Keith Girard

Bruno Mars Stands Out as Master of His Own Unique Sound (video)

Of all the albums and artists that surfaced last year around this time on “Best of” lists, only one has made good on their promise. And, that is unquestionably Bruno Mars. His debut album doo-wops & hooligans was an amalgam of everything right and wrong with music today. Mars aka, Peter Gene Hernándezis, is simply a whirling dervish of creativity; he wrote, sang, produced or co-produced everything on his first album....

Michael Feinstein Brings Gershwins to Life in New Book, Performances

Michael Feinstein, often called “The Ambassador of the Great American Songbook,” has just released a book of his own, The Gershwins and Me It celebrates his history with brothers Ira and George Gershwin and their music. The multi-platinum-selling, two-time Emmy and five-time Grammy Award-nominated artist exhibits an extraordinary passion for his concerts, records, educational programs and landmark New York club Feinstein’s at Loews Regency. Feinstein lends his vocals to twelve of his favorite Gershwin tunes, a CD of which is included with the book. He’s also performing at Feinstein’s at Loews Regency through Dec. 22 in “A Gershwin Holiday....

Renee Olstead Channels Slinky '50s in Stunning Retro Style (photos)

Jazz singer and actress Renee Olstead recreates the look of an early ’50s chanteuse in a stunning new photo shoot for Regard magazine. She talks about the end of her long-running television series, her new tour and a new EP due this month. In October, ABC announced that the upcoming fifth season of “The Secret Life of the American Teenager,” would be its last. Olstead has appeared on the show as Madison Cooperstein, a friend of the main character, since the show debuted. Filming the final episodes were emotional, she told the magazine....

Selena Gomez Gets Her Girl On in New Video for Taylor Swift (watch!)

Selena Gomez and some of her gal pals dance like nobody’s watching in a video shoutout to her BFF Taylor Swift. The girls whirl, twirl and shimmy to Swift’s “I Knew You Were Trouble” off her new album Red. Who knew Selena could be so hot. The song seems appropriate in more ways than one for the “Spring Breakers” star. Gomez reportedly has a rocky relationship with boyfriend Justin Bieber. The two are said to quarrel frequently and have broken up and made up several times. Justin didn’t help much when he got fresh with a bunch of Victoria’s Secret models at their annual fashion show....

Hayden Panettiere Heats Up Icy Nashville Role in Bikini (photos!)

Hayden Panettiere may play the “cold bitch of the century” on the new television drama “Nashville,” but in real life she likes a good belly laugh like everyone else. She tells a joke to Esquire magazine, although nothing is funny about her hot bikini photos. The 23-year-old actress, singer and model broke into acting on soap operas like her mother, actress Lesley R. Vogel. By 10, she was part of Disney’s stable of child actresses. On her new show, she plays opposite Connie Britton, the seasoned country star that Hayden’s character is gunning to replace. ...

Rita Ora Shoots Into Space for New 'Radioactive' Video (watch!)

Rita Ora takes off into space in the video for her song “Radioactive.” It’s part “Tron,” part “Star Trek” and unfolds in what looks like a rocking ride through the galaxy. Someone should have told her Katy Perry used the same intergalactic theme for her “E.T.” video. The video also has a decided post-Apocalyptic vibe, which seems so popular these days. Rita does some dance moves in front of something that looks like a high-tech compass, Then, she spins slowly in a floating chair wearing a tiger-striped coat against a backdrop of space junk and industrial waste....

Rihanna Defines Perfect Evening at Home in Racy New Pics (see!)

Rihanna got frisky with her BFF Melissa Forde, who released new photos of the singer doing one of the things she does best; shedding her clothes in front of a camera. The 24-year-old singer keeps the photos just this side of appropriate because she doesn’t reveal any private parts. She’s wearing a black bra, but no panties, revealing the bare lines of her legs and thighs. The photos were posted to Instagram and are quickly going viral....

Ke$ha Fires Up X-Factor With Her New Single 'C'mon' (watch!)

Ke$ha has her eye on even more dollar signs. Her new album Warrior is in stores and she went on “X-Factor” last night (Dec. 6) to fire up the audience with a performance of “C’Mon,” one of her new songs. The 25-year-old singer released the song on YouTube last week ahead of the album’s release. Despite selling more than three million copies of her debut album Animal, which debuted at No. 1 in January 2010, and knocked British phenom Susan Boyle’s out of the top spot after five consecutive weeks, she faced a raft of criticism over her singing....

Dave Brubeck, a Titan of Jazz For Seven Decades, Dies at 91

Dave Brubeck, a seminal figure in jazz, who popularized the musical form over seven decades with his unique compositions, died suddenly today from a heart attack at his home in Norwalk, Conn. He was one day shy of his 92nd birthday. Brubeck composed hundreds of songs during his long career. “In Your Own Sweet Way, “The Duke” and Take Five" were most popular. He recorded and toured with the Dave Brubeck Quartet, with renowned alto saxophonist Paul Desmond and was embraced by the Beat Generation....

Melanie Amaro Rides X-Factor Fame to Second Single; Album Due (listen!)

Melanie Amaro is trying to capitalize on her win on the premiere season of X-Factor USA with the release of her second new single “Long Distance.” It’s just another peppy pop tune, but her distinctive voice does set it apart. Amaro, 20, released her debut single “Don’t Fail Me Now” in August, laying the groundwork for her upcoming album, Truly, which is expected to drop next year. The judges at the time were Simon Cowell, Paula Abdul, Nicole Scherzinger and L.A. Reid....

Gwen Stefani, No Doubt Go on Seven Night Tear in Los Angeles (watch!)

Gwen Stefani and No Doubt went on a seven night tear at the Gibson Amphitheater in Los Angeles, rocking to packed audiences eager to hear the band for the first time live in three years. The shows come on the heels of the release of the band’s first studio album, “Push and Shove,” in 11 years, featuring Stefani guitarist and keyboardist Tom Dumont, bassist and keyboardist Tony Kanal and drummer Adrian Young. To its credit, the band made an effort to cut out scalpers when tickets went on sale ...

Taylor Swift Rocks KIIS Jingle Ball; Watch Her Sing Two Songs (video!)

Taylor Swift touched off frenzy at the 2012 KIIS FM Jingle Ball at the Nokia Theatre last night (Dec. 1) in Los Angeles. Swift is riding a wave with the release of her new album Red, which soared to the top of the charts in its first week out. The 22-year-old singer gave a pre-show interview with two KIIS FM disc jockeys JoJo and Cisney, whom she kindly thanked for playing all of her singles from her new album on the radio. “You guys are playing all the singles we put out like crazy, thank you for that,” she said....

Lana Del Rey Woos Jools With 'Ride' on British Television (Watch)

Lana Del Rey has always been bigger in Europe than she is in the United States, and it showed in London, where did a guest spot on the Jools Holland show on BBC-2. She sang “Ride” and drew screams from a packed audience. The 26-year-old singer has been promoting her new Paradise EP, which features eight new songs. Holland, 54, is an English pianist, bandleader, singer, composer and hosts a sort of musical variety talk show called “Later… with Jools Holland,” It would be the equivalent of Jay Leno’s “Tonight Show” with a heavier music emphasis....

The Truth About Carly Rae Jepsen: She's Paid Her Dues (photos!)

Carly Rae Jepsen became a YouTube sensation with a little help from another YouTube sensation, Justin Bieber. Now the fellow Canadian talks to Cosmpolitan about finally catching a break in the music business after years trying. Bieber, like millions of others, was enamored by Jepsen’s pop tune “Call Me, Maybe.” He made it an international hit when he Selena Gomez, Ashley Tisdale and other pals posted a sing-along on YouTube. Jepsen went viral....

Taylor Swift Down Under Mingles With Fans in Australia (video)

Taylor Swift was spotted in Australia making the rounds to promote her new album, Red, ahead of her star turn on Aria Awards Thursday night, which is actually tonight by U.S. time standards. The awards show is Australia’s version of the Grammy Awards in the United States, but she’ll only be performing as a special guest. Her new album is not up for any awards. ...

Pete Bennett, Legendary '60s, '70s Rock Promoter, Dies Suddenly at 77

Pete Bennett, one of the top promotion men in rock music during its Golden era, died suddenly of a heart attack on Thanksgiving day at his home in Connecticut. He was 77. Bennett, named “World’s Top Promotion Man,” by Billboard magazine, is credited for propelling the careers of The Beatles, Rolling Stones, Michael Jackson, The Who, Simon and Garfunkel, James Taylor and many artists and bands. Bennett, born in the Bronx, NY was described by ex-Beatle Paul McCartney as “the promotion man responsible for getting the Beatles on the radio,” according to his company Peter Bennett Enterprises....

Mick Jagger Cranks It Up as Rolling Stones Open 50th Anniversary Tour

Mick Jagger put most 69-year-olds to shame as he strutted his stuff on stage at London’s O2 Arena to celebrate the band’s 50th anniversary. Keith Richards, 68, Charlie Watts, 71, and Ronnie Wood, 65, did their best to keep up. Bill Wyman and Mick Taylor also joined the celebration. Wyman, 76, retired from the band in the 1990s, while Taylor hasn’t played on stage in more than 30 years. R&B singer Mary J Blige and British guitar god Jeff Beck also joined the Stones, who ran through the repertoire of their most popular songs,...

Peter Gabriel: Insights Into His Genius on New 'So' DVD

Peter Gabriel’s classic album So was featured in a compelling behind-the-scenes documentary in October and has just been released on DVD by Eagle Rock Entertainment. I have to say, it’s one of the best behind-the-scenes compilations I’ve ever seen. Gabriel’s smash album contained many of his most beloved songs including “Sledgehammer” and “In Your Eyes.” Released in 1986, it was his fifth studio album and seventh album overall. So became the best-selling album of Gabriel’s career and went five-times platinum in the U.S., selling more than 5 million copies. It was also his first experiment with pop music, albeit “on his own terms,” he once said....

Ke$ha Hits Today Show Determined to Show She's Real (watch!)

Ke$ha is still having a hard time proving she’s real. With he second album about to drop, she went on the Today Show this morning (Nov. 20) with at least one goal in mind. She wanted to prove she can sing. “Because I really can sing,” she told Savannah Guthrie. The 25-year-old singer has been battered by Internet snark over her purported use of autotune, an electronic device that automatically corrects off-key sounds during vocal recordings or live performances. ...

Keith Girard

Keith Girard is Editor and Pubilsher of TheImproper, New York City’s cutting edge arts, entertainment pop culture and lifestyle Web magazine. Before that, he was editor-in-chief of Billboard magazine and a reporter for the Washington Post among other media positions.