Getty | Joseph Cultice
(a.k.a. Bobby Ray Simmons Jr.) and country sweetheart Taylor Swift
might sound like a musical match made in focus group heaven, but B.o.B insists that the pairing couldn't have come about more naturally. In fact, he actually considers "Both of Us," his collaboration with the singer, to be one of the most genuine tracks on his Strange Clouds
album, a record that also sees B.o.B trading rhymes with the likes of Nicki Minaj
, Lil Wayne
and his long-term colleague T.I
The pair's musical friendship started with a text out of the blue.
"I got a text one day: 'Hey. I know this is random, but this is Taylor Swift,'" the rapper tells AOL Music Blog as he recreates the stunned look of disbelief he first got when he looked at his phone. "Nobody gets that text message! But it was her."
Stuart Wilson, Getty
Rising UK pop star Conor Maynard
was only 20 minutes into his first MuchMusic Video Awards
experience when he spoke to AOL Music on the MMVA Red Carpet, but he was already excited, and maybe a bit overwhelmed.
"This is my first time, and it's definitely been an amazing experience so far," the 19 year old "Can't Say No" singer managed to shout above the deafening "Conor!" chants coming from the teen girls on the other side of the carpet.
But the burgeoning heartthrob is used to being a little pleasantly overwhelmed these days. It wasn't that long ago that superstar producer Pharrell Williams
shocked him by declaring that he was going to change
the future of pop music.
Canadian Press | Faber Drive
Most Canadians know that Carly Rae Jepsen
was a Canadian Idol
hopeful before she blossomed into a feel-good-video-generating
global pop sensation. But long before the "Call Me Maybe" singer first started to win hearts on national television, she was actually our country's answer to Glee
character Rachel Berry.
Fellow Mission, BC musicians Dave Faber and Jeremy "Krikit" Liddle of Faber Drive
fame revealed to AOL Music on the MuchMusic Video Awards red carpet last night that Jepsen and the alt-rock band share a secret nerdy past.
"Krikit, me and Carly, we all grew up in Mission," said singer Faber. "Actually, Krik went to high school with Carly."
CP | CP
There was no maybe about it tonight: the 2012 MuchMusic Video Awards
belonged to Carly Rae Jepsen
. The Mission, BC singer conquered the stage, the podium and even the red carpet
at the awards show, turning in two showstopping performances, winning three MMVAs, and even earning best-dressed honours for her stylish black dress with a pair of slits to make Angelina Jolie's infamous Oscar leg look unassuming.
Hot on the heels of an over-the-top, prop-laden and clothes-shedding opening number by awards co-hosts LMFAO
, Jepsen took over the stage, singing her world dominating hit single "Call Me Maybe" while swinging from a giant telephone receiver (the display was enough to distract the notoriously self-involved gossip blogger Perez Hilton
from his time in the press room. "This song is like my first cheat after three months of really healthy eating and I just go on a binge and I can't stop eating!" he cooed.) She returned later in the broadcast to join rapper Flo Rida
and sing the chorus for his latest single, "Wild Ones." And when she wasn't busy performing, Carly was busy accepting awards. "Call Me Maybe" earned MuchMusic.com's Most Watched Video Award, Video of the Year, and UR FAVE Video of the Year.
Getting a little teary backstage at the end of the night, Jepsen recounted some of the struggles she faced during the early days of what's evolved into a true Cinderella story.
Carly Rae Jepsen
Island | Getty
's insidiously catchy "Call Me Maybe" isn't just a number one single. The song has become a full-blown pop-cultural phenomenon
, inspiring memes, viral videos starring everyone from Justin Bieber
to the Harvard baseball
team, and faithful covers by artists like fun.
From this mass of giggles, giddy dance moves and exuberant singalongs, one particular cover has emerged from the crowd. Haunting, pensive and delivered with just a little bit of a smirk, Ben Howard
's take is a very different beast. Even the motivation behind the British folk singer's take on "Call Me Maybe" is more like an experiment than straight tribute. Faced with a list of pop songs that they could cover as part of their appearance on BBC Radio 1's Live Lounge, Howard and his band simply picked the least offensive.
"We really didn't have many options," the mostly soft-spoken singer/songwriter tells AOL Music. "It was one of those classic 'choose a song from the playlist things' and there was just so much shit on the playlist. It got whittled down to about three different options and I suppose Carly Rae Jepsen's song was the best one of the three, really. We thought it would be funny. If you're going to look for the devil, you may as well go to the belly of hell."
Frazer Harrison, Getty
Country sweetheart and converted puck bunny Carrie Underwood
thought that she understood the passion of hockey fans, but nothing could have prepared her for the backlash that she faced when her husband, pro hockey player Mike Fisher
, was traded
to the Nashville Predators
in February of 2011.
The long-term Ottawa Senator
had become a beloved member of the team since debuting with them in the 1999-2000 season and a lot of heartbroken Ottawa fans assumed that it was all some nefarious plot
concocted by Underwood to lure her husband to her adopted home. For a brief period of time, she became hockey's Yoko Ono
"I never really understood how seriously certain regions can be about hockey," Underwood tells AOL Music Blog about the experience.
Ethan Miller, Getty
These days, Carrie Underwood
is known for her trademark hotpants and her sunny, good old country girl demeanor, but there was a time back in the '90s when the American Idol
-winning singer was far more likely to be found in grunge rock-approved plaid shirts -- and be mistaken for a ruffian.
"You know those stupid school pictures that you'd always forget about until you got there?" Underwood confesses to AOL Music Blog. "I wore those wide-legged jeans, like skater wide-legged jeans and a black and white oversized plaid shirt. And I remember when I got my picture back, one of my friends saying I looked like I was going to go rob somebody. Like I was a menace!"
Underwood's not-so-secret grunge past goes a lot deeper than the collection of plaid shirts she still keeps in her closet. As it turns out, the Oklahoman was raised on rock 'n' roll.