Pop culture from Southern California and beyond.

Katy Perry & Rebecca Black duet on 'Friday' in LA, ballad-style

At Katy Perry's Friday night L.A. concert, she welcomed very special surprise guest Rebecca Black to do a duet of Black's song "Friday." Perry introduced her as "the infamous Rebecca Black," which sounds about right.

Black also appeared in the music video for Perry's recent single "Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)." They slowed "Friday" down for a brief pairing and shared about a minute-and-a-half of stage time. (I mean, come on, she's still Rebecca Black.) Perry closed the segment by yelling "I love the Internet!"

(via Vulture)

Watch Katy Perry's "Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)":

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Playing with Google Music Beta

The hot new thing online recently has been cloud music players. For those not in the know, this essentially means being able to listen to music you own over the Internet.

Amazon was first out the gate with their cloud player, followed by Google, with Apple reportedly soon to come.

While in beta, Google Music is invitation only. You can apply for your own Google Music Beta invitation here.

I just got my invite to Google Music Beta today, so here are a few initial thoughts:

  • Unlike Amazon, Google is offering a nice selection of popular songs for free to get people into the service.
  • One thing that allows Google to do that is that you can't download songs once they're uploaded. However, it's playable on Android phones and tablets, and you can also select songs on your device to play back later when you're offline. It also automatically caches recently played songs.
  • It took a little futzing, but you can listen to music from Google Music Beta on your iPhone or iPad.
  • Much like Apple's iTunes, you can create automated mixes based on one song from your collection, as well as creating traditional playlists.
  • It's got a higher cap for free storage than Amazon, topping out at 20,000 songs. However, Amazon provides storage for any music bought through Amazon's MP3 store for free.
  • It's also got a built in rating system to let it know which songs you like and which you don't. Unlike iTunes' 5 star system, it's a bit simpler: thumbs up or thumbs down.
  • It's been a little buggier for me than Amazon's cloud player so far, with more frequent buffering issues.
  • However, while very similar to Amazon's cloud player, I found the Google interface a bit easier to use.

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Obama's latest accomplishment: Getting a girl a meeting with Justin Bieber

New York magazine's Daily Intel ran a story last week about how President Obama had just made a promise that he couldn't keep: getting a 14-year-old girl whose father was killed in the attack on the World Trade Center the chance to meet pop megastar Justin Bieber. The girl, Payton Wall, says that Bieber's music helped her survive, despite her loss.

Obama made that promise during last week's ceremony at ground zero, meeting with Payton, her sister Avery and their mother Diane. Obama told Payton that he "knows Justin" and would set a meeting up with Bieber.

Well, Justin Bieber just proved New York magazine wrong – he tweeted that Obama would be keeping this promise.

What I find most notable about this story: it's apparently easier to get a meeting with the president of the United States than with Justin Bieber.

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Pomplamoose covers the Angry Birds theme song

We've extolled the virtues of Pomplamoose before, the quirky male/female pair who put out music videos of their work that show how each sound in that song was produced.

However, they've just released their most off the wall creation to date: A cover of a song familiar to the hordes of Angry Birds players the world over, the Angry Birds theme (at least those not covertly playing the game with the sound off).

True diehards will have to wait for covers of the versions from later releases of the game, but you can enjoy Version 1 below:

For your listening pleasure, more Pomplamoose:

Michael Jackson's "Beat It":

Earth, Wind & Fire's "September":

The Chordettes' "Mister Sandman":

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Foo Fighters release YouTube performance of their entire new album 'Wasting Light'

In an interesting marketing approach, the Foo Fighters performed their entire new album "Wasting Light" and put up a YouTube video of the performance. The video was shot in the Foo Fighters' Studio 606.

The Foos have done their best to get out the word however they can. They released a documentary on the history of the band "Back and Forth," which aired in theaters on April 5 along with a live, 3D performance of the album. The documentary later aired commercial-free on various cable channels on April 8.

They've also used viral videos, contests, secret shows, social media and more in order to promote "Wasting Light."

If you still haven't gotten your Foo fill, they're releasing an album of covers, "Medium Rare," as a limited-edition vinyl for Record Store Day tomorrow, April 16.

I had the chance to see the Foo Fighters live about a decade ago when they were on tour with the Red Hot Chili Peppers. While the Foo Fighters opened the show at Washington state music venue The Gorge, they ended up delivering the more memorable, energetic performance, including climbing the sound booth. It's fun to see them still energized a decade later.

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