Best Music of 2011... So Far
Chris Brown's latest album, F.A.M.E., became Brown's first #1 album in the U.S. It sold 270,000 copies in its initial seven days. This news was over-shadowed when he allegedly broke the Times Square window at Good Morning America.
The Foo Fighters also scored its first #1 album in the U.S. with the April release of Wasting Light. It sold 235,000 copies in its first week. The alt-rock band, formed by Nirvana drummer Dave Grohl, has been recording for 16 years.
Reba McEntire got the announcement that she'll be inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame. The Irish band U2 beat the Rolling Stones when U2 became the highest-grossing tour in history.
New York rapper Ja Rule pled guilty to $4 million in tax evasion. Sharon Osbourne talked openly on CBS' The Talk about the IRS putting a lien on her and Ozzy Osbourne's house due to unpaid taxes.
Gerard Smith, the bassist for TV on the Radio, passed away. So did Clarence Clemons, formerly of the E Street Band.
Wyclef Jean aided in the Haitian presidential elections, as well as its devastating earthquake. A ton of other celebrities lent music to the charity compilation, Songs for Japan. The proceeds were to help that country in the wake of its tsunami.
One of those celebrities was Lady Gaga whose song "Born This Way" not only became perfect for spoofing by Weird Al Yankovic but it also became a so-called gay anthem. 21-year-old, west coast rapper Brandon McCartney, aka Lil' B, said his upcoming album would be titled I'm Gay, despite the fact he's not. Ricky Martin is gay however and it showed in his latest record Musica + Alma + Sexo. Marsha Ambrosius also made a video addressing gay bullying.
Matthew Morrison of Glee released his self-titled album. It featured a great cover of Amos Lee's "Arms of a Woman." The cast of Glee covered Rebecca Black's "Friday," a song just as cheesy as rock group Bowling for Soup's song "S-S-S-Saturday."
The Deer Hunter gave us The Color Spectrum, an ambitious nine EP set. It was a serious selection of songs, but the two funniest songs of the year and certainly the funniest were "Self Esteem" by Garfunkel & Oates as well as "Three Way" by Justin Timberlake and Andy Samberg.
Best Music of 2011... So Far
Best Folk / Country
1. HELPLESSNESS BLUES by Fleet Foxes
2. LAST OF THE COUNTRY GENTLEMEN by Josh T. Pearson
3. BELLA by Teddy Thompson
4. MISSION BELL by Amos Lee
5. BITTER BLOOD by Chamberlin
6. THE KING IS DEAD by The Decemberists
7. KISS EACH OTHER CLEAN by Iron & Wine
8. KING OF CIRCLES by Mike Bloom
Best Rock / Alternative
1. BURST APART by The Antlers
2. NINE TYPES OF LIGHT by TV on the Radio
3. CIRCUITAL by My Morning Jacket
4. THAO & MIRAH by Thao & Mirah
5. BLOOD PRESSURES by The Kills
6. MONDO AMORE by Nicole Atkins
7. DEGENERATION STREET by The Dears
8. ACTOR-CASTER by The Generationals
Best Pop / Electronic
1. WOUNDED RHYMES by Lykke Li
2. BORN THIS WAY by Lady Gaga
3. BLUE SONGS by Hercules and Love Affair
4. SEE THE LIGHT by Jessica 6
5. WITHOUT REGRET by Kimberly Caldwell
6. WASTED IN JACKSON by Lauren Pritchard
7. MARC BROUSSARD by Marc Broussard
8. YELLOW TREE by Sleepy Rebels
Best R&B / Rap
1. 21 by Adele
2. STONE ROLLIN' by Raphael Saadiq
3. BLACK UP by Shabazz Palaces
4. 4 by Beyonce
5. GUTTER RAINBOWS by Talib Kweli
6. NO MORE IDOLS by Chase & Status
Best Singles from non-listed Albums
1. "The Afterlife" by Paul Simon
2. "Angel" by Jennifer Hudson
3. "Song for Leaving" by Brett Dennon
4. "Hard Times" by Plan B featuring Elton John
5. "Broken Heart" by French Horn Rebellion
6. "Till the End of Time" by Timothy Bloom
7. "Lovecontract" by Musiq Soulchild
8. "Who Have You Been Loving" by Bobby Long
9. "Far Away" by Marsha Ambrosius
10. "Sensations in the Dark" by Gruff Rhys
11. "Love and Leave" by Scattered Trees
13. "Same Mum" by Braids
14. "Words" by Bobby V
15. "Sandpaper" by Moby
16. "How I Roll" by Britney Spears
17. "Your Wildest Dreams" by Warren Hayne
18. "Shell Games" by Bright Eyes
19. "Walk Away" by The Script
20. "Black Night" by The Dodos
21. "Gratisfaction" by The Strokes
22. "Collard Greens & Cornbread" by Fantasia
23. "I Can Feel It" by Holcombe Waller