Saturday, February 2, 2008

"Britney Spears the ballet comes to stage : MELTDOWN"

LONDON (Reuters) - "Meltdown", a modern ballet about troubled U.S. singer Britney Spears, will be performed by the Rambert Dance Company in London on Friday.

The dance portrays Spears fending off the paparazzi, shaving her hair and being carried off the stage on a stretcher, according to the BBC.

"I became fascinated by the fact we are fascinated with her," choreographer Hubert Essakow told the public broadcaster.

"You can't open a newspaper without her being in it. I became obsessed by every detail of her life."

The music was composed by Richard Thomas, who helped create the controversial "Jerry Springer - The Opera", a musical that offended many Christians in Britain.

Playing Spears is Gemma Nixon, who called Spears' public persona "sort of grotesque."

A spokesman for the group said "Meltdown" was envisaged as a one-off and would last about 16 minutes. It is part of a new choreography season designed to allow dancers to create their own works.

Spears, 26, who has been hounded by the tabloid press and lost custody of her two young sons, was taken to a Los Angeles hospital on Thursday where she was on psychiatric hold for the second time in a month.

She has been held for a three-day mental evaluation on the orders of her psychiatrist, her manager said.

"French Fry-throwing teen girls charged with hurling missles"

LARAMIE, Wyo. (AP) — Three 13-year-old girls accused of throwing French fries during lunchtime at their school were cited for "hurling missiles," an adult infraction covered by city ordinances.

The principal of Laramie Junior High and a police officer had warned students during an assembly the day before the French fries' launch that if they threw food, they had to suffer the consequences, Police Chief Bob Deutsch said. The warning came after school officials had heard rumors of an impending food fight.

"They saw it as really the planning of a riot, when you think about it," Deutsch said.

The girls decided to test the warning, he said.

"It wasn't a spontaneous thing -- a couple of kids giggling, throwing a French fry at each other," Deutsch said. "They intended on getting everybody involved in this and starting something that no doubt would have the potential of getting out of control."

Now, some observers are saying police and school officials went overboard, and even the American Civil Liberties Union weighed in.

"It certainly seems that this was an overreaction to a situation that could have been handled differently," said Linda Burt, Wyoming director of the ACLU.

The girls were also suspended for three days.

City prosecutor Ashley Castor didn't return phone messages left Thursday and Friday. Principal Steve Hoff declined to comment, and schools Superintendent Brian Recht did not return messages.

"Sarah Silverman's affair with Matt Damon..."

Friday, February 1, 2008

"Study claims most kids pay for online music"

from - by Eliot Van Buskirk

A study from the NPD group revealed that kids aged 9-14 -- the ever-so-valuable "tween" demographic -- prefer iTunes to peer-to-peer services and even MySpace when it comes to acquiring music online.

Here's where the 70 percent of tweens who download digital music in an average month are getting their tunes, according to the survey, which was emailed out to a representative slice of the population with kids aged 2-14 (3,376 respondents):

  • Apple iTunes: 49 percent
  • Limewire: 26 percent
  • MySpace: 16 percent

NPD entertainment industry analyst Russ Crupnick said "it's encouraging that so many young consumers are acquiring digital music the legal way -- by paying for it." (Ostensibly, these kids also make their money the old fashioned way -- they earn it.)

Crupnick also took parents to task, despite these encouraging numbers for the music industry. He said it's "surprising how unsupervised [tweens] are." Two thirds of respondents said they are allowed to access the Web themselves, without adult supervision.

One obstacle continues to plague the music industry as it reaches out to its bread-and-butter demographic, those Hanna Montana-loving tweens: none of them have credit cards.

Crupnick points to answers: "The industry can still do more to promote specific ways children can obtain digital music legally, through pre-paid accounts and gift cards. Another potential way to reach kids is through industry-sanctioned ad-supported Web destinations where kids can obtain digital music safely and legally."

(via billboard)

"Bill Cosby working on Hip-Hop album"

from - by Houston Williams

Bill Cosby - a staunch critic of some rap music - is set to release a Hip-Hop album called State of Emergency, which will be a sanitized, issue-oriented CD.

Sources told that the actor, comedian and philanthropist will address issues like proper parenting, teen pregnancy, drug abuse, Black-on-Black crime and the dropout rate in America's high schools.

In 2004, Cosby said in a speech, "Your dirty laundry gets out of school at 2:30 every day, it's cursing and calling each other [the N-word] as they're walking up and down the street. They think they're hip. They can't read. They can't write. They're laughing and giggling, and they're going nowhere."

Cosby's album will not contain any profane language, nor will it offer any denigrating comments towards women.

State of Emergency would be the 35th album for the legendary comedian, actor, who released his first album Bill Cosby is a Very Funny Fellow in 1963.

Whether or not Cosby will work with rappers on his lyrical flow or his musical selection was not known at press time.

"Limited-edition box set shows every side of Pink Floyd"


The following is not a misprint. Pink Floyd's "Dark Side Of The Moon" has been on one Billboard chart or another for 1,589 weeks. Issued in the spring of 1973, it was certainly the best-selling of their 14 studio albums and has been reissued on CD a number of times.

But it's never before been released with the other 13 studio albums of the revered English band — until now. "Oh By The Way" (Capitol/EMI) is a remarkable limited-edition box set with all the long-players — minus any greatest hits collections — featuring the original covers, any posters or special treats that came with the originals and even the varied artwork that graced the vinyl disc label.

It begins with their debut, "The Piper At The Gates Of Dawn," from the summer of 1967, and wraps up with "Division Bell," out in the spring of 1994.

A project this huge hardly requires unreleased tracks, outtakes of classics or the usual DVD of a movie or studio adventures that often accompany big boxes by big stars.

But, it's still a pretty cool set.

For example, "Wish You Were Here" (the one with the guy on fire on the cover) even has the black shrink-wrap that covered the vinyl original along with a postcard. There are two posters and a couple of stickers with "Dark Side" and the rounded corners and blurry art of 1972's "Obscured By Clouds."

"Echoes," the double-disc best-of that came out in 2001 was a great collection of album tracks and their relatively few hit singles — only five in this country — but the group often fashioned their releases as a conceptual work to be heard in its entirety, not as a collection of possible singles or unrelated songs.

This unique collection chronicles their progression from what Rolling Stone once called "a moderately successful acid-rock band" before "Dark Side Of The Moon" to one of the most successful and influential groups in rock history.

The well-chronicled animosity between some of the original members makes it likely this box will be the ultimate Pink Floyd collection. That may be a shame, but fans can at least revel in this sprawling overview of their output while hoping against hope the grumpy old guys can once again work together.

**FYI: This box set is made up of vinyl'esque compact discs, not vinyl records... - Ace:)

"Germany launches comic book on Holocaust"

from Reuters - by By Sarah Roberts

BERLIN (Reuters) - German schools will launch a comic book next week that aims to teach above all underprivileged children about the Nazi era and the Holocaust.

Although German schools already make a big effort to give pupils a thorough education about the Nazi era, racist violence remains a problem, and the revival of Germany's Jewish community has brought a rise in anti-Semitism with it.

The Tintin-style comic book is called "The Search", and tells the story of Esther, a fictional Jewish survivor of the Holocaust.

Created by the Dutch cartoonist Eric Heuvel, it is already available in the Netherlands. Berlin's Anne Frank Centre, which is backing the project, thinks it will serve a purpose in Germany, too.

"There is not a major gap in the way Germany teaches the history of this era, but this is a new approach," said spokeswoman Melina Feingold, noting that the book could reach some of the children who are least interested in schoolwork:

"We hope the comic will get even underprivileged kids interested in learning about the Holocaust."

The 61-page book, already available in various European languages, will be used alongside worksheets in history classes at secondary schools in Berlin for six months, after which the project hopes to go nationwide.

The book, based on fact, describes how Jews in Germany and the Nazi-occupied Netherlands experienced the genocidal Nazi persecution that took the lives of 6 million European Jews.

It includes the Night of Broken Glass in November 1938, when Jews were beaten and their homes, businesses and synagogues were ransacked and, later on, the deportations to the Auschwitz concentration camp.

Through pictures and realistic dialogue, the book depicts the suffering and humiliation that Jews endured as they were stripped of their livelihoods, ostracized and, finally, sent to camps to be worked to death or gassed.

After five decades when it had only a handful of Jewish residents, Germany now has the world's fastest growing Jewish community, with 220,000 arriving from the former Soviet Union since 1990.

But violent anti-Semitic crime is also increasing. Last month, five Jewish teenagers were attacked by a group of punks and subjected to anti-Semitic abuse.

The new comic book is a sequel to Heuvel's "The Discovery", also aimed at school children, based on Jewish history in Europe from 1933 to 1940.

(Editing by Kevin Liffey)

"NASA to launch Beatles tune into Space"

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Beatles are about to become radio stars in a whole new way. NASA on Monday will broadcast the Beatles' song "Across the Universe" across the galaxy to Polaris, the North Star.

This first-ever beaming of a radio song by the space agency directly into deep space is nostalgia-driven. It celebrates the 40th anniversary of the song, the 45th anniversary of NASA's Deep Space Network, which communicates with its distant probes, and the 50th anniversary of NASA.

"Send my love to the aliens," Paul McCartney told NASA through a Beatles historian. "All the best, Paul."

The song, written by McCartney and John Lennon, may have a ticket to ride and will be flying at the speed of light. But it will take 431 years along a long and winding road to reach its final destination. That's because Polaris is 2.5 quadrillion miles away.

NASA loaded an MP3 of the song, just under four minutes in its original version, and will transmit it digitally at 7 p.m. EST Monday from its giant antenna in Madrid, Spain. But if you wanted to hear it on Polaris, you would need an antenna and a receiver to convert it back to music, the same way people receive satellite television.

The idea came from Martin Lewis, a Los Angeles-based Beatles historian, who then got permission from McCartney, Yoko Ono and the two companies that own the rights to Beatles' music. One of those companies, Apple, was happy to approve the idea because is "always looking for new markets," Lewis said.

Perhaps coincidentally, the song's launching comes a day before the release of the DVD of the Julie Taymor movie named after the Beatles hit.

"Rebirth of a record store, and the death of another"

from - by W Jacarl Melton

(WASHINGTON, DC)-- Time Magazine has declared the next big thing in music media to be the rebirth of vinyl. The news couldn't come at a better time for DJ Hut. We told you about the fire last summer that devastated the businesses, located at 2010 P Street NW, and the reopening of Alberto's in the dwelling's basement. Tomorrow, DJ Hut will be back in business at noon.

DJ Hut was established in 2002, taking the place occupied by the well-regarded 12-Inch Dance Records. It sold vinyl almost exclusively, specializing in hip-hop, reggae and house.

It's been a long road back, according to Hut co-owner Chris Stiles. The store was a total loss, with damages well in the hundreds of thousands of dollars and destroyed items including an aquarium, along with numerous records.

"Aesthetically, it's completely changed," said Stiles. The post-fire DJ Hut will feature more record bins, as well as a larger stock of rock, jazz, and 180-gram vinyl reprints. Additionally, there will be more merchandise available for purchase such as microphones, cords, and DJ bags.

Along with these upgrades, there is also a noticeable change to the store's web site. Online, customers will now be able to purchase music files, as well as records. "In this day and age, you can't mention music without mentioning MP3s," Stiles said. This follows suit with what other online music sellers have found, however, those merchants have gone even further and eliminated their vinyl sales all together.

While there's seemingly been a resurgence in the popularity of LPs and 12-inch vinyl, there has also been a death of brick and mortar record retailers. This truth became even more evident with a Post article that ran Sunday announcing the imminent closing of Clarendon's notable Orpheus Records.

Orpheus, which has been in existence at the Clarendon location since 1999, started in Georgetown in 1977. On its web site, the shutter date is listed as March 31. Currently, they're undergoing a store-wide sale in the hopes to move product. In the piece by Marc Fisher that ran this weekend, owner Rick Carlisle noted that:

"It would be easier to sell the stock and store if this was still a vibrant business," says Carlisle, the bearded, barefoot, denim-clad music lover who has presided over Orpheus since it opened in Georgetown in 1977, when there were a dozen music stores in that one neighborhood. "If music was still a vibrant part of everybody's disposable income, it might be worth finding a new location. But for a record store to have a real future, you have to sell on the Web, which I don't do."

Without a doubt, there's a certain appeal to the record itself as well as the record store. Whether it's the artistic nature of a cover or the smell of aggregate aged acetate, vinyl and vinyl stores have a special place in our hearts, despite the ever increasing dominance of online music purchasing in our lives. We've mourned the passing of stores before. Today, though, do folks out there still lament such occurrences? Or are we too far down the digital music highway to stop?

"Katherine Heigl named Most Desirable Woman: PHOTOS"

from reuters - by Bob Tourtellotte

LOS ANGELES - Superlatives keep piling up for actress Katherine Heigl who on Thursday was named the "most desirable woman of 2008" by lifestyle Web site,

The site, which boasts seven million readers a month, said it polls users annually for a list of 99 women who best embody the qualities of an ideal girlfriend or wife, as judged by intelligence, humor, charisma and ambition among attributes.

"This year's list really goes to show who (our users) relate with and find beautiful, charming and personable," said's editor-in-chief, James Bassil.

Heigl, 29, starred in last year's hit comedy movie "Knocked Up" and currently is in theaters with romance "27 Dresses," playing a woman who is always a bridesmaid but never a bride until she finally finds love.

She won a supporting actress Emmy, U.S. television's highest honor, for her role as Dr. Izzie Stevens on hospital drama "Grey's Anatomy," and has been nominated for two Golden Globe awards for the same show.

Following Heigl on the list was model Alessandra Ambrosio in the No. 2 position and just behind her was British actress Kate Beckinsale, who has starred in films from action adventure "Pearl Harbor" to comedy "Click."

Rounding out the top 10, in the following order were:

2. Alessandra Ambrosio
3. Kate Beckinsale
4. Eva Mendes
5. Jessica Alba
6. Scarlett Johansson
7. Jessica Biel
8. Rihanna
9. Marisa Miller
10. Adriana Lima

Thursday, January 31, 2008

"Prostitutes look to score at Super Bowl"

PHOENIX, AZ (AP) --Police are getting for ready for the oldest profession in the Super Bowl's host city.

Arizona authorities have stepped up patrols, promising to sweep out so-called circuit girls and their pimps before next Sunday's Super Bowl.

But it isn't just the hookers who have to worry about the police. Phoenix police Sgt. Joel Trantor said they will also be going after the customers.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

"Traci Lords set to star in upcoming "Porn" Film"

from by Anne Lu - Celebrity News Service News Writer

Los Angeles, CA (CNS) - Former porn star Traci Lords is set to star in another "porn" movie.

The 39-year-old B-movie actress will join 'The Office' star Craig Robinson, Seth Rogen, Elizabeth Banks, and Jason Mewes in the new film 'Zack & Miri Make a Porno' by Kevin Smith.

The comedy movie will feature two lifelong pals who get their friends together to make a pornographic film to raise money to pay off a debt.

Other casts members are Ricky Mabe from ABC's 'Beautiful People,' Katie Morgan of HBO's 'Katie Morgan: A Porn Star Revealed,' and Jeff Anderson from 'Clerks II.'

"Porno will start production this week.

Lords gained notoriety as a porn star with her youthful appearance and enthusiastic sexual performance.

She had been under age at the time she started making sexually expl!cit movires, which had led authorities to file a suit against her and her movie agency.

She had also starred in other more mainstream movies later in her career such as 'Blade' and 'Black Mask 2: City of Masks.'

"Forbes: Madonna Richest Woman in Music"

NEW YORK (AP) — Madonna is the richest woman in music.

The 49-year-old entertainer leads's list of the top 20 "Cash Queens of Music," earning $72 million between June 2006 and June 2007.

The pop star's "Confessions" world tour pulled in $260 million, Forbes said. She also made money from album sales, her fashion line with H&M and a deal with NBC to broadcast her concert performance at London's Wembley Stadium. said it compiled the list by examining concert grosses, merchandising revenue, album sales and other revenue from clothing lines, fragrance deals and endorsements.

Barbra Streisand is No. 2 with $60 million, thanks to her comeback tour of North America and Europe.

Celine Dion ranks third with $45 million, largely from her successful "A New Day" show in Las Vegas, which she wrapped up in December after a five-year engagement at Caesars Palace.

Shakira is fourth with $38 million, followed by Beyonce ($27 million), Gwen Stefani ($26 million), Christina Aguilera ($20 million), Faith Hill ($19 million), the Dixie Chicks ($18 million) and Mariah Carey ($13 million).

Hilary Duff, Avril Lavigne and Martina McBride each banked $12 million.

Britney Spears ranked 14th on the list, earning $8 million from music royalties and sales of her fragrances with Elizabeth Arden.

Spears is followed by Carrie Underwood and Nelly Furtado ($7 million each); Fergie, Jennifer Lopez and Sheryl Crow ($6 million each); and Norah Jones ($5.5 million).

"Students put new spin on old vinyl records"

from - by Merry Mackinnon

(OREGON) --Duniway Elementary "Cool Schools" teacher Christine Claringbold collects what many people try to get rid of – old vinyl records. At present, Claringbold has at least 500 record albums in her basement, though she never plays them.

And the albums won't last much longer as musical recordings, because word is spreading about Claringbold's vinyl art objects, so sales are up. And Claringbold, an art teacher, also recycles her records at Duniway Elementary School, where they end up as templates on which third- to fifth-graders paint mandalas in her Cool Schools class. Cool Schools is an after-school program sponsored by Duniway's Parent Teacher Association (PTA).

For five years, while her daughter and son attended the Eastmoreland elementary school, Claringbold organized Duniway's Children's Art Show. She also just finished teaching an after-school class at Duniway for first to fourth-graders on how to paint and transform vinyl records into clocks.

When she isn't teaching, she's creating her own art out of recycled records – mandala- decorated mirrors and clocks, as well as whimsical bowls and cuff bracelets.

Calling her creations Eye Pop Art, Claringbold's work recently caught the attention of National Geographic Travel Magazine's Oregon Shopping Guide, which highlighted one of her brightly-painted vinyl bowls.

Her creations are also on display in an Outer Southeast Portland storefront run by Trillium Artisans.

With a mission to build sustainable micro-enterprises while increasing incomes, Trillium Artisans offers a range of services, including small business counseling, peer networking, marketing, and retail opportunities. At Trillium, Claringbold also learned about, a website where handmade items are sold.

"Etsy is the rage in the craft community," Claringbold said. "It's just ballooned."

Also, her vinyl cuff bracelets and mandala coloring books are on consignment at Elemental Arts in Westmoreland, at 6035 S.E. Milwaukie Avenue.

And soon, inside Duniway School, a three-foot diameter mandala being created with a vinyl intermediary stage will grace a hallway wall next to the music room, thanks to Claringbold and about 17 third- to fifth-graders.

"We drew it out, and I transferred the outline onto the wall," she said. "It's being painted by the kids."

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

"Must see video: Erykah Badu - "Honey"

This is one dope a$$ video folks! You must watch all the way through without interuption as to not miss anything. Great stuff! Can't wait for the full length on February 26th! - Ace:)

Monday, January 28, 2008

"Marijuana Vending Machines!"

source (AP)

California approved vending machines that will sell marijuana. Starting Monday, patients can buy legal *medical* marijuana at a Los Angeles herbal nutrition center. They will go through security, submit their prescription, pay and pick up their drugs. Store employees call it a safe, fast way to order prescriptions.

Vince Mehdizadeh, Owner of Herbal Nutrition Center says, "They'll slide a card to get into the store after hours. They'll be greeted by a security guard right there. They'll slide card in and they'll fingerprint in to verify that it's them. A camera takes a picture of them, verifying that they're actually at the machine. And they get the medicine and they move on."

The state will start with two prescription vending machines offering medical marijuana. Owners believe they could become as common as pop machines.

image by © 2008

Sunday, January 27, 2008

"Awesome Cheesecake album cover!"

I stumbled onto this album cover while surfin' the net. It's a 60's era release on Beacon Records. I censored the nipples as to not scare the childrenz!

What a title! What an album cover! Grrrrrrreat stuff indeed. - Ace:)

"Where do your text messages go?"

from - By JEFF KAROUB, AP Business Writer

Millions of fingers scurrying over mobile electronic devices probably paused this week as news emerged of a trove of text messages containing flirty and sexually explicit chat between Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick and a top aide. Even those engaging in more wholesome dialogue would be wise to wonder: Do text messages disappear — like oral conversations — or are they permanently logged somewhere for potential retrieval — like e-mail usually is?

For standard consumer text-messaging technology, the answer is largely that they disappear. But Kilpatrick's and Chief of Staff Christine Beatty's devices employ less-fleeting technology.

"I think people can feel comfortable we're not storing information that can later be used against them," Verizon Wireless spokeswoman Erica Sevilla said. "Unless you have something stored on your phone or on a recipients' phone, it does not stay on our network for a long period."

AT&T Inc. keeps text messages for up to 72 hours until delivery is successful, spokesman Howard Riefs said. If a message can't be delivered, it is removed from the system and can't be retrieved.

Kilpatrick and Beatty testified last summer in a whistleblower trial that arose from a lawsuit filed by two police officers alleging they were fired for investigating claims Kilpatrick used his security unit to cover his extramarital affairs.

Kilpatrick and Beatty denied any sexual or romantic ties in 2002 and 2003. But the Detroit Free Press said in a story published Thursday that it examined 14,000 text messages on Beatty's city-issued pager from those years and found many examples.

The city's text messaging service is provided by Mississippi-based wireless company SkyTel.

Roger Pondel, a spokesman for SkyTel's parent company Bell Industries Inc., declined comment Friday.

SkyTel's devices employ a technology called Narrowband PCS, including two-way paging, that "rose and fell" in the mid-1990s, according to David Chamberlain, a wireless analyst with Scottsdale, Ariz.-based In-Stat.

Chamberlain said SkyTel's device is more akin to e-mail than to text-messaging, and messages are stored. While mainstream technology has since moved to SMS or Short Message Service technology, some corporations and governments have stayed with wireless services like SkyTel.

"It was going to put mobile messaging in the hands of lots of people," Chamberlain said. "(But) it was so poorly differentiated from text messaging. It required people essentially to have a second, very expensive message-only account."

SkyTel's contracts with corporations and governments say communications will be stored for legal reasons. And Chamberlain said users of any technology should know that when using any device issued by an employer.

"There's absolutely no expectation of privacy with phones, e-mails, text messages or computers," he said.

While people may feel comfort knowing their text messages aren't permanently stored, that doesn't mean they should let their guards down when it comes to electronic communications, said a spokeswoman for an online privacy advocacy organization.

"The whole concept of data retention by third parties ... is going to be the big privacy question over the next couple of decades," Rebecca Jeschke of the San Francisco-based Electronic Frontier Foundation.

"We trust so much of our communications and thoughts, even, to these third parties who are capturing this information and storing it in various ways. It's time for us to think about it."