For The Record: Quick News On Snoop, Jessica, Madonna, Lance Bass, Paris, J. Lo, GN’R, Kittie & More

Snoop's arraignment delayed; Simpson leaves stage in tears; Madonna plans tour DVD.

Snoop can breathe a little easier — for now. On Monday (December 4), a superior-court judge in Santa Ana, California, postponed the rapper’s felony weapon-possession arraignment until January. The charges — not to be confused with the ones surrounding Snoop’s arrest for gun and drug possession last week — stem from a September incident at John Wayne Airport, where he was caught carrying a collapsible baton in his luggage. Snoop showed up to court Monday with three guards and his defense attorney, but he signed a waiver that will free him up from having to appear at most of the “non-substantive” hearings. He could face up to three years in prison if convicted. …

A teary-eyed Jessica Simpson quickly left the stage Sunday night at the Kennedy Center Honors in Washington, D.C., after singing Dolly Parton‘s “9 to 5,” The Columbus Dispatch reports. Simpson’s performance — which the reportedly silent audience did not applaud — was part of a tribute event honoring the country legend, Steven Spielberg, Smokey Robinson and others. Simpson ended the song abruptly by saying, “So nervous,” and appeared to still be crying when she returned to the stage with other singers later in the show, according to the paper. The tribute will be broadcast December 26 on CBS. …

Madonna‘s Confessions road trip is heading to a new venue — fans’ homes. A to-be-named tour DVD will hit U.S. stores January 23. … Lance Bass and Reichen Lehmkuhl have broken up, according to People magazine. Bass revealed his relationship with the “Amazing Race” winner when the ‘NSYNC singer announced to the magazine in July that he’s gay. …

Police shot and killed an unarmed 18-year-old who had been accused of robbing a student of two PlayStation 3s the day the console was released, AP reports. Peyton Strickland was shot Friday in New Haven County, North Carolina, after police had been sent to arrest him at a house the student shared with three roommates. One of the roommates said Strickland was unarmed but may have been holding a video game controller when police bashed in the door to the house. Authorities said Monday that the shooting will be investigated. …

Paris Hilton has backed out of an appearance at the Billboard Music Awards on Monday because she’s not into cracking on her pals. Hilton’s spokesperson, Elliot Mintz, told AP that his client wasn’t happy with some of the jokes that had been written for her. “Some satirical references ridiculed some of her peers,” he told the wire service. “Paris did not want to say anything that could appear hurtful or embarrassing about people she knows.” The awards show, which airs Monday on Fox, will not have a host, according to a network representative. …

During a pretrial hearing last week, Jennifer Lopez‘s first husband, Ojani Noa, revealed plans to fight the singer’s efforts to thwart his tell-all memoir. AP reports that Noa told the court he regrets agreeing to a preliminary injunction that bars him from “criticizing, denigrating, casting in a negative light or otherwise disparaging or causing disparagement” to his ex. “I want to fight this thing to the end,” he declared. Lopez filed the suit against Noa in April and successfully obtained a temporary restraining order prohibiting him from publishing details about the couple’s most intimate moments. Noa said the book would concentrate on his experiences, and said Lopez “was only a part of my life, but I was going to talk about my other girlfriends as well.” Lopez and Noa married in 1997 and divorced 11 months later. …

Guns N’ Roses bassist Tommy Stinson has responded to claims made last week by Eagles of Death Metal frontman Jesse Hughes regarding the band’s departure from GN’R’s current tour. Hughes had said that Stinson tossed his bass down in disgust during a November 24 gig in Cleveland, when frontman Axl Rose called the Eagles the “Pigeons of Sh– Metal.” Hughes also said Rose then picked up the instrument and hurled it at Stinson. “Eagles of Death Metal were a suggestion of mine a while ago,” the GN’R bassist wrote. “Turns out they were the wrong band for our crowd. They were booed and did not play for as long as they were scheduled to. As for all of the inaccuracies that have been said since, I would like to say that’s all they are — inaccuracies. In the past, I have thrown my bass. I have never thrown it at Axl or anyone else in the band, nor has anyone thrown my bass back at me … yet. Axl has been a dear friend to me for nine years. We have no problem communicating and wish that people would stay the f— out of sh– they don’t know anything about.” …

In related news, organizers of a guns-for-Guns N’ Roses ticket exchange program in Oakland, California, said the event was a success, with more than three dozen guns being turned over in exchange for goods worth an average of $100, including tickets to the band’s December 15 gig. The handguns and rifles collected during Saturday’s event will be transferred to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, to be melted down and converted into manhole covers. … All-female metal band Kittie have been forced to change the name of their record label to X of Infamy, following the arrival of a cease-and-desist letter issued by attorneys representing Kiss. The Canadian band’s label was originally dubbed Kiss of Infamy, which, according to Kiss’ lawyers, is “confusingly similar” to their client’s moniker. Kittie will release their new LP, Funeral for Yesterday, February 20. …

If you had told somebody 40 years ago that a copy of The Velvet Underground & Nico would have ever fetched $110,000 … well, let’s just say you never would have. But that’s what a rare vinyl item by the band is going for on eBay — dwarfing ever so slightly the 75 cents it was purchased for at a New York street sale in 2002. The acetate is being considered the only surviving copy of the first “finished” version of the debut album Andy Warhol brought to Columbia Records. The auction ends Friday. … Devendra Banhart popped up at Los Angeles’ El Rey Theatre late last week to join his bandmate Noah Georgeson onstage. Georgeson opened for Joanna Newsom and performed in support of his own Find Shelter.

Despite plenty of bloggerati rumors to the contrary, Los Angeles duo Giant Drag haven’t broken up — but things are going to be a whole lot different from now on. According to a spokesperson for Interscope Records, drummer/synth player Micah Calabrese has left the band, but guitarist Annie Hardy will soldier on as “the writer and face of Giant Drag.” The band’s most recent album was 2005′s critically lauded Hearts and Unicorns. … A West Virginia concert promoter has filed a breach of contract lawsuit against Slipknot, claiming the Iowa metal act bailed on a 2001 concert he organized. The suit claims Slipknot was scheduled to perform November 27, 2001, at the Huntington Civic Center, but canceled the appearance when a family member of one of the rockers fell ill. The complaint — which names all nine members of Slipknot as defendants — alleges that the band was aware that promoter Don Maynard “expended a significant amount of time, energy and money promoting the show based on the contract and that he would suffer damages as a result of the defendants breaching the concert contract.” Maynard is seeking $72,000 in damages.

12.01.2006

Lindsay Lohan, who has caught a lot of flak for her alleged partying ways, has been going to Alcoholics Anonymous meetings of her own volition, her publicist told The Associated Press Friday (December 1). “She started attending some, and I think it’s a positive thing,” Leslie Sloane told AP. “My biggest fear is who’s the big idiot to out which [chapter] she goes to. It’s no place to go and feel safe. No one judges her, and it’s going to be a slow process. But, to me, the fact that she’s seeing that there’s something not right makes her smarter than the next person.” …

“American Idol” runner-up Katharine McPhee will appear at the 118th Tournament of Roses Parade, airing January 1 at 11 a.m. ET on NBC. George Lucas is the Pasadena, California, event’s grand marshal. … Jay-Z is a very interesting man — just ask Barbara Walters. The rapper joins actor Patrick Dempsey, retired tennis pro Andre Agassi and Vogue Editor in Chief Anna Wintour among those profiled by the reporter in her interview special, “Barbara Walters Presents the 10 Most Fascinating People of 2006.” It will air December 12 on ABC. …

Three 6 Mafia have settled a lawsuit filed by a Pittsburgh teenager who claimed he was severely beaten during an August 2003 concert by the group. In the suit, Ramone Williams said he suffered a fractured jaw after he was thrown to the floor, hit with a chair and kicked in the face while Three 6 performed their song “Let’s Start a Riot.” The settlement was reached last month, and details were not released. … Fall Out Boy are calling on their fans to help design the cover for the iTunes pre-order version of their upcoming Infinity on High album. Amateur artists can submit their potential covers through the band’s site, FallOutBoyRock.com, and FOB will choose their favorite. Submissions are being taken until December 31, and the winner will be revealed when the album becomes available for pre-order on iTunes on January 16. …

Nirvana‘s MTV Video Music Award for Best Alternative Video — for “Heart Shaped Box” in 1994 — will be up for bid beginning Tuesday on ItsOnlyRockNRoll.com. The Moonman is expected to fetch $5,000. A signed Beatles album from the collection of George Harrison‘s sister; Bob Dylan recordings from 1961; and a hat belonging to Rolling Stones frontman Mick Jagger will also go up on the block. The auction ends December 16. … With the Eagles of Death Metal out, Guns N’ Roses have called on Helmet to open for them for the remainder of the Axl Rose-fronted band’s current tour, which rolls into Ames, Iowa, on Friday. The trek runs through December 20 in Universal City, California; Sebastian Bach and the Suicide Girls are also on the bill. … Beyoncé will be up and at ‘em early on Monday, performing at New York’s Rockefeller Plaza as part of NBC’s live “Today” broadcast. Her performance is scheduled to air between 8 and 9 a.m. ET. …

Joining the Killers and others, the Arcade Fire are becoming the latest band to give music for Bono‘s [RED] charity campaign. The anti-corporate indie-rock group is donating “Rebellion (Lies)” for a (Product) [RED] ad campaign that is tied to companies like Motorola, Converse and the Gap. “To some people this seems crass and capitalistic,” frontman Win Butler wrote in a post on the band’s site, “and I sympathize with that position, but in the first week of the campaign, they have raised enough money for 10,000 women to have antiretroviral drugs for a year … money and medication which wouldn’t have been there without a program like this.” Bono’s [RED] campaign aims to fight AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria in Africa through the sale of branded merchandise. … Kevin Lyman’s Taste of Chaos Tour — which some like to call “The Winter Warped Tour” — will hit the road for a total of 39 dates this winter, it was recently announced. The trek — which starts February 15 in Seattle and wraps April 8 in Vancouver, British Columbia — will feature 30 Seconds To Mars, the Used and more. For the full list of dates, check out TasteOfChaos.com …

Want to hang out with Metallica? Now you’ve got a shot. To celebrate Tuesday’s release of their DVD “The Videos 1989-2004,” Metallica are giving fans a chance to win a two-night stay (including hotel and travel expenses) in San Francisco, where a lucky fan will meet the band and tour their headquarters. Ten others will win a copy of the DVD. The contest ends December 31. Visit Metallica.com for additional details. … An auction featuring the paintings and personal effects of late Pink Floyd founder Syd Barrett raised more than $230,000 for children’s educational programs. Items under the gavel at the U.K. auction included 10 paintings by the reclusive musician, a pair of his bicycles, a leather armchair and his artificial Christmas tree. Barrett, who all but disappeared from public life after parting ways with Pink Floyd in 1968, died in July at his home in Cambridge, England, after being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. …

Starsailor lead singer James Walsh is doing a week of solo acoustic shows beginning Thursday in Seattle. The trek will also hit San Francisco; Los Angeles; Portland, Oregon; and Austin, Texas. … Brian McKnight‘s 10th album, aptly titled 10, is due Tuesday and will feature collaborations with Jill Scott and country group Rascal Flatts. “We’re friends, so we got together to see what we’d come up with and we came up with a pretty good tune,” he said of the latter act. …

Celebrity photo agency X17 filed a copyright-infringement suit against Mario Lavandeira — better known as Perez Hilton — in federal court Thursday, accusing the blogger of using images owned by X17 without permission. A statement issued by the photo agency claims that the success of PerezHilton.com is “due in large part to the quality and quantity of celebrity images he posts on the site, many of which are owned by X17.” Lavandeira, who has not commented on the claims, told gossip site TMZ.com that he has not been served with the suit. “My lawyers and I will address the situation when we have the opportunity to review the materials.” A group of seven additional photo agencies — including Splash News and World Entertainment News Network — sent the blogger a cease-and-desist notice earlier this week, urging him to stop posting photos without permission and to pay a licensing fee for prior use to avoid further legal action.