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The feud between new judges Mariah Carey and Nicki Minaj: real or fake? That was the question lobbed at the American Idol panel at TCA this morning in the wake of reports of cat-fighting between new judges Carey and Minaj, which one critic charged “feels like it’s fake.” Naturally, that sentiment was vehemently denied by both the producers and the judges. “Whatever feuds there have been — and this isn’t just between Nicki and Mariah but Keith (Urban) and Randy (Jackson) as well — are genuine,” executive producer Nigel Lythgoe said. “Whenever you’re in this sort of passionate situation, these things happen.” Fox reality chief Mike Darnell echoed that “it’s authentic” and explained that it has to do with the fact “there is passion in this group. They disagree about the talent, and the ways to approach the talent.” (After the panel, Darnell denied that anyone involved in Idol has orchestrated the Carey-Minaj feud, blaming it on “a rogue crew member probably took the video and sent it to TMZ. We did not encourage it.”) Read more here

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Buzz Track: Love is King

The Funnel Heads were birthed in a small garage in the cozy beach town of Dana Point CA.  Fueled by their love and respect for all music, they began crafting their own original sound derived from the crashing surf and laid back vibe of their surroundings. Meshing a large variety of genres their music embraces all that is California – rock, surf, reggae, Punk, funk, all with a hint of hip hop just begins to break down the music they create. Lewis Richards and Ronnie Kings (Offspring, Sublime) have produced their latest material. Already creating a buzz, the band is kicking off the new year with a monthly residency at the House of Blues in Anaheim.

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Sony, have a massive interest in keeping the One Direction together. The band’s global success has helped Sony Music UK to pre-tax profits up 128 per cent on last year. Sales of the group’s smash-hit second album are not even included in that.

The band which includes Liam Payne, Harry Styles, Zayn Malik, Niall Horan and Louis Tomlinson have reportedly signed a contract that means that if one member leaves the group before the end of their contract the rest of the members will miss out financially.

“It’s a really clever contract that the boys have signed up to. It means they have a real incentive to tough it out and stick together,” a source tells The Sun.

A source close to the band told me: “It’s a really clever contract that the boys have signed up to. It means they have a real incentive to tough it out and stick together.

“The formal length is for 36 months and an album a year — but the clever part is they get the big pay day after the three years.

“If one of them walks away before then, then all five miss out on the money.

“They don’t miss out on a few quid either, we are talking millions.

“They all get on really well, but it would be the kind of deal that would see them through the worst aggro possible.”

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Buzz Track: Try

Michelle Rene’ is a Nashville based singer/songwriter who delivers a blend of rock, country, and folk. Her honest voice and expressive lyrics are reminiscent of some of the pioneers of the folk rock scene married with a fresh contemporary sound. Michelle has played shows across the US and on some of country music’s most famous stages including the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, TN.

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Nazir’s song “One Pound Fish” has become a worldwide hit, securing the top position in UK Asian Chart, #5 in UK Dance Chart and #29 in UK singles chart. This song is also available on iTunes.

Korean rapper Psy recently posted a record 1 billion YouTube views for his viral music video for “Gangnam Style” earlier this month. Now, a Pakistani fishmonger wants international fame.

Muhammad Shahid Nazir video for his song, “One Pound Fish,” although the views are probably inflated, he has surpassed 12 million views on YouTube. He also also landed a record deal with Warner Music. Additionally, the people in Pakistan are so proud of Nazir that the country reportedly lifted its YouTube ban so citizens can watch “One Pound Fish” and celebrate his Internet stardom.

Business Insider explains how Nazir’s phenomenon of a song came about:

Nazir made up a song, “One Pound Fish,” which he sang to bait customers for the Upton Park market stall where he sold fish. Colin Miller, a British Web designer, filmed him nine months ago. But the video didn’t start going crazy until early December. Now there’s an “o-fish-al” music video and Nazir’s returned to Pakistan, where he’s being celebrated for his global Internet pop-culture victory. He’s far from touching the record set in 2012 by Korean pop artist Psy, whose “Gangnam Style” beat out longtime champion Justin Bieber for the most-watched video on YouTube with 1 billion views.

As Business Insider also notes, the bizarre song and video provides more proof of the “transformative power” of YouTube to “disseminate mass culture globally in the blink of an eye.”

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