For The Record: Quick News On T.I. And Lil’ Flip, 50 Cent, Eazy-E, Michael Jackson, Brad Pitt And Jennifer Aniston & More

T.I. and Flip get in a fight, 50 pulls a Beatles-like feat, Eazy remembered with revamped hits disc.

According to sources close to both MCs, T.I. and Lil’ Flip were involved in a melee on the streets of Houston on Thursday. Sources say T.I. was at a local radio station telling listeners he was going to be out in Lil’ Flip’s ‘hood of Cloverland. When T.I. and his crew finally arrived in the area, Flip and his entourage confronted them; a fight ensued, but no one was injured and no arrests were made. Representatives for Tip and Flip declined to comment. …

On the eve of the 10-year anniversary of Eazy-E‘s death, the rapper’s label has announced it will re-release Eternal E: The Best of Eazy-E with the addition of a DVD of videos. The Gangsta Memorial Edition of the album, due in stores August 30, will feature the 16 tracks released on the 2003 version, along with videos for Eazy’s “We Want Eazy,” “Only If You Want It,” “Eazy-er Said Than Dunn” and “Neighborhood Sniper,” and N.W.A‘s “Appetite for Destruction,” “100 Miles & Runnin’ ” and the title track from the group’s landmark gangsta rap album, Straight Outta Compton. … Testimony in the Michael Jackson trial on Friday continued to center around fingerprint evidence found on the adult material seized from Neverland. Fingerprint testimony had started on Thursday but had mostly focused on the techniques of the science instead of the evidence found. On Friday, though, detectives testified that five prints found among the “adult material” were identified as the accuser’s, two were from the accuser’s brother, and 12 were identified as Jackson’s. “I can’t take anymore,” Judge Rodney Melville joked about the dry testimony when he ended court 15 minutes early. Meanwhile, Jackson attorney Brian Oxman returned from his brief hospitalization for pneumonia. …

Showing she definitely just wants to be “Friends” with hubby Brad Pitt, Jennifer Aniston filed for divorce on Friday (March 25), citing irreconcilable differences, The Associated Press reports. Pitt and Aniston were married in July 2000; the Hollywood power couple had announced a separation in January via a joint press release. … Farnsworth Bentley celebrated his birthday with a few hundred of his closest friends Thursday night at New York’s Cielo, where he also screened his BET “Rip the Runway” hosting debut. Among those in attendance were Kanye West, Swizz Beatz, Common, Jean Grae, Pharoahe Monch, DJ Absolut, Black Sheep‘s Dres, Miri Ben-Ari, the Alchemist, and “America’s Next Top Model” winner Eva Pigford and her former fellow contestants Yaya and Toccara. … Later that night, Just Blaze kept the party jumping over at club Table 50, where he acted as the house DJ. While Just spun early ’90s classics from Brand Nubian, N.W.A, and others, Q-Tip, one of the top MCs of that era, got on the mic and acted as hype man. Farnsworth, 3LW and Irv Gotti were a few of the luminaries who popped up on the scene. …

This week, 50 Cent became the first artist since 1964 to score four simultaneous top-10 hits on Billboard‘s singles chart. “Candy Shop” and “Disco Inferno” — from his chart-topping album The Massacre — and the Game‘s “Hate It or Love It” and “How We Do” tracks, which feature 50 on guest vocals, are sitting at #1, #5, #6 and #8, respectively. The Beatles were the last act to achieve such a feat, with songs dominating the chart’s top five spots. … In his latest crusade against violence in rap music, the Reverend Al Sharpton has asked the FCC to deny airplay for 90 days to artists who encourage or take part in violent acts, according to The Associated Press. Sharpton also wants to target radio stations that encourage this type of violence by having them fined and their licenses reviewed. So far, the FCC has declined to comment. …

While in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, to play the tsunami-aid concert Force of Nature on March 18, Will.I.Am toured the area to view the devastation, and has since decided to help rebuild the area more directly. The Black Eyed Peas rapper has hooked up his charitable foundation, the Will.I.Am Foundation, with Octogon, LLC and Force of Nature to construct new homes in the region. “Seeing the disaster with my own eyes has been life-changing,” he said in a statement. “Seeing the children on the street and families displaced makes it clear that we need … to help rebuild the homes lost.” … The African Well Fund will launch its third annual Build a Well for Bono‘s Birthday fund-raiser on March 27 at the Hard Rock Cafe in San Diego — the same night and city where U2 kick off their Vertigo Tour. The AWF raises funds to build wells in African countries like Uganda and Ethiopia, where clean drinking water is scarce. Donations will be collected until March 10, Bono’s birthday. For more information, check out AfricanWellFund.org. …

The Flaming Lips and the Pussycat Dolls rocked out Thursday night to usher in the new Mazda MX5 Convertible at an event called “Hot in the City” at New York’s Gotham Hall. Those in attendance included Ashanti, Danger Mouse, Carson Kressley, and actresses Samaire Armstrong and Bree Turner (Lindsay Lohan‘s co-stars in her upcoming film “Just My Luck”). … A live DVD of Ben Harper playing with the Blind Boys of Alabama at the historic Apollo Theater in New York’s Harlem is slated for release on Tuesday, according to Harper’s official Web site. …

U.K. rapper and grime poster child Dizzee Rascal is gearing up to tour North America for the first time, in support of his most recent album, Showtime. Dizzee’s trek starts March 30 in Vancouver, British Columbia, and wraps April 30 in Chicago. … Just because Guided by Voices broke up doesn’t mean that former leader Robert Pollard is slowing down his deluge of releases. He’s just released a four-song EP called Zoom and is prepping reissues of the band’s 1986 debut EP, Forever Since Breakfast (due Tuesday), on hand-numbered red vinyl with bonus tracks. For true collectors, look for the rare, vinyl-only live album from 2000 recorded under the name Hazzard Hotrods (October), which was improvised live in a video store in 1990. December will bring another massive compilation of GBV songs, Suitcase 2, with more than 100 never-before-heard versions of classic and unreleased songs. And look for albums by the side projects Moping Swans and the Circus Devils in May. …

03.24.2005

Destiny’s Child will play a special show for the troops at San Diego’s Camp Pendleton on April 1. About 25,000 Marines are expected to attend “Rockin’ the Corps,” which will also feature Godsmack, Kiss, Ted Nugent and comedian Jay Mohr. The event will be produced by Quincy Jones and filmed for a televised special and DVD, with all proceeds going to support soldiers and families of Marines deployed overseas. …

Will Smith is teaming up with Jon Voight to launch a children’s film festival. The duo are modeling the festival, called Giffoni Hollywood, after a likeminded event in Giffoni, Italy, in which kid-geared full-length films and shorts are judged by youngsters between the ages of 9 and 17. Giffoni Hollywood will debut on April 28 at Hollywood’s ArcLight Cinemas, and will last for four days. … Bow Wow wants you — on his next album. The rapper’s launching a contest to find his biggest fan; his devotees are being asked to create 30-second video clips about why they love him for possible inclusion on the DVD portion of his upcoming CD/DVD release, Wanted, due out June 28. Ten grand-prize winners will make the cut. Log on to www.bowwowwanted.com for more info. …

Clay Aiken, a UNICEF ambassador, recently toured the Indonesian province of Aceh, one of the areas hit hardest by the December 26 tsunami. “The trip was for fact-finding purposes,” Aiken told the Jakarta Post. “There are citizens in the U.S. who have offered their time, effort, money and resources and there are some who try to find out where their money is going and what type of work is being done.” … Meanwhile, fellow “American Idol” season-two finalist Kimberley Locke is shopping a reality series about recording her second record and planning her wedding. The working title is “Aren’t You That Girl?” …

Britney Spears is getting a makeover — along with Kelly Clarkson and Pink. They’re among the stars who’ll have hit tracks revamped on Superstars Remixed, due out May 10. Included on the LP will be Britney’s “Toxic,” retooled by Armand Van Helden; Beyoncé’s “Naughty Girl,” massaged by Victor Calderone; and Maroon 5, Jennifer Lopez and Christina Aguilera tracks redone by Junior Vasquez, Hex Hector and Peter Rauhofer. … After a few DJ shifts here and there, Moby‘s performing with his band again for the first time in the U.S. in two years — as the headliner for this weekend’s Ultra Music Festival, the closing ceremony of Winter Music Festival 2005 in Miami. Also on the all-day Saturday bill at the Bayfront Park Amphitheater are Kelly Osbourne, Tiffany, Perry Farrell, the Crystal Method and Josh Wink. …

Sticman, one half of political rap group Dead Prez, recently received more than $50,000 in settlement fees from the city of New York, according to the duo’s attorney. The rapper and three associates were arrested during a photo shoot and sued the New York Police Department for false arrest and excessive force. A portion of the settlement will be donated to the Malcom X Grassroots Movement to further prevent police misconduct. … The late Jam Master Jay‘s mother, Connie Mizell-Perry, was honored at a proclamation ceremony on Wednesday at New York’s City Hall. City Council Speaker Gifford Miller was the keynote speaker and praised Mizell-Perry for her work with the Jam Master Jay Foundation. …

On April 5, the Smashing Pumpkins will make their digital debut. The defunct alt rock band, which has not allowed its songs to be legally downloaded until now, will release 227 tracks for download, including 113 album tracks and 114 rarities and B-sides, according to a spokesperson. The band has also set a deal to offer ringtones for hits such as “Disarm,” “1979,” “Today” and “Bullet With Butterfly Wings.” The songs will be available on all the major download services, including iTunes, Rhapsody, MusicMatch, Napster, Sony Connect, WalMart.com and Musicnet. In other Pumpkins news, former leader Billy Corgan has set TheFutureEmbrace as the title of his upcoming solo debut, which is scheduled for a June 21 release. … Tom Petty is hitting the road for a string of springtime dates, and he’s taking the Black Crowes with him — for some of the time, at least. The recently reunited Crowes will play the first month and a half of dates on the tour, from June 8 in Fort Myers, Florida, until July 30 in Saratoga Springs, New York. At the moment, the tour is scheduled to end August 26 in Berkeley, California, though more dates are expected to be announced in the coming weeks. …

Joan Jett loves rock and roll — and she’s going to share it with you starting this week as a DJ on Sirius Radio’s Underground Garage channel. The singer joins a crew that includes Beatles expert Martin Lewis, “Handsome” Dick Manitoba, Kim Fowley and other rock luminaries to offer insight and kick out the jams from bands like the Ramones, the White Stripes, MC5, the Kinks and more. “We don’t care if it’s 50 years old, or 50 minutes old. If it’s fantastic, we play it,” fellow DJ Steven Van Zandt said in a statement. Jett’s shifts are at 3-7 p.m. and 11 p.m.-3 a.m. …