For The Record: Quick News On Sanjaya, ‘Idol,’ 50 Cent, Diddy, Jeezy, Ciara, Phil Spector, Cam’ron & More

Malakar recalls high school; Jon Bon Jovi, Richie Sambora working with 'Idol' contestants; 50 set to debut new song.

If Sanjaya Malakar annoyed you on “American Idol,” be thankful you didn’t know him in high school. The former “Idol” finalist told People magazine that he used to play guitar and sing in chemistry class — and didn’t win a lot of fans. “Everyone would say, ‘Shut up, Sanjaya.’ … People either loved me or hated me.” The singer, who revealed that he was also teased in school because he got along so well with the girls, plans to continue pursuing a music career. “I’d love to go to Berklee College of Music [in Boston],” he said. “I play guitar. I play spoons. Not very well, but I can play them!” …

Jon Bon Jovi and Richie Sambora will work with “Idol” contestants for Tuesday’s rock-themed performances. …

50 Cent might need to pump some iron before performing his new song “Straight to the Bank” live for the first time. The rapper will spit the song at the highly touted WBC Super Welterweight Championship fight between “Pretty Boy” Floyd Mayweather and “The Golden Boy” Oscar de la Hoya on May 5 at Las Vegas’ MGM Grand. 50 — who was recently featured in “De la Hoya/ Mayweather 24/7,” an HBO documentary chronicling the events building up to the fight — will also lead Mayweather’s entourage into the ring. …

On Thursday (April 26), New York radio giant Hot 97 announced the first confirmed performers for its annual Summer Jam concert. The lineup includes Diddy, Ludacris, Young Jeezy, and Birdman and Lil Wayne. The June 3 show is once again set to take place at New Jersey’s Giants Stadium and will also feature Akon, Chris Brown, Keyshia Cole, Ciara, Rich Boy, T-Pain and Elephant Man. …

Phil Spector‘s defense lawyer Bruce Cutler lashed out against police in a Los Angeles courtroom Thursday, The Associated Press reports. Cutler — who previously defended mob boss John Gotti — said police “had murder on their mind” when they found actress Lana Clarkson dead in the music producer’s mansion. Authorities “interviewed and acted in such a way that anything that was consistent, the evidence will show, with their preconceived notions and theories they embraced,” said Cutler, resuming the opening statement he started delivering Wednesday. “And anything that was not consistent or inconsistent with that ‘murder on their mind,’ they ignored.” …

Cam’ron issued a statement Thursday clarifying the comments he made on Sunday’s “60 Minutes” regarding his reluctance to cooperate with authorities. “Although I was a crime victim, I didn’t feel like I could cooperate with the police investigation,” Cam’ron explained in a statement, referring to the 2005 Washington, D.C., shooting he was involved in. “Where I come from, once word gets out that you’ve cooperated with the police that only makes you a bigger target of criminal violence. … But my experience in no way justifies what I said. Looking back now, I can see how those comments could be viewed as offensive, especially to those who have suffered their own personal tragedies or to those who put their lives on the line to protect our citizens from crime. … I apologize deeply for this error in judgment.” During the “60 Minutes” interview, Cam’ron was asked if he’d contact police if he knew he lived next door to a serial killer. The rapper responded that he would just move. …

Legendary movie-industry lobbyist Jack Valenti died Thursday, AP reports. The former Motion Picture Association of America president created the organization’s movie-ratings system and was a fierce proponent of copyright legislation. Valenti also served as a White House aide to President Lyndon Johnson. He was 85. …

The White Stripes weren’t kidding when they said they’d be hitting Canada hard in support of Icky Thump. After a slot at the Bonnaroo Festival on June 17, the duo will kick off their North American tour with a date at Deer Lake Park in Burnaby, British Columbia, on June 24, followed by shows in all 10 Canadian provinces — including a special 10th anniversary show on July 14 in Nova Scotia. “Having never done a full tour of Canada, Meg and I thought it was high time to go whole hog,” singer/guitarist Jack White said in a message on the band’s Web site. The Canadian dates will be followed by gigs in New York and Boston, as well as 16 states that White said the band has not yet played, including Connecticut, South Carolina and Alabama. …

Snoop Dogg has been barred from entering Australia after failing a “character test,” Immigration Minister Kevin Andrews said on Thursday, according to a Reuters report. Snoop’s visa was canceled after he pleaded no contest to gun and drug charges in the United States earlier this month. “He doesn’t seem the sort of bloke we want in this country,” Andrews told a local radio station. Snoop was scheduled to attend the MTV Australia Video Music Awards on Sunday. … Eve was arrested early Thursday morning in Los Angeles and charged with driving under the influence after the rapper/actress crashed her car into a divider on Hollywood Boulevard, a spokesperson for the LAPD confirmed to MTV News. Police confirmed that Eve posted bail and has been released from custody. …

Kanye West, Lily Allen, Natasha Bedingfield and Rod Stewart have been added to the lineup for the Concert for Diana, a July 1 event that will be held at Wembley Stadium in London to commemorate what would have been the late Princess of Wales’ 46th birthday. Pharrell, Elton John, Joss Stone and Duran Duran are also on the bill. … LL Cool J is not Broadway bound after all. The New York Post‘s Wednesday report that the rapper/actor was in talks to star in a revival of “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” was “incorrect,” according to his representative. …

Interpol‘s July 10 release will be called Our Love to Admire, according to the band’s management. The album will feature 11 songs, including the first single, “The Heinrich Maneuver,” as well as “Pioneer to the Falls” and “The Lighthouse.” The band will play at Coachella in Indio, California, this weekend and at the Sasquatch! Music Festival in George, Washington, on May 27, before heading overseas to play the summer-festival circuit. … Beastie Boys have settled on a name for their upcoming seventh studio album. In an interview with the NME, and confirmed by the band’s management (in a “well, if he’s saying it, it’s pretty much confirmed” sort of way), Mike D said that the record will be called The Mix Up, and will be released in June. D said that the new disc, the follow-up to 2004′s To the 5 Boroughs, features the B-Boys forgoing sampling in favor of live instrumentation, hearkening back to their Check Your Head heyday. …

Nina Sky‘s Natalie and Nicole Albino celebrated their 21st birthday Wednesday night at New York’s Guest House and debuted their latest single, “Clothes Off,” from their July 17 release, The Musical.Pitbull, John Singleton and actors Rick Gonzalez and Dania Ramirez turned out for a Hennessey-sponsored Pre-Latin Billboard Awards party Wednesday night at the Catalina Beach Club in Miami. … Bad news for Happy Mondays fans: Bez has not secured a visa and will not be joining the band onstage for its Coachella performance Sunday. The act — with Bez in tow — will begin a U.K tour next month. … Hugh Grant was arrested and held for questioning in London on Wednesday night on suspicion of assault after a photographer claimed the actor threw a container of baked beans at him on Tuesday, AP reports. Grant was released on bail, and police say no charges have been filed. … A court in Jaipur, India, has issued an arrest order for Richard Gere and Bollywood actress Shilpa Shetty, on the grounds that their kiss at a recent public event “transgressed all limits of vulgarity,” AP reports. Shetty has been ordered to appear in court on May 5. Gere, who is not currently in India, could be arrested and face up to three months in jail if he returns.

04.25.2007

Tony Yayo made his first court appearance Wednesday morning (April 25) in New York in connection with allegations that he roughed up Game manager Jimmy “Henchman” Rosemond’s 14-year-old son on March 20. According to Yayo’s lawyer, Scott Leemon, very little happened during the brief preliminary appearance, at which the case was adjourned until July 24. Leemon again expressed his belief that Yayo was not involved in the incident, telling MTV News, “After a thorough investigation, I steadfastly and adamantly state to you that Tony Yayo did not slap anyone,” Leemon said. “I am hopeful that when [authorities] complete their investigation, they will come to the same conclusion. Yayo, as a father, understands the allegations and would never do anything to harm a child.” …

Beyoncé, Pete Wentz of Fall Out Boy, Jennifer Lopez, Christina Aguilera, Alicia Keys, Jessica Simpson, Hilary Duff, Fergie, Chris Brown and Katharine McPhee made People‘s 2007 “Most Beautiful” list. Click here to see photos from the issue, which hits newsstands Friday. To see more photos and check out video from the photo shoots, visit People.com. …

The “American Idol” charity special “Idol Gives Back” racked up a whopping 70 million phone votes for a variety of charitable organizations, according to the publicity firm that handles the TV show. Two lines per contestant were opened to make it easier for callers to get through — that usually doesn’t happen until the finals — and Fox parent company News Corp. has said it will chip in 10 cents for each of the first 50 million votes cast. …

Opening statements began Wednesday in the trial of Phil Spector, with prosecutor Alan Jackson telling jurors that the music producer, “when he’s confronted with the right situations, turns sinister and deadly,” The Associated Press reports. Spector reportedly appeared tense during the televised hearing, and his attorneys were set to present their own opening remarks later in the day. … Two diaries Anna Nicole Smith wrote in the early 1990s were sold for $59,750 after failing to sell at a recent auction, AP reports. An unnamed record-company executive was the buyer. …

Russell Simmons appeared on “Live With Regis & Kelly” on Wednesday and clarified his stance on questionable hip-hop lyrical content. Simmons explained that he isn’t calling for a full-on ban of certain words, but said, “We need to find more digestible ways to get our message across when it’s coming through public airwaves.” Simmons said he believes the request, which he made along with the Hip-Hop Summit Action Network, is a reasonable one and stressed that there should be more corporate responsibility for what lyrics are broadcast. … KCAA-AM, the Southern California radio station that had been rebroadcasting “Don Imus in the Morning” to rebel against the radio host’s firing over racist and sexist comments, will end the reruns Friday, AP reports. Attorneys for CBS Radio and KCAA said they had agreed to end a lawsuit aimed at halting the rebroadcasts. …

Radiohead frontman Thom Yorke posted yet another strangely phrased missive on the band’s blog earlier this week, writing that Radiohead are getting back to work after taking last week off. He added that he has “a CD of what we’ve been up to … and you haven’t. Yet. Sorry.” (It’s. OK. Thom.) Yorke goes on to write that he “must listen to it, after taking an ear break … that always makes me nervous.” … Eminem is going back to his roots. The rapper and his longtime manager are in negotiations to take over the famed St. Andrew’s Hall complex in downtown Detroit, according to the Detroit Free Press. The pair are trying to negotiate a plan to lease the venue from owner LiveNation, which would give them control of the liquor license and day-to-day operations of the venue that was the site of many of Em’s earliest performances, some of them depicted in his semiautobiographical film, “8 Mile.” The deal could be completed as early as next month. …

In an unusual move, three of this summer’s Ozzfest bands — Lamb of God, Hatebreed and Behemoth — will also play select dates on the Sounds of the Underground Tour. Suicidal Tendencies, Testament and Mushroomhead have also been announced as special guests for the trek, which was already set to feature Chimaira, Gwar, Every Time I Die, the Number Twelve Looks Like You, Goatwhore and others. Lamb of God will headline the recently added August 11 date in Louisville, Kentucky, with Hatebreed and Behemoth taking the stage earlier in the day. Testament will appear during the July 14 show in Sayreville, New Jersey, and Mushroomhead will close the July 21 Cleveland date, as well as take the stage July 22 (Columbus, Ohio); July 23 (Chicago); and July 24 (Minneapolis). Suicidal Tendencies will headline the August 3 (San Jose, California); August 4 (Irvine, California); and August 5 (Mesa, Arizona) dates. …

The band that gave you “The Sun Never Sweats” and “Stinkin’ Up the Great Outdoors” is reuniting once again, this time to rock you at the Wembley Stadium portion of Al Gore’s Live Earth concerts on July 7, AP reports. Yes, all original members of mock rockers Spinal Tap are strapping on the skin-tight trousers and lace-up leather tops one more time for the London gig, which will also feature a cameo by Marty DeBergi (a.k.a. Rob Reiner), the (fake) documentarian who immortalized them on film in 1984′s “This Is Spinal Tap.” Reiner will also unveil a new 15-minute short he directed about the band’s reunion on Wednesday at the Tribeca Film Festival. The group has recorded a new single for the occasion called “Warmer Than Hell.” …

Dave Navarro is launching his own weekly Internet series on ManiaTV called “Dave Navarro’s Spread Entertainment,” an hour-long variety show that will feature interviews, performances and comedy acts. The program, which debuts May 17, will be broadcast live from the Dragonfly nightclub in Hollywood and shot in front of a live audience. Navarro has described the show as “an avant-garde Internet talk show focusing on the arts and the human condition.” … The Cooper Temple Clause have decided to throw in the towel. According to guitarist Daniel Fisher, the break was initiated by his decision to leave the band last week. “In the wake of this decision, the rest of the boys agreed to call it a day and pursue other interests,” he wrote in a statement. “Friendships are well and truly intact and the love very much remains within the camp.” …

Papa Roach drummer Dave Buckner has decided to sit the rest of the band’s current tour out due to unspecified personal reasons. He is expected to rejoin the group at a later date, and in the interim, the band will use a stand-in for its upcoming shows, including Wednesday night’s gig in Fort Walton Beach, Florida. … Rosie O’Donnell announced her departure from “The View” on Wednesday’s show, explaining that she couldn’t agree on contract terms and will end her run in June. “It just didn’t work,” she said, “and that’s showbiz.” O’Donnell joined the show in September and has been at the center of controversy since she returned to daytime TV, including an ongoing battle with Donald Trump that often involved series co-host and creator Barbara Walters. “We have had, to say the least, an interesting year,” Walters noted Wednesday, adding, “I do not participate in the negotiations for Rosie. … This is not my doing.” Walters said they do not have a replacement host in mind.