Flea’s House ‘Burnt To A Crisp’; Plus Mary J. Blige, Nelly Furtado, AFI, Pete Wentz & More, In For The Record

Blige gets charitable; Furtado, AFI featured on bizarre holiday single; Wentz teams with Perez Hilton for T-shirt contest.

Wildfires broke out in Malibu, California, again over the weekend, and among those impacted were Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea, who lost a home due to the flames, and Guns N’ Roses frontman Axl Rose, who had a close call when the fires burned his roof and singed some of his property. According to a report on KCAL-TV, Rose’s assistant said the rocker “was with the hose everywhere” on his property, fighting to save his home. The Los Angeles Times reports that Flea said in a text message that his $4.8 million home in Corral Canyon was “burnt to a crisp” by the fires on Saturday morning. According to TMZ.com, a second, $10 million Malibu home owned by Flea — the one in which he currently resides — did not burn. The one that did was a $4.8 million house that the bassist rents and currently has up for sale, the site reports. …

Mary J. Blige is slated to perform at an upcoming Lifebeat benefit event honoring Stephen Hill, executive vice president of entertainment and music programming at BET. “Live Beats: A Night of Musical Mayhem and Tonal Terror Fashioned by Fun(k),” set to take place December 4 at New York’s Highline Ballroom, will salute the Lifebeat board member for his work in fighting AIDS/HIV. Proceeds from the event will go to Lifebeat, and a related contest will give the winner a chance to play onstage at the venue with Blige’s 10-piece backing band. For more info, go to Lifebeat.org. Adding to her good-Samaritan cred, Blige also played last week at a homeless-initiatives benefit show hosted by Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and staged by the Staples Center Foundation at the city’s Nokia Theatre L.A. LIVE. …

Ho ho huh? Nelly Furtado has ganged up with members of AFI, LCD Soundsystem, the Faint, Panthers, the Horrors, Terror and the Black Lips for an upcoming charity release by Canadian hardcore-punk princes F—ed Up. The track is featured as the B-side on the band’s new holiday single, and all proceeds will go to the George Herman House, a Toronto transitional-housing and life-skills program supporting women with mental-health issues. In more conventional news, Furtado has piled together a CD and DVD for her recent Get Loose World Tour. The items, both called Loose the Concert, will drop December 4 and feature 11 and 17 selections, respectively, from the trek. The DVD features a cover of Gnarls Barkley‘s “Crazy” as well as 30 minutes of documentary material …

If you think Furtado’s collaborative affair is out there, try this one on for size: Pete Wentz + Perez Hilton. The Fall Out Boy bassist and gossip guru have joined forces to create a new tee for Wentz’s Clandestine Industries. They’ve come up with a name for it — “I Love Being a Sh–talker” — but are staging a contest to determine the design. The shirt will be sold at the new Clandestine Industries store in Chicago and on the company’s Web site, ClandestineIndustries.com, and the winner will get a tee signed by Wentz and Hilton. The deadline to submit an original design is December 14, and the winner will be named seven days later — go to FriendsorEnemies.com for the 411 on how to enter. …

While Time has yet to decide if J.K. Rowling will best Nobel Peace Prize winner Al Gore and others for Person of the Year, the “Harry Potter” author has earned her place as the Entertainer of the Year in another magazine, Entertainment Weekly. The publication said she deserves the honor for getting “people to tote around her big, old-fashioned printed-on-paper books as if they were the hottest new entertainment devices on the planet.” Angelina Jolie, Johnny Depp, George Clooney and Will Smith also made EW‘s list of 25 top entertainers of the year. …

Linkin Park plan to keep touring in 2008, and they’ll be bringing Coheed and Cambria along for the ride. So far, just two dates have been announced for the groups’ tour leg: February 16 in Detroit and February 18 in Manchester, New Hampshire. More dates will be revealed in the coming weeks. … Radiohead guitarist Jonny Greenwood‘s instrumental score to the upcoming Paul Thomas Anderson film “There Will Be Blood” is due in stores December 18. The movie hits theaters eight days later. The score includes material Greenwood wrote for a previous orchestral piece, “Popcorn Superhet Receiver,” which will debut in concert in the U.S. in January when he participates in New York’s Wordless Music Series. … U2‘s Bono and the Edge surprised about 200 fans on Friday at the small London venue Union Chapel with a 20-minute, four-song acoustic set. According to a report on the band’s Web site, the duo played “Stay,” “Desire,” “Angel of Harlem” and the recently unearthed rarity “Wave of Sorrow,” which had never been played live and for which the Edge played keyboards. The gig was part of the Little Noise Sessions put on by Mencap, a group that aids people with learning disabilities. …

Hulk Hogan said he was totally unaware that his wife of 24 years, Linda Marie Bollea, had recently filed for divorce when asked to comment on Friday by the St. Petersburg Times. According to the paper, Linda filed a petition for the dissolution of their marriage last Tuesday, unbeknownst to her husband. After learning of the development, the wrestler then reportedly thanked the reporter for the “great information” and hung up, calling back five minutes later to say he’d been “kind of shocked” by the news. “You caught me off guard. My wife has been in California for about three weeks,” Hogan reportedly said. “Holy smokes. Wow, you just knocked the bottom out of me. I just pulled over to the side of the road for five minutes to find out what was going on here.” According to The Associated Press, Linda Bollea requested alimony and child support for their 17-year-old son, Nick Bollea, as well as a share of the family’s two multimillion-dollar properties in Florida, in her divorce petition, which calls the marriage “irretrievably broken.” The couple married in 1983 and have two children, 19-year-old singer Brooke Hogan and Nick, who was involved in an August car crash that left a passenger critically injured.

The critics and moviegoers might be loving “American Gangster,” but one New York City Drug Enforcement agent apparently isn’t so fond of the film. According to TMZ.com, ex-agent Gregory Korniloff is threatening legal action against the movie’s studio, Universal, for what he claims are “false and defamatory statements.” In a recently filed cease-and-desist letter filed by his attorney, Korniloff demands a retraction of statements made in the movie, which allegedly presents several misleading facts and incorrectly states that a third of NYC DEA agents were convicted on charges related to gangster Frank Lucas. The now-retired agent was the case agent for the DEA and, as the letter reportedly states, “personally participated in the search of Lucas’ house … and the arrest of Lucas on that same day.”

It was another rough weekend for Amy Winehouse. First, according to Reuters, the singer’s husband, Blake Fielder-Civil, was denied bail and ordered to remain in custody until at least January 18 after appearing in a London court on Friday, charged with allegedly beating up a bartender. Fielder-Civil and another man, Michael Brown, were slated to stand trial this month in the case, in which they are accused of roughing up pub landlord James King last June. But the trial was recently delayed after police arrested Fielder-Civil and accused him of conspiracy to obstruct justice in the assault case. The news was hardly better for Winehouse, who reportedly showed up 45 minutes late for her gig Saturday night at London’s Hammersmith Apollo, at which point some fans were already asking for refunds. NME reported that there was a loud chorus of boos by the time Winehouse finally took the stage and things only got worse from there, including a bit where her famous towering beehive almost toppled over and fell off. At one point, looking bored, she walked offstage and let her backup singers take over lead vocals. During the show’s encore she left again, midway through a song, and didn’t return. …

The mystery surrounding AlbumSix.com just keeps growing. The site, believed by many to be a stealth Weezer affair, was under scrutiny again, when the bandmembers posted on its official Web site last week that they have no affiliation with it or any news it purports to have. Weezer also disputed the site’s claims that the next album would be called Tout Ensemble and that it already has an official release date. According to a post on AlbumSix, “Weezer and Geffen Records have no affiliation with www.albumsix.com. … We are honestly surprised how long this lasted. We expected that the media would contact Interscope or Weezer, and they would squash things immediately. But somehow, we slipped through the traditions of journalism. … We never expected anyone to believe it. We thought we’d get a few Weezer fans on the boards to get excited, but we never actually thought we’d become a legitimate news source. We can’t say we blame the media. Viral marketing is the hot new thing. However, we hoped you learned a lesson. … We are extremely excited about the new Weezer album and are glad to see that everyone seems to share our excitement. We will be anxiously awaiting the real release date and title of album six along with everybody else. Until then, thanks for playing.” Weezer offered a “well played” to the people behind the site. …

Break out your lighters: Extreme are reuniting for a world tour and new album next year. The group broke up 11 years ago but got together in 2004-’06 for a brief re-formation. Guitarist Nuno Bettencourt, who is slated to produce the group’s yet-untitled LP, said that in light of the inclusion of the band’s song “Play With Me” in “Guitar Hero,” “We realized, not only are the people starved for rock ‘n’ roll, so are we,” according to a press release. “Let’s eat,” he added. … The Romantics have filed a lawsuit against the makers of the “Guitar Hero” video game series, claiming a cover band tapped to record the act’s signature song for the game sounds too much like the original, according to AP. The band’s “What I Like About You” appears in “Guitar Hero Encore, Rocks the ’80s,” and, after declining permission to allow game manufacturer Activision to use the song in the game, the re-recorded version sounds too similar to the original. The band is seeking a cut of royalties produced through sales of the game. …

The reunited Spice Girls want to set the record straight. After an e-mail went out over the weekend claiming that the group had scrapped a planned gig in Buenos Aires, Argentina, due to high demand for other dates, a spokesperson said the e-mail was a fake and the gig is penciled in for February. A statement on the group’s Web site reads, “The Spice Girls would like to make it clear that they have not canceled their Buenos Aires show. … A story has appeared on several Web sites that includes a fake e-mail and competition from the girls. The fake e-mail claims that due to the demand so far in the U.K. and the U.S. this show is going to be canceled. … The e-mail goes on to say that they will be running some competitions for their South American fans to travel to the U.K. to watch a show. This is not the case and this email is 100 percent unofficial and has nothing to do with the Spice Girls.” …

A judge set a February 25 court date for faded 1980s pop star Boy George, who has been accused of falsely imprisoning a 28-year-old male escort by chaining him to a wall in his London apartment in April. George (born George O’Dowd), 46, spoke only to confirm his name in court on Thursday, and was released on bail and ordered to have no contact with the alleged victim, according to reports.

11.21.07

T.I.‘s lawyers gave a hint of how they plan to defend their client through motions filed in court on Monday seeking to suppress evidence seized from the rapper’s vehicle during his October 13 arrest on federal weapons charges. The motions claim that the evidence against him and statements he made to authorities were illegally obtained. The Associated Press reports that attorneys for the rapper (born Clifford Harris) claim his car was searched without a warrant, consent or probable cause. They also claim that his detention might not have been appropriate, that statements he made to authorities might not have been voluntary and that agents may have failed to honor his rights. The motions don’t go into details on the basis for the legal challenges, but state that more information will be filled in later. A judge had not made a ruling on the challenges at press time. …

A judge suspended the driver’s license of wrestler Hulk Hogan‘s son, Nick Bollea, for one year on Tuesday, in the wake of the 17-year-old’s August crash that left his friend in critical condition, according to the AP. Bollea was arrested on November 7 on charges of reckless driving involving serious bodily injury, and the Tampa Tribune reported that the teen received a letter on Monday informing him of the suspension, as well as a letter ordering him to pay a fine for driving 106 mph before the crash, to avoid having his license suspended indefinitely. “We have the ability to suspend someone’s license if we believe what they could be convicted of is a potential danger should this person remain on the road,” said Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles spokeswoman Ann Nucatola. “We’ve deemed him dangerous to the general public on the road.” …

Despite their differences, the Wu-Tang Clan will be touring in support of their forthcoming album, The 8 Diagrams. The trek begins on December 15 in Chicago, and runs through January 26 in St. Petersburg, Florida. … According to Bruce Springsteen‘s Web site, keyboard player Danny Federici, an original member of the E Street Band, has decided to take a leave of absence from Springsteen’s current tour to undergo treatment for melanoma. Charles Giordano, who played with Bruce as a member of the Sessions band, will temporarily fill in for Federici until he’s able to return. … As I Lay Dying, August Burns Red, Evergreen Terrace and Still Remains are planning to hit the road together in January. The trek commences January 8 in San Luis Obispo, California, and runs through February 1 in Omaha, Nebraska. More dates are expected to be announced in the coming weeks. …

The Cure‘s Robert Smith addressed rumors about him working with Ashlee Simpson in V magazine. “First of all, I was mostly shocked by how fantastically widespread that rumor was … and by how quickly it spread,” he said. “I know that people were really upset by the idea that I would do that and I suppose I can understand why, but it still seems so ridiculous to me. I took my nieces to see her perform in ‘Chicago’ on the West End and afterward they wanted to meet her, so we went backstage and said hello. I didn’t understand what the big deal was. You can say what you want about her, but she can sing. Whether or not we’d actually do anything together, I don’t know. I didn’t see any reason to deny the rumor as I thought it was amusing and I never deny rumors anyway. There are a handful of singers that I’d rather pull my own fingernails out than be stuck in the same room with, but she isn’t really one of them. We have no plans to collaborate, though. Believe it or not, she and I don’t really run into each other. [He laughed.] Now, wait a second … Ashlee is calling on my other line and I should probably take it.” …

The track list for Weezer frontman Rivers Cuomo‘s forthcoming solo album, Alone — The Home Records of Rivers Cuomo, has been revealed. The album, due out December 18, will boast 17 tracks, including an early version of the band’s 1995 hit “Buddy Holly,” as well as the songs “Who You Callin’ B—h?,” “Dude We’re Finally Landing,” and “I Wish You Had an Axe Guitar.” In related news, Weezer have titled their forthcoming album Tout Ensemble, according to the band’s Web site. …

Don Imus has certainly been called a lot of things in 2007 — racist, sexist, fired, you name it. King magazine, however, has another name for him: Man of the Year. Imus was given the mag’s yearly big-dog award in the new issue. Huh? Editor-in-chief Jermaine Hall said Imus was honored for being a lighting rod in the urban community. … Former New Kid on the Block Joey McIntyre and his wife, Barrett, welcomed a baby boy on Tuesday, People magazine reports. “The family is happy and healthy,” a rep for McIntyre told the magazine. “Everyone’s doing well and they’re excited he made it here in time for Thanksgiving.” McIntyre, 34, and his wife, 29, have not yet picked a name for the child. …

According to the Florida Times-Union, former Lynyrd Skynyrd drummer Artimus Pyle was arrested in St. John’s County, Florida, on Monday, charged with failure to properly register as a sex offender. The 59-year-old, whose real name is Thomas Delmer Pyle, lives in Asheville, North Carolina. He was released from police custody Tuesday on $10,000 bail. Pyle pleaded guilty in 1993 to charges of attempted capital sexual battery by an adult on a victim younger than 12 and principal to lewd and lascivious on a child younger than 16. He was sentenced to eight years of probation and designated as a sex offender. His latest arrest stems from his recent attempt to renew his driver’s license in Florida. Police claim he failed to register as a sex offender in Florida, which state law mandates, and detectives claim he has not lived at the address provided on his license renewal application for many years.