PLATINUM RYE ENTERTAINMENT BLOG
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  • December10th

    20-year-old Ariana Grande, who is a singer/actress most notable for her role on Nickelodeon sitcom, Victorious, has released her debut studio album, Yours Truly. Fusing elements of R&B, soul and pop music within the album, Grande called upon top hitmakers Harmony Samuels, Kenneth “Babyface” Edmonds and Patrick “J. Que” Smith to handle production for the 12 tracks. The 20 year old star describes her debut offering as part homage to 90’s R&B music, while the second half of the album displays more of Grande’s unique and original sound. She notes her influences on the record as childhood idols Mariah Carey, Amy Winehouse, Christina Aguilera and Whitney Houston.

    The album was promoted initially by Grande’s summer tour, The Listening Sessions, in which she played live renditions of songs featured on the album. In addition to her concert tour, Grande released the album’s official lead single, “The Way” featuring Mac Miller, in early 2013. “The Way” was both a critical and commercial success, debuting at number 10 on the US Billboard Hot 100 and eventually earning double Platinum certification from the RIAA. Grande followed up her lead debut with two more charting singles over the summer, the “…Mariah Carey gone retro” pop ballad, “Baby I” as well as “Right There,” featuring American rapper Big Sean.

    Upon release, Yours Truly was well received by critics. Lewis Corner from Digital Spy commented that “…the production feels fresh, the lyrics are relatable and the melodies are as cool and sweet as a dollop of raspberry ripple.” The New York Times’ Jon Caramanica praised Grande for becoming the first “identifiable pop star” who used the …”Glee/Idol template as a jumping-off point to make modern pop-R&B with a sturdy vintage backbone” adding that stars have risen from these shows but unlike Grande, “haven’t left much of a mark on pop.” Critics universally agreed that the singer delivered even with such high expectations. Matt Collar of Allmusic echoed this sentiment, noting that the album was “surprisingly sophisticated and unique” and “makes the most of her talent.”

    Along with its positive critical reviews, Yours Truly was successful commercially as well. Although an initial Billboard report projected the album to sell around 110,000 units in its first week, Grande’s debut sold 138,000 copies, charting atop the Billboard 200 albums chart. To date, the album has reported sales of 170,o00 units.

    While the pop star has already been busy working on her second album due to be released in February 2014, she has recently gotten back into acting. Grande currently stars on the Nickelodeon teen sitcom, Sam & Cat, a crossover spin-off/sequel of both iCarly and Victorious. 

    Ariana currently boasts nearly 12MM Twitter followers.

  • October24th

    Director Sam Taylor-Johnson has found her lead male for her highly anticipated film adaptation of the best selling novel Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James. Taking on the lead female role of Anastasia Steele is Dakota Johnson, best known for her roles in The Social Network (2010), Beastly (2011), The Five-Year Engagement (2012), and 21 Jump Street (2012). After a long search staring opposite Dakota Johnson is Jamie Dornan as billionaire Christian Grey.

    The thirty-year-old Irish actor began his on camera career modeling for campaigns such as Dior, Armani, and Calvin Klein. He got his acting debut in the film Marie Antoinette (2006), staring Kirsten Dunst, however he is probably best known in the acting world for the work he has done on the TV series “Once Upon a Time” (2011-2013), where he took on the role of Sheriff Graham the Huntsman. Dornan was also a member of a folk band named Sons of Jim, which disbanded in 2008. He currently has 101,088 followers on Twitter and 25,719 likes on Facebook.

    Also in the cast of Fifty Shades of Grey so far is Jennifer Ehle as Carla. Ehle biggest films include The King’s Speech (2010), Contagion (2011), The Ideas of March (2011), and Zero Dark Thirty (2012). With all the attention the novel continues to receive, this movie is bound for success as well. Fifty Shades of Grey is scheduled to be in theaters August 1st 2014.

  • October18th

    25 year old Nikki Reed is an American actress, screenwriter, singer-song writer, and model from West Los Angeles, California. She began her career in 2003 with the film Thirteen which co-wrote and played the lead role in. Since her appearance in Thirteen she has landed several other roles in films, including Lords of Dog Town (2005) and all three films of The Twilight Saga (2008-2012).

    Reed is probably best known for her role as vampire Rosalie Hale in The Twilight Saga, although that is not the only impact she made on the film series. Her and her husband Paul McDonald (a singer-songwriter from American Idol season 10) created an EP titles The Best Part in October of 2012 and their song “All I’ve Ever Needed” was featured on The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn soundtrack.

    Currently, Nikki is working on a film titled In Your Eyes, a romance sci-fi film about two people who are polar opposites, yet are taken by surprise due to deep connection that exists between them. She will be starring alongside Jennifer Grey. In addition to this project, Nikkie is also working on a comedy/thriller titled Murder of a Cat that is currently in pre-production but is expected to release sometime in 2014.

    The young actress currently has 677,143 followers on Twitter and 188,783 likes on Facebook.

  • October16th

    Midnight Red, the musical act previously featured here on Sept. 20 2012, is currently putting the finishing touches on their debut album, produced entirely by RedOne. The self-proclaimed “All American Boy Band” recently completed a stint as the opening act for the Backstreet Boys/New Kids On The Block tour and is currently promoting their new single “Take Me Home,” a breezy, catchy pop ballad thats spreading across move theaters as part of Coco-Cola’s summer partnership promotion with iHeartRadio.

    The five-piece ensemble got its start in a rather unorthodox fashion; band members Eric Secharia and Anthony Lado, from California and Seattle, respectively, started the group and called Thomas Augusto of Texas whom they knew from a previous gig. They then found Joey Diggs Jr. through a mutual producer and Colton Rudloff of Buffalo via YouTube. The eclectic sound that’s generated from a group whose members come from various backgrounds is what ultimately drew the interest of high-profile producer RedOne, the man responsible for many of today’s well-known hits; most notably, singles from Lady Gaga, Pitbull and Nicki Minaj. Members of the band have raved about the creative process that RedOne has taken them through, along with his musical genius and easy-to-work-with attitude. Echoing the sentiment that the producer has helped the band craft a versatile, universal sound, Diggs told billboard, “With Midnight Red, There’s a little something for everybody. ‘Take Me Home’ is the lead single, but people can expect different funky sounds as well as some nice ballads. There’s a whole array of music coming from us because we can do anything.

    Aside from opening for the Backstreet Boys/NKOTB tour, Midnight Red has been on the move in Summer 2013. After signing with Capitol records in June, the band headlined the Universal Studios CityWalk Concert and PopExplosion shows in August 2013, including sold out performances in LA and NYC. Additionally, the group hit 50+ radio stations throughout North America as part of a promotional campaign.

    For the fall season, the group plans to ramp up an already busy schedule. While they’re current single “Take Me Home” adds to pop radio stations nationwide, Midnight Red will open for the sold out Austin Mahone: MTV Artist To Watch Tour, kicking off with an Oct. 17th show in Miami. On Oct. 24th, Z100’s Elvis Duran will showcase Midnight Red as his Artist of the Month on NBC’s The Today Show. Furthermore, the band is slated for an upcoming performance with Robin Thicke and Paramore, and according to rumors, an opening act for Katy Perry’s upcoming “Prism” Tour may be in the works.

    Look out for Midnight Red’s untitled debut album, in stores Spring 2014. 


  • October15th

    Lorde (age 16) has had a record contract nearly a quarter of her life.  Her debut album, Pure Heroine was released September 2013. Her first single “Royals which is featured on the album, hit number 1 on the billboard hot 100, making her the first New Zealand solo artist to have a number one song in the United States. This  song was the first song in 17 years by a female solo artist to  hit the top Billboard’s alternative chart.

    This young talent made her name by sneering at everything else on the radio (“We don’t care/ We aren’t caught up in your love affair”). The message is clear: Lorde has introduced herself to the world as someone who is free to care but never does. Twenty seconds into the album, she’s already announced that she’s bored. Twice.

    Lorde has had great success independently, having wrote all the lyrics on Pure Heroine and co-wrote the music. She also politely declined Katy Perry’s offer to be a supporting act on her world tour.  Check out her Twitter, Website or Facebook to keep up with what she will do next.

     

     

  • October10th

    Being one of Hollywood’s top celebrity stylists and traveling between NYC, LA and Paris – some would say Jen Atkin is living the life. Jen’s hairstyles are frequently covered by publications such as InStyle, Italian Vogue, ELLE and US Vogue and she’s worked with many famous photographers.  She has a loyal following by celebrity clients and recently gained 7,000 new followers on Twitter in the span of 5 days.

    This young talent did not become a success overnight; she started as a receptionist at a local salon in LA and worked her way up.  Today, she has worked along side other popular stylists during fashion week and continued to work in top-notch salons.  She’s mastered the skill of capturing old world beauty in the hairstyles of some of today’s most glamorous leading ladies (think Penelope Cruz, Emma Stone, Sofia Vergara, Jessica Alba, Cindy Crawford)—thanks in part to her vibrant resume. She was a key member of Madonna’s hair team on 2006’s Confessions tour; she’s been mentored by hair masters like Andy Lecompte, Guido and Danilo; and she’s made sure the locks of top models were catwalk-ready for designers like Louis Vuitton, Miu Miu, Chloe, and Alexander McQueen.

    One of Jens dream projects would be doing hair for a music video directed by Paul Hunter starring Beyonce, J. Lo, Lady Gaga or Shania Twain.

    Check out Jens’ Instagram in order to keep up with what she has going on.

  • October8th

    Canadian native Cobie Smulders is a talented and stunning actress with a great sense of humor. In other words, she is the complete package. Starting out as a model but then transitioning into an actress, this 31 year-old mother of one has become a familiar face in the acting world and continues what is already a very successful career. Cobie is known best for her role as Robin on the hit CBS sitcom “How I Met Your Mother” which is in its ninth and final season. She also appeared in The Avengers (2012) and will continue to grace the big screens as she has signed on for eight films in the franchise and is now Marvels new TV series “Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D”.

    Cobie has a ton of upcoming film projects including two Avengers movies that are in the works; Captain America: The Winter Soldier, which is scheduled for releasing in April of 2014 and The Avengers: Age of Ultron which should be released sometime in 2015. Outside of Marvel’s Avengers franchise she is staring along side Vince Vaughn and Chris Pratt in an upcoming movie titled Delivery Man coming to theaters this November.

    Cobie is married to “SNL” personality Taran Killam, who is also a very talented actor/comedian. In the past couple years with the help of “How I Met Your Mother” her popularity has continued to expand in other areas of the world, specifically Brazil, Asia, Australia, Europe, and Russia. She currently has 480k followers on Twitter, 277k likes on Facebook, and 27k followers on Instagram.

  • October4th

    Mei Kawajiri has taken the fingernail game to a whole new level. Within the last year this 30 year old has become one of the most sought-after nail artists in New York City, which is especially impressive considering that she moved to the United States last year. Ever since Kawajiri decided to move from Tokyo to Brooklyn she has been booked solid seven days a week for the past year earning over $300K.

    To call her a manicurist is an understatement. She has especially been known for her use of rhinestone, glitter and hand painting. Recently some of her most notable works have been Picasso interpretations, portraits of The Beetles, a depiction of the parting of the Red Sea, and Jay Z lyrics. She usually makes between $120 and $150 per client and has even been flown out to the Hamptons by clients to do their nails. In the past two years nail-polish sales figures have been soaring in the US proving that people are willing to pay top dollar for unique meticulous nails. No one is better at accomplishing that feat then Mei Kawajiri.

  • October3rd

    British DJ, Chelsea Leyland was born in London England. Her father owned a London-based restaurant that was eventually bought by Gordon Ramsey. Leyland studied method acting in school. It wasn’t until after she recommended a DJ friend for various fashion events that she herself became interested in being a DJ.

    Currently living in New York City, Leyland has been recognized for her edgy DJ style, her selections including hip-hop, rock, reggae, electro, house, metal and other genres including music from the 1950’s and 60s.  She’s constantly being interviewed by publications on fashion and style. She was interviewed at Coachella 2013 by Elle magazine and has been featured in Seventeen Magazine, where she was asked about fashion and style as well.

    Chelsea Leyland spun records at over a dozen events, including Suno’s after-party and Naeem Kahn’s runway show. She has been featured in the English, French, Italian, German and Turkish editions of Vogue Magazine. She has also been featured numerous times in both the new york times and wall street journal.

    Chelsea plans to continue to work and one day she would love to start her own organic product line.

    As more and more people value her input on fashion and style, this easy-the-eye, fashion DJ is definitely one to keep your eye on.

     Twitter

  • October1st

    Colton Haynes, the actor/model who was previously featured here in September 2012 is back in a notable television role after his 2 season run on Teen Wolf, playing fictional superhero Roy Harper on CW’s Arrow, an adventure series entering its second season. Aside from his most recent TV roles, Haynes has managed to stay in the pop culture spotlight by acting and appearing in music videos by notable pop stars Leona Lewis and Victoria Justice, last year.

    Haynes, 25, began his career in entertainment as a model, appearing in a Bruce Weber photo shoot for Abercrombie Fitch. Since his debut, he has modeled in campaigns for J.C. Penney and Ralph Lauren, as well as magazine shoots, including Teen Vogue and Arena. Transitioning to acting, Haynes won his first notable role as Shane on Showtime’s 2007 drama series, Look, a show that unfortunately stopped production after its first season. He then joined ABC’s The Gates the next year portraying a jock turned werewolf, another series that was ultimately cut short after just one season.

    Haynes caught his big break in the industry when he was casted as Jackson Whitmore on CW’s Teen Wolf, a role that has catapulted him into mainstream media. Although fans of the show were frustrated and confused over the actor’s eventual departure from the show after just its second season, Haynes was able to ride the show’s momentum and land his most current role as a DC Comic superhero on CW’s new hit show.

    *Catch CW’s Arrow every Wednesday at 8PM beginning on October 9th*

    Colton Haynes Twitter     Colton Haynes Facebook