For The Record: Quick News On Britney Spears, Slipknot, Mary J. Blige, Travis Barker, 7 Seconds & More

Britney lends her little sis a hand, Slipknot plan a tour, Travis Barker auctions off a no-doubt smelly cast.

Britney Spears is giving her little sister a push into the pop spotlight — she wrote the theme song for Jamie Lynn’s show debuting soon on Nickelodeon, a live-action comedy called “Zoey 101,” in which she plays a 13-year-old attending a newly co-ed beachside boarding school. Jamie Lynn sings the song on the show, which will air on Sundays starting in early 2005. …

Outside of a trek featuring Fat Joe, Bubba Sparxxx and that guy from Bowling for Soup, tours don’t get much heavier than the one that begins March 4 that features Slipknot, Lamb of God and Shadows Fall. The tour runs through May 2. … Mary J. Blige’s cover of the Emotions classic “Best of My Love” — currently heard in the Gap holiday ads starring Sarah Jessica Parker — has been officially released as a single. “I’ve listened to the Emotions ever since I was a little kid,” Blige said in a statement. “I have always wanted to perform ’Best of My Love’ … It was such a warm experience.” The song was made available as a commercial download with all digital services on Tuesday. Meanwhile, Blige is currently in the studio working on her next album, due out late 2005. …

Another day, another questionable piece of rock-star memorabilia up for auction. This time, it’s a signed cast worn by Blink-182 drummer Travis Barker while he was recovering from foot surgery. The cast — personalized with stickers, graffiti and doodles — is up for auction on eBay.com, and the current high bid is $405. Proceeds from sale of the cast will benefit “a charity that Travis has chosen,” according to his clothing company, Famous Stars and Straps. … While the world waits for a Fugees reunion, Pras isn’t exactly at home waiting for Lauryn Hill and Wyclef’s calls. Instead, he can be seen starring alongside Daryl Hannah in a short film commissioned by Amazon.com. “Careful What You Ask For,” which can be seen on the Web site’s home page, is about a pawnshop dealer who gets a deal he wasn’t expecting. …

The Backstreet Boys are hoping that their new album will come out in March, according to their official Web site. “We are looking at a March release date and we’re keeping our fingers crossed that it doesn’t change,” the band wrote in an entry on Monday. “It really is amazing how many details go into making an album. Even the smallest thing can push a release date back.” The boy band also noted that it’s looking at a late January release for the first single. … Dick Clark, host of “American Bandstand” and “Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve,” is recovering from a minor stroke he suffered earlier this week. Clark, 75, was admitted to a Los Angeles hospital where he is currently recovering, according to The Associated Press. “The doctors tell me I should be back in the swing of things before too long,” Clark said in a statement on Wednesday, “so I’m hopeful to be able to make it to Times Square to help lead the country in ringing in the New Year once again.” …

Smoky-voiced chanteuse (and onetime Metallica collaborator) Marianne Faithfull has been forced to cancel the remainder of her European tour after she suffered a seizure just before hitting the stage in Milan on Wednesday. She was taken to a hospital, where doctors diagnosed her with chronic exhaustion. A statement released by her U.S. record label, Epitaph, blames the exhaustion on Faithfull’s work in the U.K./U.S. production of the play “The Black Rider.” In the statement, Faithfull herself calms fans, saying, “I’m sorry to have let my fans down, but I will be back.” … Unwritten Law have canceled their current headlining tour, effective immediately, due to a family emergency. Bassist Pat Kim’s father was admitted to Kaiser Hospital in Los Angeles earlier this week due to an undisclosed but serious ailment. “We’re extremely saddened to have to cancel the tour and let down our fans,” frontman Scott Russo said in a statement. “Due to the unforeseeable circumstances and our concern for Pat and his family, we made the right decision to turn the bus around.” The band had been on the road to support its forthcoming album, Here’s to the Mourning, due out in early February, and plans to reschedule the dates early next year. …

Twenty-one years after “This Is Spinal Tap” put the mockumentary genre on the map, the format is being turned into a series. Alanis Morissette will star in and is among the executive producers of the Comedy Central vehicle “We’re With the Band,” which sheds light on the life of a pop star on tour. … Ray Charles may be gone, but he has been far from forgotten. To celebrate his legacy, this Friday has been designated “A Day for Ray.” The day will include a host of Charles-related activities, including nonstop screenings of the film “Ray” in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Palm Springs, California; “Ray” soundtrack giveaways at the screenings; “Ray” music being played on radio stations all day, and more. The announcement comes a day after Charles’ album Genius Loves Company earned seven Grammy nominations. …

Kevin Seconds and his legendary hardcore band 7 Seconds return with their first new album in five years, Take It Back, Take It On, Take It Over, due out January 25. Song titles include “Your Parents’ Hardcore,” “Where Is the Danger,” “Big Hardcore Mystery” and “Our Core.” Seconds said in a statement that the theme of the album is “the battle to feel valid and relevant as veteran punk-rock ’wise men’ in a scene that is overwhelmingly dominated by younger, cuter, more fashionable boys.” … More than two years since the departure of Stuart Cable, Stereophonics have a new drummer. Javier Weyler will take Cable’s place behind the kit as the band prepares to follow up 2003’s You Gotta Go There to Come Back.

12.7.2004

Lindsay Lohan had an Ashlee Simpson moment on Monday’s “Good Morning America” for her live singing debut, which turned out to be not all that live. During her song “Rumors,” Lohan missed the cue to mouth along, forcing cameras to cut away when her mouth remained closed as she was heard singing, thanks to a backing track. A spokesperson for the singer’s label maintained that the actress sang live, and only used some background to help make the song sound like it does on her album, Speak, which hit stores Tuesday. …

Destiny’s Child performed a Christmas carol, “Carol of the Bells,” a cappella at New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art Monday night at an event honoring fashion designer Roberto Cavalli, who was sponsoring an exhibition there via the Costume Institute called “Wild: Fashion Untamed,” an exploration of animalism as expressed through clothing. DC said that they admired the designer’s generosity and style, which they called “elegant,” “chic” and “so beautiful.” Most of those who attended — including Alicia Keys, Pharrell Williams, Julia Stiles, Lenny Kravitz, Anne Hathaway, Julianne Moore, Serena Williams and Mischa Barton — got to dress themselves by picking out gowns from Cavalli’s showroom, save for Keys, who chose a more subtle suede jacket. “Unfortunately, it’s raining, nasty, disgusting and freezing,” Keys said, “so I opted for a more warm, comfortable look.” While there, Pharrell talked up his own clothing line. “BBC Apparel is on its way,” he said. “And the next round of Ice Cream sneakers just came out, with three new color waves. And next year, the girls’ sneakers.” “Wild: Fashion Untamed” runs at the Met until March 13. …

Alicia Keys and Destiny’s Child are 11th-hour additions to the performance lineup of Wednesday’s Billboard Music Awards. While Keys will perform “Karma,” off The Diary of Alicia Keys, Beyoncé, Kelly and Michelle will take part in a musical tribute to Stevie Wonder, alongside Mary J. Blige and Diana Ross. … Hilary and Haylie Duff are both going to make guest appearances on “Joan of Arcadia” — but not together. Hilary will appear in an episode airing February 4 in which she plays a popular girl who becomes Joan’s sycophant after the series’ star (Amber Tamblyn) saves her life. Haylie will have a longer stretch on the show, appearing in three episodes starting February 11 as a student who begins to befriend Joan and her gang and ends up learning something shocking about herself. The show airs Fridays on CBS at 8 p.m. …

One of Paris Hilton’s movies is finally getting a release — at least in video stores. She’s third-billed in a film about suburban kids running wild called “The Hillz,” and in a bit of typecasting, she plays a snobby rich girl named Heather Smith. The film started making the rounds in film festivals this summer, and will now be available on DVD starting March 9. Writer/director Saran Barnun said that they’re still working on getting the project into limited release in theaters in Los Angeles, New York, and Miami next year. … Jennifer Lopez is slipping a bit — she’s been bumped to 10th place on The Hollywood Reporter’s list of top-paid actresses in Hollywood. Though Lopez still commands salaries of $12 million a movie, as does Renée Zellweger, the “Bridget Jones” actress went from placing 10th last year to rising up a notch to take J. Lo’s old place at #9. Julia Roberts remains #1 on the list. …

Wyclef Jean is giving back this holiday season. Jean will host and perform at Yele Haiti: Dreams in Motion, a private benefit concert and afterparty at New York’s Glo on Thursday. Others on the bill include Roberta Flack, Cassandra Wilson, Bilal, Ben Jelen and Nellie McKay. Proceeds from the event will benefit Jean’s Yele Haiti, an organization dedicated to the rebuilding of the Fugees frontman’s native Haiti. … Snoop Dogg’s home studio is among those featured in the forthcoming book “Wired: Musicians’ Home Studios – Tools & Techniques of the Musical Mavericks,” due out Thursday. Music journalist Megan Perry’s book also profiles the home studio setups used by No Doubt’s Tom Dumont, Crystal Method, Sonic Youth, Korn, System of a Down, Pennywise and 311. …

First Bob Dylan was interviewed on Sunday, and now P.O.D. and Kanye West will take it to the “60 Minutes” hot seat. The artists are part of a segment on spiritual music in the episode that airs Wednesday on CBS. … With a new single, “Find the Real,” beginning to surface at radio, Alter Bridge have extended their tour through mid-February. The trek that begins December 31 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida, will now continue through February 16 in Pittston, Pennsylvania. … Mark your calendars: The fourth annual Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival will take place from June 10-12. The three-day event will be held once again on the 700-acre farm in Manchester, Tennessee. No performers have been announced yet. …

With his fifth album, Weapons of Mass Destruction, due out next week, Xzibit couldn’t have picked a better time to sign with BMG Songs. The MC/ “Pimp My Ride” host has inked a global music publishing deal with the company. … Brian Wilson is giving fans the opportunity to create the video for his single “Heroes and Villains” off his album Smile. Wilson himself will judge the contest. Aspiring directors are being asked to make a video for the track (which they can hear on Wilson’s Web site) and send it in before January 13. The winning clip will be included on the upcoming DVD for Smile and the winner and a friend will be flown to Los Angeles to meet Wilson and attend one of his performances. More information can be found at www.brianwilson.com/contest. … If you love Anthrax and you wear size men’s 9 shoes, then you’re in luck. The band is putting one pair of its custom-designed skateboard shoes up for auction. Fans can bid on the black leather sneaker on eBay. Currently, the high bid is $202.50. …