Over the weekend, Paula Abdul's manager announced that the the judge was unsure whether she would return to "American Idol" and referred to the ongoing contract negotiations as "hurtful." He declared that it is "unlikely" that Abdul will return.
It would certainly be a blow to the show if Abdul was absent, but is she the most beloved part of the show? We hit the street to find out which judge you would deny the golden ticket to Hollywood.
What do you think: Can Paula move on or should Randy, Simon or Kara be shown the door? Drop your thoughts in the comments or head over to Your.MTV.com to make your voice heard!
15-time NBA All-Star Shaquille O'Neal is headed to the Cleveland Cavaliers in a blockbuster trade. The idea is that Shaq will provide a presence in the middle so that LeBron won't have to carry the burden himself. LeBron would be wise not to cross Shaq, as the 300-pounder has been training for a mixed martial arts fight and has been known to spank a man if he crosses him.
That's exactly what happened back in 2001 when Jack Black and Kyle Gass — better known as Tenacious D (a band name stolen from basketball broadcaster Marv Albert) — sat down for a chat with Shaq. Even though Black praised O'Neal for providing him with one of the more thrilling moments of his life, Shaq still bent the actor/rocker over and gave him what for.
Don't say we didn't warn you, LeBron.
It's a relatively quiet week for new releases. There's Regina Spektor's follow-up to her breakout, a new album from the Mars Volta and the latest from Pete Yorn. But today also sees the release of A Casual Affair: The Best of Tonic.
This begs the question: Huh?
For anybody who didn't come of age in the Clinton years, Tonic had a big radio hit in 1996 with a tune called "If You Could Only See." After that, they basically fell off the map (save for a few appearances on various soundtracks to the "American Pie" movies). The set contains that single plus a bunch of other songs that never quite got there. Even if you allow that "You Wanted More" and "Open Up Your Eyes" were "hits," that's still only three tunes on a 15-track album. Three songs is an EP, not a $15 album.
But this isn't the most egregious example of a greatest-hits album given to an undeserving artist. What are the 10 that top it? Glad you asked! Check out the most inessential greatest-hits albums of all time, and enjoy the accompanying video playlist — chock full of useless goodness!
Painting the Corners: The Best of Fastball
Actual Band Hits: One definite ("The Way"), two or three depending on whether you think "Fire Escape" and "Out of my Head" were big enough.
Analysis: Here's an unfortunate case, as Fastball are actually a great band. But outside of their debut album (which spawned the three songs mentioned above), they never had much of an impact. Plus, Painting the Corners only covers two studio albums.
The Best of Blind Melon
Actual Band Hits: One ("No Rain")
Anlysis: Blind Melon certainly had potential as a band, as their follow-up album to the mega-hit "No Rain" remains underrated to this day. But the death of singer Shannon Hoon derailed whatever momentum they might have gotten by soldiering on.
Sweet Ride: The Best of Belly
Actual Band Hits: One ("Feed the Tree")
Analysis: Strike One: Even Belly's one hit (the semi-ubiquitous "Feed the Tree") is a bit of a stretch. Strike Two: The band only released two proper albums. Strike Three: Sweet Ride doesn't even contain the original version of the hit — "Feed the Tree" is a remix.
In interviews last week, second man on the moon Buzz Aldrin teased that he was doing a rap video with Snoop Dogg that would be hitting the Web soon. That day is finally here, as "Rocket Experience" premiered last night. The video, directed by "Terminator: Salvation" helmer McG, shows the 79-year-old astronaut recording the track in the studio with Snoop, Talib Kweli and a series of back-up singers. There's also plenty of footage of space travel mixed in, along with a cameo by Aldrin's Video Music Award. (The MTV Moonman is actually modeled after an image of Aldrin sticking a flag on the moon in 1969.) The clip celebrates the 40th anniversary of Aldrin's walk on the moon, but it's not all fun and games: The song is also available for download, with a portion of the proceeds going to the SpaceShare Foundation.
The idea of Aldrin rapping is pretty funny, but he seems really sold on trying to get young people involved in science and the mysteries of space exploration. Check it out.
Yesterday, the first images from Tim Burton's upcoming "Alice in Wonderland" hit the Internet. According to the stills, the film will be both frightening and delightfully insane (which is exactly what we're looking for in a Burton/Depp collaboration).
There's no shortage of references to Lewis Carroll's classic novel in pop music (Gwen Stefani's video for "What You Waiting For," Marilyn Manson's 2007 album Eat Me Drink Me, the 7,000 metal bands who have songs titled "Malice in Wonderland"), but Alice in Chains always brought the best combination of beauty and fear. Formed in 1987, disbanded in 1996 and reformed with a new singer (replacing departed frontman Layne Staley, who died in 2002), the band was always had one foot in the metal arena even as they rode the Seattle grunge wave. The clip for "Would?" is a fantastic time capsule, as it represents the sound, the clothes and the attitude of 1992. Plus, it's got footage from Cameron Crowe's "Singles" in it (which let Alice in Chains win a VMA in 1993 for Best Video from a Film).
(Check out thousands of music videos from the past 25 years at Music.MTV.com)
Richard Nixon's run as President will forever be marred by how it ended, as the Watergate conspiracy remains the definitive political scandal in U.S. history. But Nixon was a friend to teens everywhere, as he managed to finally extract the country from the conflict in Vietnam, ended the draft and, on this day in 1970, he signed the 26th Amendment, which lowered the voting age in this country from 21 to 18. In the past few years, young people have turned out in record numbers to sway elections, and their influence continues to grow. In honor of the youth vote and as a tribute to the current struggle for just elections in Iran, check out one of the finer protest songs of the past few years in Eminem's "Mosh."
Today, we wish a very happy birthday to '80s dance-pop diva and "American Idol" judge Paula Abdul. Obviously her current job has grabbed most of her career-based headlines, but most people forget how many huge hits she has had (including "Cold Hearted" and "Straight Up"). But had she never started a singing career or gotten the "Idol" gig, she probably would have ended up being a legend based solely on her dance work, having been a Laker Girl and later a choreographer for Janet Jackson. And even when radio was not kind to her, she still found film work (she designed the cheerleading sequences in "American Beauty" and also thought up the Burger King's touchdown dance from a few years back).
We love Paula, and we love that "Opposites Attract" exists. It's a fantastic R&B roller-skating jam with a great chorus, but we've always wondered why it isn't thrown back in her face during terrible "Idol" auditions. Perhaps it's something that is always edited out, but if Paula says something negative about a contestant (which is rare, we know), wouldn't the best comeback be, "What should I have done instead — a duet with a rapping cartoon cat?" Then again, this clip won a Grammy for Best Video, so maybe it's not an insult that holds water.
Today is a significant day for trailblazing women. On June 18, 1873, Susan B. Anthony was fined $100 for attempting to vote in the previous year's election. Women wouldn't get the right to vote in this country until 1920, though the court battle gave Anthony the widest audience she had ever had. She never did pay the fine.
In 1983, 110 years later, another revolutionary woman made headlines, as Sally Ride became the first American woman in space. Her mission, aboard the Challenger space shuttle, lasted six days and made 97 orbits of Earth. Ride also became the youngest American in space.
How do we celebrate these great women? We honor the first female-centric video aired on MTV. Pat Benatar's "You Better Run" was the second clip ever aired on the station during its launch day in 1981.
"You Better Run" came from Benatar's 1980 album Crimes of Passion, which also contained her biggest single, "Hit Me With Your Best Shot."
Today will be a big day for Barack Obama: he is set to reveal his plan to restructure banking regulation and he will also approve health care and other benefits for the same-sex partners of federal employees. Those are bold pieces of policy, but the President's most definitive move in the past 24 hours was against the insect world. During an interview with CNBC's John Harwood, a house fly consistently buzzed the President's head. He repeatedly swatted at the bug until he could finally take no more and killed the beast with one slap. "That was pretty impressive, wasn't it?" said the President. "I got the sucker. You want to get a shot of that?" With his Mr. Miyagi-esque fly-killing abilities, President Obama revealed yet another one of his many talents. The incident didn't go by without some controversy, as PETA officially condemned the President's actions with a statement: ""He isn't the Buddha, he's a human being and human beings have a long way to go before they think before they act."
Fifteen years ago today, O.J. Simpson was approached by police to turn himself in as a suspect in the murder of his ex-wife and a friend in Los Angeles. Simpson fled, leading to the most notorious low-speed chase in history. Simpson hopped into his white Ford Bronco (driven by friend and fellow former football star A.C. Cowlings) and lead police down the highway, seeking asylum as the world watched. In the pre-Internet era, footage of the chase became some of the first real viral video, as it was passed around and parodied on the news, in late-night comedy sketches and in music videos. Since the chase (and the subsequent trial) became part of the fabric of Los Angeles, leave it to two of the city's most notorious residents to provide commentary. In 1994's clip for "Natural Born Killaz," Dr. Dre and Ice Cube laid down a horrorcore-esque tale about being psychopathic killers. A white Ford Bronco appears in the clip, and Cube rhymes, "I'm down with Dre like A.C. is down with O.J." The cinematic clip also features a handful of cameos, including an ironic guest spot from Tupac Shakur at the end of the video.