Taylor Swift Reveals ‘Never Ever’ Inspiration …

With new album “Red” on the way and its first single, “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together,” already a Hot 100 chart-topper, Taylor Swift made her way to the iHeartRadio Music Festival at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas on Saturday night (Sept. 22) to talk about her forthcoming music. When asked by Billboard’s Jonathan Brooks about the inspiration of “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together,” Swift revealed that the song was inspired by an unwanted studio run-in. Read More here…

Music’s Hottest Minors 2012

They’ve got hit records, millions of fans, and the kind of success most musicians only dream of — and they can’t even uncork a bottle of champagne to celebrate their success. Welcome to Billboard.com’s 2012 edition of 21 Under 21, our annual ranking of music’s most powerful minors.

From bubbly boy bands to hip-hop powerhouses, a sweet K-Pop princess to a trio of Mexican “tribal guarachero” pioneers, rising EDM superstars to international pop icons, these are the fresh faces whose careers will continue to pack the biggest punches over the next 12 months. Get used to them all, because they’re just getting started. As a 2012 bonus, we’ve also picked out 12 stars-to-be that could be hitting the 21 Under 21 radar (and the world’s ears) in the near future. See the complete list….

‘X Factor’ Premiere Ratings Drop 25 Percent, ‘The Voice’ Tops

One night may not be big enough for two singing competitions. With NBC adding an episode of “The Voice” to this Wednesday, up against the sophomore season premiere of Fox’s “The X Factor,” both series saw double-digit drops from their most recent outings.

“The X Factor’s” two-hour premiere averaged a 3.3 rating among adults 18-49 last night, according to fast affiliate ratings. That’s a 25 percent drop from last year’s series premiere, though a smaller drop from the December finale (3.8 adults rating.) In total viewers, “X Factor” averaged 8.5 million viewers….(Billboard)

Matchbox Twenty Gets First No. 1 Album on Billboard 200 Chart

As expected, pop/rock band Matchbox Twenty scores its first No. 1 on the Billboard 200 as its new “North” album debuts with 95,000 sold according to Nielsen SoundScan. It’s the group’s first full-length studio album since 2002’s “More Than You Think You Are,” which debuted and peaked at No. 6 off a 178,000 launch.

Since then, the act released an EP in 2003 (aptly titled “EP”) which went to No. 43 and a greatest hits package in 2007 titled “Exile On Mainstream.” The latter bowed and peaked at No. 3, starting with 131,000.

Big Jon Platt has been named Head of Creative for Warner Chapell Music

Big Jon Platt has been named Head of Creative for Warner/Chappell Music N.A. by pub ruler Cameron Strang. The well-respected Platt recently resigned from his post at EMI Music Publishing after a run of 17 years, signing a who’s who of writing talent including Kanye West, Jay-Z, P Diddy, Beyonce, Drake and Usher, among many others. The hiring is considered a major coup for Strang and WCM. (Hits)

Toby Mac is course for his first #1

Christian artist TobyMac is on course for his first No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart, as industry sources are now projecting his “Eye On It” will debut atop the list next week with 60,000 copies sold.The new Billboard 200 chart’s top 10 will be revealed on the morning of Wednesday, Sept. 5.

The last time a Christian album topped the Billboard 200 was in September of 1997, when LeAnn Rimes‘ “You Light Up My Life – Inspirational Songs” spent three weeks atop the list. A number of Christian sets have come close to hitting No. 1 in recent times, including Casting Crowns’ 2011 set “Come to the Well” (No. 2) and David Crowder Band’s 2012 effort “Give Us Rest” (No. 2).

Two days ago it seemed like there was going to be a race for No. 1 between TobyMac and Slaughterhouse on the Billboard 200 albums chart. Presently, the latter hip-hop super group is heading for a No. 2 bow with its “Welcome to Our House.” Sources say it might sell around 55,000