admin / 27 October 2020

Two weeks ago, the stark phrase “HE CUT HIS HAIR” began trending on social media. I can confirm its truth: the One Direction member turned solo star Harry Styles has indeed cut his hair. The usual curly tresses are gone, scissored into a tousled, swept-back look. It’s for a film role he’s currently shooting in Los Angeles. But the star hasn’t joined me on a Zoom call to discuss traumatic haircuts. Instead, we’re discussing what’s being billed as his first venture into the world of business.

Styles is the public face of a new arena to be built in Manchester, which will be one of the largest indoor venues in the UK when it opens in 2023. It’s being built by the US entertainment company Oak View Group at a projected cost of £350m. The capacity will be 23,500. Following a link-up with the Manchester-based business The Co-operative Group, it will be called Co-op Live.

“It feels like full circle for me to be doing this,” Styles says, speaking in what looks like the stainless steel confines of his LA film trailer. He grew up near Manchester, in a village in the neighbouring county Cheshire. “My first job was with the Co-op, it was delivering papers for them,” he recalls.

Manchester was where he went to gigs with friends. It was also where he auditioned for the television talent show The X Factor in 2010 when he was 16, singing an unaccompanied version of Stevie Wonder’s “Isn’t She Lovely”. It led to him joining the boy band One Direction. Transcending their talent show origins (they came third on The X Factor), Styles and his bandmates became a global phenomenon. They were the first band in US chart history to have their first four albums debut at number one, outdoing even The Beatles.

With his newly shorn hair, a green jacket with big stitching, a T-shirt with blue palm trees and a cross dangling from his neck, Styles manages even on a visually unflattering Zoom call to look the part of the teen heart-throb. But, whereas other boy band singers have struggled to establish themselves as individual acts, Styles has made a handsome success of it. He launched a solo career in 2016 and has released two accomplished hit albums. In 2017, he made his acting debut in Christopher Nolan’s war film Dunkirk. He’s currently shooting Olivia Wilde’s horror-thriller, Don’t Worry Darling.

Diversification from the evanescent world of teen-pop continues with his involvement in the Co-op Live arena. It links him with two big names in the US entertainment industry. Tim Leiweke, former CEO of the concert promoter AEG, and Irving Azoff, former CEO of Ticketmaster, run Oak View Group, the company building the arena. Azoff’s son Jeffrey Azoff is Styles’s manager. “This is a big project and it would be a lot scarier if I was with people I didn’t know,” the singer says.

He has a financial stake in it as an investor. “I didn’t get into music because I wanted to be a businessman,” he says. “I got into music because I love music. That’s always going to be a first for me. But when an opportunity like this comes up, for me it feels so much about what I can bring to it as a musician, and also as a fan.”

Construction of the arena is due to begin in November. Styles has a vaguely defined role as an adviser in its design and decor. “Obviously I’m not an expert architecturally, in terms of building an arena,” he says. “I guess the weight of my involvement falls into the idea of what you want backstage as an artist. People operate in different ways after a show. Some people like a quiet space, some people like a place where you can invite all your friends.”

Arenas have a reputation as soulless venues, the kind of interchangeable setting where a forgetful star can get the name of the city wrong (as happened to Bruce Springsteen in 2016 when he cried, “Party noises, Pittsburgh!” during a show in Cleveland).

Even at the tender age of 26, Styles is a veteran of these cavernous spaces, which he refers to as “rooms”.

“There’s a lot of cold rooms that you can play in,” he says. “You definitely remember being in the ones that sound better, the ones in which you can create some sort of feeling of being at home. As an artist, it’s rare to find that if you’re touring for months at a time, to go in these big rooms and feel that comfortable.”

Manchester’s new arena is being designed to maximise sightlines between performer and audience. “That’s usually the first thing that you miss when you go into big rooms,” he says. “There’s a point when you’re doing shows and you can see the whites of people’s eyes and you can have that connection with people. It’s easy to lose that if you can’t see people’s faces.”

The first time he sang in public was in the canteen of his Cheshire school, for a music competition. He recalls the feeling of exhilaration: “You’re so used to sitting in the classroom and looking up at your teachers. All of a sudden everyone’s down there and the teachers are looking up at you.” 

He gets the same sensation when performing for tens of thousands of people. “It’s obviously on a different scale but that feeling is very much the same,” he says. “I think it’s the same chemical. It’s just like such an unnatural thing. It’s kind of like — this isn’t supposed to be like this, this isn’t how life works. That kind of adrenalin I think is just something that you wish you could share with people that you know. It’s a beautiful thing, it’s a really special moment.”

The coronavirus pandemic poses an existential threat to venues. “It’s such a strange time to be talking about live music, because right now it just doesn’t exist,” Styles says. He insists that the Co-op Live is designed to enhance Manchester’s live infrastructure, not overwhelm it. (The city already has one of the UK’s largest indoor venues, the AO Arena.)

“The purpose is not in any way to try to monopolise the city in terms of music,” he says. “It’s about bringing more music to Manchester, wanting to bring more artists there, to use this building as a reminder of why it’s such a great music city, not trying to wipe out other venues.”

After its projected completion in 2023, Co-op Live will be able to welcome its celebrity investor on stage (“If they’ll have me. I’ll have to speak to someone and ask about that”). In the meanwhile, Styles is due to embark on a world tour next February, although the pandemic has cast it in doubt.

“It’s one of those things of just seeing how things go,” he says. “I don’t think anyone wants to be putting on a tour before it’s safe to do so. There will be a time we dance again, but until then I think it’s about protecting each other and doing everything we can to be safe. And then when it’s ready and people want to, we shall play music.”


Source: FT

admin / 24 September 2020

Harry was spotted filming his new music video ‘Golden’ in the Almafi Coast, Italy.

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admin / 10 August 2020

Harry Styles“Watermelon Sugar” takes the top seed on the Billboard Hot 100 songs chart, becoming his first No. 1 on the ranking, as it blasts from No. 7. Styles is the second member of One Direction to have led the Hot 100, following Zayn with “Pillowtalk” in 2016. “Watermelon Sugar,” released on Erskine/Columbia Records, is the 1,107th No. 1 in the Hot 100’s 62-year history. Here’s a deeper look at the song’s coronation.

No. 1 sales, No. 2 in airplay: “Watermelon Sugar” bounds 9-1 on the Digital Song Sales chart, up 614% to 63,000 downloads sold in the week ending Aug. 6, according to Nielsen Music/MRC Data. It pushes 3-2 on Radio Songs, up 8% to 71.7 million audience impressions in the week ending Aug. 9, and jumps 29-18 on Streaming Songs, although down 1% to 14.2 million U.S. streams in the week ending Aug. 6.

The song was on sale in Styles’ webstore via three physical/digital combination offerings during the tracking week ending Aug. 6. Consumers could buy cassette and vinyl singles (priced at $14.98-$15.98), with each purchase including a digital download; the download (the sale of which contributed to the latest tracking week) would be sent upon purchase, with physical versions due to arrive at a later date. The song (its original version and an instrumental) was also sale-priced to 69 cents at all digital retailers during the tracking week.

Styles scores his second Digital Song Sales No. 1, after “Sign of the Times” led for a week upon its debut in April 2017. On Radio Songs, he matches his best rank; prior single “Adore You” peaked at No. 2 in early July.

New videos, #WatermelonSugarDay: Further enhancing the profile for “Watermelon Sugar” in the tracking week, an official “behind the scenes” video for the song premiered July 31, while a “lost tour visual” clip arrived Aug. 3.

Plus, the hashtag #WatermelonSugarDay trended Aug. 3 (coinciding with National Watermelon Day, the slice of the year that “recognizes the refreshing summertime treat enjoyed at picnics and fairs”).

Harry’s history: As Styles achieves his first Hot 100 No. 1, he surpasses his prior best rank, earned when “Sign of the Times” debuted and peaked at No. 4 in April 2017. In his other top 10 visit as a soloist, “Adore You” reached No. 6 this April.

One Direction, two leaders: Styles becomes the second member of One Direction to have led the Hot 100, following Zayn, whose “Pillowtalk” reigned in its debut week in February 2016.

As a group, One Direction has tallied six Hot 100 top 10s, reaching a No. 2 best. Its debut smash “What Makes You Beautiful” hit No. 4 in April 2012, followed by “Live While We’re Young” (No. 3, October 2012); “Best Song Ever” (No. 2, August 2013); “Story of My Life” (No. 6, November 2013); “Drag Me Down” (No. 3, August 2015); and “Perfect” (No. 10, November 2015).

1D is, thus, now among an elite listing of groups with multiple members that have topped the Hot 100 solo. The Beatles became the first such act, when, after landing a record 20 No. 1s in 1964-70, George Harrison and Paul McCartney earned their first leaders apart from the band in 1970 and 1971, respectively. (By 1974, Ringo Starr and John Lennon also led solo.)

Sweet success: Styles’ new Hot 100 No. 1 marks the first leader with “watermelon” in its title. One such song previously hit the top 10: Mongo Santamaria Band’s “Watermelon Man” (No. 7, 1963).


Source: Billboard

admin / 29 July 2020

If you were to invent an artist to keep the flame burning for classic rock in a musical mainstream increasingly unfriendly to the genre’s traditions, they’d probably look and sound a lot like Harry Styles.

A dashing, long-haired, highly fashionable and occasionally gender-bending young Briton who dates pop stars and supermodels, makes free-love music videos, worships at the altars of Mick Jagger and Stevie Nicks and sells out arenas worldwide with his guitar-based, lightly psychedelic pop-rock? At times, Styles’ superstardom almost feels fictional, like some character a middle-aged writer would draw up for Russell Brand to play in a slapstick comedy, despite the archetype being almost entirely absent from the last decade-plus of popular music.

But it isn’t just real, it’s still growing. Styles’ sophomore LP Fine Line posted one of the best first-week numbers of 2019 — moving 478,000 equivalent album units in its first week, double the first-week number for his 2017 self-titled debut —  and it’s still in the top 10 of the Billboard 200 albums chart seven months later. While traditional radio success eluded Harry on his first album, Fine Line has seen two of its singles, “Adore You” and “Watermelon Sugar,” wholeheartedly embraced on the airwaves, becoming his first two top five hits on Billboard‘s Pop Songs chart — and his first two top 10 hits on the Billboard Hot 100 since his solo debut “Sign of the Times” bowed at No. 4.

Yet for all his current success and acclaim, the world’s biggest young rock star continues to be ignored at rock radio. While he appears well on his way to becoming a pop radio fixture, Styles has never even cracked any of Billboard‘s rock or alternative airplay charts.

Rock radio’s initial reluctance to embrace Styles was hardly surprising, given his musical roots as one-fifth of the massively successful vocal group One Direction. Despite having their own fair share of rock-flavored hits, 1D was considered to be firmly in the pop lane, especially by radio. So have virtually all rock-leaning groups to fall under the “boy band” umbrella, even including acts like the Jonas Brothers and 5 Seconds of Summer who play some or all of their own instruments. Even though Styles‘ solo debut was clearly more indebted to David Bowie and Queen than Michael Jackson and ABBA, he was still very much “Harry Styles of One Direction” — and like all the group’s alums, had to prove himself as an artist outside of their well-established milieu.

However, at this point, Harry Styles no longer needs the “of One Direction” to establish his place in the musical mainstream — he is very much a solo star in his own right, with his own identity (and plenty of his own fans) totally outside of 1D’s massive shadow. And as his own artist, though many of his songs are pop-accessible, his chosen lane is obviously rock, as evident by his (oft-namechecked) classic rock influences, his full-band setup, and his predominantly guitar- and piano-driven songs. As traditional rock music continues to fade from contemporary relevance, and youth-appealing, streaming-embraced stars like Styles are in particularly short supply, there would certainly be good reason to embrace him as part of the format — particularly at alternative radio, where many stations have already begun to stretch their playlists to include pop-approved, less traditionally rock stars like Billie Eilish and Post Malone.

There are few indications to this point, though, that many are interested in doing so with Styles. While “Watermelon Sugar” continues to climb at pop radio, only one station monitored by Billboard for our Alternative Songs airplay chart has attempted to play it: Alt 92.3 (WNYL) in New York, which gave it a paltry two spins in the prior tracking week. (WNYL declined to speak to Billboard about Styles for this story.)

Part of the reason for this is, simply, that Styles‘ label Columbia Records isn’t actively working his songs to rock or alternative radio. Even in a streaming age where programmers don’t need to literally be sent an artist’s song to have the ability to play it, that still matters. Radio columnist Sean Ross (of the Ross on Radio newsletter) explains that songs not being promoted to a certain radio format “tends to be the number one explanation for, “Why isn’t anybody playing this?'”

“I wish radio, in general, showed more enterprise on music,” Ross says. “But there’s no reason to expect that even the stations that play a quirky, pop-leaning version of the alternative format would go out of their way to play a Harry Styles song without being asked.”

It’s also worth noting that pop radio has also been slow to embrace Styles — even going back to the One Direction days, where despite the group’s massive popularity, they only ever notched two top 5 hits on Mainstream Top 40 (as many as Styles has already as a solo artist). By choosing “Adore You” as an advance single from Fine Line — following the more reintroductory first taste “Lights Up” — Styles’ team made their priorities clear. “Last time around, Harry Styles presented himself as a rock artist, and didn’t find a home at rock or pop radio,” Ross says. “This time, he’s clearly pursuing pop radio with the singles that have been chosen.”

One place on rock radio where Styles might have better luck finding a home is at Adult Alternative, where both “Sign of the Times” and “Watermelon Sugar” have received airplay. It’s not a ton in either case — “Watermelon Sugar” is currently only being played at two stations reporting to Billboard‘s Triple A listing, WCLX in Burlington, Vt. and KVYN in Napa Valley, Calif. But neither station views playing the song as all that out of character for their brand.

“It fits what we’re doing, and we don’t care where it came from,” WCLX programmer Chip Morgan explains. “We like Harry… and that’s it. It’s a great summer song.” Playing a song by a top 40 artist who comes from the pop world doesn’t mean a ton to Morgan, because he says that they “don’t pay attention to top 40” at WCLX anyway. “Before [‘Adore You’], we didn’t really know that much about [Styles],” he admits.

Despite his younger-leaning core following, it makes sense that Styles might also appeal to more Adult Alternative listeners, because his older musical reference points are actually much more in line with traditional Gen X and boomer sensibilities than the millennials and Gen Z-ers that mostly comprise his fanbase. “On KVYN, it wouldn’t be a rare thing to have a mix of music where Harry Styles was donuted in between Tom Waits and the Grateful Dead,” explains Nate Campbell, director of music and programming for the station. “I’m sure other radio programmers would laugh at this, and that’s fine with me. But that’s how we are choosing to try and entertain our market. And reception has been good, I’d say.”

It’s unclear whether the rock radio world will ever fully accept Harry Styles as their own — or if Styles’ own team will see much advantage in pushing him as such, when they’ve already conquered the much-bigger pop world. But Morgan and Campbell agree that it’s crucial for radio programmers in 2020 to be open-minded when it comes to filling their playlists, and not to be too influenced by what musical world an artist originally comes from.

“I may have some reservations in the back of my mind about ‘credibility’ when it comes to some pop acts,” Campbell admits. “But I think it’s important to quickly move past my own biases, based on my belief that [our genre’s defintion] IS amorphous now — it’s a completely different listening world now in this streaming era. And it’s important to take that into consideration when trying to blend your radio station in with that listening landscape.”

Source: Billboard

admin / 21 July 2020

Harry Styles who is currently in Italy has been trending on social media following his moustache look. A series of pictures of the Sign Of The Times singer’s picture sporting new look from the Eurpoean country has gone viral.

Harry Styles was originally supposed to be busy with his ‘Love On Tour’ concert which was to kickstart from June 26. However following the global pandemic, the singer announced early last month that the concert has been pushed further to 2021.

Source: YDraft

admin / 21 July 2020

Having trouble sleeping? With the dulcet tones of this English pop star, sweet dreams are guaranteed.

“Hello, I’m Harry Styles and tonight I’m going to help you drift off to sleep.”

Are they the words you want to hear as soon as you slide into bed? If so, the newest “Sleep Story” on sleep and meditation app Calm is for you.

The 40-minute recording, Dream With Me, has been narrated by pop star – and perhaps the internet’s most treasured Brit – Harry Styles.

It includes breathing exercises, visualisations, and some charming rhymes – all to the backing of music much more calming than Styles’s infectiously feel-good album Fine Line.

Dream With Me – Harry Styles is part of Calm’s paid, premium subscription content. But you can sign up for a seven-day free trial here.

admin / 14 October 2019

admin / 16 July 2019

Harry Styles is the latest actor to go under the sea.

The singer-turned-actor is in early negotiations to play the iconic role of Prince Eric in the studio’s live-action remake of The Little Mermaid.

Mermaid, being directed by Rob Marshall, is in the throes of casting, recently finding its Ariel with R&B singer Halle Bailey of Chloe x Halle fame. Melissa McCarthy, Jacob Tremblay and Awkwafina are also in talks to be part of Disney’s world.

Eric is the human prince who catches Ariel’s eye. The mermaid saves the prince from drowning and then makes a deal with the sea witch Ursula to exchange her voice for legs in order for a chance to make him love her. He is key in the final battle against Ursula.

The casting of Styles and Bailey show the studio’s intent of making the music a central component of the remake. Interestingly, the character of Eric performed no songs in the 1989 original. However, that was remedied in the 2000s Broadway musical, with Eric now performing several, including two solos.

Styles was famously a member of boy band One Direction who then struck out on a successful solo career. He made his acting debut with Dunkirk, Christopher Nolan’s World War II drama that grossed over $526 million worldwide and collected several Oscars.

The budding actor had been looking for a new project to take on and even tested for the lead in Baz Luhrmann’s Elvis biopic. That part went to Austin Butler earlier this week.

The animated 1989 original won best original song and score Oscars for Alan Menken. For the new iteration of the fairy tale, Alan Menken will update his score, and will compose a new song with lyrics from Lin-Manuel Miranda.

An early 2020 production start is being planned.

Marc Platt, who worked with Marshall on Disney’s Mary Poppins Returns and exec produced the studio’s live-action Aladdin remake, is producing. Marshall and John DeLuca are also producers Mermaid, as is Miranda.

Source: The Hollywood Reporter

admin / 19 June 2019

admin / 10 June 2019

June 10 (UPI) — One of the upcoming London episodes of The Late Late Show with James Corden will feature a star-studded, U.S. vs. U.K. dodge ball game.

Playing on the American side are former first lady Michelle Obama, actresses Kate Hudson, Melissa McCarthy, Mila Kunis and Allison Janney and actress-filmmaker Lena Waithe.

The British team will include Corden, actor Benedict Cumberbatch, singer Harry Styles, Game of Thrones alum John Bradley and Late Late Show bandleader Reggie Watts.

Corden is taking his Los Angeles-based talk show to his native England next week. The epic dodge ball game is slated to air on June 17.

The episodes will air on CBS in the United States and Sky One in the United Kingdom.