Monday, December 7, 2009

MusicMonday -- Rihanna's SNL Appearance, More Free Downloads!

Rihanna on SNL

Rihanna was the musical guest on this past weekend's Saturday Night Live -- and as reported earlier here, I was at the dress rehearsal for the NBC show! Rihanna sang two songs -- "Russian Roulette" and "Hard" featuring Young Jeezy. Admittedly, I'm not very familiar with Rihanna's music, but I dug the first song. And really loved the theatrical staging as Rihanna donned a chain mail headdress and started and ended the song while sitting on a throne-like chair.

But let me point out that I thought this first song sounded a lot better in rehearsal than it did later on in the live TV version. In the later TV version, the band was a bit overpowering during Rihanna's softer vocal moments. As for the second rap song with Young Jeezy -- well let's just say that's the first time all night I rested my eyes a bit.

Surprisingly, Rihanna's biggest hit of the night came in the digital short "Shy Ronnie" with Andy Samberg. She did a great job here -- and may have proven that she can act, too! The hilarious skit can be viewed here.

Grammy Controversy

In a posting to its website last Friday, the L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center condemned what they called "the appalling Grammy nomination for Buju Banton, a performer whose music promotes the violent murder of LGBT people." The Recording Academy announced last Wednesday that Banton’s 2009 album Rasta Got Soul was nominated for best reggae album. In August, the Jamaican singer's U.S. tour was canceled, seemingly because of protests. Let's face it, the Grammy committee really dropped the ball with this nomination.

Free Downloads

Here are some holiday tunes for free download:

There are plenty of non-holiday downloads, too. New this week:
  • Former American Idol contestant Katharine McPhee's single, "Had it All" is available here.
And don't forget to continually check the following sources for more free downloads -- new songs covering all genres are added frequently. Just click on the links below and enjoy some new tunes.

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