Rest In Peace, Donald Byrd


Jazz great Donald Byrd has passed away. Another timeless contributor to music old and new is gone, but his legacy remains. Hear “Think Twice” above and “You and Music” after the jump.

Below, you can also view a clip of an AIDS/HIV documentary called Red Hot and Cool, which includes Donald Byrd performing with Guru’s Jazzamatazz. The performance is in fact from a Giant Step produced event at Supper Club in 1994.

Hear “You and Music” after the jump

Swedish House Mafia To Auction Tickets for their ‘Black Tie Rave’


Having already raised nearly half a million dollars for charity, including the Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City and the Hurricane Sandy New Jersey Relief Fund, Swedish House Mafia has announced a second round to their charity auction efforts.

Tickets to their highly anticipated Black Tie Rave on February 28 at NYC’s Hammerstein Ballroom are the subjects of the auction, which begins on February 1 at 10am EST at Ticketmaster. This auction will benefit Save The Children, which is committing itself to join the national dialogue on gun control in the wake of December’s tragedy in Newton, Connecticut. More precisely:

Save The Children’s goal is to use their experience in advocacy, their seven decades of serving poor and vulnerable children in the U.S., and their commitment to children’s protection and rights to inform and influence both the dialogue and the policies that will emerge as the nation addresses issues that have a direct impact on the safety, security and well-being of its citizens—especially children.

Bids begin at $100.00 per ticket with a minimum purchase of 2 tickets and maximum of 4 tickets.

Get involved for some great causes and cop some tickets for an amazing event in the same breath! The first auction sold out quickly, so be sure to set your calendars and timers and what not – missing out is no fun.

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Video: Justin Timberlake – ‘I’m Ready’


Love him or hate him, Justin Timberlake has certainly made a lasting impact in the world of modern R&B. And we know a bunch of you on the low (or not so on the low) have rocked his albums – there’s some undeniably solid R&B this man’s been shelling out, even aside from his glossy pop singles.

So for those fans interested, sir Timberlake seems to be brewing a new album – the first since his 2006 release, FutureSex/LoveSounds. Watch his little teaser above explaining hiatus and then stay tuned for what promises to be another tease in a few days!

Countdown to Justin’s next unveiling Sunday at midnight.

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Rest In Peace, Ravi Shankar


Indian sitar legend Ravi Shankar passed away yesterday at the age of 92. Heralded for popularizing Indian classical music throughout the world, the three time Grammy winner also taught close friend George Harrison of The Beatles how to play sitar, with whom he also collaborated. He helped make history at the iconic 1969 Woodstock gathering with Janis Joplin and Jimi Hendrix, yet still shunned Western standards of celebrity, stating that he preferred to focus on his music and spirituality.

He leaves behind his wife, and his two daughters sitar player Anoushka Shankar and jazz singer Norah Jones. Shankar played his last show on November 4 in Long Beach, California alongside Anoushka, who often joined him.

His latest album, The Living Room Sessions, Part 1, is currently nominated for a 2013 Grammy Award. Here’s to a true great in music and a life well lived.

55th Annual Grammy Nominations


Some awesome artists getting recognized with the 55th Grammy nominations this year. Super glad to see our boy Frank Ocean, Alabama Shakes, The Black Keys, M.I.A., Florence & The Machine, The Roots, Bjork, and Miguel, amongst many others making the list.

And once again, we are thrilled to see so many great projects we worked making the nominee list as well. A big congrats to Robert Glasper, Esperanza Spalding, and Anthony Hamilton for snagging more than one nomination, too! The 55th Grammys will air on February 10. For a full list of the nominees, click here.

Best Pop Solo Performance
Set Fire To The Rain [Live] – Adele

Best R&B Performance
Thank You – Estelle
Gonna Be Alright (F.T.B.) – Robert Glasper Experiment ft. Ledisi

Best R&B Song
Pray For Me – Anthony Hamilton
Refill – Elle Varner

Best R&B Album
Black Radio – Robert Glasper Experiment
Back To Love – Anthony Hamilton

Best Traditional R&B Performance
Real Good Hands – Gregory Porter

Best Improvised Jazz Solo
Cross Roads – Ravi Coltrane

Best Jazz Vocal Album
Radio Music Society – Esperanza Spalding

Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocalist(s)
City Of Roses – Esperanza Spalding

Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical
The Absence – Melody Gardot

Best Long Form Music Video
Radio Music Society – Esperanza Spalding