White Stripes Hook Up With Beck; Plus Kanye West, Amy Winehouse, Ghostface Killah, Matt Damon & More, In For The Record

West reportedly cancels fashion-show performance; Winehouse's tour to go on as planned; Ghostface plans Pretty Toney tome.

Jack White went all out for the new White Stripes video, for their third Icky Thump single, “Conquest.” In preparation for the clip — which is in keeping with the song’s Spanish theme — he actually trained with Dennis Borba, a noted bullfighter. The video will debut November 26 on MTV and was shot over two days in Artesia, California, by director Diane Martel (Ciara, the Killers). The group’s cover of the song made popular by Patti Page — the tune also appears in a recent eBay TV ad — is also coming out in the form of four singles, which is giving the duo the chance to bust out some new music they recorded with Beck. There are three different-colored vinyl versions of the single, and the B-sides for each are as follows: “It’s My Fault for Being Famous,” for which Beck contributed vocals and piano (black); “Honey, We Can’t Afford to Look This Cheap,” for which Beck played slide guitar (white); and “Cash Grab Complications on the Matter” (red). Beck co-produced all three songs during a recording session in his living room. The digital maxi-single has all three tracks plus an acoustic mariachi version of “Conquest.” The vinyl singles, due December 18, also come with a matador trading card and a poster. …

To be expected, Kanye West has canceled his planned performance at the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show, according to “Entertainment Tonight.” The event is scheduled to tape Thursday and air December 4 on CBS. West’s mother, Donda, passed away on Saturday.

Amy Winehouse‘s U.K. tour will start Wednesday (November 14) as planned despite the recent troubles surrounding her husband, Blake Fielder-Civil, BBC News reports. The singer, who canceled shows over the summer due to “health issues,” will begin the trek at Birmingham’s National Indoor Arena. Singer/songwriter Remi Nicole, who is supporting Winehouse at the show, told the news outlet, “All I know is it’s going ahead. She’s professional and she knows what she’s got to do. I’ll be there to support her. If it was my husband, I’d be a bit upset.” The tour will end with a two-night stand at the Carling Brixton Academy in London on December 16-17. As for the other matter, The Daily Mirror reports that Winehouse visited Fielder-Civil on Tuesday for the first time since he was refused bail on Saturday. His trial on allegations of “perverting the court of justice,” or the U.S. equivalent of obstruction of justice, begins November 23, and he could face life in prison. …

First Ghostface Killah got his very own action figure — and now he’s telling fans how they can live just like him with a new book, “The World According to Pretty Toney.” The MTV Press volume, which revolves around Ghost’s alter ego, “offers nuggets of street wisdom [on] livin’, hustlin’, lovin’, eatin’, and the all-encompassing Toneology,” according to a press release. The January 8 book, co-written with J. Brightly, also comes with a bonus CD with 20 minutes of Pretty Toney tunes related to the themes in the book. Keep an eye out for new Pretty Toney airing in December on MTV2 as well. … Los Angeles rock radio station KROQ has unveiled the list of performers for the second day of its annual Almost Acoustic Christmas shows. Muse, Feist, Jimmy Eat World, Modest Mouse, Silversun Pickups, Spoon and the Shins are all on the bill for the December 9 shindig, which will take place at the Gibson Amphitheatre in Universal City, California. Linkin Park, Angels & Airwaves, Avenged Sevenfold and others will light up the December 8 show. …

Matt Damon is the Sexiest Man Alive, People declares with its 2007 issue of the same name. “You gave an aging suburban dad the ego boost of a lifetime,” he said in a statement issued to the mag. Justin Timberlake, Johnny Depp, Brad Pitt, Will Smith, Javier Bardem, Ben Affleck and others make the cut on the Hot List; while Milo Ventimiglia, Josh Duhamel, Taye Diggs and others were named “Simply Sexy.” The Rock, Rainn Wilson (“Year of the Nerd”), George Clooney and others also appear in the issue, which streets Friday. … Affleck, Eva Mendes and Reese Witherspoon want to make sure you have health insurance. The actors — along with Jeremy Piven, Joaquin Phoenix and others — have joined forces for a new public-service announcement calling for “affordable, quality health care for all Americans,” according to a press release. The ad, a joint effort between the AARP, the Entertainment Industry Foundation and the Motion Picture & Television Fund, rolled out on Tuesday. …

Don Imus isn’t just coming back to radio on December 3 — the controverial shock jock will also be resurfacing that same day on RFD-TV, a cable and satellite channel that caters to rural viewers. He has signed a five-year deal with the channel. … KT Tunstall, whose scheduled Tuesday appearances on “The Tonight Show With Jay Leno” and “Last Call with Carson Daly” have been stymied by the writers’ strike, has decided to join the protesters instead. She’s planning to busk for the strikers at the NBC headquarters in Burbank, California, on Wednesday. … And on the subject of the strike, TV Guide announced Wednesday that it is canceling its Online Video Awards ceremony and TV broadcast in light of the strike. The winners will be announced November 26. Tunstall is also due to play at the upcoming Nobel Peace Prize Concert honoring winner Al Gore. The event, which will also feature performances by Alicia Keys, Earth, Wind & Fire and others, will take place December 11 in Oslo, Norway. Uma Thurman and Tommy Lee Jones will co-host. …

The Beatles will be going digital next year, if Paul McCartney gets his way. “It’s all happening soon,” he told Billboard.com of the plans to get the group’s catalog into the digital sphere. “Most of us are all sort of ready. The whole thing is primed, ready to go — there’s just maybe one little sticking point left, and I think it’s being cleared up as we speak, so it shouldn’t be too long. It’s down to fine-tuning, but I’m pretty sure it’ll be happening next year, 2008.” McCartney cited contractual issues as the reason for the delay. … Ryan Seacrest and Dick Clark are reconvening for the annual “Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve,” which will take place on … wait for it … December 31! The ABC specials start at 10 p.m. ET and will include musical performances from New York’s Times Square and Hollywood. …

If you like E-40 and chicken wings, you’re in for a treat: The Bay Area rapper — who also owns a Fatburger joint with former NFL player Chester McGlockton — is planning to open a Wingstop Restaurant in Benicia, California. “I was introduced to Wingstop in Dallas, and as soon as I tasted the wings I was hooked,” he said in a statement. “People here [in the Bay Area] are going to love these wings.” … Every Time I Die and Escape the Fate will co-headline the annual Take Action! Tour, which raises money for various nonprofit groups. The trek, put on by Hopeless/ Sub City Records, will launch in February. … Hayden Panettiere, “hero” to dolphins, was recently honored with a Compassion in Action Award by Peta2, the youth branch of the animal-rights organization. The actress was recognized for attempting to disrupt Japan’s annual dolphin hunting by paddling out to sea with five surfers and “taking on an angry mob of boathook-wielding Japanese anglers,” according to a press release. …

Dispatch are immortalizing their record-breaking three-night, sold-out run at New York’s Madison Square Garden in July with a new concert film due January 29. A limited-edition collector’s version of “Dispatch: Zimbabwe – Live at Madison Square Garden” — which was directed by noted rock photographer Danny Clinch — will also have a Zimbabwe documentary, Clinch pics and other extras. Dispatch became the first indie band to ever sell out MSG thanks to the July shows. … Try this one on for size: San Francisco singer/songwriter and former Cake collaborator Chuck Prophet accidentally got locked in a recording studio — and while he was waiting to get out, decided to re-record an album, Waylon Jennings‘ 1975 LP, Dreaming My Dreams. Prophet’s version is available for download and as a limited edition of 1,000 copies. …

Who needs Ticketmaster? Going.com users will be able to buy tickets through the social-networking site starting Wednesday (November 14), The Associated Press reports. The site, which accommodates user-organized events and allows users to see who else is planning to hit a given show, will not be selling tickets through traditional outlets. The first show for which tickets are being offered is Moby‘s Thursday concert in New York. “Ticketing was the last-mile solution for the 300,000 local monthly RSVPs that occur on our site,” CEO and founder Evan Schumacher reportedly said in a statement. “Our goal was to connect the long tail of promoters with event-seeking audiences.”

11.13.07

Lindsay Lohan began her community service at an American Red Cross blood-services facility in a Los Angeles suburb on Monday, People reports. She reportedly arrived at noon, was greeted in the parking lot by members of staff and left at 7 p.m. Lohan must serve 10 days of community service as part of a plea deal she struck in August for her two DUI convictions.

Pete Wentz hosted a karaoke contest called “Viva La Karaoke” at his bar Angels & Kings on New York’s Lower East Side on Monday night. Karaoke fanatics — including two MTV News producers — tried to impress the judging panel, which consisted of Wentz, designer Tommy Hilfiger and MTV News’ Kim Stolz. The hodgepodge crowd included Ashlee Simpson, who was at her beau’s side all night; Aussie rockers Jet; Travis McCoy from Gym Class Heroes; and Wentz’s Fall Out Boy bandmate Patrick Stump, who serenaded the crowd with R. Kelly‘s “Space Jam” joint, “I Believe I Can Fly.” When asked why he opted for the Kelly song, Stump spilled to MTV News: “That was the only one I knew we had in the karaoke machine.” “He did a good job, it was pretty good,” Simpson added. “It was funny to watch.” …

Surprise — Radiohead‘s break with EMI might not have been a clean one. According to the U.K.’s Guardian, the band’s former label had been promoting Radiohead’s back catalog through a misleading online ad that the label subsequently yanked. The paper reports that people Googling the band’s name would encounter an ad reading “Radiohead – New Album ‘Rainbow’ now available as boxset,” referring to the band’s recent In Rainbows release, at the top of the search page. But the ad actually directed to the box set of the band’s back catalog that is being issued by EMI subsidiary Parlaphone — not the In Rainbows box set the band is putting out. Both box sets are dropping in December at the same price, which led fans to question EMI’s motives. “Parlophone were aware of the data source glitch and removed the link immediately,” EMI publicist Chris Latham told the Guardian, to which Radiohead’s spokesperson — who went unnamed — reportedly replied, “We accept that it was a genuine error and that it has been rectified.” Radiohead announced Monday that In Rainbows will arrive in North America in physical form on January 1 via their own TBD Records, which is teaming with ATO Records Group for the release. …

Beyoncé‘s planned show in Malaysia was canceled in September after Muslim groups protested her refusal to obey the country’s strict dress code for performers. But could the singer also be too controversial for … the U.S.? According to The Associated Press, some Las Vegas residents are fuming over a billboard of a bikini-clad Beyoncé, claiming the advertisement is too obscene. The ad is for local radio station KWNZ, and some are petitioning to have it taken down. “It’s obscene,” Pamela Keeney, one of the citizens who take offense to the ad, reportedly said. “I have my two little grandkids coming over here, and they don’t need to be seeing that. You can change the channel on the TV, but you can’t change that.” KWNZ is standing by the billboard and has reportedly received the backing of city spokesman Chris Good. At this point, there are no plans to take down the billboard. …

Hopefully Foxy Brown fans didn’t get too excited when her upcoming album, Brooklyn’s Don Diva, bumped up from its originally scheduled December 4 release date to November 20 a couple of months ago — the LP has now been shelved until next year. The jailed rapper’s fourth effort is now due February 5. … Maroon 5 have friends — and they’ve got photos to prove it. The band performed at the Palms Casino Resort over the weekend, drawing the likes of Avril Lavigne, Deryk Whibley, “Saturday Night Live” star Seth Meyers and more. Maroon 5 posted their personal snaps online.

Are you getting into the holiday spirit? So is John Mayer, apparently. The guitarist, whose Mayercraft Carrier Cruise Ship sets sail from Miami early next year, is putting together a December 8 concert that will feature three separate sets: an acoustic performance; songs by his John Mayer Trio; and a final segment that will revolve around Mayer’s Continuum album and feature his entire band. Those planning to attend the show, which will benefit multiple charities and take place at Southern California’s Nokia Theatre L.A. Live, are being asked to bring an unwrapped toy worth $10 or more to benefit Toys for Tots. …

Beastie Boys, the Roots and R.E.M. are among the fleet of artists who will be docking at the Big Cypress Indian Reservation in the South Florida Everglades for the sixth annual Langerado Music Festival, set to happen March 6-9. Matisyahu, 311, Of Montreal, the National, Shout Out Louds, the Walkmen and others will also play at the throwdown, which will feature 80 acts on five stages. … Common is hopping aboard the endorsement train — the Chicago MC has allied himself with Lincoln to help market the car company’s 2008 Navigator and other brand initiatives. He will appear in TV, radio and print ads for the vehicle, with the first, simply dubbed “Common,” debuting nationwide November 25 during NFL Sunday Night Football on NBC. Expect to see more tie-ins between Lincoln and Common’s various projects — his concerts, hat lines, books, etc. He will also be appearing on behalf of the company at auto shows and dealer events. But rest assured, Common fans, he’s taking on a good cause too: He will get together with fellow Chicago artists Office for a benefit concert to be held January 12 at the Windy City’s House of Blues. The event, called the “Chicago Youth Owning Their Future Benefit Concert and Silent Auction,” will raise money and awareness for the National Foundation for Teaching Entrepreneurship. Office are also slated to perform January 9 at Lincoln Park’s Biograph Theatre, and the performance will be broadcast on Chicago Public Radio as part of a new series spotlighting local talent. …

In between aimless drives around Los Angeles and trips to court for child-custody hearings, Britney Spears has found time to partner with the photo agency X17 to raise money for UNICEF by auctioning a signed copy of her new album, Blackout, on eBay. In a press release from the agency, Spears said, “I think it’s important to give back, and with the release of Blackout, this seemed like the perfect opportunity to give the fans a chance to bid on something to help children everywhere.” In other Brit news, Billy Ray Cyrus is the latest celeb to reach out to the troubled singer, according to In Touch. “Honey, you are welcome to a Nashville Thanksgiving at our house,” he told the magazine. “We would love to be there for you and we care about you. … Miley is a big fan and she wants to reach out too. We want her to know that’s it’s never too late to make things right.” And in yet another Britney development, the album artwork for her recently released album, Blackout, might be even more controversial than was originally thought. According to TMZ, the hunky priest in whose lap Spears sits is an “International Male” model. The Catholic League had slammed Spears for the imagery late last month. … Robin Thicke has canceled all the dates on an upcoming U.S. tour on doctor’s orders. According to a note posted on the soul singer’s Web site over the weekend, Thicke will have to reschedule the dates “due to doctor-ordered vocal rest until the end of the year.” He had been scheduled to start the 14-date tour Sunday in Englewood, Colorado, and play clubs and theaters through a December 13 date in Long Beach, California. …

A crowd of 1,000 Haitians carried Wyclef Jean on their shoulders through the streets of a slum and to a small-business project he helped establish on Monday, as the former Fugee visited the country for the first time since President Rene Preval named him a roving ambassador in January, AP reports. Jean met with legislators, went with model Petra Nemcova to a school and then spoke with businessmen and foreign ambassadors to plea for aid for the country. “We need all your money, we need all y’all’s support, but let’s put it to programs … that teach kids how to move the country forward,” he reportedly told the crowd. … Is Radiohead frontman Thom Yorke too good for Paul McCartney? The former Beatle told the U.K.’s Channel 4 that Yorke denied his request to record a duet. “I asked Thom to do a duet, but he said he couldn’t because he only felt happy working on his own and Radiohead’s material,” McCartney reportedly said. …

Linkin Park, Angels & Airwaves, Avenged Sevenfold and Bad Religion are among the acts that will take the stage for the first night of Los Angeles rock radio station KROQ’s annual Almost Acoustic Christmas shows at the Gibson Amphitheatre in Universal City, California. Paramore, Rise Against and Serj Tankian will also perform at the concerts, which are scheduled for December 8-9. … Maroon 5 and Santana have joined the Dave Matthews Band, O.A.R. and other acts to help nonpartisan organization HeadCount try to meet its new goal of registering up to 200,000 new voters for next year’s elections. Check out the list of all the artists supporting HeadCount and sign up to volunteer at the group’s Web site, HeadCount.org. … Would you like Shins with that? Wendy’s will soon start bundling free downloads from Rhapsody with burger orders. The fast-food chain plans to give away more than 100 million downloads to people who buy medium and large combo meals, with the songs redeemable at Wendys.com. (Rhapsody is a joint venture with MTV Networks). …

Metric have slapped together their first-ever DVD, “Live at Metropolis,” and plan to roll it out February 12. The disc will showcase the Canadian indie-rockers’ performance at Montreal’s Metropolis concert hall during their tour in support of last year’s Live It Out, and it will also include videos for the album’s three singles: “Monster Hospital,” “Poster of a Girl” and “Empty.” iTunes will have an exclusive preview of the DVD starting in December — for 99 cents, fans will be able to get their hands on three audio tracks from the show, as well as the DVD trailer. … And if you’re a Metric fan in the New York area, you’ll likely want to hit up Broken Social Scene‘s gig at Webster Hall on Wednesday. Metric’s Emily Haines will join the band onstage — along with Dinosaur Jr.‘s J. Mascis, Scott Kannberg (Pavement), Andrew Kenny (American Analog Set) and others — as it performs BSS songs and selections from core member Kevin Drew‘s recent Spirit If … release. …

Plain White T’s plan to keep the momentum going with an upcoming U.K. run and a new album, Billboard reports. After Tom Higgenson and the gang play a series of headlining gigs overseas in January, they’ll delve into their next effort, for which they have “about 17 ideas — eight or nine of them are pretty much full songs so far,” he told the magazine. “As soon as we get a few days off I’ll try to finish the rest of them.” … You’re probably already acquainted with James Blunt — after all, he previously participated in VH1′s “You Oughta Know” series — but just in case, he’s signed up for the tour again. The upcoming “You Oughta Know” stretch will also feature Sara Bareilles, a 27-year-old singer/songwriter who scored big on iTunes with her debut, Little Voice, over the summer. The trek launches February 4 in Seattle and winds down March 4 in Atlanta. …

Did he really want to hurt him? Troubled ex-Culture Club singer Boy George was charged with false imprisonment on Tuesday (November 13) after police said he allegedly chained a man to a wall in his London home. According to the Daily Telegraph, 28-year-old Norwegian escort Auden Carlsen claims that in April, George (born George O’Dowd), 47, invited him to pose for photographs in his apartment, where George grabbed and chained him. George was released on bail and is scheduled to return to court November 22. … First Celine Dion teamed with former members of Evanescence for help writing her recently released new album, Taking Chances — and now comes news that the “Power of Love” singer has a secret affinity for … AC/DC? “I’ve been a big fan of AC/DC for about 15 years or 20 years — the sound guys introduced me to [their music],” she told the U.K.’s The Daily Telegraph. “I like hard rock and, if I’m doing stadiums, I want the engineers to crank the sound system up high with rock and roll, heavy-metal music — it helps me to get the adrenalin rushing.” …

The stockholders of satellite radio XM voted on Tuesday to approve a merger with competing Sirius Satellite Radio with a preliminary account indicating that 99.8 percent of shareholders gave the marriage a thumbs up, according to a statement issued by XM. The U.S. Department of Justice and the Federal Communications Commission still has to approve the merger, which XM is confident will happen before the end of the year. … MusicWorld, Canada’s only remaining music chain, is closing its stores, according to CanWest News Service. The chain, which has been in bankruptcy, is liquidating its 72 stores, and has also announced a change in direction that will involve a stronger online presence and expansion into areas that don’t involve music. The Canadian branch of U.K. company HMV is considering purchasing some of the stores, according to CanWest. Sales of CDs, music DVDs and other music items have reportedly dropped 20 percent since last year in the country. …

Ministry have tapped Meshuggah as the main support act for their goodbye tour, which they’re calling the “C U LaTouR.” Hemlock are also on the bill for the trek, which kicks off March 28 in Vancouver, British Columbia, and wraps May 8 in Chicago. On a related note, Meshuggah have named their next record, which should be in stores early next year, obZen. … Hard-rockers Taproot have finished recording their forthcoming LP, Our Long Road Home. “The title is a unique and expressive tribute to our newly found collective freedom of creativity as a band, with no strings attached,” the band said in a statement. “It’s a tribute to the casual and comfortable settings of being at home with friends and family — a place we love to be.” … Ozzfest 2007 veterans 3 Inches of Blood have booted drummer Alexei Rodriguez after he was allegedly involved in a physical altercation with Saxon drummer Nigel Glockler at the U.K.’s Hard Rock Hell festival over the weekend. The band apologized for Rodriguez’s actions in a statement, adding that his actions are in no way “a reflection of our band. Alexei’s behavior was appalling and completely unacceptable, and it is our decision to immediately remove him from the band.” …

Uncle Kracker is standing by his claim that he didn’t sexually assault a woman in North Carolina, The Detroit News reports. The singer (real name: Matthew Shafer), who made the same assertion after being arrested on the second-degree forcible-sex-offense charge in August, also now says he regrets pleading guilty in September to a lesser charge of misdemeanor assault so he could avoid a trial. He told the News that the 26-year-old woman who was involved in the incident hit him first, and that the incident started when he bumped into her at a club after a concert. Authorities have maintained that Shafer put his hand up her skirt. “There was no sexual anything involved,” Shafer told the News. “Assault is a far cry from sexual battery. You can either wait a year, spend 150 grand, go to trial, make more of a debacle out of it, or you can get it over with.” In September, he was sentenced to 12 months of probation, ordered to undergo an alcohol assessment and was fined $1,500.