Billy Joel is back, Nicki Minaj's latest beef, and more from the week in music

Graphic: The A.V. Club, Photo: Jason Kempin (Getty Images), Ronald Martinez (Getty Images), Noam Galai; Jason Koerner (Getty Images)
Graphic: The A.V. Club, Photo: Jason Kempin (Getty Images), Ronald Martinez (Getty Images), Noam Galai; Jason Koerner (Getty Images)
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The 30 best songs released in 1984

Clockwise from bottom left: Tina Turner (Paul Natkin/Getty Images), Prince (Ross Marino/Getty Images), Cyndi Lauper (Paul Natkin/Getty Images), Van Halen (Paul Natkin/WireImage)
Clockwise from bottom left: Tina Turner (Paul Natkin/Getty Images), Prince (Ross Marino/Getty Images), Cyndi Lauper (Paul Natkin/Getty Images), Van Halen (Paul Natkin/WireImage)

1984 is roundly considered to be one of the greatest years in pop music history, a year that produced an embarrassment of riches in both the mainstream and underground. It was a year where the echoes of Michael Jackson’s Thriller could still be felt, a year that Prince turned into a superstar and Madonna had her first hits. And it was a year where the Replacements, Hüsker Dü, the Minutemen, and R.E.M. defined college rock as MTV took hold throughout America, just as Britain wound down its new pop renaissance. Read More

Billy Joel is making a comeback with first single in 17 years

Billy Joel
Billy Joel

Billy Joel, welcome back-ack-ack-ack-ack-ack! The legendary artist, who hasn’t released a true single since 2007, announced on Monday the release of a new song, “Turn The Lights Back On.” The new track is due out February 1 on streaming with an accompanying limited edition 7” vinyl. Joel also teased a possible video on Twitter/X, wherein he turns the page on his own “Famous Last Words” and dramatically plays the piano in low lighting. Read More

Lady Gaga dancer says he suffered permanent hearing damage on tour and no one did anything

Lady Gaga during her 2017 Super Bowl halftime show, where Breitenstein performed
Lady Gaga during her 2017 Super Bowl halftime show, where Breitenstein performed

Graham Breitenstein—a former dancer for Lady Gaga who participated in multiple tours—is telling his story in the hopes that he can save other young dancers some of the pain and hardship he’s experienced. In a series of Instagram videos posted over the weekend, Breitenstein alleges that he lost 70% of the hearing in his left ear while performing on Lady Gaga’s Monster Ball Tour—his first major professional gig—somewhere around 2010. Read More

Megan Thee Stallion shares “Hiss” and Nicki Minaj seems upset

Megan Thee Stallion; Nicki Minaj
Megan Thee Stallion; Nicki Minaj

Nicki Minaj has earned her place as rap’s elder stateswoman, but she’s burned bridges with a lot of other female rappers along the way. The latest is Megan Thee Stallion, hip hop’s ascendant Hot Girl, with whom Minaj collaborated on Megan’s 2019 smash hit “Hot Girl Summer.” Since then, things have soured between the two; fans suspected Minaj was dissing Megan on her 2023 track “Red Ruby Da Sleeze,” which seemingly contained veiled references to Megan being shot by Tory Lanez and how Minaj doesn’t “fuck with horses.” Now, Megan’s snuck a diss of her own into her new track “Hiss,” which was released on Thursday. Read More