Pop culture catch-up: Dream collaborations from Justin Bieber and Ariana Grande, Halsey and Marshmello and more


By Marissa Chin

Pop culture catch-up: Dream collaborations from Justin Bieber and Ariana Grande, Halsey and Marshmello and more

Hello pop culture vultures! Here’s another round-up of the latest news in the entertainment circle you might have missed:

Ariana Grande and Justin Bieber release quarantine love song for a good cause

It was like someone decided this week was the week to drop all these exciting collaborations. Grande and Bieber’s single is the latest to have fans all over social media clamouring over its soothing melody and fluffy video content.

The four-minute music video comprises of home footage from fans, friends and family making the most of their time stuck at home whether it be slow-dancing with their dogs or getting glammed up in extravagant ball gowns in their backyard. Celebrities that made a cameo include Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis, Stephen Curry, the Jenner sisters and many more—can you catch any other artists that made an appearance below?

The wholesome single, Stuck with U, aims to raise funds for the First Responders Children’s Foundation and has currently raised $24,106 and amassed 16 million viewers since its release yesterday. Stream this feel-good tune here.

Grande also seemed to take this opportunity to kill two birds with one song—amongst those that made an appearance was Grande’s boyfriend shown in the last 15 seconds of the music video. According to E!, her new beau is Dalton Gomez, a real estate agent and they’ve been dating for just a couple of months. Now that’s a new way to confirm your dating news!

Listen to Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone exclusively on Spotify

In a new project by the Wizarding World, you can now hear all about the splendid magic and wondrous adventures of Hogwarts with just a tap of your finger. Fan-favourite stars from the Potter universe and beyond are returning to narrate each chapter of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone every week up till the month of June—and who else to start it off with a bang Confringo-style than Harry Potter himself, Daniel Radcliffe?

Other notable stars in the line-up include Stephen Fry, David Beckham, Dakota Fanning, Claudia Kim, Noma Dumezweni, Eddie Redmayne and many more. We’ve always been a fan of audiobooks as they are immersive and a fun alternative for those who don’t read often.

If you’ve been meaning to start on the iconic Harry Potter series, all you need to do is stream the first two chapters already available here for all free and Premium users!

Adele shares rare birthday post on Instagram showing off her new figure

Ever since her best-selling album in 2015, the talented vocalist has been sheltering herself from the public, rarely making headlines unrelated to music. However, for her 32nd birthday that passed this Wednesday, she took to Instagram to thank her fans for all the well wishes—while also dropping a bomb on her new look.

“Thank you for the birthday love. I hope you’re all staying safe and sane during this crazy time”, the Hello singer captioned in a post of herself in a skin-tight black dress with a toothy smile. “I’d like to thank all of our first responders and essential workers who are keeping us safe while risking their lives! You are truly our angels ♥️ 2020 okay bye thanks x”

Fans are geared up more than ever for Adele’s return to the music scene since she confirmed a new album for this September.

Marshmello and Halsey remind us to Be Kind

Halsey is the latest artist to team up with Marshmello with an uplifting single during this global pandemic. During such uncertain and turbulent times, Halsey’s raw and sentimental lyrics remind us to treat the ones we love with kindness.

“I don’t know why you hide from the one and close your eyes to the one / Mess up and lie to the one that you love,” Halsey croons, “When you know you can cry to the one, always confide in the one / You can be kind to the one that you love.”

The accompanying lyric video uses bright colours and continues the floral pop art animations motif that was first teased by Halsey on social media.

Both artists have enjoyed mega success, with Marshmello’s 5x platinum hit Happier with Bastille and Halsey’s latest album Manic debuting at No. 1 on Billboard’s Top Current Albums. Stream this reassuring tune here!

The latest in book news: Edward-centred Midnight Sun will finally be published after 12 long years

Twilight fans—rejoice. Stephanie Meyer announced yesterday that she was finally going to release Midnight Sun, which (if you didn’t know) is basically just Twilight, except from Edward’s perspective. The backstory is that she started writing the novel around 10 years ago, but after fans leaked it online she just… stopped. However, she has clearly come to her senses and the release date is set for August 4th, 2020. We just wonder what R-Patz has to say about it, considering how candid he’s been about his time playing the vamp. Anyway, don’t knock it till you… Twi- it.

IU and BTS’ Suga unveils sentimental single Eight and fans have many theories

In another noteworthy collaboration, the K-pop community was in literal shambles when the highly anticipated single from megastars IU and BTS’ Suga dropped on Wednesday.

We mentioned that the song would no doubt create and break records along the way—and boy, did it do just that. The single debuted at number 1 on several of Korea’s biggest music charts including Melon, Genie, Bugs and Soribada. Eight also landed on the top spot on iTunes in at least 59 countries—a new record for a Korean female soloist—including the United States, France, New Zealand, Finland, Malaysia and many more. Furthermore, Eight was listened to by almost 200,000 users on Melon in the first hour after its release, a new record with BTS’ own ON right behind.

The music video offered fans a visual feast with its colourful and whimsical vibe tinged with some cybertronic elements. It also combines the use of 2D animation, showing IU in cartoon form going on fantastical adventures. While the music video and meaning of the song are open to interpretation, fans speculate that it is dedicated to IU’s late close friends, Shinee’s Jonghyun and Sulli who unfortunately passed away in 2017 and 2019 respectively.

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