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Normani drops highly-anticipated debut album ‘Dopamine’

Normani just released her debut solo album Dopamine, with the singer announced the release on X: “thank you jesus. thank you jesus. thank you jesus. have really been over here all morning doing my best to find the words to articulate my gratitude for everyone that has endured with me throughout this process and who has continued to believe in me. this album was legit one of the hardest things in life for me over the years. literally can’t even entirely verbalize my appreciation in this moment because of how overwhelmed my heart is in the most magical way possible. ahhhhh my thoughts are obviously all over the place lol imma try this again tomorrow hahaha”

The album has been years in the making, and per Billboard marks the former Fifth Harmony star “finally stepping into who I’ve been called to be. I’m just grateful that everybody is just really excited still for this album and for this body of work. They’ve waited on me, which I don’t really take for granted.”

Dopamine includes Normani’s most recent single “Candy Paint,” which dropped May 31, as well as “Dopamine (First Dose),” “1:58” (featuring Gunna), and “Wild Side” (featuring Cardi B).

Normani’s solo career has included four singles on the Hot 100 chart, including “Love Lies” with Khalid, which peaked at No. 9; “Dancing With a Stranger” with Sam Smith (No. 7); “Wild Side” (No. 14); and “Motivation” (No. 33).

To stream Dopamine, head here.

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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu disbands Israeli war cabinet

Officials tell The Associated Press and CNN that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has dissolved his war cabinet, which was responsible for key decisions relating to the Israel-Hamas conflict. The war cabinet, set up five days after the Hamas-led terrorist attacks against Israel on October 7, had five members: Netanyahu, Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, opposition leader Benny Gantz, and two “observers,” Ron Dermer and Gadi Eisenkot. Israeli official said that decision-making will now move back to the government’s main security cabinet, adding that Netanyahu “will hold smaller forums on sensitive matters.”

Netanyahu’s decision comes just over a week after opposition leader Benny Gantz withdrew from the cabinet, stating that the prime minister was making “total victory impossible.” In announcing his resignation, Gantz said the government needs to put the return of the hostages seized Oct. 7 by Hamas “above political survival.” Gantz said in announcing his resignation: “Months after the October disaster, the situation in the country and in the decision-making cabinet has changed. Netanyahu and his partners have turned unity into a void call who has no cover. Fateful strategic decisions are met with hesitancy and procrastination due to political considerations. Netanyahu is preventing us from progressing to a real victory. That is why we are leaving the emergency government today with a heavy heart, but with a whole heart.”

Netanyahu’s wartime decision-making has been criticized, with those saying he has been influenced by ultranationalists in his government who oppose a deal that would bring about a cease-fire in exchange for the release of hostages. Netanyahu has denied the accusation, saying he has the country’s best interests in mind.

More than 37,000 people have been killed in Gaza since Israel launched its offensive in the enclave following Hamas’ Oct. 7 attacks, in which some 1,200 people were killed and around 250 others were taken hostage, according to Israeli officials.

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Surgeon General calls for warning labels on social media platforms

In a New York Times opinion essay published Monday, U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Vivek H. Murthy called for social media companies to be required to use safety warning labels, and asked Congress to take action in ordering social media platforms to post warning labels similar to those attached to tobacco or alcohol products

Murthy wrote in the Times op-ed that statistics are clear about the effect social media has on adolescents, particularly those who are facing anxiety and depression issues. Murthy cited research that shows social media could be negatively impacting youth mental health, and added that a surgeon general’s warning on social media platforms could raise awareness for parents about the potential harm of the platforms (per USA TODAY.) He said that while warning labels only won’t protect young people it’s a first step in the acknowledgment of its dangers.

Murthy wrote: “The mental health crisis among young people is an emergency — and social media has emerged as an important contributor. Adolescents who spend more than three hours a day on social media face double the risk of anxiety and depression symptoms .. One of the worst things for a parent is to know your children are in danger yet be unable to do anything about it. That is how parents tell me they feel when it comes to social media — helpless and alone in the face of toxic content and hidden harms.”

The Surgeon General said that the average time adolescents spend on social media had increased to 4.8 hours a day in the summer of 2023, adding: “it is time to require a surgeon general’s warning label on social media platforms, stating that social media is associated with significant mental health harms for adolescents. A surgeon general’s warning label, which requires Congressional action, would regularly remind parents and adolescents that social media has not been proven safe .. To be clear, a warning label would not, on its own, make social media safe for young people. The advisory I issued a year ago about social media and young people’s mental health included specific recommendations.”

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Orville Peck teams with Kylie Minogue, Diplo for ‘Midnight Ride’ off upcoming LP ‘Stampede’

Orville Peck has teamed up with pop star Kylie Minogue and Diplo for the new single “Midnight Ride,” the latest release from Peck’s upcoming duet album, Stampede, due out on August 2nd. Peck said in a statement: “Doing this song with Kylie and Diplo was a dream come true. Kylie was the first person I asked to be on Stampede because I knew exactly the kind of magic we could all make together.” 

Peck’s 15-song duets collection Stampede will also feature collaborations with Beck, Margo Price, Mickey Guyton, Molly Tuttle and Golden Highway, Debbii Dawson, Teddy Swims and more. Peck previously collaborated with Elton John, Willie Nelson, Allison Russell, Noah Cyrus, Nathaniel Rateliff, Midland and others on his first duets collection, Stampede Vol. 1.   Peck says of the new collection: “This project has always been something I’ve fantasized about, so to see it finally come to fruition really is a dream come true.”

Peck is on the road for his “Stampede Tour,” which runs through the end of October.  He has also announced his 6th Annual Rodeo festival, which will be hosted by John Waters in Nashville on August 23rd, 24th, and 25th. Peck will headline the festival, as will Tanya Tucker with additional, performances from Medium Build, Mickey Guyton, Reyna Roberts, The Nude Party and more. Tickets for the 6th Annual Rodeo are available at the link: here.

Listen to Midnight Ridehere.
Stream Stampede: Vol. 1 here.
Pre-order/pre-save Stampede: The Full Album: here.

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BTS’ RM drops videos for his solo singles, ‘Groin’ and ‘Domodachi’

RM from the K-pop band has dropped the music video for “Groin,” a B-side track from his second solo album Right Place, Wrong Person, released on May 24th. The Pennacky-directed clip for “Groin” finds the singer and rapper decked out in a dark Adidas track jacket while dancing and rapping in the streets; it arrives on the heels of RM’s second solo album, Right Place, Wrong Person, which was released in May. Check out the music video for ‘Groin’ – here.

RM also dropped the music video for “Domodachi” featuring Little Simz; the track ‘revolves around the theme of becoming friends by being together and the pure joy of dancing with those friends.’ Check out the video for Domodachihere.

Right Place, Wrong Person also features the singles “Come Back to Me,” “Nuts,” “Heaven,” “LOST!” and more. Per Billboard, Right Place, Wrong Person includes collaborations with British rapper-singer Little Simz (“Domodachi”) and singer-guitarist Moses Sumney (“Around the World in a Day”). “Come Back to Me” features lyrics by RM, with guest musicians OHHYUK from South Korean band HYUKOH, and guitar and bass from Kuo of Taiwanese band Sunset Rollercoaster, as well as contributions by singer-songwriter JNKYRD and San yawn of Balming Tiger.

RM and his BTS bandmates Jin, SUGA, J-Hope, Jimin, V and Jung Kook are currently serving in the South Korean military, which mandates an 18-month military enlistment for all able-bodied men by the time they turn 28. A few of the members have pursued various solo projects amid their service, and the full group is planning to reconvene for band activities in 2025.

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2 children among 9 injured in shooting at recreational splash pad in Michigan

Two children were among nine people injured after a shooter opened fire at a splash pad in a Detroit suburb over the weekend. Police describe the incident, which took place on Saturday afternoon in Rochester Hills, Mich., as a “random” shooting and trying to determine a motive. The alleged gunman, 42-year white Michael William Nash from Shelby Township, was found dead from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound in a home he shared with his mother.

Oakland County Sheriff Mike Bouchard said during a news conference that an 8-year-old boy was shot in the head and his 4-year-old brother was shot in the leg; the older boy remains in critical condition, while the younger child is in stable condition. Their mother, 39, was also among the victims after being wounded in the abdomen and leg; she was listed in stable condition. The other adult victims ranged in age from 30 to 78.

Sheriff Bouchard said Saturday that the suspect pulled up to the Brooklands Plaza Splash Pad just after 5 p.m. at a city park featuring a recreation area. The suspect left his vehicle, and opened fire from roughly 20 feet away with a Glock 9mm handgun, reloading multiple times and firing “potentially 28 times.” Bouchard said the attack appeared to be random, with at least one witness reporting that the shooter appeared to use two hand guns during the attack, but that has not yet been confirmed. Bouchard said police will continue to investigate for a motive and look for shell casings, but also said there appeared to be no connection between the shooter and the victims.

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2 dead, multiple injured in shooting at Juneteenth celebration in Texas

Two people are dead and 14 others were injured after a shooting at a Juneteenth celebration in Texas. Police in Round Rock, TX (located less than 20 miles north of Austin), said that the incident took place on Saturday night when a fight broke out between two groups at the Old Settlers Park at about 11 p.m. local time. Round Rock Police Chief Allen Banks said early Sunday that at the same time, someone produced a gun and began to fire, adding that multiple people were struck by gunfire.

Police Chief Banks said during a media briefing: “We’re very disappointed and angry with these events. This is the 16th year of this Juneteenth event, and for someone to destroy the peace and celebration within an instance, it angers me.” Most of the wounded victims have since been released from area hospitals with the remaining victims listed in stable condition and should be released “within the next day or so”. The victims’ ages range from 10 to 62 years old.

Police have asked for the public’s help in locating a suspect in connection with the shooting during a Juneteenth celebration that left two dead and 14 others injured, adding that the suspect is “armed and dangerous” and warned the public not to approach him if spotted. Police said Sunday night in a post on X that they are looking for a suspect with a “thin build, approximately 5 feet 7 inches tall, short dreadlocks, and wearing a white hoodie at the time of the incident.”

Banks said in a message to the suspect: “Turn yourself in. If you’re man enough to carry a gun and pull the trigger, be man enough to step up. Turn yourself in. Let’s figure out why you chose to take lives and injure people.” Banks said he plans to release the names of the two who were killed in the shooting on Monday: “My thoughts and my prayers go out to the victims. My condolences go out to the families of the deceased.”

Round Rock Mayor Craig Morgan released the following statement: “I know Round Rock residents are devastated as they wake up to the terrible news of last night’s tragic events. To the families who are mourning the loss of loved ones, please know that our entire community mourns with you. To those who were injured, we are here to support you in your recovery. We are a community that values safety, celebration and unity, and we are committed to ensuring that our community heals through this event together. We will not let this incident define us, nor will we let fear take hold. Instead, we will support each other, offer help where it is needed, and remain united in our resolve to make Round Rock a safe and welcoming place for all.”

Anyone with video or information about the incident is asked to reach out to the Round Rock Police Department at 512-218-5500.

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Ice Spice releasing debut album ‘Y2K!,’ announces global tour

Ice Spice has announced that highly anticipated debut album Y2K! will be released on July 26 via 10K Projects/Capitol Records. The rapper’s first full-length album will include her latest single “Gimmie A Light,”and features production by longtime collaborator RIOTUSA.  Ice posted on her socials“HIIIII >.< Y2K ☆ THE ALBUM WILL BE DROPPING JULY 26TH !!!! pre-save the link in my bio now”

Additionally, Ice also announced the Y2K! WORLD TOUR, her first-ever global headline outing with festival dates across Europe, the UK, and North America this summer. The 24-date “Y2K! World Tour” will feature supporting acts Cash Cobain and her go-to producer RIOTUSA on the turntables. The tour will begin in Denmark on July 4 with several festival performances including Roskilde Festival in Denmark, Rolling Loud Europe in Austria, Wireless Festival in London, and more before heading back to the U.S. on July 30 in Washington, D.C. Ice Spice will hit up a slew of major cities until she wraps up in Miami Beach on August 31.

Tickets for Ice Spice’s tour are on sale now; head here for information.

To pe-order Y2K! head HERE.

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Charlie Puth releases his new song “Hero”

Charlie Puth is back with new music, posting on Instagram: ‘My new song HERO is about when you see someone you love hurting themselves, ruining the things in their life that are good, but you just can’t save them. It’s one of the hardest songs I’ve ever had to write, but I wrote it in hopes that you’ve gone through something similar in your life, and that it can fill in the BLANK for you like it did for me. I’m very excited to share my next album with you, especially this song because it’s a great representation of what’s to come. I’ve never put out a song like this before- it’s very different for me, but I want to thank @taylorswift for letting me know musically that I just couldn’t keep this on my hard drive any longer. HERO is yours on May 24th and this is the single artwork. Thank you to all of my fans- you’ll never know how much you mean to me…’

The 32-year-old singer-songwriter said that he decided to release the song after being inspired by fellow singer Taylor Swift, who referenced Puth on her song “The Tortured Poets Department,” which features the lyric, “We declared Charlie Puth should be a bigger artist.”

“Hero” is Puth’s second song of 2024, following his collaboration with K-pop group Stray Kids, “Lose My Breath” featuring Charlie Puth. He released his most recent album, Charlie, in October 2022.

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U.S. Pres. Biden and Ukrainian Pres. Zelenskyy sign 10-year bilateral security agreement

President Joe Biden and leaders of the Group of Seven nations reached a deal Thursday to give Ukraine a $50 billion loan this year backed by frozen Russian assets, sustaining their commitment in opposition of Russia’s invasion. The loan would be funded by interest earned on profits from Russia’s frozen assets, largely held in Europe and will support military aid, humanitarian support and reconstruction costs.

Biden and the leaders of Italy, Canada, Germany, France, Canada and the United Kingdom are in Italy for a series of G7 meetings this week. The move comes after Biden and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy signed a separate bilateral security agreement, which solidifies U.S. support to Ukraine for the next decade, including military training, intelligence sharing and weapons assistance.

Mr. Biden and Zelenskyy held a joint press conference in Italy on Thursday, in which Biden called all the actions to bolster Ukraine a message to Russian leader Vladimir Putin: “he cannot wait us out, he cannot divide us. We’re going to stand with Ukraine. We’ve taken three major steps at the G7 that collectively show Putin he cannot wait us out, and we’ll be with Ukraine until they prevail in this war. First is the bilateral security agreement just signed. Second, historic agreement to provide $50 billion in value from Russian sovereign assets to Ukraine. And third, an agreement to ensure our sanctions efforts disrupt third countries that are supplying Russia’s war efforts.” (per NBC News).  Zelenskyy thanked Mr. Biden and Congress for their aid, and offered “thanks to every American heart that does not betray freedom and supports us.”

The Treasury and Commerce departments previously announced a new round of sanctions targeting Russia and its “war machine,” aimed at slowing Russia’s military growth as it continues its war in Ukraine. The sanctions will make it harder for Russia to import supplies to build military equipment, though they will still allow food and goods to get into Russia outside those sectors.  The Biden administration is now allowing Ukraine to use U.S. weapons across the border into Russia near the city of Kharkiv, a policy change that the White House says came with Russia opening a new front in its war.  National security adviser Jake Sullivan told reporters earlier this week: “Our position here we believe is straightforward and common sensical. Russians are launching attacks from one side of the border directly on to the other side of the border. And Ukraine ought to be able to fire back across that border.” 

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