For The Record: Quick News On Brad Pitt And Jennifer Aniston, Mary-Kate And Ashley, Usher, Evanescence, The Game & More

Hollywood power couple splits, Olsen twins launching perfumes, Usher hitting Showtime.

After seven years together, including four and a half years of marriage, Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston are separating. “For those who follow these sorts of things, we would like to explain that our separation is not the result of any of the speculation reported by the tabloid media,” Pitt and Aniston said in a joint statement published on People magazine’s Web site Friday (January 7). “This decision is a result of much thoughtful consideration. We happily remain committed and caring friends with great love and admiration for one another. We ask in advance for your kindness and sensitivity in the coming months.” … Smells like twin spirit — Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen are launching two fragrances, Coast to Coast NY (which will have a citrus scent) and Coast to Coast LA (which will have a more floral, tropical scent). The perfumes will be sold in mass-market drug chains, department stores and Wal-Mart starting in March. …

Nelly recently donated $50,000 to the Martin Luther King Memorial Project Foundation. According to The St. Louis American, the donation will help build a memorial on the mall in Washington, D.C., in honor of Dr. King. “I think anytime you can be in conjunction with a great man such as Dr. King, it’s only right,” Nelly told the paper. The memorial will cost almost $100 million to build and maintain, and organizers say they have already raised $65 million. The foundation has until 2006 to collect the additional money. …

On March 5, Usher will stage a 90-minute live show filmed in HDTV called “One Night One Star Usher Live” from San Juan’s Coliseo de Puerto Rico. The concert will air on Showtime, smack in the middle of the channel’s free-preview weekend, at 9 p.m. ET/PT. … This year’s Grammy nominees will not only find themselves sweating it out together at the actual ceremony, but they’ll also be grouped on a CD compilation. The 21-track Grammy Nominees 2005, due in stores February 1, includes songs by Usher, U2, Alicia Keys, Beastie Boys, Prince, Green Day, Black Eyed Peas, Kanye West and Evanescence, and will benefit music-related charities such as the recording academy’s MusiCares Foundation and the Grammy Foundation. …

Cuban Link‘s upcoming Chain Reaction, due March 8, will feature appearances from Jadakiss, the Game and Peedi Crakk. Mya sings on the former Terror Squad rapper’s first single, “Sugardaddy.” … Dirtbag Clothing has announced it will move forward with plans to launch Dimebag Hardware, the clothing line inspired by the late “Dimebag” Darrell Abbott. The Dimebag Hardware line will consist of T-shirts, sweatshirts, hats, shorts and work shirts with “a metal edge,” according to a statement released Friday by the company. The line will debut at the NAMM music convention in Anaheim, California, on January 20, and will be available online at dimebaghardware.com and dirtbagclothing.com, as well as at guitar shops and boutiques across the U.S. and Europe. …

Norah Jones will headline the Air J Jazz and Blues Festival, scheduled for January 27-29 in Montego Bay, Jamaica. Other artists on the bill include Dionne Warwick, Roberta Flack and Jimmy Cliff.Danny Sugerman, former manager of the Doors and co-author of “No One Here Gets Out Alive,” the definitive bio of the Jim Morrison-led band, died in Los Angeles on Thursday from lung cancer. Sugarman, 50, started as an assistant to the band when he was 14 and went on to become their manager following Morrison’s 1971 death. He also acted as a consultant on Oliver Stone‘s 1991 movie “The Doors.” …

Five months after “Peace Train” singer Cat Stevens (now known as Yusuf Islam) was detained and deported by U.S. authorities, who said he was on a no-fly list, the singer is still barred from entering the country. Homeland Security chief Tom Ridge said Thursday that the singer remains on the list because “the reasons we rejected him several months ago still exist in my mind.” Peace activist Islam was barred from the U.S. at the time because of what the government said were his alleged ties to terrorist organizations, a claim the singer has denied. … Paul McCartney, Sting and the surviving members of Queen are among the artists collaborating on 46664: 1 Year On, an EP to raise money for Nelson Mandela‘s 46664 organization, which combats the spread of HIV and AIDS in Africa (46664 was Mandela’s prisoner number when he was incarcerated on South Africa’s Robben Island). The EP, which is available for download from the iTunes music store, features collaborations from McCartney and EurythmicsDavid A. Stewart, Sting and Jimmy Cliff, and Queen and Mandela himself. …

Swedish psychedelic garage rockers The Soundtrack of Our Lives will follow up their 2002 album, Behind the Music, with Origin Vol. 1, due March 15. The group will kick off a brief club tour January 15 in Boston that ends January 26 in Los Angeles, and will appear at Austin, Texas’ South by Southwest Music Conference in March. … The Slamdance Film Festival, the annual, unofficial fest that coincides with the Sundance Film Festival, will feature performances from former Soul Coughing singer Mike Doughty, producer/rapper Prince Paul and Parliament/ Funkadelic keyboardist Bernie Worrell. Also playing at the fest in Park City, Utah — taking place January 21-28 — will be Apex Theory, guitarist Elliott Sharp and Spearhead frontman Michael Franti, whose documentary about his search for humanity in war zones in Iraq and Israel, “I Know I Am Not Alone,” will close the event. …

Thomas Slattery digs iTunes, he just doesn’t like the fact that the only device the site works with is Apple’s own iPod. So he sued the company in U.S. District Court in San Jose, California, on Monday, alleging that the company broke antitrust laws by shutting out its competitors. An Apple spokesperson did not return a call seeking comment. …

01.06.2005

Pharrell Williams is suing Reebok International for more than $4 million, accusing the manufacturer of his Billionaire Boys Club (BBC) clothing line of breach-of-contract. Williams filed the lawsuit before Christmas, claiming the sportswear giant didn’t produce clothing meeting BBC’s standards and failed to distribute the clothing line to stores by an agreed-upon deadline. A spokesperson for Reebok said that the suit was unexpected and the company is trying to resolve the issue out of court. …

A woman who claims she worked as a publicist for James Brown in the late 1980s has filed a federal lawsuit against him, alleging that he caused her to suffer Graves’ disease (a basic defect in the immune system) because he raped her at gunpoint in 1988, according to The Associated Press. A lawyer for Brown says Jacque Hollander’s charges are “baseless” and “too little, too late.” While Hollander’s lawyer agrees that the statute of limitation on a rape charge has run out, he says the suit has merit since his client’s doctor only recently told her that her ailment, which she was diagnosed with in 2000, was caused by the alleged incident. Hollander is seeking $106 million in damages in a U.S. District Court in Chicago. Brown’s reps could not be reached by press time for comment. …

Do you appear to be between the ages of 18 and 35 and really really like hard rock? If you said yes to either of those questions, the “Battle for Ozzfest” organizers want you to be a member of the audience at the final battle, which will take place on Sunday between 5 p.m. and 10 p.m. in the Los Angeles area. Check out www.ozzfest.com for more info. … Johnny Ramone‘s wife and friends, including Rob Zombie, will unveil a statue in memory of the late Ramones guitarist at a public ceremony January 14 at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery in Los Angeles. The monument, of Johnny playing his guitar, will be located near where Dee Dee Ramone is buried and will include the following quote from Johnny: “If a man can judge success by how many great friends he has, then I have been very successful.” …

Pink is plunging forward with her next album, according to her Web site. She’s already started writing and has a few new songs already, the post says, and though it didn’t disclose exactly who would be working with Pink this time around, it said she would be teaming up with “some great talent.” … Supermodel Tyra Banks has put her debut album on hold, but insists she has not given up on a singing career. “I have a talk show in the works, so we’re trying to figure out the timing of the music and how to blend the two,” she explained. “I just did a beautiful song with Wyclef and one with Rodney Jerkins. …

Slash‘s Las Vegas New Year’s Eve celebration was cut short after the Velvet Revolver guitarist found out his cat had suffered a heart attack back in Los Angeles and had to be rushed to a veterinarian, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal. Slash reportedly returned to his suite several times throughout the night to get updates on the feline’s health. … Kelly Osbourne recently shot a cameo for “The Muppets’ Wonderful Wizard of Oz,” due on the small screen in May. Osbourne plays herself and bumps into Ashanti‘s Dorothy character in the flick. …

Love Rocks, a two-disc compilation celebrating love, “regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity,” will see release on February 25. Christina Aguilera, Pink, Mandy Moore, Dolly Parton, Melissa Etheridge and others contribute songs to the album, with all proceeds benefiting Human Rights Campaign, an organization promoting gay and lesbian civil rights. … William Hung‘s feature-film debut, the Cantonese-language “Where Is Mama’s Boy?,” hits theaters this weekend in Singapore. The “American Idol” reject, who is in Singapore promoting the film and doing benefits for the tsunami victims, plays a street vendor who befriends a music-club owner, played by Hong Kong starlet Nancy Sit. …

Jurassic 5 rapper Chali 2na has settled on Fish Out of Water as the title for his solo album, due in February. Some of the material from the LP, which includes a track produced by Linkin Park‘s Mike Shinoda, is included on the recently released mixtape Fish Market. J5 are also recording an album for release in 2005. … 8Ball and MJG are releasing “Forever” with Lloyd as the next single from Living Legends.

After facing two liens on her New York apartment in the past year, Courtney Love has decided to solve her money problems by selling the place. She’s listed the 4,100-square-foot loft in SoHo as a $6 million property, after paying $2.6 million for the place five years ago. … Fans of “The O.C.” who recognize the music of the Album Leaf, featured in recent episodes of the hit TV show, will now be able to see the band live. Jimmy LaValle (a.k.a. the Album Leaf) takes his pristine, minimalist instrumentals on the road this month with a West Coast jaunt that kicks off January 13 near the O.C., in Costa Mesa, California. …

To walk this way, or not to walk this way … that’s the question posed at Burbank, California’s Falcon Theatre where the show “The Comedy of Aerosmith” is playing throughout the month of January. The “For mature audiences only!” show, a parody of Shakespeare‘s “The Comedy of Errors” mixed with the music of Aerosmith, is being performed by the Troubadour Theater Company. … Natalie Imbruglia has finished her new album, which she’s calling Counting Down the Days. The first single, “Shiver,” is due out in mid-March, while the album is expected March 29. Song titles include “I Won’t Be Lost,” “On the Run,” “Sanctuary,” “Satisfied,” “Honeycomb Child” and “Come on Home.” …