Exclusive! Mariah Carey E=MC² Preview

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Yesterday, Island/Def Jam honcho L.A. Reid hosted a few journalists in his office for a special preview of Mariah Carey’s upcoming E=MC? album, tentatively due April 15. While Reid looked on, Mariah’s A&R man and long-rumored beau Mark Sudack played 12 of the album’s cuts from his laptop, often passionately (and adorably!) singing along. On the album, there was drama, there was death, there was disco. What follows is a track-by-track breakdown of our impressions of the album. Note that this isn’t the final track sequence, that L.A. ticked off the producers list to us but it is by no means etched in stone and the tracks that we heard weren’t always mastered.

One final note: so much of this album is sung in Mariah’s chest voice. The vocal gymnastics and whistle notes, while there (’cause, duh, it’s Mariah!), take a backseat to clear, purposeful singing, and Mariah sounds better for it. Oh yeah, Mimi’s back.

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J. Lo Welcomes Babies into World of Ridiculous Privilege

by (@katespencer)

jenniferlopez.jpgHello, new Lopez-Anthony royalty. We do not know your names yet, little twins, but let us imagine them to be Jennifer 2: The Sequel and Mennifer. You are new to this earth – only 12 hours old – but surely you are already wise. You have seen how sexy and glamorous that woman whose breasts you are not allowed to suckle is, and surely you’ve marveled at the Armani couture birthing garment that she wore for your special day. You’ve been swaddled in diapers made of zebra hair and silk and nestled into your nursery as Diana Ross herself sings you lullabies. You are special. You are spoiled. Enjoy it. Don’t feel bad when you are each driven around in your own Escalade pulled by Clydesdale horses. Do not resist the temptation to carry around that miniature Balenciaga bag. You can do whatever you want – BUT! – whatever you do, do not be seen rolling with those Federline boys. They’re already bad news. [People]

Friday: Paris Pops a Boob Out

by (@katespencer)

parispink.jpgAaron Carter Jailed in Texas after Drug Arrest
The former teen heartthrob is now a pothead, and was nabbed with two ounces of weed in his car. [People]

Sam Must Stay Away from Brit
Brit’s former friend got served with his restraining order last night and can’t go anywhere near the pop star. But who will crush up her pills and dope her up now?? [TMZ]

Paris Slips Nip, Reminds You She?s Still Hot
We’ve seen her boobs so many times, we can barely remember what we’re staring at. Nipples can’t save you from jumping the shark, P!? [Gawker]

Nicole Richie Skips Mommy-ing for Table Dancing
Girls just want to have fun, even if they’ve got kids at home.? [Us]

OMG! Ashton Kutcher Partied at Tainted Club
NYC hot spot Socialista has come down with a serious hepatitis scare, and a bunch of stars were just there! National emergency!? [NYP]

R. Kelly’s Underaged Flame Speaks Out

by (@katespencer)

rkelly.jpgWho’s ready to get creeped out?! We are! The husband of R. Kelly‘s ex-publicist spoke out last week on the radio about his daughter’s relationship with the controversial crooner and caused quite a stir. His wife, Regina Daniels, quit working for the star late last year amidst whispers that her 21-year old step-daughter had done dirty deeds with her former client. Her hubby George backed this up in his interview and said he was speaking out for “the public” because “it doesn’t have to be a superstar, it could be the guy on the corner.” But Kelly – through his new publicist – released a statement, and had this to say about his accusers: “The fact is that they had no problem with the relationship — indeed, they encouraged it — while Ms. Daniels was on Mr. Kelly’s payroll.”

After all the back and forth, the youngin’ in question, Maxine Daniels, tried to clear things up even further. “I tried to keep it a secret,” she said of her love affair with the singer. “But when my stepmother found out about our relationship, she resigned because she felt that Rob had ‘crossed the line’ by dating a girl that he has known since she was 7 years old.”

Eek. The rest of her statement can be found here, and we are anxiously awaiting a comment from Regina Daniels, the woman who first shed light on this scandal with her resignation. Until then, tell us – who do you believe in this mess??

Jessica Does Have Fans – in the Ukraine

by (@katespencer)

jessicasimpsonukraine.jpgCongrats are in order to Jessica Simpson! Her movie, Blonde Ambition, which was a total bomb in the US, is the number one movie in the Ukraine this week! The budget flick (which also stars Luke Wilson in the biggest career mistake of his life) opened only in texas theaters and grossed just $1,771 it’s debut weekend. But clearly we Americans don’t know a good film when we see one. Over in the Ukraine, the movie managed to rake in a whopping $253,008 last weekend. Now keep in mind Spider-Man 3 raked in $151,116,516 it’s opening weekend, but whose counting?! What could possibly explain the popularity of this admittedly crappy flick? An expert throws down some knowledge: “The former Soviet nations have a sweet tooth for straight-up comedies,” Conor Bresnan, editor in chief of Box Office Mojo International, reveals.”When these comedies have big name celebrities like Jessica Simpson’s, that’s all that’s needed to sell the movie. Russian and Ukrainian audiences have an even bigger urge for escapism than Americans.”

Jessica Simpson – and her papa – thank you, people of the Ukraine. Now she can afford that Louis Vuitton carrying case for her dog. [People]

Thursday: Janet to Become Mrs. Dupri?

by (@katespencer)

janetjd.jpgDid Sam Lutfi Drug his BFF Britney?
Cops are trying to figure out of Sam doped up Brit to keep her under his control. Um, totally?? [TMZ]

Janet Jackson: Ready to Wed JD
Is the third time down the aisle gonna be a charm for Ms. Jackson? The singer recently started shopping for wedding dresses, which will hopefully be wardrobe malfunction-free.? [NY Post]

Spencer Pratt?s Got Heidi Under his Thumb

The blonde man-diva is reportedly shopping around for a new reality deal (not at MTV!) and doing all the talking for his lady-friend. [NY Post]

Pink Says She & Hubby are Still Pals
Nobody cheated, there’s no anger and the couple is still totally best friends for life. Is there a script floating around Hollywood for this sort of thing?? [People]

Amy Winehouse Sings for Blake at Brits
Wino wailed on a couple of songs at the Brit Awards last night, and did her usual shout out to her incarcerated husband. But hey, and least she’s not slurring her words.? [DListed]

Gossip Break: Paula’s Forever Our Girl

by (@katespencer)

paulaabdul.jpg- Michael Lohan hates Lindsay’s boobie pics, while her mom calls ‘em “tastefully done.” No wonder their marriage ended in divorce. [People, DListed]

- Heidi Montag and Spencer Pratt are creating a video game. If we can fight them, we’ll play. [Us]

- Paula Abdul‘s new music video is 80′s-awesome. Straight up! [Popsugar]

Is it just us or has Katherine Heigl started taking herself to seriously? [Jezebel]

Jessica Simpson is like totally going to marry Tony Romo. Get the cameras ready! [Us]

J. Lo’s Poppin’ Out her $6 Million Twins

by (@katespencer)

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Here come those golden nuggets of baby that Jennifer Lopez has been lugging around for nine months! The Gigli star is currently holed up giving birth in her private room at the North Shore University Hospital, where she is presumably being fanned by a small army of male models and fed grapes by an endangered monkey, as an assistant does all the pushing for her. The room sat empty for two weeks before J. Lo arrived, complete with plush leather couches and beefed up security. Hospital staff even supposedly ran drills to prepare for a possible Lopez-Anthony baby kidnapping. Rats! They foiled my plan!

Clearly, Jenny thinks she is the unofficial Queen of America, but she may be the only one at her coronation. People mag has reportedly offered Lopez $6 million for exclusive photos of her kids that will go in their US edition only, and OK! has forked over a bundle for the international rights. But why didn’t they go for the right to print the photos here in the States? One unimpressed expert responds: “Look at her track record with her movies, and look at her album sales. The U.S. market hasn?t been fascinated with her in some time,? the source said. ?It makes more sense to not spend a fortune on photos that won?t cause a noticeable increase on the newsstand. This just isn?t going to sell like Shiloh (Jolie-Pitt), and $6 million is a lot of money.?

Make a Track With Flavor Flav!

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flavor-flav-189?1.jpgFlavor Flav may be an expert at choosing a hottie from a harem, but he also knows all about the beats that are needed to bring a rap track to life. All those years watching the Bomb Squad do their thing with Public Enemy didn’t go to waste – no way. So we’re giving at-home producers a chance to hit the studio with our main man. The Track contest lets beatmeisters submit their stuff and have it heard by the world. The person who wins the whole shebang will be flown to L.A. to perfect their creation with the help of Flav himself. Submissions are open through March 14. The time to get going is right now.

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Mary J.’s Gonna Tell You A Story

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A few weeks back, Mary J. Blige came in and filmed her very own Storytellers, playing the hits from What’s the 411? on up to her latest Growing Pains. The Queen of Hip-Hop Soul shared the stories behind all the songs, and on Monday, February 25th at 8 p.m., VH1 is airing the show. Check back on Friday when we’ll have a few sneak cuts of songs that didn’t make the show.