Camila Cabello says One Direction inspired her pop dream

Camila Cabello was inspired to audition on 'The X Factor USA' by One Direction. The 20-year-old singer tried out on Simon Cowell's Stateside talent show back in 2012 and after impressing with her vocal talents she went on to become part of girl group 'Fifth Harmony' - also comprised of Ally Brooke, Normani Kordei, Dinah Jane and Lauren Jauregui - before quitting in 2016 to pursue a solo career. Camila - who was born in Eastern Havana, Cuba, but moved to Miami with her family at the age of five - admits she would have never have pursued her pop dream if it wasn't for her love of the 1D boys, who were created on the UK version of 'The X Factor' in 2010. Speaking to NPR Radio, she revealed: "I saw this video of One Direction, and I was a huge One Direction fan. They were giving tips on how to audition for 'X Factor USA'. But there was an audition in North Carolina, and that was super close to Miami, and ... I just wanted to give it a shot. It was just these five seconds of bravery that changed my life, you know? In Latin culture, we have this thing called a quinceañera. But instead of a quinceañera, I wanted my 15th birthday present to be for my parents to drive me to North Carolina so that I could audition. I think that my parents would be supportive of anything that I did. If I was like, 'Oh, I really want to be a dentist today, and not pursue this as a career,' they would be totally fine with it. I think they just saw how much I wanted it." Since going it alone, Camila has achieved huge success with her single 'Havana', featuring Young Thug, becoming a global smash and her self-titled debut solo LP has topped the iTunes album chart in over 100 countries. Camila admits she always dreamed of being a solo star and had been writing songs since she was 16. She said: "I had been writing songs since I was 16, and at first I wanted to write for other people. [But] I had these songs that were so personal ... and I couldn't imagine me giving it to Continue Reading

ULTIMATE FALL GUIDE 2015: Janet Jackson, Adele, One Direction and many more are getting back into gear with new releases

Break time for a lot of musicians will end this fall. An array of stars, who’ve spent long stretches away from the studio, will finally put themselves back in play over the next few months. This season will see the first Janet Jackson album in nearly seven years, “Unbreakable,” hitting shelves on Oct. 2, a week after the first Don Henley solo outing in 15 years. And a reliable source says the long-tardy Adele will, at last, issue her first album since the mega-blockbuster “21” nearly five years ago. It’s rumored to be set for a November release. Henley’s aforementioned album connects to another fall trend: rockers going country. The Eagles founder’s new album, “Cass Country,” finds him harmonizing in Nashville with stars like Miranda Lambert, Martina McBride and more. Mirroring his move is Steven Tyler, who’s been recording on Music Row for a release to arrive by year’s end. Both Kanye and Rihanna are expected to continue releasing songs. One ongoing trend looks to continue this fall — musical memoirs. After Chrissie Hynde published her witty tome earlier in September, Creedence Clearwater czar John Fogerty offers “Fortunate Son” on Oct. 6. Elvis Costello’s much-anticipated book, “Unfaithful Music and Disappearing Ink,” appears Oct. 13. Two of music’s top names — Kanye West and Rihanna — are likely to continue the “surprise” release trend. They’ve been suddenly dropping songs for nearly a year now, with the likely result of complete works out by Thanksgiving. Kanye has given his album the tentative title “Swish.” The music industry’s escalating reliance on its back catalogue will also advance this fall. The Elvis Presley estate has green-lit “If I Can Dream,” which pairs vintage vocals from The King with rich Continue Reading

One Direction’s ‘Four’ album review: The fab fivesome retreats on their latest album

They’re at the peak of their beauty, fame and power. So why, on One Direction’s new album, do the guys spend so much time looking back with longing? In a song titled “18,” the fivesome pines to “love you like you made me feel when we were 18.” It’s hardly the only instance on “Four” when the pip-squeak stars — with Louis Tomlinson the oldest, at 22 — fret over time racing by. In “Night Changes,” they nervously sing, “We’re getting older baby/and I’ve been thinking about it lately,” while in “Girl Almighty,” their worry makes them turn to God. WIth passion, they sing “Let’s pray we stay young/made of lightning.” The anxiety shows in the pace of the music, too. It’s the slowest O.D. album so far, as if they were laying speed bumps in front of themselves, hoping to linger as long as possible. A concern like that may sound bananas for guys of such vim and influence. But it makes great sense, given their particular career path. Nothing ages faster than a teen idol, after all, especially since the young girls who comprise their target audience mature more quickly than their male counterparts. At this point, One Direction has ruled the teeny-bop market for three full years, a long stay in this fleeting world. To strike while the iron remains hot, they’ve reliably issued a new album each of the last four Novembers, the better to make the most of gift-giving season. Even the title of the new album — “Four” — acknowledges the group’s lengthening history. But instead of using that realization to push ahead, “Four” represents a step back in both sound and sensibility. O.D.’s last album, “Midnight Memories,” seemed more mature, at least by Tiger Beat standards. It featured more rock guitars, albeit of a toy variety. Some lyrics found them Continue Reading

REVIEW: One Direction takes laid-back yet charming approach to big show at MetLife Stadium

No fancy costumes. No fast-moving backup dancers. No fantasy action sequences. None of the common trappings of modern, mega-budget pop shows had any place at One Direction's MetLife show on Monday. This may have been the cutie-pie fivesome's biggest tour to date — moving from last year's shows at 20,000-seat arenas to 50,000-capacity venues like MetLife (for two nights, no less). But even in this looming setting the guys stuck to the classic K.I.S.S. acronym — Keep it simple, stupid. Other than a few fire-works and the occasional flourish of ticker-tape, the focus fell squarely on the five boys, acted as boyish as possible. From the sound of the crowd's reaction, no one felt in the least bit cheated. The scream level, which had made ear-plugs mandatory in an arena, demanded far stronger survival equipment at a stadium. Like, say, a hazmat suit with a sound-canceling device. Any repressive government searching for a fresh method of torture should consider exposing their victims to these girls in full shriek. Small wonder the sound of the crowd sometimes threatened to overwhelm the performers. That made sense, given the essential teen-idol dynamic. It pivots on projection: The girls bring the defining fantasy. The group merely serves as generic vessels to receive it. Such an exchange makes O.D.'s casual approach both appropriate and charming. From the start, back in 2010, the fivesome stood out by defying the rigidly choreographed, uniformly dressed approach of '90s boy bands like 'N Sync or the Backstreet Boys. At MetLife, they were still wandering around the stage, rather than dancing on it, and they were clad in wear meant to look either rumpled or at least unfussed with. It's a strategy, like any other. But clearly it's working on the target audience. So is the music. As was evident from the first number — "Midnight Memories" — the songs connect by Continue Reading

N.Y. gals of all ages go bonkers for One Direction

Bieber Fever is so yesterday — 2012’s pop sensation is taking fans in a whole new direction. Ladies of all ages — from tweens to their moms, and allegedly, even Taylor Swift - have fallen under the British band’s spell. “It’s One Direction’s world, and we’re just living in it,” says Keith Caulfield, associate director of Charts/Retail at Billboard, who compares the pandemonium following the Irish-English boy group to the ’60s Beatlemania or the pop stars that rocked the ’80s and ’90s. There’s more than meets the eye to this fab five, which is why they sold out their Dec. 3 concert at Madison Square Garden in under a minute and debuted two albums on Billboard’s Top 200 Albums Chart within a single year - heights only reached by the likes of Justin Bieber and The Beatles. They’ve got the looks of the Jonas Brothers with the edge of the young Rolling Stones, inserting secret messages about drinking and partying in their not-so squeaky-clean lyrics. And as the boys become tabloid fodder - from Taylor Swift reportedly dating Harry Styles, to the Twitter feud between One Direction’s Zayn Malik and Max George of the rival boy band The Wanted (who are also playing the Jingle Ball with them at Madison Square Garden on Dec. 7 - get ready for drama) - the tween heartthrobs are on the radar of grown women, too. “I love them!” says Sharon Paculor, 33, a marketing consultant from Astoria, who was smitten the first time their single “One Thing” popped up on her Pandora playlist. “It made me feel like a teenager again ... it’s like that crush you used to have when you were a teen, like a school girl again,” says Paculor, who loves Liam Payne best. “Their music makes me believe maybe, there is a guy out there that will love me like the way their songs express,” she adds. “At first, I was embarrassed, but Continue Reading

Review: One Direction are defiantly mature on ‘Made in the A.M.’

It's tough to promote a new album when everyone's already marked your gravestone.At least that's been One Direction's dilemma with their fifth (and potentially final) album Made in the A.M., out Friday, released in the wake of bandmate Zayn Malik's exit and the group's announcement that they're taking a break. Brushing off rumors that they're calling it quits for good, the remaining members have tried to keep the narrative about the music: playing up their growth since 2011 debut Up All Night and touting A.M. as "the best album we feel we've done," as Harry Styles flatly describes it to USA TODAY.Such empty declarations could be passed off as media-coaching blather, but to the guys' credit, it's actually not far off. On A.M. (**1/2 out of four), One Direction's writing is sharper and their sound richer than before, and although they still have all the edge of a butter knife, there's a defiance and maturity that may have surfaced after weathering this year's drama.That reinvigorated spirit is clear on first single Drag Me Down, the album's second track and an electrifying ode to standing one's ground, which pulses with brash guitar riffs and a slick reggae groove. It sets the pace for other previously released highlights including Perfect, an alleged Taylor Swift kiss-off and exemplary pop anthem, and Long Way Down, whose alternating harmonies make the mawkish chorus almost forgivable.A.M. hits its stride with the irresistible Never Enough, which sounds like a funk, doo-wop and '80s hair metal song all rolled into one. Styles co-write Olivia bounces along as the British pop-rockers do their best Beatles impressions, while album closer History will unexpectedly tug at your heartstrings with its stripped-down, campfire vibes and insistence that "this is not the end." Even if your Tumblr page isn't populated by "Larry Stylinson" fan fiction, it's hard not to be moved by this bittersweet Continue Reading

One Direction’s solo careers: Who has the ‘Best Song Ever’?

Does it ever drive you crazy just how fast a band changes? Since One Direction announced their hiatus in August 2015, all five guys (including Zayn, who left the group in March 2015) have released solo music. From Louis Tomlinson, whose new single Back to You dropped Friday, to Harry Styles, who is about to embark on a world tour, we've reviewed the differences in the boys' unique musical styles.  Harry Styles 1D persona: Fun & flirty Current MO: Taking cues from rock legends Level of solo success: Extraordinharry Was this Angel's solo success really much of a surprise? His album, which debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 Albums chart, sounds like a mix of David Bowie and John Elton, and classic rock anthems like Sign of the Times display just what his voice can do. The singer will hit the road for his first tour without his One Direction bandmates this fall.  Zayn Malik 1D persona: Suave & sexy Current MO: Hanging with Taylor Swift's crew Level of solo success: Amazayn Zayn opted for a totally different direction with his music. His 2016 album Mind of Mine, which also debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 Albums chart, switched up his style a bit by incorporating R&B, but the shift hasn't seemed to hurt his career. His new sound has made him popular with Taylor Swift's crowd, too. Zayn recorded I Don't Wanna Live Forever with Swift earlier this year, and he is dating Gigi Hadid, who appeared in Swift's music video for Bad Blood and on a recent Vogue cover with Zayn.  Louis Tomlinson 1D persona: Stylish & sassy Current MO: Finally finding his voice Level of solo success: Fabulouis It's been a hard few months for Tomlinson, who lost his mother in December and said last month that some saw him as "forgettable" in One Direction. But he hasn't let his challenges stop him from Continue Reading

Loudon Wainwright III on the book he never meant to write, a memoir titled ‘Liner Notes’

As a child, Loudon Wainwright III would watch his father, a gifted essayist who wrote a column for Life magazine, struggle any time he tried to write a book. And that experience convinced young Loudon that the last thing he would ever want to do is write a book.I know this having read about that childhood memory and more in "Liner Notes," the memoir he grew up to write. "I never wanted to be a writer," he confesses, or possibly boasts. "It seemed like a hard, boring and lonely life. Growing up, I saw my journalist father at work torturing himself while writing, trying to write, and, worst of all, not writing."The reluctant author's father, Loudon Wainwright Jr., features prominently in the book, as do his wives and children, former lovers and assorted other major players in the story of his life, including alcohol and infidelity. It's all there in the subtitle, really: "On Parents & Children, Exes & Excess, Death & Decay, & A Few of My Other Favorite Things."It's a fun read with heartbreaking passages, laugh-out-loud funny and poignant and real. In short, it is the sort of book one might imagine Wainwright having written if one's knowledge of his legacy extends beyond the breakthrough single he believes will feature prominently when the time comes to dispense with his obituary. "Dead Skunk" also rates its share of introspective musings in the memoir he's coming to Tempe to discuss, promote and otherwise explain in a conversation with the writer of this article Friday at Changing Hands Bookstore.  Question: In the book, you talk about people like Bob Dylan, Hank Williams, Howlin’ Wolf writing their songs from an autobiographical perspective. What is it about these musical memoirists, as you put, it that spoke to you and inspired you to approach much of your own work that way?A: Just hearing the power of what they were doing was inspiring. So I just decided to write about my life the way that they did. More specifically, Continue Reading

‘Miss March’ is one stupid comedy … in a bad way

Waking up from a coma, a dork finds his high school sweetie is a playmate. With Zach Cregger, Trevor Moore. Directors: Cregger and Moore. (1:29). R: Language, nudity, comic violence. At area theaters. It takes a really bad stupid comedy to make you appreciate well-done stupid comedies. And boy is "Miss March" a stupid comedy. How stupid? Well, it used to be called "Miss February" until its release date changed. Talk about staying fluid. The premise sounds like the '80s J. Geils Band song "Centerfold," but don't be fooled by the salacious setup. The majority of this sophomoric slop – "romp" is too generous a word – is a series of unfunny scrapes that end with the two heroes thrown out of cars or slipping away by the skin of their teeth. Audiences who haven't done the same by the final 10 minutes will find no satisfaction as the action moves to the Playboy mansion. Opening on the last high school days of Eugene (Zach Cregger) and Tucker (Trevor Moore), "Miss March" establishes Eugene as a virginal good boy and his pal Tucker as his repressed id (short for "idiot?"). When Eugene's hottie girlfriend (Raquel Alessi, curvy but a flat actress) demands sex after the prom, Tucker pours him too many loosen-up drinks and Eugene falls down a flight of stairs and goes into a coma. Four years later, he awakens to discover his angel is a Playboy centerfold, and Tucker drags him cross-country to a party at Hugh Hefner's mansion for a win-her-back rendezvous. Along the way they offend Tucker's epileptic ex-girlfriend (Molly Stanton), angry firefighters and a would-be playa ("The Office's" Craig Robinson, in a mildly amusing turn). This stuff isn't brain surgery, yet it does require a sure hand. For evidence, see any of the Farrelly brothers comedies – even the lesser ones, though "There's Something About Mary" is the obvious influence – as well as "American Pie" and its jerky-boy sequels. At least some of those had Continue Reading

Zayn Malik thanks One Direction at first public appearance since leaving boy band: They’re ‘four of the best guys I’ve ever met’

Zayn Malik might have quit One Direction, but they’re still a part of the story of his life. The ex-member of One Direction made his first public appearance since splitting with the boy band at the 2015 Asian Awards in London on Friday. The 22-year-old was honored for his contribution to music, and during his acceptance speech gave a heartfelt shoutout to his ex-bandmates. “I'd also like to take this moment to thank four of the best guys I’ve ever met,” he said. “Some of the things we did will stay with me for the rest of my life, and I thank you for that.” Malik’s red carpet appearance was noteworthy among 1D fans for other reasons as well: the singer debuted his newly shaved head and a nose ring at the awards show, a dramatic change in his look from his boy band days. The celeb abruptly quit the band last month because he wanted to be “a normal 22-year-old who is able to relax and have some private time out of the spotlight.” But when his solo demo track “I Won’t Mind” was leaked by producer Naughty Boy only a few days after his departure, it fueled speculation Malik was also eyeing a solo career. As for the remaining members of One Direction, they are currently writing songs for their fifth studio album, which is slated to come out later this year. ON A MOBILE DEVICE? WATCH THE VIDEO HERE. Continue Reading