Archives For conan o’brien

I don’t like holding on to a lot of physical mementos, especially ones that would require a UPS label or a potential over-packed suitcase.

This is primarily in reference to the award shows that I cover but extends to any other trip I make or event I attend. First, I have the priceless memories of those experiences. Second, if I do save something, it’s usually a hotel room key, a press credential or a ticket stub. I’ve saved the latter since first attending baseball games and wrestling matches as a kid. I read in Rolling Stone once that Springsteen also saves his room keys and I thought to myself, “If he isn’t too cool for that then neither am I.” Press credentials are also nice because like tickets and room keys, they are small, but they are also unique.

But this past GRAMMYs, something changed. It started on my first day in Los Angeles. I attended an event that Wednesday night (something I have never done before) so I could speak with Recording Academy President Neil Portnow and Conan O’Brien. Afterwards I had drinks with a colleague and we talked about all of the various award shows and “radio rows” that I’ve had the privilege of covering. I always tell people that despite the fact I’m at a lot of these, I never assume that I’ll be at the next show and I never take any of them for granted.

The conversation I had with that co-worker drove those points home on to a different level. I hope it reflected in my work, but I and my producer can tell you it was definitely reflected in my work ethic. Don’t get me wrong, I always bust my butt on the road. But this time there was a different pace and diligence to the process. I covered events, conducted interviews, hosted shows, Skype’d in a few TV hits and edited, edited, edited which was only followed by more editing… and a lot of distribution throughout the social networks, our dot-coms and most importantly, the airwaves.

We wrapped radio row that Friday – its official title is “Westwood One Backstage” – and my producer Jay asked me if I wanted an official GRAMMYs poster that he had all of the interviewees sign. We’ve done this in the past and I almost never take it home. First, I can’t be bothered with anything that doesn’t involve completing my work for the week and second, it’s not like I can shove it in a suitcase.

But again, this time was different. And I thought to myself that a year from now, I might not be at The GRAMMYs. So maybe I should take a second to reflect, be thankful and perhaps take another memento home – one that would look pretty cool on the wall framed, I might add.

On Sunday Jay and I attended The GRAMMYs, and as we walked out he handed me a program. The GRAMMY program is more encyclopedia than playbill in size. The old me would have discarded it; but this time was different. It found its way in to my luggage, which I had to check anyways because that’s what happens when you travel across the country for a week to work.

The poster made it home too thanks to the J.W. Marriott’s business center and the aforementioned UPS. It’s hanging in my bedroom.

When I had that chat with my colleague the night before radio row began, I retired back to my hotel room and told myself that no matter what happens, I better push myself to new limits and leave it all out there.

And by the end of the trip, I felt I had at the very least accomplished that… so I wanted to make sure I took a piece of it back with me too. I’m glad I did.

On my first day of coverage in Los Angeles for The 59th GRAMMYs, I attended The Recording Academy Producers And Engineers Wing 10th Annual event which honored 12-time GRAMMY winner Jack White. The artist’s friend Conan O’Brien was on hand and stopped to chat about his Patriots winning Super Bowl 51. I also spoke with Regina Spektor and Academy President Neil Portnow.



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TMZ’s Dax checked in to The RRS to detail how much Conan O’Brien and his crew will receive after leaving NBC.

Catch Dax on TMZ TV – Local listings here.
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here.

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TMZ’s Dax called in to The RRS to chat about Jay Leno officially moving back to “The Tonight Show.”

Catch Dax on TMZ TV – Local listings here.
Check out the the latest
here.

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TMZ’s Dax called in to The RRS after TMZ broke the news that NBC would move Jay Leno back to 11:30 p.m. after the Winter Olympics.


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You know her as Ke$ha, the trash-talking, hard-partying pop star who’s single, “TiK ToK” recently sold the most digital copies in a week by a female artist. BTW, the song that she sings the hook of, Flo Rida’s “Right Round”, sold the most overall.

Her family and friends know her as Kesha Rose Sebert – a trash-talking, hard-partying aspiring artist, who is finally breaking out on the grandest stage of ’em all.

And as for Ke$ha, seems she knows who she is, and what she’s doing – but as for who her father is? Well, that’s another story.

“This guy called me up, and said, ‘I think I’m your dad,” explained Ke$ha. “So like, I moved to (Los Angeles), and off-the-plane moved in with him. And turned out he’s totally not my dad, and so I lived in my car for a minute… and then, I ended up getting my own apartment.”

Believe it or not, that’s one of Sebert’s more tame stories… her official website’s bio starts with an account of the pop star’s face-to-face meeting with an icon. Ke$ha paid off a gardner and snuck in to Prince’s house to give him a demo. Sebert met The Purple One, and she left the CD there for him, but she never heard back.

It seems Sebert loves to tell stories – and tales she tells on her debut LP, Animal, which hit stores Tuesday. The following day, before taping a performance on “The Tonight Show with Conan O’Brien” – the 22 year-old singer/rapper/story teller called in to “The Ralphie Radio Show.”

It’s a true Hollywood tale: the girl who lived in her car, and still doesn’t know the identity of her father, goes on to help sell the two most downloaded singles in a sole week. Of course, you probably didn’t know Ke$ha sang the hook of “Right Round” because she didn’t receive credit for the single. It was her decision to not be credited and not appear in the music video. Matter of fact, Sebert says at first she didn’t receive much of anything for the performance.


Part 1: CD Release Party Shut Down By Po-Po, Living In Her Car

Part 2: Animal, “Right Round”, Katy Perry’s Engagement


“I didn’t get shit,” Ke$ha said, rather calmly, noting that in addition to no up-front payment, the track did not yield her any royalty checks. “I got a car,” she later admitted when pressed about whether the song could be credited with landing her a deal on RCA Records. The 1978 Gold Trans-Am that she currently drives can also be seen in the video for “TiK ToK.”

You can say what you’d like about the type of music, or the context of it – but Ke$ha insists the songs are sincere and “unapologetically fun.”

“The music is honest,” she clarifies. “I write with sheer honesty, so anything that’s in any of my songs, like, chances are I’ve probably done that at some point. I’m not saying like, I do these things every day.”

“Unapologetically fun” is kinda a term you could use to describe another track… Katy Perry’s “I Kissed A Girl.” Perry and Sebert are friends – and Ke$ha made a cameo in the video for Perry’s debut single. Yet, due to all of the commotion around her own debut, Sebert did not hear that comedian Russell Brand proposed to Perry… until I told her on The RRS.

“Are you serious?!” she exclaimed, before I cited multiple reports from Brand’s publicist and the comedian himself. “Wow, no shit.”

Sebert hasn’t met Brand, but is happy for the newly engaged couple. Although, she did have to think for a second on what she would give them as a wedding gift.

“I would get her… a giant… inflatable…,” she said, thinking out loud, before I cut her off and reminded her that the censors were standing by, if need be.

“No, some sort of animal. Or I’ll buy her a boat… I dunno.”

The label flopped, the officer lied, and the video went viral. It could have been the worst two years ever for Armando Perez, known to the masses as the emcee, “Pitbull.” Instead – it yielded Pit’s greatest success to date, and much to show for it.

“It’s been a roller coaster ride,” said Pitbull, who called in to The Ralphie Radio Show from his hometown of Miami. The city rewarded “Mr. 305” for his charity work by giving him the key to the city. This came right before Pitbull released his major-label debut LP, Rebelution, which includes the back-to-back top 10 hits “I Know You Want Me (Calle Ocho)” and “Hotel Room Service.”

“Definitely an honor and a blessing,” Pit commented of the award from Miami. “Bein’ able to come from we’ve come from, whether it be negativity, poverty, or nothing and make something…” he continued, before a right turn on to a lighter note. “The thing was, then I took it to the pawn shop, and it wasn’t really worth much, and I was like, ‘Damn!’”

When you look back at Pitbull’s last 18 months – his sense of humor is something to marvel at. The dominos began to fall in December of 2007 – when police charged Pitbull with driving under the influence of alcohol and speeding. The following February, TVT Records filed for bankruptcy. Pit remises of the label’s workers fondly, but calls TVT President Steve Gotlieb, “illogical.” Then fast forward to May 2009, when Pitbull punched a fan on stage. The Miami-emcee still feels guilty over the incident. However, Pit felt the need to defend himself.

“I brought (the fan) on stage to get rid of him, ‘cause he was making it rain (the act of tossing money in to the air) all night,” Pitbull recalled, adding that anything that goes up in the air becomes a distraction while performing. “As soon as I bring him on stage, he throws money in my face, so to every action there’s a reaction.”


Part 1: Receiving The Key To Miami, Ellen

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Part 2: Rollercoaster of a Year, Egg Whites Edit in “Hotel Room Service.”


But by the midway point of 2009, Pitbull’s misfortunes were beginning to turn around. June saw Pitbull ink a deal with Sony Music that allowed him to create his own record label, Mr. 305 Inc. In July, a Miami jury acquitted Pit of the DUI charges after authorities convicted an officer of perjury. Then August brought Pitbull not one, but two Top 10 singles from Rebelution. Pitbull says he moved up the date from September 1 to coincide with his performance on The Tonight Show with Conan O’Brien. Pit will also be appearing on Ellen. The rapper is quite fond of the talk show host, even if it doesn’t seem to exactly translate that way.

“I really like Ellen,” Pitbull admitted. “To me, she’s someone that’s genuine, someone that’s natural, and someone that does what she loves. She don’t got no hair on her tongue… well… let me stop that.” Pit intended to use an old Spanish expression to imply that she says what she wants, but he admits it didn’t translate as well as he planned.

“Down here in Miami, you know anyone tell you, ‘Yo, how’s everything?’ You say, ‘Nah, I’m straight.’ I be like, ‘Yeah, I’m straight,’ (Ellen) might be like, ‘Ehhhh I’m not,’” Pitbull joked.

The conversation did not get any more serious when asked about the latest “Super Clean” edit of “Hotel Room Service”: the last part of the rhyme, “Oh you’re the healthy type? Well, here goes some egg whites,” changes to “Then I’m gonna give you just what you like.”

“There’s nothing wrong with that,” Pitbull said, attempting to naively defend his double entendre off the breakfast food with a certain human excretion. “If you go to have breakfast at a diner, and you ask for egg whites, is that a problem?”

how can you not laugh at this? “a how to” on picking up women, if you will.

how can you not laugh at this? “a how to” on picking up women, if you will.

well, we never heard back from the archdiocese of boston regarding fr. david ajemian and his letters of admiration sent to a one conan o’brien. thankfully michael hundgen from tmz returned a call to talk about the entire incident.
click here to listen.