For The Record: Quick News On Madonna, Bow Wow, Snoop, R. Kelly, Aly & AJ, Backstreet Boys & More

Madge designs clothes for H&M; Bow Wow becomes high school principal for a day; Snoop contributing to 'Arthur' soundtrack.

Lots of people go nuts over H&M clothes, but Madonna is enough of a fan to make her own. The singer has signed on to design a line of clothes and accessories called the M by Madonna women's wear collection for the Swedish fashion giant. H&M has provided Madonna, her band and dancers with offstage clothing for her recent tour, and the singer has been the face of the chain's advertising campaign this year. "I've made no secret of my love of fashion over the years," Madonna said in a statement on her Web site. "Working with Margareta [van den Bosch, the company's head of design] and H&M was an exciting and new creative challenge for me. I'm really happy with the results and look forward to wearing M by Madonna along with the rest of the world." The line will launch in March. ...

Bow Wow is acting as principal for a day at Schurr High School in Montebello, California, on Thursday (December 7). The rapper is planning to have breakfast with students, read announcements over the loudspeaker, visit some classrooms, give a pep talk to the school's football team, meet with students participating in the pageant, stop by the blood drive and give a live performance. ...

Expect to hear Snoop barking a new tune on the "Arthur and the Invisibles" soundtrack, hitting stores January 9. The rapper contributes "Go Girl," while Jewel chalks up her "Quest for Love" and Elijah chip in "It's a Beautiful Day." The rest of the soundtrack is rounded out by contributions from the London Symphonic Orchestra & the Metro Voices. ... December is shaping up to be a busy month for songwriter/producer Sean Garrett. The man behind Beyoncé's "Check on It" and Chris Brown's "Gimme That" will hit the studio with R. Kelly on Friday in Chicago and plans to work with the R&B artist through Monday. Then Garrett is off to Atlanta, where he'll collaborate with Whitney Houston from Tuesday through December 14. The producer will also reteam with Chris Brown in a New York studio from December 15-19. ...

Former Backstreet Boy Kevin Richardson is working on a new project: a baby. The singer/actor, who will next appear onstage in the Toronto production of "Chicago," told MTV News that he and his wife are planning to start a family soon. ... Aly & AJ are hard at work on their second album. "It's definitely still going to be Aly and I, it's just we've grown up and I think the music has grown up with us," AJ said. ... Sean Paul is also laying down new tracks: The dancehall star has been recording his next album in Jamaica since September. "I'll probably be finished by April next year, probably come out in June," he said. ... Clinic have set a January 23 Stateside release date for their fourth album, Visitations. The British band is touring North America beginning March 2 in Los Angeles and wrapping up March 12 in Toronto. ...

If you dug "My Block: The Bay," there's a new comp you should get dumb with: Hyphy Hits, due January 9. The 20-track collection calls on the Bay Area's hottest hip-hoppers to introduce hyphy, their own crunk-and-screw-like blend, to the masses. Expect to find E-40, Keak Da Sneak, Mistah F.A.B., Mac Dre and many others on the set. ... Singer/songwriter Jason Mraz has a digital-only release hitting JasonMraz.com on Tuesday. Selections for Friends was recorded in July during his Songs for Friends Tour and touches on new material, classics and more obscure tracks. "God Rests in Reason" includes spoken-word elements from Khalil Gibran, a reputed poet who has never appeared in a song before. ...

Godsmack frontman Sully Erna will release "The Paths We Choose," his personal memoir, on February 7. According to the book's Web site, the tome isn't just a tell-all about life as a touring frontman. "It's about his life growing up, and all the struggling, suffering and sinning along the way. It's about the good times, and the time he almost gave it all up. It's about the people he loves and the ones who betrayed him, the bands he lived for and the mistakes that seemed like good ideas at the time. But most of all, it's about his never-ending passion for music." ... Garbage will issue a greatest-hits collection titled Absolute Garbage on March 19. Look for the set to feature 17 tracks, including "Only Happy When It Rains," "Stupid Girl" and "Bleed Like Me." The band continues to be on indefinite hiatus. ...

Soon-to-be Fall Out Boy tourmates Permanent Me have aligned themselves with another big name: producer Matt Squire. The Panic! at the Disco and Cute Is What We Aim For collaborator helmed the New York newcomers' debut, After the Room Clears, which will drop January 23. Permanent Me are currently touring with Monty Are I, the Summer Obsession and the Outline. ... Bayside have completed work on their forthcoming album, The Walking Wounded. No official release date has been cemented yet, but the LP is expected to surface in February. ... Puddle of Mudd also recently wrapped recording a new album: their yet-untitled third effort, which is slated for release in the spring. The band expects to tour heavily in 2007 to support the LP. ...

New York hardcore legends Sick of It All are the subject of the upcoming tribute album Our Impact Will Be Felt, which will hit stores February 3 and feature contributions from Sepultura, Bouncing Souls, Bleeding Through, Rise Against and others. To celebrate the release, Sick of It All will hit the road later this month with Hatebreed for a brief five-gig stint that kicks off in Washington, D.C., on December 26 and runs through December 30 in New Haven, Connecticut. The band will also open for AFI for four shows next year: February 5 in New Orleans; February 9 in Columbus, Ohio; February 11 in Cincinnati; and February 15 in Tulsa, Oklahoma. ... Finger Eleven will follow up their 2003 self-titled effort — which went gold — with Them vs. You, due March 20. The album is said to blend rock with country and funk elements.

12.06.2006

Gwen Stefani wants to be a part of what you listen to and what you look like, and now she's stepping into the world of scent. "Creating a fragrance is one of the most prestigious things a designer can do," the singer said in a press release announcing her L.A.M.B. brand's entry into the fragrance field. "For me it's another thing you can wear and another thing I can creatively be a part of." Stefani will team up with Coty Inc. for the scent, which will debut in fall 2007. ...

The Good Charlotte documentary "Fast Future Generation" will be released December 26 on DVD. The film, which premiered in January at the Sundance Film Festival, follows the band on tour in Japan. ... Christina Aguilera has signed on to perform live in Times Square for "Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve 2007," airing on ABC. Clark and Ryan Seacrest are co-hosting. ...

Katharine McPhee shows her sexy side on the cover of Shape, wearing a red cleavage-baring bathing suit that exposes her midriff. The "Idol" runner-up also talks about battling an eating disorder and developing a new workout regimen in the cover story — her first one. "At the time of the 'American Idol' tryouts [August 2005], I was out of control, binging and sometimes purging up to seven times a day," she said. The singer checked herself into Los Angeles' Eating Disorder Center of California, where she was encouraged to eat apples with peanut butter and Snickers bars every day. "I had to eat them every day to get over the excitement," she said. "Now I rarely crave them." The Shape issue hits stands this week, while McPhee's debut album — which she's still working on — is due January 30. ...

Plotting Ashlee Simpson's next musical move is going to be "very tricky," producer/ Geffen Records chairman Ron Fair told MTV News. "She is a really great singer, and I think she proved that on her last record," he said. "She's in a very tight spot. She's got an extremely famous sister. Everything they do is magnified by the press. ... It's very hard to do anything if you're under that kind of scrutiny." But don't count the younger Simpson — who Fair called "a real star" — out just yet. "Our company is going to work with her and we're going to figure out how to overcome those prejudices ... because she deserves to be heard and she deserves a shot." ...

Nelly Furtado will perform a private all-ages concert Friday in Los Angeles. Want in? Take a photo of yourself with a copy of Furtado's Loose and e-mail the pic to loosenup@geffen.com along with your name, age and location. Winners will be selected at random throughout the week. And if you're willing to pay your way in — for charity — a two-ticket package featuring meet-and-greet passes and an autographed copy of Loose is up for bid Wednesday (December 6) at Universal Music's eBay store. Proceeds benefit the Land Conservancy of British Columbia. ... Tuesday was a busy breakup day in the world of Hollywood couples. People reported that Jennifer Aniston and Vince Vaughn are calling it quits after more than a year together. The magazine also announced the end of "O.C." stars Adam Brody and Rachel Bilson's offscreen romance. ...

You don't have to win "America's Next Top Model" to rep for Cover Girl. Rihanna has joined Queen Latifah and Molly Sims as one of the faces of the makeup line. The singer, whose mother was once a makeup artist, will shoot her first ad this month. The campaign will launch in the summer. ... Aimee Mann commenced her Christmas Variety Show in San Francisco Tuesday night. The tour — which also features Grant-Lee Phillips, comedian Paul F. Tompkins ("Best Week Ever," "Mr. Show") and "SNL" castmember Fred Armisen on select dates — winds down December 20 in Alexandria, Virginia. ...

Thursday, Fear Before the March of Flames, Murder by Death and Heavy Heavy Low Low will hit the road together next month for a 15-date East Coast run. The tour gets underway in Hartford, Connecticut, on January 18, with dates scheduled through February 3 in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. ... Taking Back Sunday will head out with Underoath and Armor for Sleep on a 38-date North American tour that kicks off February 22 in State College, Pennsylvania. The trek is scheduled to run through April 7, but the location of the final show has yet to be determined. ...

Frontman Ben Perri has left Long Island, New York, hardcore outfit From Autumn to Ashes, forcing drummer Francis Mark to take over that role. According to a Mark-penned post on the band's MySpace, Perri seemed to lose interest in the group during the recording of 2005's "appropriately titled" GGGarth Richardson-produced Abandon Your Friends. Mark says Perri didn't write any lyrics for the effort after assuring the rest of the band that he would, was a no-show at practice and ditched FATA before they took off to play Baltimore. "In the middle of recording the best album of our career, and just two weeks before our tour of Australia, Ben quite literally abandoned his friends," the post read. ...

Dog Fashion Disco are calling it quits and have booked a farewell show for January 13 in Baltimore. "It was a hard decision to make," the band said in a statement, "but after 10 years of constant dedication and touring, it is time to pursue other interests." Frontman Todd Smith added, "I always told myself if it stopped being worth the effort, I would gracefully bow out and that's exactly what I'm doing. I'm not going to get into details exactly why everything is ending because it really doesn't matter." ...

MySpace announced Tuesday that it is partnering with Sentinel Tech Holding Corporation to deploy a database with the names and descriptions of convicted U.S. sex offenders within the next 30 days. The move, which comes in response to repeated reports about solicitations from predators on the social-networking site, is an attempt to block sex offenders from the site by using an automated system to search for matches between the database and MySpace user profiles and delete those profiles. The database will be updated every month and include details such as names, age, hair color, height, scars and tattoos.