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NGAB: Bye-Bye Bluegrass, Hello Satan

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We?ll never get to hear the banjo?d-out version of ?No Expectations? or ?Honky Tonk Women? or whatever Stones song Cliff Wagner & the Old #7 were plotting before they got deep-sixed last Friday night. Americans with money and phones have voted, and bluegrass ain?t part of Next Great American Band?s agenda.

That?s okay, it?s a pop and rock world we live in, especially when you?re selling blocks of commercial time in a talent contest, so we?re now down to six outfits that are going to take us through the start of ’08. I?ve still got my fingers crossed for Tres Bien, who did the shimmy-shimmy-shake on ?Get Off My Cloud? (with a ?Satisfaction? guitar riff thrown in for you dudes who miss mash-ups) and conjured a vibe out of That Thing You Do.

All in all, it was a surprisingly fun romp through the Jagger-Richards songbook, with no one ? except for the big-band nimrods ? embarrassing themselves. The metal rugrats should have told Dicko to sticko and come out sans shirts for their ?Jumping Jack Flash? romp. Something very odd about seeing an 11-year-old from the San Diego suburbs singing that he was ?born in a cross-fire hurricane,? but the Light of Doom kid swings his hair around really well; I believed him for a sec or two. And the praying pickers in the Clark Brothers summoned the dangers of the devil quite convincingly with their judge-pleasing ?Gimme Shelter.?

Read more…

by (@katespencer)

Monday: Nobody Puts Oprah in a Corner

oprah-1127.jpgOprah?s Enemies Try to Ruin Her Rep
Some weirdo is trying to trash Queen O with an expose book about alleged discrimination at her production company. We smell an Oprah’s Book Club pick! [NYP]

Did Paris Sell Out Pal Nicole?
Someone is trying to sneakily sell pics of Nicole’s baby shower (of which In Style has the exclusive pic rights) to the tabs that feature a certain blonde someone in the center of every image. BFF can also stand for Bad Friend Forever, apparently. [NYDN]

The Spice Girls Get Hacked
Someone broke into the Girls’ website and posted a message announcing the cancellation of the show. Surely the culprit deserves to be slammed down and zigazig-ahhhhed for this crime. [People]

Lohans Battle at Family Therapy
It is so nice to see that everyone’s Thanksgivings are wonderfully dysfunctional. Nothing goes with pumpkin pie quite like a group counseling session! [X17]

Britney Spends Thanksgiving Shopping
The singer just HAD to go to the Virgin Megastore on Thanksgiving to buy a CD and a movie. Think she was trying to boast sales of her own album flop? [Us]

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Celebrities Talk Turkey

Happy Thanksgiving folks. As a Turkey Day treat, we’re presenting you with this special report from VH1 News and Red Hot Red Carpet. In it, our peerless reporters get to the bottom of Thanksgiving traditions — celebrity traditions, that is. Want to know how Heidi Klum bastes her bird? Bet you didn’t think Christina Ricci knew how to eat turkey, much less cook one. Diane Sawyer likes to play games at her table. Perhaps unsurprisingly, Jessica Simpson needs a little help with her feast preparation. Common is a big mumbler, so we can’t tell you what his Thanksgiving is all about. But our favorite response is from actress Kerry Washington. When asked about her special cooking skills, she replied, “I make a really good reservation.” Spoken like a true superstar.

by (@katespencer)

Brit Wants to Catch K-Fed Behaving Badly

britney-spears-1121.jpgFinally this divorce is gonna turn into a fun little game of Gotcha! Along with her private investigator (our guess is that this is just cousin-assistant Alli Sims in a Sherlock Holmes hat and pipe), BritBrit is attempting to bust K-Fed doing something dumb. Kevin’s attorney wasn’t fazed by the singer’s latest attempt at couple’s war, stating that he didn’t think her snooping would be “a good expenditure of funds.” But this is Britney Spears we’re talking about! The girl is made of funds. And so what if the Kev’s counselor isn’t freaked? We still like to imagine what dirty business Britney might find goin’ down at Chez Federline:

  • Kevin likes to dance around in his underwear to – gasp! - Christina Aguilera.
  • Sean Preston and Jayden James are fed Cheez-Its and Ginger Ale instead of Cheetos and Diet Coke.
  • K-Fed invited Justin Timberlake over for a sleepover where they ate pizza, prank called Britney and learned the entire dance routine to “I’m a Slave 4 U.”
  • Her ex has a weekly hang session with his bros where they smoke some of the green stuff, drink 40′s, and watch The Bachelor.
  • Kevin stops at red lights and only makes left hand turns when the stoplight is green - amazing!

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Donda West’s Surgeon Speaks (Not)

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Dr. Jan Adams, the doctor who operated on Kanye West‘s mother Donda the day before she died, appeared on Larry King Live last night…for about a minute and a half. He’d been slated as the night’s guest, and was set to seize the opportunity to clear up what he claims are press-spun inaccuracies. But after being booked, the doctor was asked by the West family not to appear on the show. Adams explained:

They are my side, and I’m going to respect their wishes. I’m going to apologize to you because I think I’m taking up your air time, but I will not be on the show and I’m not going to discuss any of that. I’m going to honor their wishes, OK?

Soon after, he unclipped his mic and left. As if this case needed any help in its weirdness, Dr. Jan Adams just saw it and raised it a pile of attitude. Work it out.

You can watch the clip of Jan’s appearance at CNN’s website.

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Astbury Tripping or Zeppelin Fibbing?

plant-180?210.jpgEvery right-thinking rock fan wants Led Zeppelin to play more dates than the single reunion gig that’s caused so much ballyhoo since its announcement last month. But Robert Plant says it’s highly unlikely and Jimmy Page is uncertain. Someone should give the icons a magic eight ball. But maybe Zep fans are being fed some fibs about the likelihood of a more extensive tour. Seems that Ian Astbury, tough-guy singer for the Cult, mouthed off about his band’s opening slot on a Zeppelin 2008 tour on stage in that rock ‘n’ roll paradise, Cincinnati.

Blast the new, 5.1 surround sound version, of The Song Remains the Same until the real beans about the tour are spilled from the Zep camp.

And here are 10 tunes that don’t get enough respect from Zeppelinites.

by (@katespencer)

Kanye West Bids His Mom Farewell

The hip hop star took a break from his European tour this week to return to the States and pay tribute to his #1 fan – his mama. Donda West‘s funeral was held yesterday in Spencer, Oklahoma, at the True Vine Ministries church. Kanye broke down as he stood in front of the gathered crowd – which included Jay Z, Beyonce, Erykah Badu and Pharell Williams – and spoke a few short words about his mom. The rapper said that he was addressing them because his mom would have urged him to “get up there,” and that he hoped she would not “rest in peace, but rest in paradise.” Anita Baker sang the song “Summertime,” while R&B star John Legend played piano. One guest commented that “it was a beautiful service.”

In the video above, Kanye pays tribute to his mother at his concert in Brussels, Belgium, on Sunday. Before bringing a woman out to sing the Journey classic “Don’t Stop Believing,” West told the crowd, “I wanna dedicate this to my mother because of the words, the lyrics … It says what she would want me to do, and that’s to not stop believing.” Awwww.

by (@katespencer)

Wednesday: Britney Thankful for George Clooney

clooney.jpgGeorge Clooney Backs Britney
The hunky actor comes to Britney Spears’ defense against the paparazzi. Now if he could only protect her from bad outfit choices too. [People]

Zahara Jolie-Pitt’s Birth Mom Speaks
Turns out the little girl’s mom is still alive in Ethiopia and has revealed to the press that Z was conceived after she was raped. [NYP]

Donda West Doc Disses Larry King
Surgeon Jan Adams bailed on Larry just minutes into his appearance on the talk show. Looks like a letter from Kanye’s peeps asking him to keep quiet actually worked. [People]

Celebs Support Striking Writers
Ray Romano and Debra Messing showed up and Alicia Keys performed. Hollywood’s writers strike is starting to sound more like an awards show. [E Online]

Will Smith Down with Scientology
Smith confesses that pal Tom Cruise got him into studying Scientology. That’s what crazy friends are for, natch. [A Socialite's Life]

by (@katespencer)

Britney: Cherry Poppin’ at Fourteen?

britney-coverjpg.jpgUs Weekly has Britney back on their cover this week, and amazingly she’s looking a lot better than she has in recent months! Oh wait – a slower look has revealed to us that the girl on the cover is Britney from about 15 years ago. Whoops. They really had our hopes up there for a second! The mag is accusing Britney of faking her squeaky clean, virginal image from years past and alleges that she lost her virginity at the age of 14 to her hometown love Reg Jones. That whole purity thing with Justin Timberlake was supposedly all a scam too, and the mag says Brit and JT were actually knockin’ boots the entire time! Even worse, they dig up some real dirty stuff from her past – like her grandma who shot herself in the chest on the grave of her dead child, for example. Her great uncle Earnest Spears even weighs in on Britney, saying, “She didn’t have a hope of turning out normal.”

While not quite as salacious as a shotgun-wielding, suicidal grandma and an early-aged sex fest, we tend to think Britney’s recent life events have more to do with her current spiral towards disaster than some guy she got with as a teenager. If you consider that:

  1. The girl got famous at 16
  2. Brit traveling with world with no parental supervision whatsoever
  3. She earned gajillions taunting ogling dudes (and little kids) with her abs
  4. She got stuck with a loser husband, two babies, post-partum depression and a divorce in just two years

Well, she seems to be doing reasonably well given the past ten crappy years of her life. [Us Weekly]

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Mayer Joins Universe in Timberlake Loving

john_mayerOnce more, John Mayer has taken to the internet to clear some things up. And after his recent douchebag confession we’re all ears. This time, though, the revelation isn’t quite so groundbreaking. Turns out John Mayer is in love with Justin Timberlake‘s FutureSex/LoveSounds album. Released September 21, 2006. Can’t stop listening to it, apparently. In particular, “I Think She Knows.” “When that track comes on I spend the first 3:30 preparing for the awesomeness to come. Then I yell at the speakers, ‘Make this 4 minutes long and put it on the next disc!’” Mayer states on his blog.

Which begs the question, where the hell has Mayer been for the past 14 months? We know there was that whole Personal Dark Age, where that Simpson cling-on must have sucked all light and culture from your days, but you never went to a bar? A department store? Surely you must have gone to a Target. No one ever mentioned anything, in a comic fashion, about “bringing sexy back” in front of you? Nothing? OK. Well we can only assume that Cammy D must have slipped it into your stereo during your weekend of surreptitious passion.