Day in Pop Report for 06/14/2011
(TMZ) Shaquille O'Neal is embroiled in a criminal case in which 7 gang members allegedly kidnapped, beat up and robbed a man who claimed to have a tape showing Shaq having sex with other women while he was married to Shaunie.
Law enforcement sources tell TMZ ... Ladell Rowles -- a member of the Main Street Mafia Crip Gang in L.A. who is friends with Shaq -- along with 6 other members went on a search and destroy mission in L.A. on February 11, 2008. They believed a man named Robert Ross had the sex tape and they tried getting it back with the help of a gun or two.
According to the police report, the 7 gang members met up with Ross at a convenience store -- Pink Dot -- on the Sunset Strip. The men allegedly surrounded Ross' Rolls Royce Phantom with guns drawn, jumped into Ross' car and ordered him to drive to Rowles' house in South Central L.A.
Once there, Rowles allegedly pistol whipped Ross and demanded that he turn over the sex tape. Ross said he would get the tape and bring it back to them. The 7 men then allegedly took Ross' Rolex, diamond chain and earrings, along with $15,000 in cash -- then let Ross go.
The 7 men have been arrested and charged with robbery, kidnapping and other crimes. They are currently in the middle of a preliminary hearing and being held in jail.
We've learned LAPD detectives interviewed Shaq to determine what, if any, involvement he had in the alleged crimes. When the case file went to the D.A. Shaq was not listed as a suspect. Now here's the interesting backstory
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George Strait released his 89th career single yesterday and notches his second highest debut in his career on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart as "Here For A Good Time," the first single from his upcoming MCA Nashville album, lands at No. 29 on its official add date at radio.
It is the most added song at country radio this week with an impressive 80 adds. This is his highest debut since "I Saw God Today" debuted Top 20 in 2008.
"Here For A Good Time," written by Strait, his son Bubba Strait and legendary songwriter Dean Dillon, is Strait's 89th career single. The new album is scheduled for a fall release. more on this story
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(TMZ) Shifty Shellshock's estranged wife has filed for divorce, TMZ has learned -- and she's demanding full custody of their 7-year-old son ... claiming the "Celebrity Rehab" alum is a crappy caretaker.
Melissa Binzer filed the divorce docs in L.A. County Superior Court recently -- citing irreconcilable differences. But here's the interesting part -- they share a 7-year-old son, who has type 1 diabetes. Melissa claims Shifty has no idea how to take care of a diabetic child, so she's demanding full legal and physical custody.
On top of that, Melissa claims Shifty has struggled with drug and alcohol addictions for a long time, and she fears he "would not create a suitable environment" for their son.
Melissa and Shifty -- real name Seth Binzer -- got married in 2002, but have been separated for nearly six years. more on this story
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(Stunt) Mat Kearney has announced an August 2nd release date for his fourth full-length studio album, entitled Young Love.
The new album was recorded in Nashville with his longtime friend and producer Robert Marvin as well as Jason Lehning and is the follow-up to 2009's City of Black & White. more on this story
For Young Love the Nashville based, Oregon born artist expanded on his sound and approach by incorporating beats and grooves into his songwriting. The result is ten addictive honest heartfelt songs including "Hey Mama," a catchy, handclap-inducing tune that is the first single from the set. This infectious song currently available via all digital retailers is on its way to being a summertime hit as it climbs its way up the charts, currently Top 40 at Hot AC and Top 20 at AAA.
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American Idol mastermind Simon Fuller and Island Records founder Chris Blackwell have teamed up for a new joint venture that will create an independent partnership model for artists and content owners in the music and entertainment industries aimed at putting them in full control of their careers and their businesses for the first time.
The new venture Blackwell Fuller, Inc. will take the form of a new content company focused on working with artists looking to develop and nourish the connection points between them and their audiences. Fuller and Blackwell have already identified several opportunities to partner with important artists and iconic brands and will be announcing the first of these initiatives in the coming months.
"In the rush to create new media platforms in this incredibly explosive digital age, the business community generally relegates artists to the role of a mere spectator, often at their own expense," said Fuller. "We believe we have a unique opportunity to create new-media partnerships directly with the creators themselves and build a new model that will define the path for artists and creators for the new digital age." more on this story
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(Webster) Ricky Skaggs will take the stage with the Boston Pops in Boston, Massachusetts on June 25th and 26th.
The Pops, commonly referred to as "America's Orchestra," will join Skaggs and his band, Kentucky Thunder, performing many of Skaggs' country and bluegrass hits as part of his 2011 Treasure Chest Tour.
Led by conductor Keith Lockhart, the orchestra has popularized light, classical music through their performances at the Symphony Hall and the PBS series, "Evening at Pops." This is not the first time the classical orchestra music has paired up with #1 bluegrass hits; Skaggs and the Pops received rave reviews after they performed together back in 2005. more on this story
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(charitybuzz) As a Grammy-winning artist and a SAG Award-winning actress, there's nothing that Mya can't do. From singing and songwriting to dancing and acting, Mya's on-screen presence as a multi-faceted entertainer has been truly-awe inspiring, which is why an exclusive opportunity to chat with Mya over dinner in NYC can't be missed.
She's partnering with leading charity auction site charitybuzz to put the one-on-one dinner valued at $2,500 up for grabs. Whether it's pow-wowing over how she brought down the house "Lady Marmalade" style with fellow artists Christina Aguilera, Lil' Kim and Pink, or listening to incredible tales from the set of the film adaptation of Broadway musical Chicago, there will be plenty to talk about.
The auction runs through Wednesday, June 15 here. Proceeds will benefit North Shore Animal League America, the largest no-kill animal rescue and adoption organization in the world.
One of the most unique breakthrough musical artists today, Janelle Monae has dazzled the entertainment world with her sensational, soulful stylings that have Vogue magazine labeling her "a different kind of diva," while earning accolades from Sean "Diddy" Combs as "a true visionary". A retro-glam fashionista as well as a funky-fresh entertainment influence, Janelle has captured the imaginations of fellow artists and fans everywhere, so who wouldn't want to get the chance to meet Janelle Monae backstage at a concert of their choice? One winner and a friend could win the opportunity to meet the funkstress face-to-face, and listen to a few of her Grammy-nominated hits live! Bidding is open at charitybuzz through Wednesday, June 15 here. Proceeds will benefit I'm Still Here Foundation, which draws on the support and collaboration of artists and cultural institutions as a resource to share, educate and inspire people living with Alzheimer's. more on this story
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(Wolfson) New school meets old school when rising soul sensation Mayer Hawthorne and legendary Memphis organ player Booker T. Jones join Daryl Hall on a special two-part episode which premieres with the 43rd edition of Live From Daryl's House.
The newest installment of the Webby and MTV O Music award-winning Internet series, which last year made its broadcast debut on WGN America to impressive ratings, will debut at www.lfdh.com on June 15, followed by an episode featuring Daryl and Booker T. with Hawthorne as the guest artist on July 15.
Mayer Hawthorne was born in Ann Arbor, MI, listening on the car radio to the rich soul music coming out of the Motor City. He counts Isaac Hayes, Leroy Hutson, Mike Terry and Barry White among his influences, but draws the most inspiration from Smokey Robinson, Curtis Mayfield and the legendary Motown songwriting team of Holland-Dozier-Holland, which he shares with Daryl. After several critically acclaimed releases for the independent Stones Throw label, Hawthorne signed with Universal Republic for his upcoming new album, How Do You Do, and is currently on tour with Bruno Mars and Janelle Monαe. more on this story
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Jonathan Mann's Song-A-Day project goes viral with 30 songs being written and recorded in 30 days.
Mann has enlisted his friends in The Spinto Band, The Family Crest and The Glowing Stars as well as a handful of random musicians, many of whom are collaborating remotely to take part in the June Song-A-Day project.
The whole process, from writing to arranging to recording and producing is being streamed live on www.songatron.com, incorporating feedback from the audience watching into the songs. more on this story
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Universal have set an August 16th release date for the 10th Anniversary expanded two-CD set, O Brother, Where Art Thou? Deluxe Edition, with legendary original producer T Bone Burnett personally involved in all aspects of this release.
The album that rocketed bluegrass, roots and even Americana music from the 20th Century into the new millennium features a 17-track bonus disc. Thirteen of these newly-released songs were recorded during original sessions for the film, and all except "Cow Road" and "I'll Fly Away" went unheard on-screen. This release marks the first time these tracks have been made available in any format.
Produced by 12-time GRAMMY Award- and Academy Award-winner T Bone Burnett, the original O Brother, Where Art Thou? soundtrack from the 2000 filmwritten, directed and produced by the Coen Brothers and starring George Clooneyshot to No. 1 on the Billboard Top 200 and Country charts and became a bona fide music phenomenon, despite scant radio airplay. Along with ALBUM OF THE YEAR honors, the album won GRAMMYs for "I Am A Man Of Constant Sorrow" performed by Dan Tyminski, Harley Allen and Pat Enright, and "O Death" by the legendary Dr. Ralph Stanley. more on this story
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(TMZ) Katt Williams has been arrested again ... TMZ has learned -- this time, the comedian was busted in Palmdale, CA after an intense standoff with a tractor driver.
Law enforcement sources tell TMZ ... a man doing tractor work on a Palmdale home where Katt was staying claims three women approached his vehicle and began attacking him with rocks and dirt clods around 4:30 Saturday afternoon.
The man, who says he suffered facial injuries in the attack, called his wife to pick him up -- but when she arrived, Katt pulled up in an SUV and blocked their exit. That's when the man called 911.
The L.A. County Sheriff's Dept. quickly arrived to the scene -- arrested the women for assault with a deadly weapon and busted Katt for felony intimidating a witness.
Katt was hauled to a nearby station, where he was booked. Bail was set at $50,000. Williams was released later that night. more on this story
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(IT) The Wilderness of Manitoba continues to tour in the States, adding a series of new shows this summer.
The dates will find the group alongside a varied group of artists ranging from Aimee Mann to Rasputina or Other Lives.
The chamber-folk ensemble is touring in support their debut collection, When You Left The Fire, out now on tinyOGRE. more on this story
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(TMZ) Bret Lockett might finally get that face-to-face meeting with Kim Kardashian he always wanted -- but it looks like it's going to go down ... in a courtroom!
Sources close to Kim K tell TMZ ... her lawyers are drafting a defamation lawsuit against Lockett and will file it as early as Monday morning.
Kim has maintained all along she never met Bret -- despite his claims they had a "physical relationship." Harvey hammered Lockett on TMZ Live last week, asking him when and where he met Kim, but Lockett refused to say. Nevertheless, he insisted he and Kim had hooked up this year, after she starting dating Kris Humphries.
But on Friday, Lockett finally fessed up on "Showbiz Tonight" ... admitting he never actually met Kim. We're told Kim's lawyers fired off a letter to Lockett in the last few days, telling him to hang on to the so-called "evidence" he has on his "affair" with Kim -- because he'll need to produce it in court. more on this story
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(Girly) Architecture in Helsinki's "Contact High" gets remixed by Bjφrn Yttling (Producer for Lykke Li and Member of Peter, Bjφrn, & John).
The band has added a new NY date to their tour and are about to wrap up the tail end of their U.S. tour. Fans and listeners also have something to look forward to with this new remix of their beloved new single "Contact High".
The music video for Architecture in Helsinki's catchy original version, off of their new album Moment Bends, can be seen here. more on this story
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(Jam!) Selena Gomez hit the stage for her first gig since her pre-weekend hospitalization on Monday and assured fans she was fine. Talking about her illness, the teenager said, "I was just very malnourished... low on iron and exhausted." more
(Antiquiet) This thunder-stealing son of a bitch! Just hours shy of the release of Eminem and Royce Da 5′9″s collaboration Bad Meets Evil Hell: The Sequel, Kanye West dropped a new track called Mama's Boyfriend that fans will recognize from his a capella performance at the Facebook offices late last year. more
(Billboard) Carl Gardner, lead singer of '50s group the Coasters, passed away Sunday (June 12) in Port St. Lucie, Florida after an extended illness. Gardner, whose voice leads Coasters classics like "Yakety Yak," "Poison Ivy" and "Charlie Brown," co-founded the band in 1955 more
Ever wonder what Bruce Springsteen classics might sound like if they were done in cheesed out auto-tune? (Billboard) The minds behind "Glee" are hoping to snag Bruce Springsteen for season three. Executive producer Ian Brennan wants The Boss to join the show as a motivational speaker. more
Josh Turner will perform with one of his musical idols Randy Travis on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno to night, Tuesday, June 14. They will perform T.I.M.E. from Travis' most recent duets album Anniversary Celebration.
(Billboard) With a 20th week at No. 1 on Billboard's Adult Contemporary chart, Bruno Mars' "Just the Way You Are" becomes the longest-reigning debut single in the list's almost 50-year history. more
(Hollywood Reporter) After Summit Entertainment (who distributes the "Twilight" films) got songwriter Matt Heart's "Eternal Knight" booted off YouTube, iTunes, Amazon and other outlets, the singer sued. Last week, a federal judge in Ohio allowed parts of the lawsuit to survive, finding that the singer has alleged a plausible claim that the studio knowingly misrepresented its copyrights when sending a takedown notice to various websites. more
(BBC) Laura Ziskin, producer of Pretty Woman, Fight Club and the Spider-Man films, dies of cancer in Los Angeles at the age of 61 more
(BBC) Sci-fi mystery Super 8, directed by JJ Abrams, claims pole position at the US and Canada box office from X-Men prequel First Class more
(Billboard) Frank Ocean mentioned via his Tumblr blog that he'll be collaborating with Kanye West and Jay-Z, presumably on their upcoming joint album "Watch the Throne." more
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(TMZ) Sources connected with Charlie Sheen tell TMZ ... the actor is negotiating a "big offer" for a new TV series that could debut as early as January, 2012.
We're told Charlie's reps are in "deep negotiations" and the deal could be done by week's end.
Our sources say the sitcom is being written specifically around Charlie and will air on a broadcast network. The deal does not call for a pilot. The show would go straight to series.
Our sources would not reveal details about the sitcom, except to say Chuck Lorre is NOT involved. more on this story
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BET Awards '11 have announced the addition of Lil Wayne and Drake as performers at this year's event.
Lil Wayne and Drake will join the previously announced performers Jill Scott and Alicia Keys.
The event, hosted by comedian Kevin Hart, airs live on Sunday, June 26 at 8 p.m.* from the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, CA more on this story
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(Stunt) Owl City kicked off his headlining tour of the US last night at the legendary Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, TN.
The tour kicked-off on the eve of the release of his new full-length studio album All Things Bright and Beautiful (Universal Republic), which hits stores today.
The new album is the follow up to his platinum selling debut Ocean Eyes and has already been receiving raves from the press. more on this story
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Coldplay, The Office, Chelsea Handler, Eminem, Maroon 5, Wilco, Bon Iver, Robyn, Dave Matthews Band, Fox NFL Sunday, Friday Night Lights are all part of the Joplin Tornado Relief eBay charity auction to benefit United Way of Southwest Missouri.
On May 22, Joplin, Missouri was hit by a tornado that would later come to be known as the deadliest in American history. While images of the devastation are burned into our consciousness, the city has focused their energy on rebuilding their community and their lives.
Today, the public can do their part to support Joplin by visiting the Joplin Tornado Relief eBay Charity Auction at www.ebay.com/givingengine.
The first round of the auction, powered by premiere auction management company Giving Engine, is currently up and will take place through Monday, June 20th. Notable items on the digital auction block include
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Trace Adkins has set an August 2, 2011 released date for his brand new album Proud To Be Here.
The announcement was made in front of thousands of fans on Saturday night during Adkins' 13th consecutive CMA Music Festival performance at LP Field in Nashville, TN. The album Deluxe Edition will be available for presale on iTunes on July 12, 2011.
"Proud To Be Here was chosen as the album title some weeks ago because it's how I've felt ever since my first album release and during every milestone since. The title song could have been based on my life and it's about narrow escapes and the grace that guides you through. Obviously, now after the fire, Proud To Be Here takes on an even greater significance. Once again, I've been blessed and everyone is safe. I don't even want to think what could've been had it started at 3am instead of 3pm..." said Trace. more on this story
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(TMZ) Ricki Lake is being sued for allegedly making a HUGE mistake with some flammable heating oil ... and causing the fire that burned down the Malibu beach house she was renting back in 2010.
According to the lawsuit filed by the owner of the home ... Lake was refilling a portable space heater when she spilled the oil on the hot heating coils -- and the oil burst into flames. The fire quickly ripped through the entire property.
In the lawsuit, filed Monday in L.A. County Superior Court, the owner, Hovsep Kousouyan, claims Lake spoke with emergency personnel who responded to the fire -- and she admitted the whole thing was her fault.
Kousouyan says his beach house was completely destroyed in the blaze -- and wants Lake to pay for all of the damages ... which could be in the millions. more on this story
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(TMZ) If you wanted to catch a glimpse of Octomom in a bikini AND get your car washed ... sorry, you're outta luck -- her bikini car wash for next weekend has been canceled.
Nadya Suleman's manager tells TMZ the car wash -- which was organized to help Nadya raise some scratch for mortgage payments -- is off because the deal with they had with the Melrose Strip Auto Detailing went south. The manager says the place wanted $13 from the $20 they were charging -- plus they had to bring their own towels and soap.
The manager says the car wash is off and they're looking for a new place to have it. The weekend manager at the car wash confirmed it was canceled, but wouldn't go into detail. more on this story
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(Livestream) Dave Koz will answer fan questions and play a few songs live from his summer rehearsal today, June 14 at 9pm ET/6pm PT.
The special Livestream event is in celebration of the release of the star's new album 'Live from Soho.'
Fans can submit their questions in advance to Dave on Facebook or on Twitter using the hashtag #davekozlive. Viewers can join in on the fun live here
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