When Colbie Caillat began work on her fourth album, the uptempo "Gypsy Heart," the Grammy-winning, multiplatinum singer was at a career crossroads. The record label wanted her to capitalize on the recent success of Miley Cyrus' "Bangerz" with a sexier release, but Caillat was unsure. A fortunate intervention from producer Babyface kept the singer true to herself and resulted in anthemic single "Try," which admonishes women to embrace their truest beauty. The accompanying video has garnered 25 million views on YouTube and Vevo. Colbie Caillat opened up to me about rediscovering her authentic self, … Read more
There are many ways to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month, which runs through October 15. You can brush up on Latin Music, Learn Salsa Dancing, try out Spanish Food Recipes, Learn Spanish with Babbel or Duolingo, or teach your children the Mayan alphabet with The Game of Alphabet of Maya. Or you can rock some Latin pop. I spoke with Jasmine V, who has a new single, "That's Me Right There," featuring Kendrick Lamar, that's burning up YouTube.
Why does Hispanic Heritage Month matter? Hispanic Heritage Month is so important to me because I feel like we'… Read more
Electronic rock duo Phantogram is named after an optical illusion that makes 2D images appear 3D, but the talents of Sarah Barthel and Josh Carter are plain to see and hear. I chatted with Carter about the twosome's most recent album, "Voices," the meanings behind some of their most heartfelt lyrics, keeping their almost 20-year friendship alive, and his favorite apps.
On both of your albums, the name Lucy keeps coming up. Who's Lucy? Lucy is an imaginary character that we made up. When I was writing "When I'm Small," there was a … Read more
When Arcade Fire multi-instrumentalist Richard Reed Parry produced his solo album of classical compositions, "Music for Heart and Breath," he made it as much for himself as he did for fans. "For me it has a centering quality and brings me in touch with some quality of quiet inner voice and inner rhythm that perhaps gets lost in one's daily life," he says. Parry is currently touring the album. I chatted with Richard Reed Parry about making the album, the challenges of working solo, his stage show, and his favorite apps.
What are the unique … Read more
If your system crashes and your entire iTunes library vanishes, you may think that your music, videos, and photos are gone for good. But before you excavate your CDs and photos from storage to re-rip and re-scan, check out these top five apps for restoring your files with just one click.Sharepod ( Windows, Mac)
Sharepod transfers your tunes, videos, podcasts, and photos from your iPod, iPhone, or iPad to your Windows or Mac computer with just one click -- for just $20. You get 50 transfers for free before purchase. Sharepod also comes with a helpful database backup should anything … Read more
Scare queen Sharon Needles has long regarded Facebook as a necessary evil. On the one hand, it's "nothing but a bunch of teenage f--- brats, seeing who they can piss off the most." But on the other hand, the popular social media site is a way for the "RuPaul's Drag Race" Season 4 winner to connect with fans and share album releases and tour dates. Now that Facebook is forcing users to use their legal names or risk losing their accounts, the performance artist has downgraded her opinion to just plain evil. I chatted … Read more
On CBS series "Person of Interest," Amy Acker plays Root, a hacker and assassin. In real life, the actress -- who has also played Fred/Illyria on "Angel" and Kelly Peyton on "Alias" -- jokes that her grade-school-age son is more tech savvy than she is. I chatted with Amy Acker about Season 4 of "Person of Interest," her most memorable fan encounters, and her favorite mobile apps.
What's Root's defining characteristic? Probably loyalty. She looks out for all the team and does anything the machine asks and never questions … Read more
War is hell, and so are ungracious houseguests. That's what one unsuspecting family discovers when David, a soldier just back from combat (played by Dan Stevens), crashes at their home in "The Guest." I chatted with Dan Stevens, the British actor best known for playing attorney and would-be heir Matthew Crawley on "Downton Abbey," about his latest role, becoming an American heartthrob, and his favorite apps.
What was the appeal of playing this particular character? When I came here to the States, I was looking for different challenges and didn't quite know what form … Read more
"Sixteen Candles" has just turned 30. To mark this momentous event, actors Gedde Watanabe, Debbie Pollack, and Justin Henry are attending a special screening of the '80s cult classic today at San Francisco's Castro Theatre. I chatted with the trio about the film's legacy, working with director John Hughes, the scenes that you've never seen, and their favorite apps.Gedde Watanabe (Long Duk Dong)
Did growing up somewhat alienated as an Asian-American in Utah inform your portrayal of foreign exchange student Long Duk Dong? Absolutely not. [Laughs] There was some of the alienation where I … Read more
Today Apple announced a bushel of new products: not one but two iPhone 6s, three Apple Watches, iOS 8, Apple Pay, and assorted other apps. Here's what you need to know about the goods.iPhone 6
When: September 19 (preorders begin Friday, September 12).
How much: iPhone 6: $199 for 16GB, $299 for 64GB, $399 for 128GB; iPhone 6 Plus: $299 for 16GB, $399 for 64GB, $499 for 128GB -- those are US prices, all with a two-year contract. (Bargain hunters can now … Read more