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A recap of the this week's Day in Rock stories

Top 5 stories for first half this week

Singer Stabbed To Death After Show
punkbands reports: Christopher Johnson of Useless Wooden Toys was stabbed to death Saturday morning after his band played a house show in Bloomington, Indiana on Friday night.

Johnson was taken to Bloomington Hospital where he was pronounced dead. Christopher Johnson was 32 years old.

The altercation began when the two got into a fist fight after Brian P. White grabbed a woman's buttocks at a house party at the Arlington Road residence. A short time later, White came out of the house and stabbed Johnson in the chest, according to the news release - more on this story

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Celine Butchers AC/DC
Blabbermouth reports: According to the UK's Daily Mail, Celine Dion's cover version of the AC/DC track "You Shook Me All Night Long" has been voted the worst cover song.

Dion, 40, has never released the song as a single but performed the "musical offense" at a Las Vegas concert six years ago. A SUGABABES and GIRLS ALOUD version of "Walk This Way", which had been a huge hit for AEROSMITH and rappers RUN DMC, came second.

Experts also delivered a verdict on the most successful cover versions. Jimi Hendrix's cover of the Bob Dylan song "All Along the Watchtower" topped the list, with the Guns N' Roses' version of the Wings' song "Live and Let Die" and Nirvana's cover of "The Man Who Sold the World" by David Bowie also in the top five. - Read the lists and watch a video of Sealion butchering the AC/DC song. It's not pretty.

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Axl's Chinese Democracy Tirade
Rolling Stone reports: In light of the Guns N' Roses leak last week - nine tracks that may or may not be the near-final version of Chinese Democracy - Rolling Stone dialed up Axl Rose pal and collaborator Sebastian Bach to gain some insight into where Rose now stands with the extremely delayed LP. For the full story, see the next issue (out later this week).

For now, here's Bach recalling what happened the time he suggested Rose just put out Democracy: "There's only a couple of times he's ever gotten mad at me. One of them was when I let Ron Jeremy in his dressing room. He didn't like that at all. 'Why the ---- did you let Ron Jeremy in my dressing room?' I was like, dude, he was begging. That wasn't a good time for me. Axl goes from zero to 60 faster than any hemi engine, I'll tell you that.

"When we were first hanging out in 2006, we were just standing around a bunch of people. I go, 'Axl, do you think you might get the record out? It would be a great time, now that we're on tour and everything.' He goes, 'Oh. Great! Everybody! Sebastian has a great idea here, man. Guess what? Sebastian, should I put out a record? Maybe it would be a good idea for me to put out a ----ing record! Hey everybody, listen to this! I never thought of that! That never came to me! Oh, great idea dude.' I felt like Fred Flintstone in Mr. Slate's office." - How does Axl feel about doing a reality show?

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Drugs Severely Damaged Winehouse
Jam! reports: Soul diva Amy Winehouse has damaged her lungs by smoking crack cocaine and cigarettes, her father said in an interview published Sunday.

The Sunday Mirror quoted Mitch Winehouse as saying that Amy has an early stage emphysema and an irregular heartbeat, and has been warned that she will have to wear an oxygen mask unless she stops smoking drugs.

"The doctors have told her if she goes back to smoking drugs, it won't just ruin her voice, it will kill her," Mitch Winehouse was quoted as saying. - more on this story

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Phish Reunion, Springsteen Adds Dates, Jay-Z Ridiculous, The Shins Turn Selfish, Fiddy Throws A Fit, Late Night With Motley Crue and more
antiMusic reports: Could Phish be ready to reunite? According to an online report, the beloved jam band will do exactly that at some point in the near future, when it hits the studio to make an album with producer Steve Lillywhite.

Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band have added seven dates to their summer itinerary, which will conclude Aug. 30 with a show in Milwaukee for Harley Davidson's 105th anniversary festival. more

Jay-Z has said the row over his headline slot at Glastonbury is the result of outdated thinking. The announcement has been met with some criticism, with Oasis guitarist Noel Gallagher claiming he was "wrong" for the event. But Jay-Z said: "It's ridiculous, if we don't embrace what is new, then how do we progress?" He continued: "I've never actually experienced anything like that before." more

The Shins are likely to self-release their fourth studio album through frontman James Mercer's Aural Apothecary label, Billboard can reveal. more
Taco Bell threw the gorditas to the wind when they asked rapper 50 Cent to change his name to 79, 89, or 99 Cent to match their value menu. Not only did Taco Bell grossly overestimated the worth of rapper 50 Cent, but they stood to lose as much as 49 cents. What's that? 50 Cent not only shot the offer down, but is throwing a hissy-fit about it that puts an 8 year-old girl to shame? Whew! Lucky break, Taco Bell. Lucky break. more
Opiate For The Masses regrets missing out on performing for fans in Oklahoma City, OK and Harrison, AR on this run with Filter and 10 Years. Drummer, Seven Antonopoulos is sidelined in a Dallas, TX hospital with severe complications from a dental issue he has been dealing with. Nothing less would have kept the band from the road. Opiate is due to rejoin the tour on Monday in Nashville, TN.

Former Crown the Lost/current Job For A Cowboy drummer Jon "The Charn" Rice will be handling drum duties for the Former Crown the Lost July 12 show at The Smiling Moose in Pittsburgh, PA. "Jon, who is currently on a European festival run with Job For A Cowboy, has gratiously accepted to fill in for us during this time of need, and for that, we will reward him with a case of beer and full access to my ever-unmanageable CD collection," commented the band. more

Tickle Me Pink are streaming their debut album, Madeline, in its entirety on Purevolume . You can also preview four live videos from the live DVD that will be included with the album. Madeline will hit stores on July 1st. Tickle Me Pink will hit the road this summer with Finch and Scary Kids Scaring Kids, as well as play select dates on this summer's Warped Tour.

Wanna watch Paul Shaffer screw up Motley Crue's music with his overblown keyboards? Then turn-in Tuesday night when the band are set to appear on the Late Show with David Letterman. Metal Underground's report

According to CelebrityAccess, the Mountain Rock Festival, which was slated to take place July 17-20 in Farwell, Michigan with performances by Survivor, Jackyl, and Foghat, among others, has been cancelled after unidentified investors had withdrawn their support. - more

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George Carlin RIP
antiMusic reports: A true legend has died. He wasn't a musician but we know that a lot of our readers will "leave a sh*t" about this loss. [inside joke for Carlin fans]. House of Rock has the sad news: Comedian George Carlin, a counter-culture hero famed for his routines about drugs and dirty words, died of heart failure at a Los Angeles-area hospital on Sunday, a spokesman said. He was 71.

Carlin, who had a history of heart and drug-dependency problems, died at Saint John's Health Center in Santa Monica about 6 p.m. PDT Sunday after being admitted earlier in the afternoon for chest pains, spokesman Jeff Abraham told Reuters.

Known for his edgy, provocative material, Carlin achieved status as an anti-Establishment icon in the 1970s with stand-up bits full of drug references and a routine called "Seven Words You Can Never Say On Television." A regulatory battle over a radio broadcast of the routine ultimately reached the U.S. Supreme Court. - more on this story

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T.I. Murder Charges
AP reports: Two brothers have been charged with murder in the fatal shooting of an assistant to rapper T.I. at a party following a Cincinnati performance in 2006.

Hosea Thomas, 34, and Padron Thomas, 40, were charged Thursday in the death of 26-year-old Philant Johnson and the wounding of three others in the rapper's entourage.

Detective Tim Gormly said gunfire erupted after the brothers tried to get into Harris' VIP area at an after-hours club. - more on this story

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When Surfers Attack
antiMusic reports: Not directly music related but a problem with see with a certain caliber of "pop" star. Seems that surfers have found the ultimate solution to the problem of stalkerazzi: give the prying photogs a beat down! TMZ has the story and some fun video of the karmatic happening:

A group of surfers just got gnarly on a group of paps -- all over photos of beach king Matthew McConaughey. Around 12 paps were on the beach in Malibu trying to get shots of Matty hitting the surf, when an all out smackdown was laid on the paps by turf protecting surfers.

One pap was hit the face and suffered a broken nose, while another was thrown into some rocks and had his camera smashed. McConaughey was not involved in the ruckus. - Watch the video! and crank up some Surf Punks!

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Nine Inch Nails Limit Themselves
Metal Underground reports: Nine Inch Nails' retail version of "The Slip" CD/DVD digipak will now be limited to 250,000 copies worldwide.

The package was originally announced to be limited to 200,000 pieces only (presumably for North America), each individually numbered, while for the UK, Europe, Australia, and other territories, the release would not be limited or numbered, but will otherwise be identical.

Now, this limited, numbered edition of 250,000 units will be the only version of the digipak available. - more on this story

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Slash To Get His Shot At Justice
Daily News reports: Velvet Revolver guitarist Slash and his wife, Perla, can move forward with a $1 million civil suit they filed against a real estate agent and his firm, alleging they were duped into buying a house that did not have the amenities they expected, a judge ruled today.

The suit, filed last November in Los Angeles County Superior Court and amended in mid-March, names Gregory Holcomb and Sotheby's International Realty as defendants.

Judge Mel Red Recana denied defense motions to dismiss the portions of the suit alleging fraud, constructive fraud, negative fraud and breach of fiduciary duty, and to strike the claim for punitive damages. - more on this story

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David Gilmour Live In Gdansk Details
Sony reports: David Gilmour Live In Gdańsk is a double live album plus concert DVD to be released on September 16th on Columbia Records. David Gilmour Live In Gdansk, the first solo live album from Pink Floyd's singer / guitarist, captures the magic of his concert held in front of 50,000 in the Gdansk shipyards, the final performance of his critically acclaimed 2006 On An Island tour. It also features the first ever recording of selected Pink Floyd classics performed with an orchestra.

The double live album David Gilmour Live In Gdańsk, produced by David Gilmour and Phil Manzanera, features the Gdansk concert and demonstrates a musician and his band playing at the very peak of their musical brilliance. The six piece band is accompanied for the only time on the On An Island tour by an orchestra: the 40-strong string section of the Polish Baltic Philharmonic conducted by Zbigniew Preisner, orchestral arranger on David Gilmour's On An Island album (multi-platinum around the world, number 1 in Europe, number 1 in the UK and number 6 in the U.S.). It is the first ever live recording with an orchestra of Pink Floyd's 'High Hopes' and 'A Great Day For Freedom', the latter performed here as a one-off for this special Solidarity anniversary.

The two and a half hour DVD which accompanies the live album evocatively portrays the drama of the Gdansk concert, set against the urban landscape of the shipyard and crane-filled skyline. - more on this story

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Legendary Guitarist Books First U.S. Shows In Over 3 Decades
antiMusic reports: Most people think of Motley Crue as having the wildest story in rock and roll, thanks mostly to their autobiography "The Dirt." But their sordid tales are no match for those of Fleetwood Mac. The band's history was already worthy of a blockbuster bio-pic long before they became the chart topping darlings of 70s AM radio.

The band's founder went from inspiring someone to add to the famous "Clapton Is God" graffiti on a UK wall with the line "Peter Green is Better Than God," to quitting the group and becoming a grave digger. Then when he was about to make a comeback, he refused to sign a record contract because he thought it was a deal with the Devil. (that's actually not far off).

Green's story is tame compared to how Jeremy Spencer left the group. The band was on tour and arrived in Los Angeles right after a major earthquake shook California. The band was scheduled to play the Whiskey A Go Go that night and a few hours before they were set to hit the stage, Jeremy stepped out to check out a local shop (a head shop by some accounts, bookstore by others) but he never returned. In fact, he went off and joined a cult! 36 long years have passed and Jeremy is back to his calling as a guitar god. With a new album under his belt, he has announced his plans to play in the U.S. for the first time since 1972. - more on this story

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New Order DVD Preview
imeem reports: imeem has your front row seat to the premiere of New Order's new concert DVD, "Live in Glasgow," days prior to its retail release next Tuesday! Starting today, fans can stream the entire concert for free exclusively on imeem

"Live in Glasgow" documents a rare two-night appearance by the influential synth-pop group at Glasgow's Carling Academy in October 2006. Rhino highlights the very best moments from the celebratory shows, capturing songs that span the band's extraordinary career, including several rare performances of Joy Division favorites. The set list covers songs from New Order's entire career, from the band's first single "Ceremony" and its biggest hits, including "Blue Monday," "Temptation" and "Bizarre Love Triangle," to a trio of Joy Division classics, "Love Will Tear Us Apart," "Transmission" and "Shadowplay." The video also includes interviews with all three band members, filmed exclusively for this DVD.

New Order music playlists are also available on the band's imeem profile for free streaming. On imeem, fans can create their own custom music, video and photo playlists and embed them on blogs and social networking sites like MySpace and Facebook. Simply cut and paste the embed code located under each player.
- more on this story

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Britney The Vegas Years
TMZ reports: TMZ has learned that Britney Spears is working on a new album, and Vegas kingpin George Maloof is behind it!

Our sources say the album is being recorded at Maloof's Palms Casino in Las Vegas. We hear former manager Larry Rudolph is back in the picture -- and producing the album.

Maloof is trying to extend his long arm into the music biz -- and is also behind Ali Lohan's upcoming album. - more on this story

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The Orchard Now The Proud Owners of TVT Records
The Orchard reports: The Orchard and TVT Records today announced that The Orchard was selected as the winning bidder in a bankruptcy auction held yesterday in New York City to purchase TVT Records.

Under the terms of its bid, The Orchard would assume control of TVT's catalogue of recorded masters, artist contracts and physical record distribution infrastructure, among other assets, but excluding its holdings in its music publishing subsidiary.

The acquisition is expected to close on or before July 3rd, 2008, although there can be no assurances that the transaction will close as it is subject to court approval, customary closing conditions and finalization of the purchase agreement between the parties. - more on this story

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Local Live On The Drive
PR reports: Singer-songwriter Mike Mangione is one of ten Milwaukee artists selected for a program called "Local Live On The Drive," which broadcasts live performance video clips on buses via Transit TV in Milwaukee, Chicago, Orlando, Atlanta and Los Angeles for the duration of the summer. His performance of "It's Me Not You" (along with the other performance clips) was taped in the WMSE-FM studio in Milwaukee. The bus programming debuted on June 18th.

Mangione is set to release his album "Tenebrae" nationally via Oarfin Distribution on August 5th. With "Tenebrae" already enjoying a soft release on the internet, and reaching #9 on the Euro Americana Charts for January, Mangione has his sights set to top these achievements in 2008. - more on this story

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Fiddy Restrained By Ex, But Sues Her for Defamation
TMZ reports: 50 Cent's ex Shaniqua Tompkins got a restraining order Friday morning against the rapper, but she was also served with a real doozy of a lawsuit.

The rapper's lawyers brought the legal hammer down on Tompkins, slapping her with a $20 million defamation suit in Connecticut court for accusing Fiddy -- over and over again -- of burning down his own house, and trying to kill her and his own son.

Not only that, 50 wants the court to force Shaniqua to let him visit 11-year-old Marquise, in accordance with an earlier order. - more on this story

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Wine And Pickles From Mike Keneally
PR reports: A Note From Mike Keneally: We have finally finished work on Wine And Pickles, the album of unreleased or otherwise rare and/or scintillating material recorded in the studio between 1998 and 2006.

We've been working hard on this release since February. You wouldn't think it would take so much time to put together an album of material that's already been recorded. But it does. Because we care. It's mostly unreleased tracks from my own album sessions, but it also collects a couple of tracks from other projects (such as "Inhale," a collaboration with Lyle Workman, and "Thou Shalt Not Kill," my track from the 156 Strings acoustic guitar compilation on Cuneiform), some unreleased solo recordings not attached to specific album projects, and some of the soundtrack work I did for Court TV in the late 90s.

Originally this collection was going to be only available for download, but we're such album geeks at Exowax and we were so happy with the way the album was turning out, we just needed to make it a real-life thing you could hold and fling. I've done two paintings for the package and three tons of liner notes, and Atticus Wolrab has done his customarily spine-tingling job designing the package. - more on this story

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Bumblefoot Abnormal Release Fast Approaching
PR reports: "Abnormal", the long awaited 16 track follow up to Bumblefoot's 2005 "Normal" is now available for presale at Bald Freak Music. With a sound described as "The Sex Pistols meets Queen, with innovative guitar and a Zappa-esque twist" there is something for all fans old and new.

An autographed CD can also be purchased with a portion of proceeds going to support Multiple Sclerosis research. In addition, a radio-friendly and an instrumental version of the album will be made available for purchase on iTunes and other digital stores on July 1st.

For the diehard fan that thought they had everything Bumblefoot, there is a limited edition "Fan Pack" - more on this story

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Take A Mono Ride With Jan & Dean
conqueroo reports: Jan & Dean rode the surf wave to the top of the charts in the early to mid-'60s, and even introduced the sub-genre of hot-rod rock. Yet their Liberty singles have never been comprehensively compiled into one CD package � until now. On August 26, Collectors' Choice Music will release Jan & Dean: The Complete Liberty Singles in original mono (instead of the after-the-fact stereo that has dominated reissues of the band's work). The collection contains 42 songs including all the hits and some rarities (plus Jan Berry's solo singles and an unreleased B-side).

Liner notes were written by Jan & Dean authorities Ed Osborne (who also produced the reissue) and David Beard, and include input from those who were on the scene, such as engineer/producer Bones Howe, Jan Berry friend and co-writer Don Altfeld, and Dean Torrence himself. The package contains vintage album cover art and photos.

The set includes "Surf City" (#1), "Little Old Lady From Pasadena" (#3), "Dead Man's Curve" (#8), "Drag City" (#10),"Ride the Wild Surf" (#16), "Popsicle" (#21), "Sidewalk Surfing" (#25), "Linda" (#28), "The Anaheim, Azusa & Cucamonga Sewing Circle, Book Review and Timing Association" (#77), "I Found a Girl" (#30), "You Really Know How To Hurt a Guy" (#27), "Tennessee" (#65),"Batman" (#66), "A Sunday Kind of Love" (#95) and from the T.A.M.I. Show episode they hosted, "(Here They Come) From All Over the World," among many others.
- more on this story

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Ephel Duath Dog Eyes Details
Earache reports: Davide Tiso, guitarist and founding member of Italian experimental jazz metallers Ephel Duath, has spoken about the band's upcoming new album, Through My Dog's Eyes.

Commented DAVIDE: "Through My Dog's Eyes is a generous album and we are extremely proud of it. After tons of preproductions we are ready to enter the studio this next July 14 to complete the recording sessions. We have tried to limitate intricate structures, and dissonant arrangements, offering a warm trip not too difficult to capture and appreciate. This album arrives directly to the stomach of the listener, but not using any kind of violence. The body of TMDE is massive, his eyes are delicate and gentle: what you find in a big size dog. - more on this story

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Sister Hazel Named One of the Most Influential Independent Performers of the last 15 years
PR reports: Performing Songwriter magazine has named the band Sister Hazel as one of their Top 100 Most Influential Independent Performers of the last 15 years in their June issue (on stands now).

Sister Hazel was included in the "Organizers" category, which focuses on artists who provide opportunities for others. Said Performing Songwriter of Sister Hazel: "The Gainesville, Fla., band, known for devoting to their fans and charity events, has built an entire community of like-minded individuals. In 2001 they launched the Rock Boat, a first-of-its-kind floating festival that was the model for all fan cruises that followed. The 2009 event will feature a dozen acts including Carbon Leaf, Cowboy Mouth and Aslyn. In 2004 they created the Rock Slope, a ski and snowboarding music fest in Steamboat Springs, Colo. Sister Hazel's 10th CD, Before The Amplifiers, Live Acoustic, will be released in June." - more on this story

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Gojira Discuss Their New Album
Prosthetic Records reports: France's metal titans Gojira are currently finishing the band's forthcoming album, 'The Way of All Flesh,' which is currently slated for an October 14 release in North America through Prosthetic Records. The follow-up to the critically-acclaimed 'From Mars To Sirius,' the album will be available throughout Europe one day earlier through Listenable Records.

Gojira frontman Joe Duplantier recently spoke with MTV's Chris Harris about the upcoming record. An excerpt from the conversation: "That's the theme � it's about death itself," explained. "It's also about the immortality of the soul. That's the main subject for us. Since we started to play and release albums, we've always talked about the same thing: the soul.

"This album's got a more dramatic feel to it, and some of the lyrics are almost cynical," continued Duplantier. "Usually, with my lyrics, I'm always positive. But on this album, I'm so pissed off with the situation on Earth right now, how we're abusing so much, and we take everything that we can take from the ocean, and we kill off endangered species. So in some of the songs, it's almost like a requiem for the Earth. This record is a lot darker � like, a lot darker, I would say. The music is darker and more violent." - read the full article

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Mandragora Scream's Again
MMP reports: Metal Mind Productions will rerelease Mandragora Scream's debut album "Fairy Tales From Hell's Caves" and the follow-up "A Whisper Of Dew" which are the mandatory releases for any fans of modern gothic rock.

Mandragora Scream is without question one of the most prominent groups on the contemporary gothic rock/dark wave scene. Their amazing releases include all the best elements of the genre, resulting in unforgettable musical experiences that touch the deepest parts of the soul.

"Fairy Tales From Hell's Caves" (2001) was a concept album, telling the story of Virgil, who descends all the way down to the Dantean Hell, where he meets a mysterious vampire fairy.
- more on this story

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Not To Be Undimensional Conscious Again
PR reports: Metal Mind Productions announces the rerelease of Disharmonic Orchestra's "Not To Be Undimensional Conscious". New digipak edition is limited to 2000 copies and includes 3 bonus tracks! The release date is scheduled for 21st July 2008 in Europe and 2nd September 2008 in USA (via MVD).

Disharmonic Orchestra is one of those bands that leave you speechless after listening to just one song. Right from the get-go you simply hear the difference � it's death metal, but not played in the way you would expect it to sound. Innovative ideas and groundbreaking patterns � all of this reinvents the sole definition of death metal, introducing music that reaches far beyond its boundaries.

The group's second LP from 1992 entitled "Not To Be Undimensional Conscious" is perhaps one of the finest releases in the history of avant-garde metal� Everything on this album, from the peculiar cover and booklet design to the music itself, ventured as far from traditional death metal approach as possible.
- more on this story

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Killsmith Week: Day 1
antiMusic reports: Most people got their first taste of Neal Smith's talent on most of Alice Cooper's classic songs. But to get the full Neal Smith experience you have to hear the new Killsmith album 'Sexual Savior,' where Neal not only wrote all the songs and played almost all of the instruments but also produced it! Last month Morley spoke with Neal about the album in details and we're including just a small part of that conversation here this week as Neal walks us through some of his favorite tracks from the CD. Here is Neal with today's song:

"Leave Me Alone": I find that I have all sorts of inspirations for writing material. But what I try to do some times is put myself into somebody's head and I was imagining what, if I could get inside the head of the kids that did so much damage in Columbine, and try to see what they may have been thinking about days or weeks before this happened. And that's totally where this came from. I mean it was pretty simplistic in its approach. And I wanted to try something just a little bit different.

Instead of just hammering out lines, just to belt out words, that were very powerful words to talk about what someone may have been thinking, and actually, I probably can imagine there's not too many kids in high school that at some point or another, no matter who they are, may have not had those feelings. Now reacting to them the way that people do sometimes unfortunately in some of these instances with weapons which is totally outrageous. Not everybody does that but they still think those things. I mean we're all in high school at one point. So that was sort of the inspiration for that one."

Learn more about the CD and what else Neal is up to right - here

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Fists Fly Over Britney at LAX
TMZ reports: A mad crush turned violent at LAX as Britney Spears returned to Los Angeles. Law enforcement sources tell TMZ that as Britney made her way through the terminal swarmed by more than 30 photogs, a fight broke out between one of Brit's bodyguards and a photographer.

Several uniformed officers, who happened to be in the area working crowd control on the snappers, immediately responded to the fight.

After the skirmish, we're told the two men shook hands and made up. No arrests were made. - Watch the video

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