artists when you were recruiting new members from that community?

In having membership conversations with artists in these communities, we get a lot of questions about how the Awards process works. When new members have concerns, I make sure they are aware that the process is fluid and there’s an opportunity to lend their voice to changes each year. I think members find it encouraging that they can submit proposals if they feel that adjustments or changes need to be made to the Awards process.

The Academy said 56% of the invitees were from underrepresented communities. How did the efforts to diversify the membership play into your country outreach, which is predominantly a white genre? What are the challenges there?

Like many genres, the face of country music is evolving, and I anticipate in the coming years we’ll see a more inclusive space within this community. Our membership model is peer-driven, so I work closely with key genre stakeholders on our membership committees who constantly introduce us to emerging artists and future industry leaders.

Amanda Garcia Davenport / Membership Manager
Pop, EDM
Chapters: Texas, Memphis

Davenport previously handled public relations for a mental health and addiction recovery non-profit as well as did music marketing for Visit Austin before joining the Academy in 2020.

Amanda Garcia Davenport

Amanda Garcia Davenport

LeChoyce Photography

The Academy says 56% of the new invitees were from underrepresented communities. How did that play into your outreach efforts?

As a Latina from Texas, reaching underrepresented communities is always top of mind for me. I’ve found that often prospective members don’t realize they already meet our membership qualifications, so our initial conversations are simply providing information about our process. Nine times out of ten, once someone realizes they qualify, they automatically mention people within their own circles that also qualify. It’s truly a ripple effect and further proves how we all must work together to build a more inclusive membership.

The organization has a goal of adding 2,500 female voting members by 2025. How does that play into your EDM recruiting efforts in a heavily male-dominated genre?

I see this as a challenge a lot of genres are facing and constantly remind myself of the various disciplines that qualify for voting membership – producer, engineer, songwriter, etc. — this way I don’t get stuck only thinking of one profession. We’re also leaning on our membership’s peer-to-peer model (each member can recommend two new members per year) and tapping into existing [ally]organizations with a similar focus like Key of She, Sound Girls, and Girls Make Beats.

Maurice Kalous / Sr. Membership Manager
Rock, Alternative, Spoken Word, Children’s Music
Chapters: Chicago, Philadelphia, Washington, D.C.

A 13-year veteran of the Academy, Kalous had already been supported the Chicago chapter and last year, his role shifted to focus on outreach within the rock, alternative, spoken word, and children’s music communities while supporting membership efforts for the Chicago, Philadelphia, and D.C. chapters

Maurice Kalous

Maurice Kalous

Roger Jansen

The Academy added Best Spoken Word Poetry Album category this year. How has that helped in recruiting artists in that genre?

The addition of the Best Spoken Word Poetry Album category is a monumental achievement for the Spoken Word Poetry community. Some of the strongest voices in Spoken Word Poetry advocated for the category addition, including Grammy-nominated artist J. Ivy. Throughout the process of proposing this category, J. and his peers put in the work to ensure recognition for the community by connecting with artists in the genre, leading to an overwhelmingly positive response from their fellow creators.

Of the genres that you cover, which one presents the biggest challenge in recruiting new members?

Right now, I’d love to see more artists in metal engage with the Academy, lead some of our member-facing programs, and take on leadership roles within their respective chapters. We have fantastic voices in our new membership class that I can see leading those discussions…Broadly speaking, I believe our biggest challenge is ensuring all artists working in music understand what the Recording Academy has to offer outside of the Grammy Awards recognition. We are an organization working to better the lives of everyone working in music, and everything we do is powered by our members.

Brittany Presley / Membership Manager
R&B, Rap, Reggae, Global Music
Chapter: Los Angeles

Presley held several positions at nationally syndicated radio stations and production companies before starting with the Academy in 2013 and moving to membership manager four years ago.

Brittany Presley

Brittany Presley

Brittany Presley

What are the challenges in recruiting members from the rap community when some have a still lingering belief in that community that rap isn’t fairly represented in the big four categories?

We’re working hard to continue building relationships and trust with the artists that call this genre home, and we’ve made great strides thanks to the intentional efforts made on behalf of Harvey, Valeisha and so many other leaders here at the Academy. I often find that connecting with these artists directly and uncovering what we do outside of the awards show related to creators’ rights, the Black Music Collective (BMC), and MusiCares helps paint a full picture of what Academy membership can offer them. There is still much progress to be made, and we’re committed to putting in the work that needs to be done to break barriers and build more trust with the rap community.

What areas do you see the greatest potential for growth in the genres that you cover and in the chapter that you oversee? What are the biggest challenges?

I see great potential for growth within the Global music genre. For example, there are so many incredible artists coming out of Africa, and we’re only seeing a subset of that here in the states. I strongly feel that Global music will soon become the music of our time.

Lewis Robertson / Membership Manager
Jazz, Comedy, New Age, Ambien or Chant, Contemporary Instrumental
Chapters: San Francisco, Pacific Northwest

A music professional who worked as a studio musician, tour and studio manager and professor, Robertson started at the Recording Academy three years ago.

Lewis Roberston

Lewis Roberston

Ryan Bates

The Academy says 56% percent of the new invitees were from underrepresented communities. How did that play into your outreach efforts?

I would estimate that over 80% of my outreach efforts this year were dedicated to identifying and supporting music people in underrepresented communities. Our hope is to not just defend against existing industry biases, but to ultimately help affect positive change that will reverberate throughout the world of music.

What areas do you see the greatest potential for growth in the genres and regions that you cover?

The UK Jazz scene is exploding with innovation, Colorado and Seattle have become quite large music hubs, the comedy genre at large is an untapped gold-mine of creativity, ideas, and artists pushing boundaries. Music from the Bay Area is filled with important calls to action, Contemporary Instrumental music is continuing to breed some of the greatest musicians of our time, and New Age, Ambient and Chant music is becoming more and more important as our lives get busier and more stressful.



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