In celebration of the 20th anniversary of Britney Spears’ debut studio album, “…Baby One More Time,” which was released on 12 January 12 1999 through Jive Records in the USA, a nostalgia-driven microsite, “Britney OS ’99” launched today here.
The microsite reimagines a Britney Spears fan’s computer desktop in 1999 to interact with a virtual version of Britney Spears by communicating via a retro messaging app. By speaking with “Britney Bot” users are able to send GIFs, make calls and chat to create a shareable playlist that reflects their mood. Fans are rewarded with hidden exclusives, free content and a chance to win prizes by interacting with all areas of “Britney OS ’99”, such as the web browser or documents folder.
Justin Tranter, formerly of Semi Precious Weapons (who supported Lady Gaga on many early tours across the UK and Europe), and who wrote four songs on “Glory,” will serve as the executive producer on Britney’s next full-length release for RCA Records. The album will be her tenth studio effort over a career that spans two decades. Justin said: “I’m beyond excited to be involved.”
Britney’s manager, Larry Rudolph, said: “Everything is on hold right now until Jamie is better. But once he is, she will resume working on the album with Justin. Right now, she’s taking some time off to deal with these family issues.”
Today Britney Spears announced an indefinite work hiatus putting her Britney: Domination launch at Park Theater at the new Park MGM resort in Las Vegas on hold until further notice. Due to her father’s recent life-threatening health issues, she has made the decision to devote all of her time to her family and their efforts to care for her father during his recovery.
“I don’t even know where to start with this, because this is so tough for me to say. I will not be performing my new show Domination. I’ve been looking forward to this show and seeing all of you this year, so doing this breaks my heart. However, it’s important to always put your family first… and that’s the decision I had to make. A couple of months ago, my father was hospitalised and almost died. We’re all so grateful that he came out of it alive, but he still has a long road ahead of him. I had to make the difficult decision to put my full focus and energy on my family at this time. I hope you all can understand. I appreciate your prayers and support for my family during this time. Thank you, and love you all… always.
“I am dedicating my focus and energy to care for my family. We have a very special relationship and I want to be with my family at this time just like they have always been there for me.”
Refunds are available at the original point of purchase. For more information please contact Ticketmaster customer service at 800-745-3000.
Twitter abounded with rumours that New York rapper, Rich The Kid, has duetted with Britney on a new song entitled “On It.” Rich The Kid Re-Tweeted the rumour today, fuelling the fire that the gossip is true.
Billboard Boxscores have compiled the highest grossing Las Vegas residencies of all time, with Celine Dion taking spots #1 and #2 with her residencies at the Colosseum at Caesars Palace – A New Day Has Come (2003-2007, $385.1 million, 2,814,577 tickets sold, 714 shows) and Celine (2011-2018, $245.5 million, 1,520,455 tickets sold, 375 shows). Elton John took third place with The Red Piano (2004-2009, $166.4 million, 982,090 tickets sold, 247 shows). Britney is the youngest on the list in 4th place with Piece Of Me selling 916,184 tickets and generating $137.7 million over 248 shows.
Epic Rights have licensed a variety of designs to UK company Ecell Global, known online as HeadCase Designs. You can choose a design and apply it to a variety of different cases to fit the most popular Apple and Samsung devices. Cases are available to purchase on Amazon UK or via HeadCase Designs here!
Britney’s first ever official Funko Pop! Rocks doll has arrived at Target USA stores as an exclusive, featuring a free T-shirt, both marking the 20th anniversary of “…Baby One More Time.” There are no current plans for a UK release.
SoundExchange: You’ve mentioned before that one reason your first residency was important is because you’re a parent. Can you go into more detail about why and how a residency is preferable to a tour when you’re raising kids? For instance, are you able to fulfill the endless parent duties when you’re booked in the same place for an extended period?
Britney: Yes, doing shows in one place makes it so much easier for me to be with my boys. It also helps that Vegas is just a short plane ride away from L.A., so I don’t have to miss sports games, birthdays and holidays. The boys also love to come visit me on show day, which makes it so fun for me. I love having my boys around.
SoundExchange: So, it’s possible to have a career as a musician and raise a family at the same time?
Britney: It is! It’s about finding work-life balance, which is so important. It’s about learning how to prioritize.
SoundExchange: The first residency was wildly successful AND got great reviews. But what will you remember most about the first residency?
Britney: Putting that first show together was exciting and nerve-wracking at the same time. I wanted to make sure to give something amazing to my fans and there weren’t any other pop artists doing residencies at the time, so there wasn’t really anyone or anything to look to. We really had to figure out how to make the show exciting and interesting night after night and year after year, for both the fans and for myself and the cast.
SoundExchange: With the second residency approaching, is there anything you plan to do differently, whether it’s the stage production or the other visual and musical details that contribute to the fan experience?
Britney: I can’t really give away too many details! What I can say is I am working with creative team Nappytabs to put together a new show that’s going to be really spectacular. I know that my fans will not only love the music, but also the visuals. It’s going to be amazing!
SoundExchange: People attend the Las Vegas shows to hear the music they remember so fondly, but what are your thoughts about getting into the studio and releasing new music?
Britney: I always have new music on my mind! Right now, it’s really about finding the time to get into the studio between taking care of my boys and this new show!
SoundExchange: You’ve had a long career already, so to some degree your musical legacy is already established. But you also have a long career ahead of you and opportunities to further establish your legacy. Is one of your goals to be thought of in the same realm as other genre-defining artists like Aretha, Prince or Bruce Springsteen? And what will it take to achieve that goal?
Britney: It’s so hard to imagine even being mentioned in the same category as Aretha, Prince or Springsteen! They are icons and I really look up to all of them. I just try to tackle each show, year, milestone with doing and giving the best that I can. All I can hope is that everyone that comes to my show and my fans are loving what I am doing.
Larry Rudoph has talked to Pollstar about Domination and his work with Britney, saying: “She walked into my office with her family when she was 13 years old. They played me some VHS tapes, which shows how long ago it was, of her on the new ‘Mickey Mouse Club’. I didn’t know really anything about it – I’m not talking about Annette Funicello. I thought she had a lot of talent and showed a lot of promise, but she was 13 years old. And if you go back and look at the charts from 1995, you’ll see they were dominated at the time by urban pop. There weren’t any young white females on the pop charts. That had kind of ended a few years earlier with Tiffany.
“We put out the ‘…Baby One More Time’ single in September or October of 1998, and then the album in January of 1999, and both were enormously successful. We were like, if we take Britney to the malls, which is where America lives, and they see her, they’ll connect with her. I remember going to one of these shows at Macy’s Herald Square in New York. We were performing in the middle of the Calvin Klein section and there were underwear racks around us. People were just shopping and not realising that 10 feet away from them was Britney Spears, who was about to become the biggest star in the world. All of a sudden she went from unknown to everybody knowing her. I saw the change day-to-day but it was almost overnight. You would see it go from 5 percent of the house knowing her, to 15 percent, then one in five, to 50 percent, to 75 percent, to 100 percent. By the end of that little tour, in which she only did three or four songs with no production whatsoever, the album opened at #1 and she was a big star on her own. Then we planned for her actual first headlining tour. Full story “Larry Rudolph talks about Domination”→
Britney announced her new Las Vegas residency last night, to open in February 2019. Britney: Domination will be performed at the Park Theater located in the Park MGM hotel, with rumours abounding she will become the highest paid female artist in Vegas history earning her $500,000 USD per show. The theatre is currently home to Cher and Aerosmith and is the same venue where Lady Gaga will launch her Enigma and Jazz & Piano residency shows in 2019. Book tickets on Ticketmaster here!
The first run of dates are as follows:
February 2019 | 13, 14, 16, 17, 20, 22, 23, 27
March 2019 | 1 & 2
May 2019 | 8, 10, 11, 15, 17, 18, 22, 24, 25, 26
July 2019 | 24, 26, 27, 31
August 2019 | 2, 3, 7, 9, 10, 14, 16, 17
Britney is expected to make her new Las Vegas residency announcement on Tuesday, live-streamed on Ellen’s YouTube channel, during her surprise appearance to announce her announcement.
Britney is set to appear on the Las Vegas Strip at Toshiba Plaza at the front of T-Mobile Arena on Thursday night. Her arrival is scheduled for 7pm, announcing her residency at announce an upcoming residency at The Park Theater at Park MGM, next door to Toshiba Plaza and T-Mobile Arena.
For months, rumours have suggested that The Park Theater will house her next Vegas residency, following Piece Of Me at Zappos Theater at Planet Hollywood (previously The Axis) closing on New Year’s Eve after a four-year run.
Larry Rudolph would not confirm yet, saying: “We can’t specify exactly what it is just yet. But I can say she is very excited and can’t wait to share this news with the world on Thursday!”
The residency is expected to start in February 2019.
Following the Urban Outfitters USA exclusive pink vinyl release last year, and this year’s Urban Outfitters USA exclusive clear vinyl (with sparkly flowers on the sleeve, Sony Legacy are releasing a “…Baby One More Time” picture disc 12″ vinyl worldwide on 23rd November 2018, celebrating it’s 20 year anniversary.
The picture disc vinyl is also available in a bundle from Epic Rights who will launch a “…Baby One More Time” themed web store, featuring a variety of limited edition merchandise including t-shirts and accessories.
Epic Rights have announced they are to relaunch the official Britney Spears store today featuring a new, exclusive range of merchandise, separate to her tour merchandise and designs currently available in Berksha, Primark, Hot Topic, Target and Urban Outfitters.
On its 20th anniversary, Britney and the team behind “…Baby One More Time” have spoken to the Guardian.
“The whole song is about that stress that we all go through as teens. I knew it was a great song. It was different and I loved it – I don’t think you can anticipate how a song is going to be received. I was pretty young at the time, so I was nervous, but Max was so nice and put me right at ease. I remember being so in awe of Stockholm. I was out there for, like, 10 days, but we were so busy in the studio I didn’t have time to go out and explore on that first trip. I really respect his perfectionism when I’m working with him. I think Max is a genius. It all just came together and felt right. In my opinion Max is the greatest songwriter of all time.”
Max Martin, who wrote the song and sent it to TLC, said, “I remember listening back to the tape after it blew up and you can hear me sort of go: ‘Hit me baby one more time’, then I hear myself say, Yeah, it’s pretty good’.”
TLC declined the single and Simon Cowell tried to secure it for 5ive, who had worked with Max Martin on their debut single; Cowell even offered Max a £95,000 Merc 500SL for it, but he declined.
Steve Lunt began to A&R Britney’s debut album after she originally wanted to make a Sheryl Crow-esque album, and the rest is history. Nana Hedin, backing vocalist, said: “I remember I thought the song was for teenagers but the production was filled with a grown-up attitude and sounds that I really liked. I was so impressed by how a guy like Max could write lyrics that got into the hearts and spoke to the teenage thinking. I tried to sound exactly like her. It was hard, but a lot of fun. I’m like a parrot in many ways. I try to get the same vibe and use the exact same pronunciation as the artist. In one harmony, each take is different; I sing very high, in another I use powerful belting, the next I’m whispering and sometimes I even pinch my nose for a sharper sound.”
How does Britney feel about the song almost 20 years later? “Wow, that went quick. It was such a fun and crazy time, it was a bit of a blur.”
Britney kicked off her European Piece of Me tour last night at Brighton Pride, performing then full set list in front of close to 60,000 people; merchandise included a Work Bitch cap, two T shirts, pin badges, iron-on patches and a hoodie.
Britney has spoken about her ‘rollercoaster’ two decades in showbusiness as she prepares to perform in London for the first time in seven years.
Reflecting on her extraordinary career with ES Magazine, she said she would not have achieved her success without the support of her team. “I was lucky enough to have an amazingly supportive team around me. But I don’t think anyone can really prepare you for the rollercoaster.”
The star said she would get behind her sons Sean Preston, 12, and Jayden James, 11, if they chose to follow in her footsteps. “I’d support whatever they want to do as long as they stay true to themselves. It’s going so fast. They’re going to school, playing sports – growing up and finding out who they are. They’re both really gifted. That’s me being a proud mom. They’re great at sports, art, playing piano.”
Despite being one of the most recognisable faces in the world, she said she “tries to keep a low profile” and lead a quiet family life.
“I have a pretty normal day-to-day life with my kids, their school and sports, and my own routine. Family is super important to me. Me and my sister and brother are very close, and now our kids are growing up together and it’s amazing. Sometimes it’s a little embarrassing for me being recognised out in public. But people try to be as respectful as possible. Birthdays are a big deal for us. We always get together as a family to celebrate, no matter where we are.”
She has ‘no regrets’ about the past, adding: “I believe things happen for a reason.”
On Vegas, she said, “It was amazing! It was such a great four years, all the crew, dancers and band became such a family. I would be open to doing it again. It was super hard work, especially when we were putting the show together, but was worth it. The crowds that came to see my shows were so much fun and Vegas became my home away from home.”
Britney said she was excited to make her return to the UK, and specifically London. “I can’t wait – I have always had a special relationship with London and I love my time there. I like to explore and see the city each time I’m there. It’s actually been over a year since I was last there. I am so happy to bring this show to London and to my fans there, it’s going to be a lot of fun! It’s impossible for me to visit London without stopping at Topshop!”
“I just want to keep making music for my fans. I’m open to other opportunities that may come along in the future, you never know what could happen. I really admire the way Jennifer Lopez so gracefully handles being a successful entertainer, a businesswoman and, most importantly, a mom.
“I’m excited about the future, hopefully releasing new music when I’m ready! Seeing other artists do cool things and hearing their music is exciting to me — I’m inspired by everything from pop to rock to urban.”
She has also found love dating model, actor and trainer Sam Asghari, 24, for over a year now after meeting on set. “We worked together on the video for my song ‘Slumber Party’. I kept his number and a few months later gave him a call. The simple things that are most meaningful – I’m a romantic. I believe in love, so I’m open to my marriage.”
“These days everything is under such a microscope with social media being 24 /7. But it also means as artists we can connect with the fans like we couldn’t before.”
She’s also passionate about her charity work. “Whether it’s for the LGBTQ community or children, or deadly illnesses. There is so much work to be done. Being a mom, I’m passionate about the wellbeing of children.”
Britney kicks off her UK and European tour of Piece of Me this Saturday, 4th August, at Brighton Pride.