Kanye West and Jay-Z were recently sent a message from independent record stores — please, sirs, may we sell your music and make you even more money? A coalition of stores signed a letter to the super-duo asking them to reconsider their deal with Best Buy to sell their much-anticipated Watch the Throne exclusively for about two weeks before other retailers may have the privilege.
Kanye West's warbling, robotic voice comes courtesy of a studio trick that corrects the pitch of a vocalist (i.e. it forces the sound into key). Best known as "Auto-Tune," the brand name of the software, the corrective tactic is the overused trend of the year, audible on Pop, R&B and Hip Hop songs up and down the charts. Today's artists and producers have gone from faking it to flaunting it.
It's almost beyond belief that we're on the cusp of the last year of the first decade of the new millennium. What does 2009 hold for us? Axl Rose will release a 10-CD box set of material that was considered for 'Chinese Democracy,' while the late Tupac Shakur will mount his first posthumous tour.