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Tag Archives | music


Michael Jackson earns $160 million from the grave

  Michael Jackson died on June 25, 2009 of a tragic drug overdose, however, he’s still making tons of dough. Today Jackson topped  Forbes’ list of top-earning dead celebrities. The King of Pop reportedly scored $160 million over the past year. That beats the top living celebrity earner, Madonna, who collected $125 million from June 2012 to June 2013.  This makes Jackson the top earning celebrity in the world. A kind of immortality few celebrities achieve. Also, the entertainer is not just  earning money on the... Read More →

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Beatle song to become a children’s book

  Ex-Beatle, Ringo Starr, will soon be a published children’s author. The rocker has snagged a deal with Simon & Schuster to turn his 1968 tune, “Octopus’s Garden” into an illustrated children’s book, according to a PR Newswire release. The song appeared on the Beatles album, “Abbey Road” (1969). The way the story goes, Starr composed the song while cruising on actor, Peter Seller’s yacht. Apparently the boat captain gave the Beatle drummer a lesson on how the octopus trawls the sea bed searching for shiny stones and... Read More →

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Tony Awards 2013:”Kinky Boots” and high TV ratings

  The Internet is buzzing about  the 67th Annual Tony Awards kicking butt in the ratings last night. The celebration of Broadway’s best drew 7.24 million viewers, up 20 percent over last year. “Kinky Boots,” the musical filled with drag queens and big dreams, danced away with the largest haul — six Tonys — including best score for 1980’s rocker, Cyndi Lauper, her first. What’s next, “Kinky Boots” on the big screen? Also, acclaimed actress, Cicely Tyson, picked up her first Tony... Read More →

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Photo courtesy Guest Blogger Jean Youn

Jean Youn: Stars and dream achievers

Which areas do you like most – sports, music, or movies? Do you have any particular favorite star in that area? Stars! Whatever the area may be, it must have some stars for people  to envy as well as love. And so often those who have ascended to stardom are called “dream achievers.” To first generation immigrants like me, those who have become stars, made a fortune or become famous, are regarded as the ones who have realized the American dream. Then, I came across a very interesting story. According... Read More →

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Photo: Denis O'Regan/Coachella -- R. Kelly joined Phoenix on stage day two of 2013 Coachella in Indio April 13, 2013

R.Kelly rocks with Phoenix at 2013 Coachella

A lot of rocking and grooving in the desert at 2013 Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival in Indio over the past few days. The event kicked off it’s first weekend last Friday. On Saturday night, R&B singer, R. Kelly, gave a surprise performance with the French alternative rock band, Phoenix. They did hot remix “Ignition”/”1901.” The second weekend of 2013 Coachella runs April 19-22. More information about this major Southland music event here. For some great reporting on Coachella and tons of photos check out Inland Empire... Read More →

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Award Season graphic

Award Season: Oscar maker layoffs, Writers Guild and Grammy nominations

Oscar maker to axe  a lot of workers It’s not going to be a ho, ho, jolly holiday season for some employees of the company that makes Oscar. The Wrap is reporting today that R.S. Owens, a Chicago-based company, will be laying off almost 100 workers by December 17. That’s more than a third of the staff. R.S. Owens is the supplier of awards for the Emmys, MTV Video Music Awards, and “American Idol” as well. More details here. Writers Guild nominations... Read More →

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music clip art

Jean Youn: Positive message of “Gangnam Style”

Do you happen to hear the song or watch the video of “Gangnam Style” sung by a Korean singer, Psy? He is only the second Asian singer who has ever reached No. 2 on the Billboard chart. To be honest with you, I don’t understand why it became so popular worldwide. I can’t hear and understand clearly the lyrics, even though it is written in Korean. His dancing style seems strange to me. However, today I want to introduce a very unique story about the region,... Read More →

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Donna Summer photo

Donna Summer: 1948 – 2012

The Disco Queen with the powerful voice, Donna Summer, reportedly passed away today, at the age of 63. The singer-songwriter and five-time Grammy winner, died in Florida after a long battle with cancer. It’s not a day that goes by that I don’t hear a Summer hit on the radio. She had a number of them — with hot rhythms and catchy lyrics like: “Last Dance,” “Hot Stuff,” “Bad Girls,” “Dim All The Lights,” “She Works Hard For Her Money,”  and my favorite, “Heaven Knows.” More... Read More →

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Photo: Rodrigo Pena/Freelance Photog/ -- Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg closed out the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival in Indio April 15,, 2012

Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg rock Coachella

Thousands of music fans got a treat last night when Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg took to the stage at the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival out in the desert town of Indio. Inland Empire music reporter, Vanessa Franko, says it was a huge set, which will be remembered and talked about for a good while. The rap/hip hop legendary duo wrapped the first weekend of Coachella. Check out Franko’s blog reports. Also, more photos here.

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Photo: Robert Matheu /courtesy Los Angeles Dodgers -- The Beach Boys on 50th Anniversary Tour

The Beach Boys to perform opening day at Dodger Stadium

The Beach Boys are going to perform the national anthem on opening day of Dodger baseball, Tuesday April 10, at Dodger Stadium, the club announced today. Both the legendary band and Dodger Stadium are celebrating 50th anniversaries. “It’s very special to us that we get to celebrate our 50 years alongside the Dodgers, a team we all love,” said The Beach Boys in a news release. “Generations of fans have supported our music just as much as their Boys in Blue and we’re very happy to celebrate both L.A. traditions at... Read More →

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Jean Youn: Music and the sweet sounds of spring

What kind of music do you like? What are your favorite songs? Different people like to listen to different kinds of music. However, there are some songs that many people, across cultures, generations and gender all seem to enjoy.There are certain things that touch sensitivities universally. I think a good example of such a song is Nella Fantasia, it is based on the theme song, “Gabriel’s Oboe,” from the movie “The Mission” (1986). Even though the song is sung in Italian, and I don’t speak any... Read More →

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Whitney Houston: 1963-2012

Today the entertainment world and music fans around the globe are mourning Whitney Houston — a phenomenal talent with a voice like no other.  The pop superstar was found dead in her Beverly Hilton hotel room yesterday afternoon.  She was 48. Details of her death are still sketchy. The Los Angeles Times has extensive coverage on its website. Also, photos, videos, and more on the official Whitney Houston website.   Houston was once a powerhouse in the music industry as well as a succesful movie producer and actress, then... Read More →

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Mary and Joseph clip art

Christmas Eve

Mary Did You Know Mary, did you know That your baby boy, would one day walk on water? Mary, did you know-w-w-w That your baby boy, would save our sons and daughters? Did you know That your baby boy, has come to make you new? And this child that you delivered will soon deliver you Mary, did you know That your baby boy, will give sight to a blind man? Mary, did you know That your baby boy, will calm the storm with his hand? Did... Read More →

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Photo: Esquire/People -- Pop singer Rihanna named 2011 sexiest woman alive

Rihanna named 2011 Sexiest Woman Alive!

Pop singer and fashion risk-taker, Rihanna, displayed her special kind of heat on the cover of Esquire’s November issue. The magazine named the 23-year-old Barbados native, 2011 Sexiest Woman Alive! On the Internet today, there is some debate about whether the entertainer really deserves the title. People magazine has more on Rihanna’s new title. Also, to ah, see more of Rihanna and check out the runners-up … click over to the Esquire website.

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"Terminator" movie poster

Celebrity book deals: Courtney Love & Arnold Schwarzenegger

Catching up on some celebrity book deals. Rocker Courtney Love has signed a deal with HarperCollins for a “tell-all” memior, according to the publishing  site Galleycat. Love’s untitled memior reportedly will be a no-holds-barred telling of her life from ” childhood to the present day.” Love was married to deceased rock legend, Kurt Cobain of Nirvana. Love has had success with her band, Hole, but also personal problems and trouble with drugs in her later years. Also Galleycat is reporting the autobiography of  Arnold Schwarzenegger... Read More →

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Photo: FLLewis/Media City G -- Morning sun shining through the camphor trees in Burbank March 2011

Morning: A tribute to Gil Scott-Heron 1949 – 2011

A music pioneer has passed on. Poet and spoken-word musician, Gil Scott-Heron, died in a New York City hospital yesterday at the age of 62. He reportedly became ill after returning from a European trip. Scott-Heron became famous for his well-known song, “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised,” from his first album “125th and Lenox” (1970).  Other versions of the composition appeared on the artist’s other albums including “Pieces of a Man” (1971). Scott-Heron was known for his songs that spoke of social and political issues. He’s considered an inspiration for... Read More →

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Photo: Vanessa Franko/Audio File blog -- Singer Erykah Badu performed at the Coachella Music and Art Festival in Indio April 16, 2011

Music, art, and good times at Coachella

Thousands of music fans and art lovers are enjoying a hot weekend at the annual Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival. If you think it’s been hot here — this festival is going in the deep desert town of Indio in the Coachella Valley.   Despite some technical difficulties, Grammy winning artist, Erykah Badu, rocked out with fans at Coachella on the Empire Polo Grounds yesterday. Music critic, Vanessa Franko, is following the events, the artists, the fans, celebrity sightings, and more in her blog Audio File. A lot of great Coachella photos as... Read More →

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Photo: Samantha Appleton/White House -- First Lady Michelle Obama talked with singers John Legend, Smokey Robin, Motown Records Founder Berry Gordy, Jr., and Grammy Music Executive Director Bob Santelli at the White House February 24, 2011

Catching up: First Lady Michelle Obama greets entertainers and music executives

The sound of Motown was in the air at the White House last month. During a special tribute to the legendary Motown sound of pop/soul/rhythm and blues, First Lady Michelle Obama chatted with singers John Legend, Smokey Robinson, Motown Founder Berry Gordy, Jr., and Grammy Museum Executive Director, Bob Santelli, right before a Motown Music Series student workshop.

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Photo: Pete Souza/White House -- Entertainer Stevie Wonder got a standing ovation from the White House audience during "The Motown Sound: In Performance at the White House" concert February 24, 2011

Stevie Wonder gets a standing ovation at the White House

PBS stations across the country ran the premiere of the TV special, “The Motown Sound: In Performance at the White House,” last night. The concert recorded in the East Room of the White House back on February 24, 2011, was a celebration of Black History Month and the legendary soul/pop/rhythm and blues sound of Motown Records. Some of the great artists who helped create that Motown Sound: The Temptations, Marvin Gaye, Smokey Robinson and the Miracles, The Supremes, Gladys Knight and the Pips, and Stevie Wonder. President Barack Obama... Read More →

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logo for TV show "Two and a Half Men"

Showbiz Bits: Christina Aguilera arrested, Charlie Sheen’s TV show, and Natalie Portman speaks out on designer controversy

Christina Aguilera jailed for public drunkenness The pop diva with the big voice, Christina Aguilera, has hit a rough patch. Her movie, “Burlesque,” stumbled at the box office, she botched the national anthem at the Super Bowl a few weeks ago, and then last night, the singer was arrested for being intoxicated in public.  Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Deputies reportedly pulled over a car in West Hollywood early this morning with the singer’s boyfriend, Matthew Rutler, behind the wheel. He was busted on suspicion of DUI and Aguilera, a passenger in the car, was so out of... Read More →

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