Posts By Lauren Harris


Pete Wentz Takes Care of Ashlee, Uganda

WentzBeing a rock star is hard work, as Fall Out Boy bassist Pete wentz will tell you. When he’s not opening bars in New York’s East Village or attending to his tipsy pop star girlfriend, Uganda beckons, and he’s heading to the African nation on a humanitarian mission — plus keeping his eye makeup artfully smudged the entire time. On Monday night Wentz celebrated the grand opening of his bar Angels and Kings on Avenue B. The bar, which Wentz partnered with members of Gym Class Heroes to open, is "for the rejects," yet paradoxically features a VIP lounge where Wentz’s girlfriend Ashlee Simpson had a bit too much to drink the other night, forcing Wentz to curtail an interview to take care of her. Wentz also announced his July trip to Uganda to raise awareness about the conditions there. "I’m pretty excited, but also a little nervous," Wentz told the NME about his trip.


Courtney Puts Kurt On the Block

KurtAfter running out of items of her own oversized clothing to sell on eBay, Courtney Love has moved on to the possessions of deceased husband and former Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain. "I’m going to have a Christie’s auction," Love said. While she hasn’t yet decided on specific items that will be for sale, she claims her house is a "mausoleum" and her daughter doesn’t need to inherit "a giant Hefty bag full of flannel f*cking shirts." Daughter Frances Bean’s legacy? "A sweater, a guitar and the lyrics to ‘Teen Spirit’ — that’s what my daughter gets." Love has slowly been selling off Cobain’s legacy, parting with 25% of his musical catalog last year.

What items would you want from Kurt Cobain’s wardrobe?


Hip-Hop Pays Homage to Virginia Victims

070419_jin The tragedy at Virginia Tech has sparked an outpouring of grief from politicians and artists far and wide, and the hip-hop community is no exception.

Immediately after the shootings, Chinese-American rapper Jin (left) quickly recorded the song "Rain Rain Go Away" that’s dedicated to "all the victims at Virginia Tech." (Listen here.)

Virginia rappers Pusha T, Fam-Lay and Skillz all talked to about how the tragedy is affecting their home state. "We must come together as a community to be strong for students and families whose lives were lost," said The Clipse‘s Pusha T, a Virginia Beach native.

And did a cool feature called the "Top 10 Rap Songs About Loss" that gets away from the bling and braggadocio and focuses on hip-hop’s sympathetic side.


Rapping Squirrel: WTF Wordsworth?

Rap In an effort to seduce visitors, Cumbria Tourism has released a rap video. Officials who work for the bucolic English countryside decided it would be a good idea to give the area?s image a 2007 overhaul. With that in mind, they made this clip, which features a man dressed in a squirrel suit, rapping ?Daffodils,? also known as ?I Wandered Lonely As a Cloud.? ?Daffodils,? as you might remember from your high school English classes, is a poem by William Wordsworth, the Romantic poet who died in 1850. Wordsworth lived in Cumbria, which helps explain this video. A little. But can anyone explain the squirrel?


America’s New Attraction: Mt. Rockmore


Proving that there?s no low baby boomers won?t sink to, a rock ?n? roll theme park is set to open in Myrtle Beach next spring. Called Hard Rock Park (because it?s associated with Hard Rock Caf?, of course), the 150-acre playground will provide opportunities for 30,000 enthusiasts to ride the music, every single day. Though individual attractions have yet to be announced, we?re all aflutter over here, wondering whether the rides will be able to incorporate rock ?n? roll?s all-important sex and drugs elements into their design. We shudder to guess at who will be honored with a roller coaster (John Bonham? Bon Scott? Janis Joplin?). We also loathe to speculate whose name will grace the shooting gallery (Courtney Love? 50 Cent? Phil Spector?). Basically, there?s no end to the bad puns we could make here, which is sort of the point. After all, the park already unveiled Mount Rockmore — a 250-ton sand sculpture that features the faces of Elvis, John Lennon, Hendrix and Bob Marley, as its groundbreaking mascot. Way to respect the artists, Hard Rock Park!


Icky Art: Stripes Go Rhinestone Cowboy


Style mavens and neo-classic rockers Jack and Meg White announced their new full-length, Icky Thump, will be released on June 19th, and leaked their cover art online. The sleeve features the happy duo clad in more finery than Glen Campbell at a fashion show. That?s fitting, since their newest album is so flamboyant. Is the red and white motif kaput? What?s your favorite White Stripes era?


Scratch M.I.A.?s Back, She?ll Scratch Yours



British/Sri Lankan beauty M.I.A. announced that she?s ready to release her sophomore effort, Kala, on June 25th. The follow-up to her critically acclaimed 2005 album Arular features collaborations with beat-whiz Timbaland and avant-hop-head Diplo. (She?s worked with Timbaland before; there?s a bonus track on the U.K. version of Shock Value called ?Come Around? to that effect.) M.I.A., whose work thus far has been both sexually charged and a lightning rod for political controversy, has been hard at work on making challenging music. It?s not always the most danceable, but we love the title of her first single (which you can hear at her MySpace page): ?Bird Flu.? Anyone care to guess at the titles of other tracks on the album? We?re hoping for ?Project Red? and ?Niger Yellowcake.?


Fergie’s Got a Case of the Mondays

Fergie had quite the weekend. First, she was attacked by brain-sucking zombies in Grindhouse. Then she covered Dolly Parton?s ?9 to 5? on the Charlotte Church show in Britain. (Maybe she caught the cover-song fever from Alanis.) Here?s one on a slow Monday for all you cubicle slaves from the first lady of the Black Eyed Peas. Fergie knows how to help you through the start of the workweek.

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Watch & Learn: “We Takin’ Over”

Watch & Learn: We peep a video and come up with five things nobody knew.

Boasting more "features" than the shelves of Blockbuster, the video for DJ Khaled‘s "We Takin’ Over" passes the mic between some of the hottest names in hip-hop. T.I.? Akon? Lil’ Wayne? Rick Ross? Fat Joe? Birdman? All present; and all apparently wanted by "The Man." So what happens when you cast rap superstars in what looks like an episode of "Miami Vice?" Here’s what we learned:

Read more…


Timbaland’s Shock-ing Footage

070319_timbaland_rev With his new CD Shock Value hitting the streets on April 3, Timbaland posted a video preview of the album online. So based on this label-approved leak, what parts of the new disc sound like they work? Easy. Those moments when Timmy lets his thumpa-thumpa do the talking, like on club-bangers "Bounce" (featuring Dre and Justin Timberlake) and "The Way I Are" (featuring Keri Hilson and D.O.E.) Which parts are whack? When the guests make themselves too at home, like on the Fall Out Boy cut (and possibly the M.I.A. track). And what’s weird? The fact that Swedish punks the Hives are guesting. Seeing their collabo sandwiched between Nelly Furtado and Elton John is straight-up surreal, giving me hope that Shock Value just might live up to its name.

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Photos: Timbaland