Amazon Claims More Than 55 Million Music Streaming Users

Amazon says its Amazon Music streaming service has surpassed 55 million customers. There are six different pricing tiers for its streaming service, including a free ad-supported tier.

Amazon Music first launched in October 2016, but it still lags behind and . Just last summer, Apple Music announced 60 million subscribers. Last quarter, Spotify confirmed it has around 113 million paying subscribers and 248 million users globally.

There is no drill-down for how many users are in each of the Amazon Music tiers. Amazon does reveal that the growth of Amazon Music Unlimited is up 50% over the last year.

Amazon Music Unlimited is available in the United States, UK, Germany, Japan, and Brazil with HD-quality. France, Italy, Spain, and Mexico were also significant contributors to growth, though HD-quality music is not available yet.

Amazon’s subscription tiers encourage Prime members to give its services a try. Amazon’s dominance in the smart speaker market means there’s an Amazon Music tier just for its Alexa devices. Prime users also get a discount on the Amazon Music Unlimited service, undercutting rivals.

Spotify is focusing on music and podcast exclusives to help differentiate. But during its last earnings call, Spotify gave some insights into Amazon’s growth.

Amazon’s music streaming business is picking up more ad-supported users than paying subscribers, according to Spotify.

“Our data also suggests that Amazon’s user base skews significantly more to ‘Ad-Supported’ than ‘Premium,’ and that average engagement on our platform is approximately 3x,” Spotify said during its .

Spotify says that Amazon’s ad-supported growth leaves the company open to continue growing its paid streaming service. Spotify needs to be careful here, though, Amazon’s ecosystem is attractive to people who want all services under one provider.

Amazon has its fingers in storage, video, reading, games, and now music. If Spotify isn’t careful to diversify beyond just music, larger tech companies like Apple and Amazon could surpass it.

"Space Jam" Nike LeBron 17 Revealed As Part Of Nike’s All Star Collection

Nike Basketball and Jordan Brand have major plans for the NBA’s All Star festivities in Chicago next month, including a plethora highly coveted sneakers. This will include Jordan Brand’s “Unite” collection, featuring the Off-White Air Jordan 5 collab and “Retro U” Air Jordan 3s, as well as a Space Jam inspired Nike LeBron 17. 

Although the LeBron-led Space Jam 2 film won’t be hitting theaters until the summer 2021, Nike Basketball is getting an early jump on things with a two-pack LeBron 17s. The “Monstars” colorway is expected to launch in mid-February, along with the rest Nike’s All Star collection.

The Swoosh has also unveiled the third “Coming To America” Nike Zoom Freak 1 and another Gatorade x Nike PG 4 collab, as well as a “Don C” Nike KD 12 and a red Nike Kyrie 6 that pulls on inspiration from the Air Jordan 11.

Scroll down for ficial images Nike Basketball’s All Star collection, and stay tuned for the ficial release details.

"Space Jam" Nike LeBron 17 Revealed As Part Of Nike's All Star Collection

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"Space Jam" Nike LeBron 17 Revealed As Part Of Nike's All Star Collection

Nike
"Space Jam" Nike LeBron 17 Revealed As Part Of Nike's All Star Collection
Nike

"Space Jam" Nike LeBron 17 Revealed As Part Of Nike's All Star Collection

Nike

"Space Jam" Nike LeBron 17 Revealed As Part Of Nike's All Star Collection

Nike

Robert Downey Jr. On "Tropic Thunder": "90% Of My Black Friends" Loved Blackface

Robert Downey Jr. paid a visit to The Joe Rogan Experience podcast last week, as projections that his $175 million budget film, Doolittle, would lose $100 million at the box fice are revealed. At one point, Joe asks RDJ if he thinks “you could do blackface today,” referencing Robert’s role in Ben Stiller’s 2008 film, Tropic Thunder, as an Australian-born actor named Kirk Lazarus who undergoes “pigmentation alteration” to portray a black character. Robert responds, “you could…” with a little hesitation, and elaborates on the film’s conception. “When Ben called and said, ‘Hey I’m doing this thing’ – you know I think Sean Penn had passed on it or something. Possibly wisely. And I thought, ‘Yeah, I’ll do that and I’ll do that after Iron Man.’ Then I started thinking, ‘This is a terrible idea, wait a minute.'”

However, he reconsidered what his intentions were in taking the role. “Then I thought, ‘Well hold on dude, get real here, where is your heart?,'” he recounts. “My heart is…a) I get to be black for a summer in my mind, so there’s something in it for me. The other thing is, I get to hold up to nature the insane self-involved hypocrisy artists and what they think they’re allowed to do on occasion, just my opinion.” Praising Ben Stiller as a “masterful artist and director,” RDJ reveals that Ben’s execution was what made the film ultimately work. “Ben] knew exactly what the vision for this was, he executed it, it was impossible to not have it be an fensive nightmare a movie. And 90 percent my black friends were like, ‘Dude, that was great.'”

Robert Downey Jr. On "Tropic Thunder": "90% Of My Black Friends" Loved BlackfaceCarlos Alvarez/Getty s

Joe then asks him about “the other 10%” to which Robert responds, “I can’t disagree with them, but I know where my heart was. I think that it’s never an excuse to do something that’s out place and out its time, but to me, it blasted the cap on the issue].” After Joe declares that it’s unlikely that blackface could ever be received well today, RDJ touches back on the issue intention. “There’s a morality clause here on this planet and it’s a big price to pay. I think having a moral psychology is job one. Sometimes, you just gotta go, ‘Yeah I effed up.’ Again, not in my defense but, Tropic Thunder is about how wrong blackface] is, so I take exception.”

Robert Downey Jr. On "Tropic Thunder": "90% Of My Black Friends" Loved BlackfaceKevin Winter/Getty s

However, he reveals that he did get some pushback from his loved ones. “My mother was horrified,” he reveals. He imitates his mother’s response, saying, “‘Bobby, I’m telling ya, I have a bad feeling about this.’ I was like, ‘Yeah me too, Mom.'” Robert Downey Jr. went on to be nominated for a Golden Globe as well as an Oscar for Bets Supporting Actor for his role in the film, but lost both times.

Missy Elliott Tearfully Reflects On Illness: "I Couldn’t Even Hold A Pen To Write"

Things were a tad emotional at TV One’s annual Urban Honors awards in Washington, D.C. Missy “Misdemeanor” Elliott was given the Music Innovation Award, an honor that was presented to her by longtime friend Lil Kim. It was a tender moment on stage as Missy took a moment to thank Kim for being family to her for all these decades.

Missy Elliott Tearfully Reflects On Illness: "I Couldn't Even Hold A Pen To Write"
Andrew H. Walker / Staff / Getty s

“First I want to thank Lil Kim cause… It’s hard to find people in the industry that become like family,” Missy began. “We’re beyond cameras, you know, getting in front cameras and pretending that we are family. We are truly family. She’s been my sister for so long and I always have looked up to her because when I first seen her, you know, I always been a big girl. Kim had on the little swimsuits on and I was like, ‘Oh, nah, I ain’t finna do that.’ Internet ain’t out but I’ll shut it down in the future if I pull that stunt.” The audience laughed as she continued, “But, you are a trailblazer and an innovator yourself and I want you to know that.”

She also made sure to give a shout out to Da Brat, noting that the former So So Def rapper was her “sister.” Later on during her speech, Missy became choked up. “When I look back over my life,” she said as she started to cry. The audience clapped and cheered her on and Lil Kim stood by her side and encouraged her to continue. “I was sick. I couldn’t even hold a pen to write. And it was so much to say give up. But as I stand here with all you, I thank you ’cause it’s so much talent in this room.” Watch her emotional speech in full below.

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Your love, talent, and grace should be awarded a million times ❤️

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Agent Smith Might Not Appear In "Matrix 4" After Hugo Weaving Exits Due to Scheduling Conflicts

When The Matrix 4 was ficially confirmed last summer, many fans the hit sci-fi film saga were eager to see the original cast return to their iconic roles. With stars like Keanu Reeves and Jada Pinkett-Smith confirmed to “enter The Matrix” again, and be joined by new actors like Black Mirror‘s Yahya Abdul-Mateen — he’s set to play a young Morpheus — everything seemed to be falling in place perfectly for the revival that many have been waiting nearly two decades to see come to fruition. However, it’s looking like those who rooted for the film’s legendary bad guy Agent Smith will unfortunately be disappointed following news that actor Hugo Weaving will not be returning for the next installment. 

 According to IndieWire, Weaving confirmed his departure from Matrix 4 due to a prior commitment to his theater performance in “The Visit” at the National Theater. Speaking with Time Out London about the scheduling conflict, he said, “It’s unfortunate but actually I had this fer for “The Visit”] and then the fer came from “The Matrix”, so I knew it was happening but I didn’t have dates.” Even though he thought it was possible to juggle both roles, Hugo found it impossible to act in both productions, stating, “I thought I] could do both and it took eight weeks to work out that the dates would work – I held f on accepting a role in “The Visit” during that time]. I was in touch with director] Lana Wachowski, but in the end she decided that the dates weren’t going to work. So we’d sorted the dates and then she sort changed her mind. They’re pushing on ahead without me.”

Some are suggesting that Agent Smith may still return, but obviously with a different actor. While story-wise that may be a suitable option, especially with a rumored plot centering around younger versions core characters, not having Hugo Weaving in a role that he helped make iconic would be a bit a slap in the face to hardcore fans.

We’ll wait to see the fate Agent Smith when more news about The Matrix 4 becomes available, but in the meantime see one the character’s most classic scenes from the entire series below:

6ix9ine’s GF Shares New Picture Of Rapper After He’s Denied Home Confinement

Tekashi 6ix9ine was pleading with the judge to let him serve the rest his sentence from home. The rapper was hit with a 24-month sentence for his involvement in the gun and drug case last year with time served. In recent times, he asked the judge if he could go home because he feared for his safety behind bars. Judge Paul Englemayer said the prison term is “necessary in this case … to] reflect the seriousness his crimes.”

The rapper might still be able to get out this summer as it was previously reported but his girlfriend Jade hit the ‘Gram with something to say. Sharing a recent photo the two, she aired out the Nine Tr3y Bloods, Sara Molina — the mother 6ix9ine’s daughter — and the general public for clowning him for snitching. She even went as far as comparing the rapper to Sammy The Bull.

“They kidnapped you , they had with the mother your child , they get caught on the phone trying to kill you & their stealing millions dollars from you,” she wrote. ” If you snitch , for the rest your life people are gonna try to kill you for being a rat but if you don’t snitch , you’re doing 47 years in prison where they’re gonna kill you anyway because they were already talking about it . Sammy the Bull kills 19 people and gets 5 years . You kill no one and gets 2 years . This shit is so fucked up.”

As she continued to show her man support and called for his freedom, she also decided to flaunt the fact that he’s 13x platinum ad 8x gold. 

Molina clearly caught wind the comments and blasted Jade for even bringing her name up. “Imagine sleeping with a n***a while he still with his baby moms, ending up with the n***a but you still mentioning me for what,” she wrote. “He not hugging you or kssing you boy look like he’s dead inside standing right next to you. You the only one that looks happy dummy.” Peep the post below. 

Kendrick Lamar To Headline London’s BST Hyde Park Festival In July

London – Rap superstar Kendrick Lamar is set to headline the BST Hyde Park Festival this summer on July 5, according to Billboard. Fans are anticipating the return of the Top Dawg Entertainment artist who hasn’t released a project since 2017’s DAMN. It’s been rumored that Lamar will release a rock-influenced album this year and possibly debut it at the festival.

James Blake and Alabama Shakes singer Brittany Howard will also be on the Sunday (July 5) show with the 13-time Grammy Award winner. The BST concert series launched in 2013 and now spans across two weekends with six concerts in total. Taylor Swift, Pearl Jam and Rita Ora, among others will also take the stage for the festival.

Tickets for general sale will be available Friday (January 24) at 10 a.m. AmexUK cardholders can purchase tickets presale now. Other performing artists will be announced at a later date. The festival from 2018 featured Stevie Wonder, Black Eyed Peas, Celine Dion, Barbra Streisand, Lionel Richie and more.

Lamar has been pretty quiet on the music front for most of 2019 though he did appear on Beyoncé’s Lion King album. Also, last July he welcomed his first child with fiancée Whitney Alford. The couple met and began dating at Compton’s Centennial High School over 13 years ago.

Chris Paul Explains How The Rockets Lied To Him About OKC Trade

Back in the summer, Chris Paul was traded from the Houston Rockets to the Oklahoma City Thunder in what was a shocking deal. Fans had an inkling that the Rockets would trade Paul but they didn’t think it would be to the Thunder in exchange for Russell Westbrook. Paul has admitted to being shocked by that deal although for now, he is making the best his situation in OKC.

In a recent article from Sports IllustratedPaul spoke about his trade from the Rockets and how it ultimately surprised him. Paul says he felt sort lied to as Rockets general manager Daryl Morey told him he wouldn’t be going anywhere near OKC. 

Chris Paul Explains How The Rockets Lied To Him About OKC Trade

Alex Goodlett/Getty s

“After the season I reached out to the Rockets] and said, ‘Hey, if you guys want to go in a different direction, let us know now. That way we can figure something out,’” Paul said. “They said we’re not trying to go in a different direction. Morey] asked me if I wanted to go to Oklahoma City. I said no, and he said, ‘We won’t trade you there, because you chose to come to us from L.A.’ He doesn’t owe me anything, but that’s where the whole communication thing was.”

At the end the day, sports are a cut-throat business and players’ feelings aren’t always taken into account. No matter how much yourself you give to a team, there will always be a chance you get dealt very far away.

NeNe Leakes Not Leaving "RHOA" Despite Wendy Williams Report On Her Departure

Wendy Williams recently revealed on her talk show that her friend NeNe Leakes was thinking leaving Real Housewives Of Atlanta for good after being the leading act on the show from the very beginning. Apparently NeNe had sent Wendy some text alluding to her departure but after Wendy shared the update, NeNe and her team have responded not only denying the news but making it clear that NeNe was just venting.

NeNe Leakes Not Leaving "RHOA" Despite Wendy Williams Report On Her Departure
Marcus Ingram/Getty s 

“It’s been an especially difficult couple weeks for Nene, and she was venting to her friend in private correspondence. Nothing has been confirmed or ficially decided for next season,” NeNe’s representative said the situation. Even though Wendy started the rumour, she thinks NeNe should stay on the show and not pack up shop just yet. 

“In my opinion NeNe, you need this platform to explain the other part your life. Forget hair pieces and arguing with them broads. You got that secret and that secret is going to melt their hearts,” Wendy said. 

NeNe and Wendy only recently hashed out a long-standing beef the duo had between each other. Last summer they both attended a party with Rick Ross and made amends, sharing endless photos their newfound love. “When you get the call that says…Sis, let’s get f the bullshit and get on some real shit. OVERCOMING (I’m just saying it how it was said) This nite right here, was a movie,” NeNe wrote. 

Wendy Williams Farted On Live TV & Summer Walker Can’t Contain Herself

When is Wendy Williams not making headlines? For somebody that reports on all Hot Topics happening in pop culture, she sure is a regular in the tabloids for problems in her relationship, injuries preventing her from hosting her show, real estate updates, and even apparently for passing gas on television. It’s one the most embarrassing things that could ever happen to a talk show host; accepting a job live on the air has its benefits but if you’ve had a heavy helping beans the night before, you might want to consider handling your business before arriving on set because Wendy Williams reportedly let one out coyly on her show but fans heard the squeak from out her famous purple chair. Now, everyone is clowning her to the bathroom and back for apparently farting on air.

While discussing Odell Beckham Jr’s recent arrest, Wendy Williams seemingly felt a need to relieve herself some stomach bloating, letting out a fart and casually lifting her leg up to the side. She tried to play it f as though nothing happened but the replay shows otherwise. Among viewers the show, singer Summer Walker shared a clip the host letting it rip, laughing in her caption and replaying the incident in slow-motion. Fans are convinced that the fart is real but, so far, Wendy has not commented on the matter.

It might be worth it to tune in again today to see if Williams says anything about her apparent gas issue.

Summer Walker Serves Luscious Looks In Most Recent Thirst Traps

After letting her fans know that she would be taking it easy in 2020, Summer Walker is focusing on her personal life, which includes her relationship with producer London On Da Track, and the management her social anxiety, which has affected so many her performances. In person, the rising star isn’t too down to do interviews or anything that would trigger her to become uncomfortable. However, she doesn’t hold back online. On social media, she ten works to further her brand by revealing layers her personality to all  her supporters. This morning, she switched things up by showing f some skin, which she doesn’t regularly do, uploading a series “Players Club Vibes” to her page.

Complementing a shot she shared last night her exposing her underboob in a revealing crop top, Summer Walker returned with a trio sultry pictures in a lavish black dress and oodles icy jewelry. Diamonds dance on her neck, wrist, and digits, with the artist feeling herself in the display and confirming that she is still spending time with LODT. A few days ago, the rumor mill kicked f with reports that they may have broken up after Walker shared a cryptic post that people assumed was about the producer. London appears in her latest images so she’s definitely gone and cleared that one up.

What do you think Summer Walker? Are you messing with her music? 

Air Jordan 3 "Tokyo" Releasing For 2020 Olympic Games: What To Expect

Jordan Brand reportedly has plans to release a brand new Air Jordan 3 this Summer in celebration the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo. According to sneaker source House Heat, the Air Jordan 3 “Tokyo” will feature a classic “White/Fire Red-Black” color scheme.

Early images the celebratory 3s have not yet surfaced but they could look something like the mockup embedded below based on the leaked information.

That photoshopped image is just a guess at what’s to come, but sneakerheads will surely approve if the final product does resemble that design. Release details remain unknown but one would assume the “Tokyo” Air Jordan 3s in the summer as the 2020 Olympic games are scheduled to take place from July 24th to August 9th.

In addition to the white, red and black 3s, Jordan Brand will also be releasing a new “Red Cement” colorway in February. Click here for more details on that.

A$AP Rocky Thanked Donald Trump For Support During Swedish Imprisonment

New York, NY – A$AP Rocky discussed a past phone call he had with Donald Trump during an interview with The Breakfast Club on Friday (January 17). While reflecting on his legal drama in Sweden, the A$AP Mob member confirmed he spoke with Trump and thanked his unlikely advocate for supporting his prison release last year.

“I spoke to [Trump] to thank ’em,” he said. “I was very thankful for what happened, for him supporting me. I don’t agree with all the political shit that he does at all, but like I said, I was just thankful for everybody who supported me in there. Just keeping it 100 with you.”

Host Charlamagne Tha God tried to probe for more details about the chat with Trump, asking if the president sought to bring Rocky to the White House. But the Harlem-bred rapper downplayed the call and reiterated how thankful he was.

“Regardless of all the political shit, man, I kept it cordial and very respectful because I was thankful,” he noted. “That was it.”

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IM ALL 😎’$

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Rocky did admit he was worried about Trump’s support though. He recalled wondering if the president could hurt his case during his imprisonment in Sweden.

“So I’m really in Sweden and thinking about all this political shit, I was kind of thinking it was going to make my situation worse, but I still was thankful,” he stated. “I’m just keeping it 100.”

Rocky was locked up for a month on assault charges in Sweden last summer and was ultimately found guilty at trial. He avoided additional time behind bars at sentencing but was ordered to pay a fine.

50 Cent Brushes Off "Power" Fans That Criticized Him For Last Week’s Episode

50 Cent uses social media to stay in close communication with Power‘s viewership. He reminds them to tune in every week. He supplies them with funny memes to counterbalance the frustration they may experience from some moments the television show. At times, he takes into consideration the viewers’ complaints and tries to appease them. When Power‘s sixth season kicked f over the summer, fans were disappointed to discover that the original theme song had been replaced by a new rendition by Trey Songz. After weeks protest, Fifty conceded to switch the theme back to the version sung by Joe. This kind relationship between a show’s executive producer and its fanbase can be fun, but it must be difficult to monitor the satisfaction levels the masses. 

50 Cent has taken to Instagram to call out all the Power watchers that criticized him for last Sunday’s episode. “Y’all some funny motherfvckers man,” he wrote in a caption on a photo himself. “Called me all kinds names because y’all didn’t like the last episode… now we friends again. 🤔ain’t this some bullshit.” In a follow-up post, he continued: “Now everybody love me again, I wasn’t shit last week. 🎥 say sorry or something nice.”

In the midst his beef with Fif, French Montana leaked a clip from last week’s episode  Power before it aired and tried to warn its viewers that they would be disappointed with the outcome. I guess he was on to something. Anyway, read our recap that episode here

"Surviving Jeffrey Epstein" Gets Green Lit By Lifetime

Following the success  Surviving R. Kelly, Lifetime has ordered a four-hour documentary series titled Surviving Jeffrey Epstein.

"Surviving Jeffrey Epstein" Gets Green Lit By LifetimeStephanie Keith / Getty s

According to Variety, the network made the announcement during the Television Critics Association winter press tour on Saturday.

Anne Sundberg and Ricki Stern will direct. The two have previously collaborated on 2010’s Joan Rivers: A Piece Work, 2007’s The Devil Came on Horseback and more. The series will be released through Emmy-winner Robert Friedman’s Bungalow Media + Entertainment. Shura Davidson and Gena McCarthy will executive produce. Christopher Mason, contributor for The New York Times and New York Magazine, is also attached.

In July 2019, Epstein was arrested on federal charges for trafficking minors. For Epstein’s numerous connections to higher-ups in Washington D.C., including the Clintons, the case gained widespread media attention.

Epstein died an apparent suicide in his prison cell; however, his death has been the subject popular conspiracy theories including murder.

Adam McKay is also working on a separate Epstein-related limited series for HBO. That series will be based on Miami Herald investigative reporter Julie K. Brown’s book. All criminal charges were dropped on August 29, 2019, as his death eliminates the possibility he faces punishment. 

Surviving Jeffrey Epstein is expected to air this summer.