iTunes

Star Apps: Christina Perri

In 2011 Christina Perri found success with her debut, "Lovestrong," and became iTunes' Breakthrough Pop Artist of the year. So when the singer/songwriter began work on her sophomore album, "Head or Heart," she knew she had two choices: write for an audience or write for herself. She chose the latter, and her new album is even more beautiful than the first and features top 20 hit "Human." Her voice is angelic; and the subject matter, raw and relatable. I chatted with Perri days before her North American tour about the inspiration behind her … Read more

Star Apps: Sal Vulcano of 'Impractical Jokers'

Sal Vulcano, one-fourth of the "Impractical Jokers" team, chats about the hit series, his most intimidating prank, and his favorite apps.

Start with four high school friends and improv veterans from Staten Island -- Brian "Q" Quinn, James "Murr" Murray, Joseph "Joe" Gatto, and Salvatore "Sal" Vulcano -- who've been playing pranks on each other for years. Then give them a TV show so they can embarrass each other on-air, and you get "Impractical Jokers." The hidden-camera show, now in its third season, has been tickling viewers' … Read more

Star Apps: The Glitch Mob

Electronic trio the Glitch Mob's sophomore album, "Love Death Immortality," lives up to its epic title. The 10-track recording's grand, encompassing sound was honed onstage at some of the biggest worldwide venues over the past couple years, and the themes explored -- captured in the title -- are universal. In contrast to the group's debut album, "Drink the Sea," "Love Death Immortality" is richer, with real instrumentation, and more robust, with strong female guest voices. The band's live show is equally massive, with spectacular interactive concert visuals that the musicians … Read more

Star Apps: Jason Bateman

Jason Bateman is best known for his acting: "The Hogan Family" and "Teen Wolf 2" if you grew up in the '80s, and "Arrested Development" and "Identity Thief" if you're watching him now. But he's also been recognized for directing. Bateman ran an episode of the "The Hogan Family" at the age of 18, thus becoming the youngest person inducted into the Directors Guild of America (DGA). Recently he has capitalized on both talents with the feature film "Bad Words," in which he plays Guy Trilby, … Read more

Apple considering a Spotify rival and iTunes Android app

Apple is in negotiations with senior executives at record labels about launching an on-demand streaming music service that would compete with Spotify and Beats music, according to a report by Billboard. Citing three unnamed sources, the publication said the "exploratory talks" are right now in very early stages.

The report also said Apple is mulling creating an iTunes Store app for Android, bringing the property to enemy turf. Apple did not return a request for comment. We'll update this post if we hear back.

The considerations come at a trying time for iTunes. According to Nielsen, downloads … Read more

Star Apps: Jo Dee Messina

Multiplatinum, award-winning, nine-time No. 1 country crooner Jo Dee Messina is the voice of the independent woman. The singer/songwriter declared "Stand Beside Me" -- not "Stand by Your Man" -- and is best known for empowering feminist anthems like "Bye Bye," "I'm Alright," "That's the Way," and "Bring on the Rain" (with Tim McGraw). Longtime fans of both genders funded her first post-label record on Kickstarter and in return got to pick the title, track listing, and first single, and one fan designed the logo … Read more

Star Apps: Jason Dohring

Having played a 400-year-old vampire, a serial killer, mass murderer Timothy McVeigh, and most recently a murder suspect, actor Jason Dohring is no stranger to playing bad boys. Reprising his role as Logan Echolls, Veronica Mars's emotionally volatile ex in the silver-screen adaptation of hit TV show "Veronica Mars," Dohring is confident that longtime fans and newbies alike will enjoy watching teenage detective Veronica Mars all grown up and cracking another gripping case. "Veronica Mars" is currently playing in theaters nationwide.

The "Veronica Mars" film has become one of the most successful KickstarterRead more

Apple adds selfie section to iTunes App Store

The selfie phenomenon appears to have won a certain measure of legitimacy from Apple.

Apparently geared toward expediting the satisfaction felt by many people when they take photos of themselves and share them with others, the company on Thursday added a special section to its iTunes App store devoted to apps that cater to the need to selfie. Mixed in with popular selfie apps such as Snapchat and Justin Bieber's Shots, the "Sharing Selfies" section also includes selfie diary app Picr and selfie portrait-editing app Facetune.

The section's selection is available on both the mobile and … Read more

Star Apps: David J

If you want to hear David J's new album, "An Eclipse of Ships," but can't make it to Austin for his three SXSW shows (March 12-16), you'll have to wait till spring. The acoustic album features musicians on violin, acoustic piano, Rhodes, stand-up bass, mandolin, oboe, percussion, and a bevy of acoustic guitars. It's a celebration of women -- some known to the artist and some conjured up in fantasies.

David J's time as founding member of death rock band Bauhaus ("Bela Lugosi's Dead," "Dark Entries," "Kick … Read more

Star Apps: Les Claypool

Primus frontman Les Claypool and M.I.R.V. guitarist Bryan Kehoe were jamming around the campfire one night. Claypool was suddenly inspired by the country music forced on him as a child -- Johnny Horton, Jerry Reed, and Vernon Dalhart -- and started playing his bass in a "Luther Perkins dig digga dang, dig digga dang" while Kehoe accompanied on guitar. They tested various songs, from obvious choices like Johnny Horton's "Battle of New Orleans" and Primus' own "Jerry Was a Race Car Driver" to less likely candidates such as Alice in … Read more