For The Record: Quick News On Jay-Z, Stone Temple Pilots, Ashanti, Stacie Orrico, Fear Factory, Raphael Saddiq & More

One hundred signed copies of Jay-Z‘s The Black Album, which dropped Friday, are being auctioned off on eBay. In one of the copies will be tickets to Jay’s November 25 benefit concert in New York. …

Though Scott Weiland was due to have his arraignment on a DUI charge on Monday (November 17), the case was continued until December 3. The former Stone Temple Pilots frontman/current Velvet Revolver singer is completing his court-ordered stay at a residential rehab facility, and will not have to appear at the next court hearing, as his lawyer can enter a plea for him since it’s a misdemeanor charge. Meanwhile, Weiland’s former STP bandmates confirmed in an interview with Guitar One that the band is officially over. Lead guitarist Dean DeLeo told the magazine, “Along with the beauty of STP there was a dark trail that went right along with it … There’s not much I can look back on and say I really enjoyed, without wondering if the floor was going to drop from under us.” The DeLeo brothers, having just produced Alien Ant Farm, are now focusing on producing the new band Monterey. …

Ashanti will join country star Kenny Chesney, soul singer Joss Stone and operatic soprano Renée Fleming for “Christmas in Washington,” a TNT television special scheduled to air December 14 at 8 p.m. ET/PT. President Bush and the first lady are expected to be among the guests for the holiday concert, now in its 22nd year. … Stacie Orrico will perform her song “(There’s Gotta Be) More to Life” at this year’s Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade on November 27, which will also feature appearances by Clay Aiken, Aaron Carter, Hilary Duff and Ruben Studdard. Then on December 3, Orrico will continue to spread holiday cheer through New York by helping to light the Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center. …

Archetype, Fear Factory‘s follow-up to 2001′s Digimortal, will feature a cover of Nirvana‘s “School,” off their 1989 album, Bleach, as a bonus track. Archetype is due in April. … New York public-school students will get first crack at the final cinematic chapter in the “Lord of the Rings” saga. Contest winners from 17 participating schools who penned 200-word essays on the theme of the wizard Gandalf’s quote, “All you have to do is decide what to do with the time that is given to you,” get to attend advance screenings of “The Return of the King” on December 1. Meanwhile, New Line is donating a grant to be divided amongst the participating schools, to be applied to the purchase of new books for the schools’ libraries. …

It may not be the Blues Brothers, but Dan Aykroyd is working on a blues album. The “Saturday Night Live” vet showed up at New York’s La Rambla to pay his respects — and talk up his new musical venture — at the “SNL” afterparty on Saturday. He was joined by the likes of show host Alec Baldwin, conservative pundit Ann Coulter, Coulter’s political nemesis Al Franken, and current “SNL” players Tina Fey and Will Forte. … Joseph “Amp” Fiddler, keyboardist in ’70s funk-rock outfit Funkadelic, is in the final stages of recording a new solo album, to be released in January. Waltz of the Ghetto Fly features songs written with Raphael Saddiq, Jay Dee and former bandmate George Clinton. …

Two major manufacturing sites for CD bootlegs were busted last week after a year-and-a-half-long investigation by the RIAA and the New York Police Department. Nearly 56,100 counterfeit CDs were taken from one location in midtown Manhattan and one in the Bronx, where 34 CD-R burners and 20 DVD burners were also discovered. … SoundScan isn’t just for record stores anymore — the sales tracking system, which added iTunes and other digital-download services this summer, has expanded to include Napster, BuyMusic, Musicmatch and Musicnow. Last week, SoundScan reported more than 1 million tracks downloaded for the first time since it began tracking downloads in June. The main authority for retail music-sales information, SoundScan’s data provides the basis of the weekly Billboard music charts. …

11.14.03

Britney Spears is often accused of lip-synching, but for her performance at this weekend’s American Music Awards, she’s planning to prove everyone wrong — by singing live. “I think the reason why people say that [I lip-synch] is because I am dancing a lot,” the singer said in a phone press conference on Wednesday. “Janet [Jackson], when she does her shows, she dances a lot. And you know, there’s parts where the background vocals and the chorus has definitely come up, but that doesn’t mean I’m not singing.” The American Music Awards air live from Los Angeles on ABC Sunday at 8 p.m. ET …

Maureen Marder, the former welder/dancer whose life was the inspiration for “Flashdance,” is suing Jennifer Lopez for copyright infringement over her “I’m Glad” video, which pays homage to the 1983 movie. The lawsuit, filed Thursday in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles, alleges Lopez needed Marder’s permission to make the video because she refused to grant sequel rights or to permit any further use of her story after “Flashdance” was released. … Clive Davis threw a party in honor of Alicia Keys Thursday night at New York’s Industria to kick off the festivities in promotion of her upcoming self-titled album. Pink and Tommy Lee were among the celebs who showed up. …

Courtney Love did not appear in a Los Angeles court on Friday (November 14) but entered a plea of not guilty via her attorney in her misdemeanor drug case. Whereas Wednesday’s arraignment was for possession during her overdose on October 2, Friday’s arraignment was for being under the influence of opiates and/or cocaine during her arrest earlier that night. Love is due back in court December 12. …

On November 23 soccer fans can get their kicks watching Michelle Branch performing live during the halftime ceremonies of the 2003 Major League Soccer Cup. The singer/songwriter’s performance in Carson, California, will be broadcast on ABC. … The Donnas confirmed that they will not be appearing on Australia’s Big Day Out festival in January, due to the wrist injury suffered by Torry Castellano (Donna C.). On the bright side, the drummer is recovering nicely after surgery and will hopefully soon join her bandmates in rehearsals as they begin work on the follow-up to last year’s major-label debut, Spend the Night.

Ozzy Osbourne has rescheduled three of the European tour dates that were postponed last month due to his treatment for the body tremors that have plagued him for years. The heavy metal godfather will perform in London on February 22 and two shows in Birmingham on February 24 and 26. … Believe it or not, British Prime Minister Tony Blair is a fan of over-the-top glam-metallers the Darkness. Besides the big-haired, spandex-sporting rockers, Blair also favors U2 and Foo Fighters. … Indiana University students taking Professor Glenn Gass’ rock music history class got a surprise when John Mellencamp showed up as a guest lecturer Tuesday. The rocker offered inspiration and his views on topics ranging from politics to MTV. …