T.I. Withdraws Thanksgiving Request; Plus Britney Spears, Kanye West, Jay-Z, Chris Brown & More, In For The Record

Spears chooses next Blackout single; West vies for J.A.M. Award; Jay's joint venture acquires clothing company.

T.I.‘s planned Thanksgiving Day celebration just got a whole lot quieter: The rapper has withdrawn his request to host a holiday bash at his home in suburban Atlanta, The Associated Press reports. The 27-year-old rapper, whose real name is Clifford Harris Jr., has been under under house arrest as he awaits his trial on weapons charges.

First Britney Spears asked fans to “Gimme More” — now she’s asking them, do you want a “Piece of Me”? The singer has announced the latter track as her next Blackout single. Spears might have some good luck on her side, as the song was produced by Bloodshy & Avant, the same team behind her Grammy-winning track “Toxic.” …

Kanye West, Wyclef Jean and Nelly will compete for the Music Award honor at the upcoming J.A.M. Awards, a Jam Master Jay- and Run-DMC-inspired event intended to reflect the positive aspects of rap. Jim Jones, DJ Kay Slay, Bumpy Knuckles, Lord Finesse and EPMD have joined the show’s performance roster, which already included Snoop Dogg, Mobb Deep, Papoose, Raekwon, Q-Tip, Marley Marl, DMC and more. Two more categories have also been announced for the event, which is being put on by Hot 97, the Jam Master Jay Foundation for Music and other organizations: Chuck D, Will Smith and esteemed Princeton University professor Dr. Cornel West are up for the Justice Award; while Spike Lee, graffiti artist Lee Quinones and Charlotte Bobcats owner Robert L. Johnson will face off for the Arts Award. The ceremony will be held November 29 at the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York. …

Jay-Z is busy shooting videos for and touring behind his new American Gangster album, but that’s not stopping him from making business deals. His joint venture Scion recently acquired Artful Dodger after paying $15 million for the apparel company. “They represent what’s next and new in fashion,” Jay-Z said in a statement. … Chris Brown, LeAnn Rimes and Usher have been added to the roster of artists set to perform at Movies Rock, which will take place at Hollywood’s Kodak Theatre on December 2 and air December 7 at 9:00 p.m. on CBS. Beyoncé, Mary J. Blige, Jennifer Lopez and others were previously announced as performers. …

Former “American Idol” Carrie Underwood repeated as Female Vocalist of the Year Wednesday night at the Country Music Association Awards. The singer also took home a trophy for Single of the Year for her hit “Before He Cheats” in a show that featured a performance from surprise Billboard albums chart-toppers the Eagles as well as another “American Idol” alum, Kellie Pickler. She broke down crying while singing “I Wonder,” a tune about her estranged mother, who left the family when Pickler was 2 years old. … Don’t expect KT Tunstall to be congratulating Underwood on her new prizes — the Scottish singer/songwriter lashed out at the country star in an interview due to appear in the new issue of Steppin’ Out, which hits newsstands Wednesday. Tunstall, whose songs have been used in “Idol,” sounded off on Underwood’s Grammy win for Best New Artist, saying, “It’s pretty weird when the Best New Artist is someone from a reality TV show who sings other people’s music. It’s also very weird when Carrie Underwood thanks God and Simon Cowell. That’s pretty scary! I would hope the Best New Artist is somebody who’s writing their own music. Or at least something original.” Tunstall didn’t mince words about Britney Spears‘ recent troubles either, saying, “It’s frustrating that there’s this anti-intellectualism going on with all the magazines who cover her. It’s almost like the days of gladiators. The people are begging for death. … On a spiritual level, I don’t want to be part of it. I don’t want to feed into it.” …

Lily Allen has signed on to host a new BBC3 entertainment show, according to the U.K.’s Guardian. Assorted celebrities and unsigned bands will join the starlet on “Lily Allen and Friends,” and the audience will consist of her online friends. It will air early next year. … Mya is slated to appear Thursday night at an event benefiting the North Shore Animal League America, an animal-rescue and adoption group. It will be held at the Night Hotel in New York. … Alchemist is amped to work with Eminem again, according to a new interview he gave to Complex magazine. “If anything, I would bring [a new track] to him, load it into him, let him compute the things that I’m going through, the sounds that I’m finding. Let’s interpolate this Eminem style.” He added, “I feel like the best out of my connection with Em hasn’t happened yet.” …

Joel Madden are Nicole Richie are preparing for their first child, but everything isn’t going according to plan in the couple’s lives. They have been denied sale of a home in a gated community in Southern California because residents there are concerned about paparazzi swarming in, Us Weekly reports. The magazine also says a baby shower is planned for later this month. …

More than 100 celebrities — including Kanye West, Coldplay‘s Chris Martin, Evanescence‘s Amy Lee, the Beastie Boys, Bright Eyes, Cobra Starship, Reese Witherspoon and Cameron Diaz — have signed on to create personalized lunchboxes for an online auction to benefit a pair of hunger-relief organizations: the Food Bank for New York City and South Africa’s Lunchbox Fund. The auction will go live on December 7 at midnight at TheLunchboxAuction.org and run through December 21. Other stars participating in the event include David Bowie, Elton John, Casey Affleck, Eva Mendes, Interpol, Jessica Biel, Cat Power and Courtney Love. …

Despite Courtney getting involved in a good cause, she’s also going off the handle again — and this time, Madonna is in her sights. In a typically incomprehensible, profanity-laden post on her MySpace page, she wrote, “madonna is a great business woma but come on she s weak as an artista nd we akl lknow it — i like madge — but as a relevant musician — its a joke.” The exhausting rant is 3,700 words long. … As for the aforementioned Cat Power, the track list for singer Chan Marshall‘s upcoming covers album, Jukebox, has been shuffled a bit and will now feature a limited-edition bonus disc with covers of songs by Moby Grape, Nick Cave, Roberta Flack, Patsy Cline and Lil Wayne‘s all-star squad, Hot Boys. Also slated for inclusion on the January 22 album are covers of songs by Frank Sinatra, Hank Williams, Bob Dylan, Billie Holiday and James Brown. … In related news, Brown’s estate is already tangled in a dispute with one of the late rock icon’s backup singers who says she is Brown’s fourth wife, but now another woman has come forward with a similar claim, AP reports. In court papers recently filed in South Carolina, 73-year-old Velma Warren Brown says she had three children with the late singer and lived with him for 17 years — and that he never served her with divorce papers. …

The Blood Brothers have finally made an announcement concerning their future. Basically, the band has no future. “After 10 years of making music as the Blood Brothers, we have made the collective decision that our time together has come to an end,” the band said in a statement. “We feel extremely fortunate to have spent such a deeply memorable and amazing part of our lives with each other. At this point, however, we feel it’s best that our futures move forward on separate paths. We’d like to express our sincerest thanks and gratitude to all the bands we’ve played with, individuals who have helped us make our records, and fans who have come to our shows and picked up our music throughout the years. Your friendship, support and love hold such a profoundly special place in each of our hearts. We hope that the memories you attach to our music are as fond as those you have given us.” …

Ozzy Osbourne‘s tour sure is seeing a lot of drama. In addition to a recent pre-show police sting in Fargo, North Dakota, and a flurry of arrests at Ozzy shows, a young fan was tasered and arrested after allegedly fighting with officers during Osbourne’s concert in Sioux City, Iowa, on Sunday, according to a report in the Sioux City Journal. The 16-year-old Sioux City boy, who has not been named, was allegedly trying to start a mosh pit near the end of the show when security called Sioux City police to help remove the boy. Three police officers reportedly tried to take hold of the boy, who was allegedly swinging his arms and being aggressive. After police told him to stop resisting, he refused, after which he was tasered. One officer was slightly injured in the incident, for which the boy was charged with misdemeanor counts of interference with official acts, failure to obey a police officer and assault on a police officer. In related news, the Los Angeles Times reports that a Beverly Hills, California, physician who has been accused of over-prescribing addictive drugs to Osbourne and other celebrities has been publicly reprimanded by the Medical Board of California. Three years ago, the board accused Dr. David A. Kipper of gross negligence in the care of eight patients and threatened to take away his medical license. Osbourne has also filed his own complaint with the board and said the pills he’d been prescribed had a negative impact on his life. “I couldn’t talk. I couldn’t walk,” he told the Times. “I could barely stand up. I was lumbering about like the Hunchback of Notre Dame. It got to the point where I was scared to close my eyes at night — afraid I might not wake up.” …

A Perfect Circle mastermind Billy Howerdel has started a new project dubbed Ashes Divide. A song from the band, “Enemies,” can be heard on the group’s MySpace page. According to the page, the band is signed to Island/Def Jam. … Bruce Springsteen showcased three songs at a charity event for wounded U.S. troops in New York on Wednesday night, AP reports. The Boss also auctioned off his Harley-Davidson motorcycle for a cool $85,000 at “Stand Up for Heroes,” which featured Conan O’Brien as MC and some joke-telling by Robin Williams. Stephen Colbert, James Gandolfini and others were in attendance at the event, which was expected to draw more than $2.5 million for Bob Woodruff’s Family Fund, a benefit group started by the ABC newsman who was previously injured in Iraq. … Many hit songs these days rely on other artists’ samples — and now the latter are finally getting their due. Samples that have appeared in songs by Mary J. Blige, 2Pac, Notorious B.I.G., Beastie Boys, Madonna, Dr. Dre and others have been dug up from the archives for the new collection Droppin’ Science. The February 12 release will be available as a 10-track CD or 13-song digital album. …

What do you get when you put Vincent Gallo and Eric Erlandson together? A new band: Rriiccee. Gallo, who wrote and directed “Buffalo 66″ and “Brown Bunny,” previously released two solo albums, while Erlandson made a name for himself as a guitarist for Hole. Their new abstract project, which may eventually embrace additional members, will formally introduce itself with a tour starting in December — but doesn’t plan to record any music or even release anything. “We’ve chosen not to go into a studio in a traditional way like other bands have done in the past,” Gallo said in a statement. “We’ve chosen to remain open, to grow and change more naturally, and when we play live, the music is often created during the performance.” Rriiccee previously played at Japan’s Fuji Rock Festival and at a show in San Francisco. …

“Barfly” actor Mickey Rourke was arrested Thursday in Miami Beach, Florida, on suspicion of driving under the influence — on a scooter, according to AP. He reportedly made a U-turn at a red light and swerved multiple times. “I’m not drunk, I didn’t even drink that much,” he reportedly said before being taken to police headquarters and failing a breath test. He is being held on $1,000 bond. …

Are you a “unique” “Star Trek” fan? Not “unique” as in especially devoted, but rather fans who have “long necks, small heads, bug eyes, large foreheads [or] oversized ears”? Then you’re in luck. Those are some of the attributes the makers of the J.J. Abrams reboot are requiring as they hunt for extras to appear in the film, according to BBC News. But if you don’t match any of those descriptions, fear not — the studio is also looking for “ultra perfect or ultra plain-looking people.” Auditions will be held Saturday in Burbank, California. …

Nobel Peace Prize winner Al Gore‘s much-talked-about appearance on NBC’s “30 Rock” will air on Thursday evening. The former vice president and environmentalist plays himself but also acts as if he can hear troubled whales calling in the episode, which spoofs NBC’s “Green Is Universal” campaign. The show has many days of shooting planned for a 10th second-season episode amid the writers’ strike, according to the Los Angeles Times. … In other strike news, West Hollywood, California’s Roxy Theatre is allowing Writers Guild of America members to go to shows for free — so long as the concerts in question haven’t already sold out, according to Variety. All the members have to do is show their union membership card.

11.07.07

T.I. is under house arrest as he awaits his trial on weapons charges — but he doesn’t want that to get in the way of the holidays. The rapper (real name: Clifford Harris) has asked a judge to let him host a Thanksgiving Day celebration at his home in Jonesboro, Georgia, according to The Associated Press. On Tuesday, his attorneys requested that a list of family members be given “approved visitation to have dinner with the defendant” from 9 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. on November 22. T.I. isn’t allowed to have visitors without prior approval and can’t have more than three visitors at a time, with minor exceptions. His October 26 release on bond is being supervised by a monitoring service, which would also be present for the Thanksgiving celebration. …

Lawyers for Britney Spears and Kevin Federline will be in Los Angeles Superior Court on Thursday for an emergency hearing in their ongoing custody dispute, TMZ.com reports. The hearing was reportedly called by Federline’s attorney Mark Vincent Kaplan, who is alleging that the singer has not followed drug-testing procedures. Neither Spears nor Federline are expected to show. In other Brit news, her longtime photographer and friend Mark Lidell revealed to “Extra” what went wrong at the notorious OK! magazine photo shoot earlier this year. “Paparazzi absolutely killed and ruined our day … they were everywhere … and it made our shoot absolutely impossible.” He said Spears later told him, ” ‘Mark, if you want me to come back afterwards, I’ll do my best and get back’ … but she had to go and finish off the music video [for 'Gimme More'].” …

Embattled pop star Amy Winehouse has been granted a visa allowing her to enter the United States but will still not be making any of her previously scheduled appearances, her publicist confirmed to MTV News on Wednesday (November 7). The “Rehab” singer was set to appear at the mtvU Woodie Awards on Thursday and as the musical guest on “Saturday Night Live” (which is now in reruns anyway, due to the writers’ strike ) this weekend. Some speculated Winehouse’s recent visa troubles were thought to have something to do with her recent arrest for marijuana possession in Norway. Winehouse will next visit the States in January to kick off her U.S. tour. …

Lily Allen doesn’t show much skin when she performs — but she’s stripping down to model lingerie as part of a new six-figure deal, according to MTV UK. Like Maggie Gyllenhaal, Dita Von Tesse and Kate Moss before her, Allen has signed with risqué clothing company Agent Provocateur. The singer has also recently modeled for a shampoo company and is working on a TV show. …

Michael Jackson‘s Neverland nightmare might be coming true — according to TMZ, the estate has gone into foreclosure per a Notice of Default report for California’s Santa Barbara County. The singer was reportedly delinquent on a $23 million loan as of October 12. …

Lil Wayne, Against Me!, Juelz Santana, Arctic Monkeys and Fat Joe, all in the same place? Indeed — you’ll find those artists, as well as Ol’ Dirty Bastard, Lady Sovereign, Pete Doherty and others, showcased in “The Vice Photo Book,” a new volume culling shots from the magazine’s 13-year history. The 336-page tome will be sold for $45 at bookstores starting in December. …

Swizz Beatz and T-Pain took the stage on Tuesday night at the “Women of King” Calendar party held at the Metropolitan Pavilion in New York. Q-Tip, radio personality Wendy Williams and Dres of Black Sheep were all on hand as D-Nice manned the turntables at the shindig, which was sponsored by Remy Martin. … Talib Kweli, Strong Arm Steady and Jean Grae got together onstage at Belvedere Vodka’s Apollo Lounge in New York’s Harlem neighborhood on Tuesday night in an effort to draw more young people to the famed Apollo Theatre. Fonzworth Bentley was in attendance. …

Diddy got a break on Tuesday when a district attorney in New York decided not to charge him with assault in an alleged incident last month. Well, now comes more good news for the music mogul, albeit of a very different variety: His YouTube search for someone to hold his umbrella has ended, he announced on Tuesday on “The Oprah Winfrey Show.” He gave the job to Heather Thompson, who remarked, “I understand who the star is in this relationship.” Diddy said he’s looking for four assistants in total, so his YouTube quest goes on. …

In what could amount to a case of Jessica Alba mirroring Madonna, the “Fantastic Four” actress, who doesn’t have any stage experience, has been approached to star in a new Broadway production of David Mamet‘s “Speed-the-Plow” in which Madge previously starred, the New York Post reports. According to the Post, James Gandolfini is being considered for one of the male lead roles. …

My Bloody Valentine fans, the wait is over — that reunion album you’ve been hoping for is a go, and apparently it’s even happening this year. TheDailySwarm.com reports that on Monday VBS.tv will launch an exclusive video interview between My Bloody Valentine mastermind Kevin Shields and Ian Svenonius (Weird War, the Make Up) as part of the online TV channel’s “Soft Focus” series. In the conversation, Shields reportedly said a yet-untitled album — which involved the band getting back in the studio for the first time since 1995 — will be dropping this year. “It sounds like what we sounded like — different but not radically different. People will go, ‘Yeah, it sounds like My Bloody Valentine,’ ” he reportedly said. …

Sub Pop — the record label that boasts “Podfisting our way to your blog. Or whatever” as one of its current slogans — has launched a new digital-download music store. Among the initial 200 offerings in the store, which will eventually incorporate out-of-print material, are releases by the Shins, Sleater-Kinney, David Cross, Low, Band of Horses and Iron and Wine. Customers who purchase files through the store will be able to download them multiple times, which also means that fans will be able to get additional bonus tracks or improved sound quality if and when the releases are enhanced. …

Radiohead‘s name-your-own-price album scheme has resulted in only two of five listeners paying for the band’s new In Rainbows LP, but the noble pursuit might have landed Radiohead some additional profits. Billboard reports that the band’s seven previous albums have sold 35.8 percent more copies since Radiohead made the In Rainbows announcement on September 30. …

Pete Doherty showed signs of improvement in his ongoing battle with drugs last month when a judge gave him a suspended jail sentence after seeing signs of progress — but now there’s more bad news for the Babyshambles frontman. “Peter sadly relapsed last week and is now looking to check himself back into a rehab clinic so that he can try to continue the hitherto excellent attempts he had made to break free of heroin,” his record label, EMI, said in a statement, according to AP. The announcement was made after a video of Doherty recently injecting himself with heroin surfaced online. According to EMI, Doherty considers the incident “a stupid, stupid action for which I feel only shame.” …

Cowboy Junkies go to church: The Canadian alt-rockers recently returned to the Church of the Holy Trinity in Toronto, where they recorded 1988′s The Trinity Session, to commemorate the album, which many consider to be their most important work. Ryan Adams, Vic Chestnutt, Jeff Bird and Natalie Merchant joined the Junkies for The Trinity Revisited, a reworking of the album that is coming out in the form of a DVD/CD set on February 26, in time for the original effort’s 20th anniversary. …

Actors have been showing their support for the writers’ strike in recent days, but former Disney chief Michael Eisner has a much different take on the protest: In a word, it’s “stupid,” he says. “I’ve seen stupid strikes, I’ve seen less stupid strikes. … This is a stupid strike,” he reportedly remarked during a panel discussion at a conference in New York on Wednesday, Reuters reports. “It’s a waste of their time,” he added. “[The studios] have nothing to give. They don’t know what to give.” …

Politically inclined music fans are probably familiar with HeadCount, the voter-registration that teamed with the Dave Matthews Band, the Allman Brothers Band and other artists to register 50,000 people for the 2004 election. Well, the volunteer-run group is coming back for next year’s races — and has an even loftier goal in mind: to register 200,000 new voters. HeadCount — which more recently became aligned with O.A.R. as well — is seeking volunteers to join its street teams, which will register people at future concerts. Go to HeadCount.org for more info. …

Country Music Hall of Fame inductee Hank Thompson died of lung cancer on Tuesday, days after he canceled his tour, AP reports. October 8 — which turned out to be the day of his last show — had been declared “Hank Thompson Day” by Texas Governor Rick Perry and Waco Mayor Virginia DuPuy. Thompson was 82.