For The Record: Quick News On Gwen, Backstreet Boys, Busta, Beanie Sigel, Maroon 5, Shakira, Jay-Z & More

Stefani previewing 'Wind It Up' clip online; Backstreet back on track; Rhymes cited for talking on cell phone.

Can't wait for Gwen Stefani to bust out her new single, "Wind It Up," at the American Music Awards on November 21? Hop over to Stefani's site (or YouTube) to check out a different clip of the tune, one that will appear on her December 5 DVD, "Harajuku Lovers Live." Yahoo! Music will unveil the full performance from the DVD on Tuesday. ...

Backstreet's back ... almost. Backstreet Boys fans will have to wait just a little longer before they can get their hands on the band's new CD, according to A.J. McLean. "The boys and I are finishing up the new record, coming out at the top of the year," McLean revealed to MTV News at the Moto 8 party Thursday night in Hollywood. "We're about three-quarters of the way through. We just got new mixes, we're just kind of going through the top eight [songs] we have right now, and getting the mix [done] properly. But everyone's really stoked about it. The songs are great, man." Additionally, McLean has spent the last six months working on another solo record. "It's a lot of personal stuff," McLean explained. "Like, my relationship with my father that I don't really have. There's a song about him called 'Sincerely Yours.' There's a lot of songs on the record that are just me expressing who I am and letting everyone know I am my own person outside of Backstreet Boys." Whether McLean resurrects his Johnny No Name alter ego remains to be seen. ... Busta Rhymes' run-ins with the authorities continue. On Thursday, the rapper was cited for, of all things, talking on his cell phone while driving in New York. He was caught at 7 p.m. as he passed a police station, according to The Associated Press. He has been issued a summons for a moving violation. ...

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Rapper Beanie Sigel was hospitalized on Wednesday for a stomach ailment that doctors later diagnosed as a double hernia, his manager confirmed. According to Marc Bayer, Sigel felt discomforting pains when he awoke that morning and then decided to visit an undisclosed Philadelphia-area hospital. Medical officials examined Sigel and recognized a bulge against his abdominal wall as a hernia. The rapper is slated to be released from hospital custody on Monday following an ordered weekend of rest. ... Maroon 5, who will be honored Wednesday at the Environmental Media Awards, have recorded a public-service announcement endorsing California's Proposition 87, a $4 billion program aimed at reducing petroleum consumption and giving incentives for research and production of alternative energy. The band also encourages everyone to vote in the midterm elections. ... Russell Simmons has contributed to "Take Your Parents to Vote Day," an animated short film being shown in 25 percent of the nation's schools. New York City Department of Education Chancellor Joel Klein is also in the video. ...

It was Shakira's night at the Latin Grammys on Thursday, where the hip-shaking singer won four awards, including Album of the Year for Fijación Oral Vol. 1; Song of the Year and Record of the Year for "La Tortura"; and Best Female Pop Vocal Album. The Colombian singer, who gave one of her patented sultry performances during the telecast with "La Tortura," also took the opportunity to speak out in support of illegal immigrants working in the U.S., saying, "I hope soon they will receive the recognition they deserve from the government." Several other artists also commented on the immigration issue during the broadcast. Shakira almost went five-for-five but lost out in the best-video category to Puerto Rican reggaetón group Calle 13, who also won Best New Artist and Best Urban Album. The Latin Recording Academy also honored Ricky Martin with its Person of the Year award. ... Miami production team Cool & Dre have partnered with upstart indie label Skeleton Key Entertainment to release their new artist Joe Hound through the duo's Epidemic Music imprint. ...

Jay-Z will be the in-studio guest Friday (November 3) on "The All Out Show" with Rude Jude and Lord Sear, broadcast on Sirius Satellite Radio's Shade 45 — the station managed by Eminem. Jay will address the recent beef with Dip Set's Jim Jones and Cam'ron, criticisms from DMX and the failure of LL Cool J's latest album on Def Jam. He'll also discuss the challenge of being president of Def Jam, coming out of retirement, boycotting Cristal champagne and — of course — his upcoming album, Kingdom Come. ... 30 Seconds to Mars, the Used, Senses Fail, Aiden, Saosin and Chiodos have been tapped to appear on the third annual Taste of Chaos Tour. According to Chaos (and Warped Tour) founder Kevin Lyman, the trek is scheduled to kick off on February 15 in Seattle. ... Sorry, ladies: It turns out Doogie Howser is gay. Amid recent rumors, Neil Patrick Harris confirmed his sexual orientation to People magazine. "Rather than ignore those who choose to publish their opinions without actually talking to me, I am happy to dispel any rumors or misconceptions and am quite proud to say that I am a very content gay man living my life to the fullest and feel most fortunate to be working with wonderful people in the business I love," the actor said in a statement. ...

Victory Records filed suit against Virgin Records and parent company EMI Music in Chicago federal court on Thursday, claiming that the company tried to lure away one of its bands, Hawthorne Heights. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the suit charges Virgin and EMI with tortious interference with contractual relations and seeks a minimum of $10 million in compensatory damages and $10 million in punitive damages over allegations that Virgin signed HH while the group was still under obligation to Victory. HH sued Victory in August in an attempt to get out of its contract with the Chicago indie label — which the bandmembers claimed had mistreated them — but a judge ruled last month that the group was still under obligation to Victory. ... In more upbeat Victory news, the label is teaming with a company called Textango to make its catalog available for purchase through text messaging. The service allows for those without credit cards to purchase music digitally, since the charges appear on their cell phone bills. ...

Maybe seven is Flavor Flav's lucky number. The reality-TV star and Public Enemy hype man is expecting his seventh child, though not by "Flavor of Love" winner Deelishis, who the 47-year-old rapper is currently dating. AP reports that Flav's manager confirmed the impending January birth and said the child was conceived with a former girlfriend of Flav's, who he began seeing again after things didn't work out with the winner of the first season of "Flavor of Love," Nicole "Hoopz" Alexander. Deelishis (born London Charles) is reportedly standing by her man. ... As he promised on "Rock Star: Supernova," host Dave Navarro has recorded guitar parts for "Ladylike," the first single from finalist Storm Large's debut album, due in the spring. The single is currently available via iTunes. ... Electronic-music wizards BT and Thomas Dolby are teaming for a tour beginning Monday in Anaheim, California. Both artists will perform their shows accompanied by high-definition film presentations, with digital sound mixed in 5.1.

11.02.2006

50 Cent and Robert De Niro are in final negotiations to co-star in "New Orleans," a police thriller set against the backdrop of Hurricane Katrina, according to The Hollywood Reporter. The independent film follows a cop (De Niro) who thinks his partner was killed by the storm. 50 plays De Niro's new partner. The duo delve into the underworld of police corruption, where they learn that the fallen cop was shot to death. ...

Five Greensboro, North Carolina, police officers have filed a defamation suit against the Game and his associates, The Associated Press reports. The five officers, who were involved in the rapper's October 2005 arrest at a North Carolina mall, say they were libeled and slandered by the Game, who compared his arrest to that of Rodney King in an interview. Officers Hien Nguyen, Matthew Brown, Ryan Childrey, Romaine Watkins and David Greare are also protesting the distribution of a video of the arrest — on a DVD promoted as including footage of the Game "being wrongfully arrested and brutalized by the police in North Carolina." Each officer seeks more than $10,000 in damages. ...

Fergie, the Killers and Janet Jackson will perform at the 2006 Billboard Music Awards, airing live December 4 on Fox. Chris Brown, Rihanna and "American Idol" finalists Katharine McPhee and Chris Daughtry are also scheduled to appear at the ceremony. ... Elton John, Celine Dion, Barry Manilow ... and Prince? The purple rocker has signed on to open up his own nightclub, 3121, inside the Rio Hotel in Las Vegas, where he'll perform every Friday and Saturday night beginning November 10. Tickets to see the singer in the intimate 1,500-seat venue will cost $125, and Prince will also host Wednesday night shows by other artists, with a pre-announcement site featuring images of Cee-Lo, Patti LaBelle, Sheila E, Esthero, Floetry and Maceo Parker though it has not been announced what tie those artists have to the club. ...

A guitar pick used by late Pantera/Damageplan guitarist "Dimebag" Darrell Abbott during a junior high school talent show back in 1982 fetched more than $342 during a recent eBay auction. The seller purchased the pick years ago from someone who went to the same school as Dime. The auction also included the talent-show flyer as well as a newspaper clipping about the event. ... The first in a series of gearshift knobs inspired by Metallica's James Hetfield will be available for purchase at the Metallica club store starting today. Only 100 resin knobs were produced, and are available in four colors: flesh, metal gray, copper and green. The first 25 were signed by Hetfield, and are priced at $69.95. ... Thrice singer Dustin Kensrue will release his debut solo LP, Please Come Home, on January 23. The album is a blend of folk, blues, country and soul. ...

Bassist Johnny Colt, formerly of the Black Crowes and Train, will be filling in for Voivod's Jason Newsted during Rock Star Supernova's upcoming North American tour, which launches New Year's Eve in Las Vegas. Newsted is on the mend after suffering a torn anterior labrum in his left shoulder and a rotator cuff and bicep tear in his right following an accident, during which the bassist tried to catch a 90-pound bass head that had fallen off the top of his amp. Surgery to repair his injuries, and subsequent rehab, could sideline Newsted for nine months. ... Dave Matthews Band are calling on fans in an effort to get out the vote. "Election Day is one week away," an e-mail sent Tuesday to DMB fans read. "Dave Matthews Band wants to encourage everyone to let your voice be heard by remembering to vote on Election Day." The campaign, run by non-partisan voter-registration organization HeadCount.org, will also reach fans who have signed up to receive updates from Phish, the Grateful Dead, O.A.R, Gov't Mule, moe., String Cheese Incident Umphrey's McGee and the Disco Biscuits — whose bassist, Marc Brownstein, is a co-chair of HeadCount.org. ...

The bitch is back. Elton John played a three-hour set featuring hits including "Bennie and the Jets," "Daniel" and "Levon" to a packed house at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum in New York on Wednesday. As he introduced songs from his latest album, The Captain & the Kid, the outspoken entertainer commented that while the disc has been out since mid-September, "nobody would know it. My record label isn't doing anything to help. F--- Universal. Please drop me. I'm 58 and I don't care anymore." John wraps up his current tour with a second show at Nassau Coliseum on Thursday (November 2). ... Kylie Minogue will return to the stage on November 11 in Sydney, Australia, more than a year after being diagnosed with breast cancer, according to her official Web site. Minogue, 38, who underwent successful surgery in May, followed by chemotherapy, will also pick up some European dates she was forced to cancel last year after the revelation of the disease. ... Actress Zoe Saldana hosted a Hennessy "Suite Spot" event Wednesday night at G Spa in Manhattan that brought out partygoers including Lance Bass and his partner Reichen Lehmkuhl, as well as tennis star Andy Roddick and "America's Top Model" season-five winner Nicole Linkletter. ...

"Speed Racer" is about to enter "The Matrix." The brothers behind the sci-fi action trilogy, Larry and Andy Wachowski, have signed on to write and direct a live-action version of the popular 1960s cartoon series. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the duo's take on the iconic cartoon will follow the adventures of the young race-car driver Speed on his quest for glory in his thundering gadget-laden vehicle, Mach 5. Producer Joel Silver said the Wachowskis are approaching the racing scenes "in a way you've never seen before." The family-friendly movie is scheduled for a summer 2008 release. ... The remake of "Revenge of the Nerds," produced by Adam Brody of "The O.C." and starring Kristin Cavallari as a sorority sister, is officially on hiatus, Variety reports. Atlanta's Emory University backed out of a deal with Fox Atomic to allow one-third of the film to be shot there. A Fox Atomic representative said the cast and crew remain intact, and the studio still plan to release the film in August. ...

Seminal noise-rockers Sonic Youth are delivering an early Christmas gift this year. On December 12, the veteran band will release The Destroyed Room: B-Sides and Rarities. The 12-track disc will compile material culled from the band's career with Geffen Records, focusing on tracks previously only available on vinyl including an Alice Cooper cover and a version of 1995's "The Diamond Sea" with an alternate ending. ... File-sharing network Kazaa has tentatively resolved the last of the major lawsuits it was facing by agreeing to a $10 million payment to the National Music Publishers' Association, according to The New York Times. Though the terms of the deal remain confidential, a source told the paper that in addition to the payment, Kazaa also committed to keep using filtering software that prevents unauthorized exchange of copyrighted songs over its network.