Lauryn Hill Plays Bizarre Show In NYC; Plus Alicia Keys, Common, Kelly Clarkson, Lily Allen, Madonna, Al Sharpton & More, In For The Record

Keys, Com lighting up Red Star Soul concert series; Clarkson helping kick off NFL season; Allen's U.S. work visa canceled.

Lauryn Hill arrived more than two hours late and performed an uneven if not memorable set on Monday night at Brooklyn, New York’s Wingate Field as part of the free Martin Luther King Jr. Concert Series. The enigmatic singer, overdressed for a hot summer night, showed up at 10 p.m. for the scheduled 7:30 show and ran through a number of her more popular solo and Fugees hits — but often reconfigured them into unrecognizable scat chants. Hill told the audience her sometimes-inaudible voice was hoarse, but her tone improved as she continued. Hill closed the show with her Grammy-winning “Doo Wop (That Thing)” and then immediately exited after thanking the 10,000-plus people who showed up for the park jam. …

Alicia Keys, Erykah Badu and Common will light up the Red Star Soul concert series over the course of the next three months, Billboard.com reports. Common and Chrisette Michele will kick off the campaign August 15 in Los Angeles, with Com playing additional shows in Detroit (September 4); Atlanta (September 18); and Washington, D.C. (September 26). Raphael Saadiq, Michele and Teedra Moses will play at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland on August 28; Badu and Michele will hit up Chicago on September 13; and Badu will also play Philadelphia on October 13. …

If you’re a fan of Kelly Clarkson and football, get ready for some red-hot double coverage: She’ll help kick off the NFL season when she sings before the New Orleans Saints and Indianapolis Colts game September 6. The half-hour pre-game show — which will also feature performances by Hinder, Faith Hill and John Mellencamp — will air on NBC at 8 p.m. ET. Clarkson’s performance will be part of a free concert she’ll be giving at Indianapolis’ Monument Circle. …

Lily Allen‘s U.S. work visa was canceled upon her arrival at Los Angeles International Airport on Sunday, BBC News reports. The singer, who had come to the States for the VMAs announcement on Tuesday (August 7), was held at the airport for five hours due to her June arrest in London for alleged assault. A spokesperson for Allen said the singer was questioned but that her work visa will be sorted out by her next visit. Allen is slated to tour the U.S. in September and is still expected to attend — and perform at — the VMAs on September 9. … Madonna‘s representative Liz Rosenberg says that despite reports of a snag in the singer’s adoption of David Banda, the process is going smoothly. “None of that stuff is true,” Rosenberg told UsMagazine.com in regards to a Reuters report that suggested the adoption might be compromised. “The adoption process is going along very well and according to proper procedure,” she asserted. …

The Reverend Al Sharpton is staging a “day of outrage” on Tuesday to urge the public to divest from the music industry until it forces rappers to stop using derogatory terms including the N-word. Sharpton led a rally in Detroit outside the former studios for Motown Records, but he has also organized 19 additional protests elsewhere in the U.S. “The opposition has tried to use the argument of free speech, but they don’t have the freedom to use people’s pension funds against their own will and interest,” he said in an interview with Reuters. … A London judge has dismissed a suit over a U.K. photo agency using a 2004 image of J.K. Rowling‘s 3-year-old son, saying the legal action didn’t have a realistic chance of success, according to Bloomberg News. “Our aim has only been to protect our children from press intrusion during their childhood,” Rowling said in a statement, adding that she and her husband plan to appeal the ruling. …

AFI side project Blaqk Audio will embark on their first tour September 5 in Atlanta, in support of the forthcoming Cexcells, which lands in stores August 14. The trek runs through September 27 in Los Angeles. … Buzz is building over the next Hives LP, which will be called The Black and White Album, according to Billboard.com. There’s no release date scheduled yet. … Black Tide, a young metal band from Miami that had been tapped to replace Circus Diablo on Ozzfest’s second stage, have now found themselves having to drop off the bill — without even playing a single note. As it turns out, the band is too young — the second stage is being sponsored by Jägermeister, and the group’s youngest member is only 14 years old. …

They’ve gone and done it: McFarlane Toys has created Jon Bon Jovi and Richie Sambora action figures, and is planning to unveil them this month. Go here for details.Anthrax have nixed plans to record their next album with Slipknot‘s Corey Taylor, citing scheduling conflicts with Taylor’s other projects. The band’s searching for a new singer to enter the fold. … Boston hardcore legends Sam Black Church will reunite for a September 22 gig at the Roxy in Boston; this will be the band’s first live set in more than six years. Darkbuster, Madball and Unearth will also play at the show. …

Louisiana native Terrance Stewart, also known as DJ Bay Bay, was arrested Monday and charged with rape and witness intimidation, according to a report in Louisiana newspaper The Shreveport Times. Stewart served as the inspiration behind rapper Hurricane Chris‘ breakout hit “A Bay Bay,” which is a nod to the DJ. According to Shreveport police, an unidentified woman was found drunk and unconscious on Thursday night at the club where Stewart was spinning, and police believe the woman was raped during the party. Stewart is being held in jail on a $150,000 bond; his lawyer issued a statement defending his client’s innocence. “Mr. Stewart is innocent of these charges and intends to vigorously defend himself against them,” lawyer Eric Johnson said. “We are very confident that after the case is tried by a judge or jury that Mr. Stewart will be exonerated.” Police are also searching for another DJ, Ron Johnson, who they believe was also involved in the incident. …

What better way to bring the bizarre Phil Spector trial down the homestretch than with an appearance by blockbuster-movie director Michael Bay? On Monday, the filmmaker — one of the last three rebuttal witnesses being presented by the prosecution — said he didn’t see deceased actress Lana Clarkson at a Hollywood party weeks before her death, as the defense had suggested, the Los Angeles Times reports. According to defense attorneys, Bay had snubbed Clarkson at the party, hurting her so much that it helped drive her to suicide. Bay, who was called to rebut testimony from defense witness Punkin Pie Laughlin, said he had cast Clarkson in a commercial about a decade ago and that he would have recognized her had he seen her at a party. …

Pete Doherty tested positive for drugs during a review of the Babyshambles frontman’s court-ordered participation in a treatment program on Tuesday, spurring a London judge to warn him to quit drugs within a month or face jail time, The Associated Press reports. “If he does not show his motivation it’s prison, as simple as that,” Judge Davinder Lachlar said at the hearing. “Depending on what information I have when [Doherty] next [comes] to court, the decision will be made.” Doherty is due in West London Magistrates’ Court on September 4 for another hearing.

08.06.07

Let the fiesta begin — Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony have rolled out dates for their En Concierto trek. The spousal celebration will hit Atlantic City, New Jersey (September 29); Uncasville, Connecticut (October 3); Washington, D.C. (October 5); New York (October 7); Toronto (October 10); Chicago (October 14); San Jose, California (October 17); Los Angeles (October 19); Anaheim, California (October 20); San Diego (October 24); Las Vegas (October 26); Dallas (October 30); Houston (October 31); and Miami (November 2). In related news, Lopez is firing back at critics of “El Cantante,” her new film with Anthony, the Los Angeles Times reports. Speaking at the Directors Guild of America Theatre in Los Angeles on Friday, she insisted that the film is an accurate portrayal of salsa legend Hector Lavoe. “I don’t know what movie [the critics] want to see, because this is the truth,” she said. …

Lindsay Lohan checked into a drug and alcohol treatment center in Sundance, Utah, over the weekend, according to a CBS News radio report. Lifestyle magazine Town & Country recently named the center, Cirque Lodge, one of the best substance-abuse facilities in the country. Lohan, who is due in court in Santa Monica, California, on August 24, has been to rehab twice before. …

Gwen Stefani recently admitted to U.K. newspaper The Observer that meeting up with her No Doubt bandmates was a bit uncomfortable. “It would be ridiculous to say there was no tension,” she said. “Because my solo career has been going on and on. It was never supposed to be this long.” Beyond the No Doubt reunion, the singer also revealed what else is on the horizon — acting roles “are the last thing on my list,” she said; instead, her focus is “make babies, make music.” “I’m on repeat mode,” she added. Stefani also opened up about her ongoing “mad love affair” with Gavin Rossdale. “Time goes by and you get the rocky times then you get the intense love times, then you get the reward of having the baby,” she said about her relationship with her husband. “It’s just this ongoing saga. … I’m interested to see what’s going to happen next, you know?’ ” …

The organizers behind “A Concert for Virginia Tech” are coming to the defense of Nas, whose lyrics have stirred up controversy over his participation in the event. “Nas is a positive force in hip-hop,” read a statement issued by Red Light Management, which manages Dave Matthews Band and is helping the group organize the event. “Over the course of his albums, many of which have included storytelling about the violence of inner-city life, he has evolved into a spokesman for change. His actions stand out as a true lesson in how conflict can be resolved with words.” …

Many U.S. music retailers are yanking import copies of Amy Winehouse‘s 2003 debut, Frank, from their shelves after receiving a letter from Universal Republic that threatens legal action and claims the label has exclusive rights to distribute her recordings Stateside. The label is planning to issue the album domestically for the first time November 7. … Backstreet Boys are unveiling their new single “Inconsolable” Monday night (August 6) on New York’s Z-100 radio. The track will surface on the group’s yet-untitled new album, due October 30. … Speaking of big returns, the Black Crowes have finished recording their new album, which will be mixed in September and street in the spring. The disc spotlights new touring keyboardist Adam MacDougall and North Mississippi Allstars guitarist Luther Dickinson, and was produced by the band and longtime collaborator Paul Stacey. …

A New Zealand mayoral candidate is trying to put Ice Cube in hot water. Political hopeful Len Brown, who is vying for the mayor’s seat in Manukau City, issued a press release Monday morning calling for the rapper’s August 22 visit to Auckland to be canceled. “Ice Cube brings a gangsta message to our community via his gangsta rap,” the statement read. “This message promotes gangs, gang violence and drugs. We don’t want this in our homes. We don’t want it on our streets.” … LL Cool J highlighted the New York leg of the Microsoft Zune BBQ concert series in Brooklyn, New York, on Saturday. The veteran rapper stormed through tracks that spanned his entire career, including his latest, “Queens.” Grand Puba, the LOX, Clipse, the Boot Camp Click, Large Professor and Joell Ortiz also performed at the community-based event. UGK and Mos Def performed at previous stops in Chicago and Los Angeles. …

Don’t bet the family farm on it just yet, but Van Halen‘s reunion tour is reportedly back on, sources tell Billboard.com. The outlet reports that a press conference will be held in Hollywood next week, during which the band will announce a 50-date arena tour to start in early October. The hard-rock legends had originally planned to set out on an amphitheater tour this summer, but it was scrapped, and guitarist Eddie Van Halen entered rehab. The reunion tour will reportedly feature Eddie Van Halen, Alex Van Halen, Eddie’s son Wolfgang and David Lee Roth. … Gene Simmons was forthright, to say the least, about his feelings toward former Kiss mates Ace Frehley and Peter Criss in a recent interview with TVGuide.com. “They were thrown out of the band because they were drug addicts and alcoholics,” said Simmons, who has a strong aversion to drugs and alcohol. “They’re damaged. … You’re talking about 30 years of abuse. Everybody cares about Ace and Peter. I love them to death. But I don’t want them to die on tour.” …

There’s a new wrinkle in Madonna‘s adoption of a Malawian boy. The court-appointed official who was assigned to the case is not being allowed to travel to Britain to evaluate the suitability of the singer and her husband, Guy Ritchie, to be the adoptive parents of David Banda, Reuters reports. The official, Penstone Kilembe, had been appointed to travel to Britain twice, after which he has been expected to testify in a hearing next year whether Madonna’s adoption of the child should be formalized. Kilembe is being accused of getting a plane ticket and money directly from Madonna, without the approval of the Malawian government, but he has dismissed claims that he asked the singer for the ticket. … Two more people have been identified as James Brown‘s children, The Associated Press reports. While many DNA tests have come back negative and others are pending, two people claiming to be the late singer’s offspring are indeed telling the truth, longtime Brown adviser Buddy Dallas said Friday. While Dallas refused to identify the two people, a 45-year-old retired flight attendant is thought to be one of them. …

Chris Rock and his wife Malaak said in a statement issued Monday that he is not the father of a 13-year-old boy whose mother, Kali Bowyer, attempted to file a paternity suit against the comedian in March. According to the statement, DNA testing has ruled out Rock as the father of the child. “After multiple lies, including that Chris refused to establish paternity and after finding out that Ms. Bowyer has an extensive criminal record, we personally asked the court to help us establish paternity so that we could put this harassment to rest. … We have spent a tremendous sum to litigate this case and are asking our attorney to pursue all legal remedies against her.” … Eddie Murphy has confirmed that he is the father of Melanie Brown‘s child, but the Spice Girl is still upset — her lawyer Gloria Allred said Saturday that the actor “has not indicated … that he plans to visit the baby,” AP reports. Murphy issued a statement Friday saying, “He acknowledges paternity of the child Angel and has paid child support to Ms. Brown, as well as covering the expenses of her pregnancy.” But Allred said Brown’s chief concern is that he “see his child, spend time with her, hold her, love her and bond with his daughter.” …

Record label Kill Rock Stars is giving away free downloads of Elliott Smith‘s “Angel in the Snow” on Monday in commemoration of what would have been the late singer/songwriter’s 38th birthday. Go here for details. … If Iggy Pop‘s performance with the Stooges at Lollapalooza on Sunday has you salivating for more, mark September 18 on your calendar — a new Pop DVD, “Live San Fran 1981,” drops that day. The concert features Ig being backed up by Blondie drummer Clem Burke and future David Bowie guitarist Carlos Alomar, and two unreleased songs he recorded with Ric Ocasek of the Cars are also included in the package. …

Lee Hazlewood, who wrote “These Boots Were Made for Walkin’ ” — Nancy Sinatra‘s hit from the ’60s that Jessica Simpson reworked for “The Dukes of Hazzard” — has died of cancer, BBC News reports. The singer/songwriter, whose songs were covered by a wide range of artists including Nick Cave and Primal Scream, was 78.