For The Record: Quick News On 50 Cent, Hanson, NIN, LCD Soundsystem, Randy Jackson & More

50 Cent ads pulled in U.K., Taylor Hanson now a father of two, 'Batman Begins' preview airing during 'Smallville' finale.

50 Cent‘s controversial Reebok “I am what I am” ads have been pulled in the U.K., according to BBC News. In response to protests from the group Mothers Against Guns, who previously called for a Reebok boycott, the shoe company discontinued its inflammatory ads that featured 50 counting the number of times he’d been shot. “We are pleased Reebok has shown it is socially responsible — it is the right decision,” Michelle Forbes, vice-chairman of Mothers Against Guns, told the BBC. “We know how brave it was for Reebok to do this and we appreciate it.” Reebok issued a statement saying, “A small number of the general public found it offensive. Therefore Reebok took the decision to immediately and indefinitely stop broadcasting the 50 Cent spot.” …

A former Neverland security guard testified on Wednesday (April 20) that the security staff was ordered to not allow Michael Jackson‘s accuser to leave the property, a directive that came around the same time the prosecution alleges that the family was held against their will. However, Brian Barron also told the court that it was policy to not allow children to leave the ranch if they weren’t accompanied by their parents, and it seemed like the family wanted to be there. Barron noted that after leaving Neverland as a part-time employee, he was approached by the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Department to go back to work there and act as an informant, but he refused. …

Taylor Hanson has a new reason to sing “Penny & Me.” The 22-year-old Hanson member and his wife, Natalie, welcomed their second child, a daughter named Penelope, into the world on Tuesday. Their son, Jordan Ezra, was born in October 2002. Baby and mom are both doing fine. …LCD Soundsystem‘s next single, “Disco Infiltrator,” will be released on May 23, and remixes are being arranged at the moment. Meanwhile, Nine Inch NailsTrent Reznor has recruited LCD frontman James Murphy (under his DFA production moniker) to remix “The Hand That Feeds,” off the upcoming NIN LP With Teeth. On the NIN Web site, Reznor writes that the DFA and their record label are “doing the most interesting production work out there.” Drum’n’bass producer Photek has also been tapped to tweak Teeth. …

Something Corporate singer Andrew McMahon‘s side project, Jack’s Mannequin, will release their debut, Everything in Transit, on July 12. In the meantime, the band is launching a tour April 27 in Berkeley, California, which wraps June 9 in Grand Rapids, Michigan. …Jim Verraros, a finalist from the first season of “American Idol,” will release his second album — and first on a major label — on Tuesday. Rollercoaster features a guest appearance from fellow contestant Angela Peel. Meanwhile, Verraros’ movie debut, “Eating Out,” was released April 8. … Juliette Lewis‘ band, Juliette and the Licks, have just finished their debut album, the follow-up to their EP, Like a Bolt of Lightning. You’re Speaking My Language includes such tracks as “I Never Got to Tell You What I Wanted To,” “Pray for the Band Latoya” and “American Boy Vol. 2,” and is due out May 17. …

Natalie Cole is slated to perform at the 12th annual Race to Erase MS benefit, called Rock and Royalty to Erase MS, taking place Friday in Los Angeles at the Westin Century Plaza Hotel and Spa. Randy Jackson, Drea de Matteo and Jamie-Lynn DiScala will be presenters at the gala, which will include a fashion show by Tommy Hilfiger, while Tony Danza, Tom Arnold and Bill Maher will emcee the live auction. Proceeds go to the Center Without Walls, a research program to find a cure for multiple sclerosis. Last year’s event raised more than $2 million. … Want to see Mötley Crüe but don’t want to get off your couch? The band is taking care of that excuse by filming its April 27 show in Grand Rapids, Michigan, at the Van Andel Arena for a DVD to come out in the fall. The “Red, White, & Crüe” DVD will be directed by Hamish Hamilton, who’s previously shot concerts such as Britney Spears‘ “Live From Miami” Showtime special. “This will give our fans a chance to see this f—ing incredible show from the safety of their living rooms,” Crüe bassist Nikki Sixx said in a statement. …

The creators of the Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival are launching a new multistage tour this summer with Trey Anastasio and Ben Harper & the Innocent Criminals headlining. Starting on June 16, the Zooma Tour will stop at 28 amphitheaters around the country before wrapping at the end of July. A complete list of dates and the 20-plus rotating acts who will perform will be available soon. … Jason Mraz will head out with Alanis Morissette for some unplugged performances on her Jagged Little Pill acoustic tour. The outing begins June 7 in Toronto. … The Hot Snakes, the last band to record a session for BBC DJ John Peel before he died, are releasing those recordings on Tuesday. The EP features all four tracks from the October 11 session. …

04.19.2005

Jay-Z has teamed up with Swiss watch designer Audemars Piguet to release a limited-edition, upscale watch collection. According to Jay’s publicist, only 100 of the watches, which celebrate the MC’s 10th year in the music industry, are being made: 50 in stainless steel, 30 in rose gold and 20 in platinum. The timepieces can be found in Audemars Piguet shops; prices range from $24,000 to $100,000. Each watch comes with an iPod with all of Jay’s albums already uploaded. …

Young Buck‘s Monday court date in Los Angeles in connection with the melee at last fall’s Vibe Awards was continued to May 13. The G-Unit rapper has already pleaded not guilty to assault with a deadly weapon. … Nas is staging a brief college tour to promote his Street’s Disciple album. The five-date jaunt will kick off on Saturday at the University of Connecticut’s Storrs campus and wrap on May 21 at the University of Chicago. The rapper is planning a larger tour for the summer. …

After leaving the Queens of the Stone Age tour earlier this month, Mark Lanegan returned to the stage for the last show on this leg of their outing. About half an hour into the band’s set at the Music Box at the Fonda in Los Angeles Monday night, Lanegan emerged onstage without a word of explanation and proceeded to sing several songs. The other surprise of the night came during the first encore, when the band came out with ZZ Top guitarist Billy Gibbons. They performed the 1973 ZZ Top song “Precious and Grace” as well as the Lullabies to Paralyze track on which Gibbons appears, “Burn the Witch.” … Along with working with the same producers he used on Schizophrenic, JC Chasez has been spending time in the studio with James Harry (Britney Spears) and David Maurice (Jay-Z) for the follow-up. “I’m concentrated not so much on the production but the songwriting, so it’s gonna be an album of great songs,” Chasez said. …

“Rush Hour” star Chris Tucker was arrested Sunday for reckless driving and fleeing when police in Warren County, Georgia, tried to pull him over for going 109 mph on Interstate 20, according to the Smoking Gun Web site. The actor, driving a 2005 Bentley, reportedly did not immediately stop for authorities. … Michael Jackson‘s lawyers finished grilling the accuser’s mother on Tuesday, finishing up her five days on the stand by calling into question photographs showing the bruises she claimed came from an altercation with JC Penney security guards. Jackson’s attorney Thomas Mesereau tried to establish that the abuse could have been at the hands of her husband, and that she conned the department store into paying a $150,000 settlement. In a mug shot taken immediately after the incident, she testified, she doesn’t have bruises because they took time to turn dark and she was wearing makeup. Mesereau also tried to establish that the mother spent money raised for her son’s cancer costs, asking about a car she looked into buying and asking how she paid for plastic surgery. “I used a credit card,” she said. She said the donations were used to make a room sterile for her son at her parents’ home during his chemotherapy. Meanwhile, the prosecution is expected to wrap its case by the end of next week. …

Lovebirds and “One Tree Hill” castmates Chad Michael Murray and Sophia Bush were married over the weekend in Santa Monica, California. The vows were exchanged at the Hotel Casa del Mar overlooking the ocean and in front of almost 200 guests, including Bethany Joy Lenz and Tyler Hilton, according to Bush’s publicist. The couple, who met in 2003, were engaged last July when Murray popped the question on the Australian set of his upcoming movie, “House of Wax.” … A New York judge has issued a warrant for Natasha Lyonne‘s arrest. The “American Pie” and “Slums of Beverly Hills” actress was a no-show Monday morning for a scheduled court appearance, according to Reuters. She was due in court to answer charges filed back in December in the wake of her arrest on criminal-mischief, harassment and trespassing charges. Police were called to the star’s apartment building when a neighbor complained she forced her way into their apartment, broke a mirror and then allegedly threatened to sexually assault their dog. …

Come Wednesday, Ryan Seacrest will be immortalized — sort of. The “American Idol” host is getting a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Merv Griffin and Larry King are slated to speak at the ceremony. … Ashanti‘s making two stops on TV for sweeps month. Besides her starring role as Dorothy in “The Muppets’ Wizard of Oz” (airing May 20 at 8 p.m. on ABC), the singer is also guest-starring as herself on “Las Vegas” as the new girlfriend of Jon Lovitz‘s colorful billionaire character, Fred Puterbaugh. The episode, called “Magic. Carpet. Fred.,” airs May 9 at 9 p.m. on NBC. …

Since when does P. Diddy skip out on his own party? That was Las Vegas mayor Oscar Goodman‘s reaction when the rap boss failed to appear at the Aladdin Resort & Casino on Friday — deemed Diddy Day, no less — for a special press conference. The hip-hop mogul was supposedly going to announce some new business ventures he’s been working on, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reports, including a new restaurant and a nightclub. Those plans are now reported to be on hold. … Is Madonna planning on doing a musical? She certainly hints as much in her latest letter to fans in ICON magazine. “I have been back in the studio writing new songs for several different projects,” she wrote. “Should I do a musical? Should I record another album?” The singer also mentioned that she’s just finished designing the fall line for her English Roses collection and that her upcoming tour documentary is more than what she intended it to be. “It starts out being a film about me and my life on tour and ends up being a story about humanity,” she wrote. “I am very excited about it and hope to premiere it at the Cannes Film Festival.” …

Ja Rule‘s new movie “Back in the Day” is set to premiere on television. Ja plays Reggie Cooper, a young man from the wrong side of the tracks who struggles to avoid the gang life but becomes embroiled in it when his paroled friend (played by Ving Rhames) gets him involved in the murder of a local preacher. The urban drama also stars Pam Grier, Tatyana Ali, Frank Langella and Tia Carrere and will premiere May 13 on BET at 7:30 p.m. ET. The DVD will hit stores May 24. … Sisqó is planning to spend some time at the beach for his part in the upcoming campy teen comedy “Surf School,” a self-described “American Pie”-at-the-beach, which began production last week. The “Thong Song” singer plays rapper Mo, a member of a group of misfits that also includes the school virgin, a goth mute, a sex-crazed loudmouth and a Maryland transplant, who enter a surf contest together. School scenes take place in Laguna Beach, California, while the surf scenes are being shot in Costa Rica. …

The brothers GallagherNoel and Liam — aren’t exactly known for their calm demeanors. So they’re probably busting furniture over the news that tracks from Oasis‘ upcoming album, Don’t Believe the Truth, have been leaked to the Internet more than six weeks before the record is due in stores. Late Monday night, message boards on several Oasis fan sites began popping with transfers of songs like “The Meaning of Soul,” “Let There Be Love” and “Mucky Fingers.” No word on how the tracks made their way to the Web, but for fans who still want to buy the album, it’s out on May 31. … On Tuesday night (April 19), the nonprofit organization Dress for Success, which helps low-income women find clothes for joining the workforce, will host a star-studded gala at the Marriott Marquis in New York. Lorraine Bracco will host the event, where revelers can expect to see Star Jones Reynolds, Ashanti, Wyclef Jean and Harry Belafonte, who will be honored. …

Billy Idol is joining the Warped Tour for a few select dates. The punk idol will perform at the July 6, 7, 10, 16, 17, 20 and 24 shows. “I’m risking it all over again in the clinch, in the trenches, showing people the energy of Generation X, the rock of ‘Rebel Yell,’ ” he said in a statement. Also on the Warped lineup are the Offspring, My Chemical Romance, Transplants, Thrice, Fall Out Boy and Dropkick Murphys. …