Rihanna named the world's richest female musician by Forbes
Rihanna is all about the benjamins! The Bajan star has amassed a $600 million net worth, making her the world's wealthiest female musician, Forbes reported on June 4. RiRi's wealth has grown over the years thanks to her recording career and several business ventures including Fenty Beauty, her Savage X Fenty line and her new LVMH luxury fashion line, FENTY.
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Taylor Swift announces album release date before delivering new video, Pride performance
Taylor Swift had quite a busy month! The pop singer announced on June 13 that her newest album, "Lover," would be released on Aug. 23. Just a few hours later, she dropped her second single from the project, "You Need to Calm Down." On June 14, she performed at Stonewall Inn's Pride celebration in New York. Three days later, she released the video for "Calm Down," which highlighted her support for the LGBTQ+ community with its imagery and guest stars, who included Laverne Cox, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Ellen DeGeneres, Adam Lambert and more. Katy Perry also made a cameo, which revealed that she and Taylor have once and for all ended their beef.
Carrie Underwood wins big at 2019 CMT Music Awards, faces legal battle
Carrie Underwood was a major winner at the 2019 CMT Music Awards in Nashville where she walked away with two trophies on June 5 — video of year for "Cry Pretty" and female video of the year for "Love Wins." Just a few weeks later, Carrie was hit with a copyright lawsuit. Songwriter Heidi Merrill filed suit against Carrie, the NFL and NBC on June 19, claiming the country music singer's producer stole the "Sunday Night Football" theme song from Heidi's song "Game On."
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R. Kelly enters "not guilty" plea to 11 counts of sexual abuse
R. Kelly maintained his innocence in a Chicago courtroom where he pleaded not guilty to 11 counts of sexual abuse on June 6. The 52-year-old singer was charged with four counts of aggravated criminal sexual assault and 21 counts overall. Each count carries a maximum prison sentence of 30 years.
Miley Cyrus issues apology for 2017 remarks about hip hop
Miley Cyrus apologized on June 11 for criticizing hip-hop music in a 2017 Billboard interview. The "Wrecking Ball" singer told the publication that she no longer listened to rap or hip hop because of materialistic and misogynistic lyrics — comments she now says were "insensitive." "…I am aware of my platform and have always used it the best way I know how and to shine a light on injustice," she wrote in a comment posted to YouTube. "I want to start with saying I am sorry. I own the fact that saying … 'this pushed me out of the hip hop scene a little' was insensitive as it is a privilege to have the ability to dip in and out of 'the scene.'"
Ty Herndon releases new version of 1995 single with different pronouns
Ty Herndon re-released his hit 1995 single, "What Mattered Most," with different pronouns to reflect his sexuality. "In the [original] I say the word "she" or "her" something like 36 times. I'm doing this song 25 years later the way I wish I could've recorded it back then," the country music singer, who came out as gay in 2014, told People magazine on June 4.
Granger Smith to go back on tour after son's death
Granger Smith announced that he will be going back on the road just a few weeks after his 3-year-old son, River, died in a drowning accident. The country singer explained his decision to tour in a video posted to his family's YouTube channel on June 19. "I'm still going to do music, in fact I'm going to go back on tour next week and I'm going to bring them with me," Granger said about his wife, Amber, and children. "Music has always been healing. That's the place I've always turned to."
Megadeth's Dave Mustaine diagnosed with throat cancer
Dave Mustaine has been diagnosed with throat cancer. The Megadeth frontman shared the news in an Instagram post on June 17. "I've been diagnosed with throat cancer. It's clearly something to be respected and faced head on — but I've faced obstacles before," he said. "I'm working closely with my doctors, and we've mapped out a treatment plan which they feel has a 90 percent success rate." Dave also shared that the band will be canceling the majority of its shows scheduled in 2019.
Federal court approves "Stairway to Heaven" copyright rehearing
The copyright dispute surrounding Led Zeppelin's "Stairway to Heaven" is far from over as a federal court decided on June 10 to rehear arguments concerning the case. The 9th Circuit voted to rehear the matter after the band's lawyers and plaintiff Michael Skidmore's legal team both expressed disagreement over a September 2018 order for a retrial. Skidmore, the trustee of Spirit guitarist Randy California, claims that Led Zeppelin copied the intro of "Stairway" from Randy's "Taurus."
Maren Morris defends herself against trolls after sharing photos of Parkland survivor and topless Playboy photoshoot
Maren Morris isn't afraid to clap back. The country music star defended her decision to share photos from a topless Playboy shoot, in which she's covering her breasts, on Instagram on June 13. "Some can slut-shame me for my lyrics about sex, and you can put me in your little box, but I just want to live and love," she said. "I recently accepted myself and will put these photos in a frame because I'll never have this moment back." Just one week later, Maren expanded on her words in an accompanying Playboy interview in which she said she lost 5,000 followers after sharing an image of Parkland shooting survivor Emma Gonzalez. "To not be able to share an opinion, or to lose fans and ticket sales over it, is so mind-boggling to me, because it's an American right — a human right — to be able to voice your opinion," she told the magazine.
Philippe Zdar, a Grammy-winning music producer and one-half of the house music duo Cassius (pictured), died at age 52 on June 19 after accidentally falling out of a window in Paris. Jim Pike, co-founder and lead singer of the 1960s pop group The Lettermen, died at age 82 on June 9 from complications of Parkinson's disease. DJ Official, a Grammy-winning producer, was shot and killed in Los Angeles on June 14. He was 26. Bushwick Bill, a member of the hip-hop group The Geto Boys, died at age 52 on June 10 from pancreatic cancer.
Universal Music facing legal woes after NYT piece reveals $500K song loss in Universal Studios fire
Dozens of singers' estates are reportedly planning to file lawsuits against Universal Music Group after The New York Times published previously underreported data concerning the 2008 Universal Studios Fire, according to NPR. The Times reported on June 11 that more than 500K song titles and 118,230 music assets — lost tape and artistry worth an estimated $150 million — was destroyed in the devastating 2008 fire. UMG has denied the claims.
Selena Gomez reveals she's completed a new album
Selena Gomez fans, get ready… there's finally new music on the way! The pop singer revealed that she's finished with her newest album — her first project since 2015's "Revival." Selena shared the good news while appearing on "The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon" on June 11. "I'm actually done. I have to do a few finishing things with it, but I'm just relieved. It took me four years now to even feel at a good place with this album," she said.
Drake releases two new songs in celebration of Toronto Raptors win
Toronto Raptors superfan Drake celebrated the team's first NBA championship with the release of two new songs on June 14. The Toronto rapper, who made headlines for his courtside antics during the NBA Finals, posted the two singles, "Omertà" and "Money in the Grave" featuring Rick Ross, on YouTube just one day after the Raptors secured their victory.