Monthly Archives: September 2008

Bruce Springsteen and Billy Joel to Perform for Obama

The Boss and The Piano Man will come together for the first time to perform at an Obama fundraiser in New York on October 16th.

But like the Streisand-starring Obama benefit before them, tickets to see Bruce Springsteen and Billy Joel share the same stage will cost you a minimum of $500 to attend, and ticket prices could skyrocket up to a whopping $10,000.

All for a good cause? I’m sure that’s what would-be concert-going Obama supporters are telling themselves.

Rock stars Bruce Springsteen and Billy Joel are teaming up for their first joint concert to benefit Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama.

Obama plans to attend the concert at the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York City on Oct. 16, the day after his final debate with Republican John McCain at Hofstra University, located in Hempstead, N.Y.

Seeing the two superstars together won’t come cheap. Tickets start at US$500 and range up to $10,000.

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NY Mayor Bloomberg Set to Announce Third-Term Bid

The NY Times is reporting that New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg will announce his decision to seek a third term as mayor on Thursday, which would constitute a radical about-face for Mr. Bloomberg, as he has been an ardent supporter of term limits for elected officials.

Bloomberg would have to overturn existing laws that prevent him from seeking re-election, a move he is expected to make through legislation in City Council.

After months of speculation about his political future, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg plans to announce on Thursday morning that he will seek a third term as mayor, according to three people who have been told of his plans.

The extraordinary move promises to upend New York City’s political world.

Right now, Mr. Bloomberg is barred by law from seeking re-election. But he will propose trying to revise the city’s 15-year-old term limits law, which would otherwise force him and dozens of other elected leaders out of office in 2009, the three people said.

In his announcement, Mr. Bloomberg, a former Wall Street trader and founder of a billion-dollar financial data firm, is expected to argue that the financial crisis unfolding in New York City demands his steady hand and proven business acumen.

The move represents an about-face for Mr. Bloomberg, who has repeatedly said he supports term limits and once called an effort to revise the law “disgusting.” He will apparently try to do so through legislation in the City Council, rather than the ballot box.

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Kevin Costner’s New Career As A Country Music Singer

Occasionally interesting actor, questionable director, and one-time dancer with wolves, Kevin Costner, is set to release an album of country music with his band Modern West.

Besides acting, Kevin Costner has a whole field of dreams he wants to fulfill — and he will realize one of them this November with the release of his first country music album, says People magazine.

While his musical aspirations may come as a bit of a surprise to some, Costner has been playing music with some of his Modern West band mates for nearly 20 years, he tells People.

“I remember looking into the crowd, thinking, ‘This just feels right,'” he previously said about performing with his band.

The 53-year-old has co-written six songs from the 12-track album, some of which will be available to country music radio this week, People reports.

The album is set for release Nov. 11, and the band plans tour dates later this year through 2009, says the mag.

Costner had been contemplating getting back into music for years, but he finally convinced himself that he had to seize the moment — and do something more than sign autographs all day:

But if life has taught me anything it was not be stopped by the question or the unknown. “F… it what did I have to lose but maybe some of the best times of my life”…It was a feeling that I had been unable to articulate. For along time now I have felt the need to connect with people in a more meaningful way than just the autograph. I have found myself here and around the world in different situations where the only exchange has been just that. A quick signature on the run followed usually by a “gee he’s taller than I thought”. I always thought that music could build a stronger more personal moment for me.

Costner and his band have 4,430 friends. Well, it’s a start, Kev.

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AC/DC’s ‘Black Ice’ and ‘Rock Band’ Pack: Coming Soon to Wal-Mart

Classic rockers AC/DC will release their fifteenth studio album, Black Ice, as well as a special ‘Rock Band’ track package this December. And both will be available exclusively through that ever-elite music source — big box retail giant Wal-Mart. How very bad-ass of them.

AC/DC…will lend 18 songs to AC/DC Live: Rock Band Track Pack. The stand-alone game will be playable on both Rock Band and Rock Band 2 and will feature live versions of hits like “Thunderstruck,” “Highway to Hell” and “Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap.” The full track list is below. The game will be released this December and, like Black Ice, will be available exclusively at Wal-Mart.

AC/DC kicks off their fall tour at the end of October and the band have just added additional dates from mid-December through late January:

AC/DC Black Ice Tour
December 20 – Ft. Lauderdale, FL @ Bank Atlantic Center
December 21 – Tampa, FL @ St. Pete Times Forum
January 5 – Cleveland, OH @ Quicken Loans Arena
January 7 – Pittsburgh, PA@ Mellon Arena
January 9 – Toronto, ONT @ Rogers Centre
January 11 – Cincinnati, OH @ U.S. Bank Arena
January 13 – St. Louis, MO @ Scottrade Center
January 15 – Omaha, NE @ Qwest Center Omaha
January 17 – Fargo, ND @ Fargodome
January 19 – Minneapolis, MN @ Xcel Energy Center
January 21 – Kansas City, MO @ Sprint Center
January 23 – Dallas, TX @ American Airlines Center
January 26 – Tulsa, OK @ BOK Center
January 28 – Little Rock, AR @ ALLTELL Arena
January 30 – Memphis, TN @ FedEx Forum
January 31 – Nashville, TN @ Sommet Center

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Paramount Signs Deal With Marvel Studios

Expect more big-budget, blockbusting live-action comic book action movies over the next few years, as Marvel Studios has signed a deal to extend its parnership with Paramount Pictures.

Marvel announced a massive releasing partnership with Paramount, the studio that shepherded the aforementioned Iron Man into theaters. Over the next eight years, Marvel could deliver ten movies to the studio, including the previously announced Iron Man sequel (May 7th, 2010), Thor (July 16th, 2010), The First Avenger: Captain America (May 6th 2011) and The Avengers (July 15th, 2011). You read the release dates of the latter two films correctly; they’ll be released within six weeks of each other.

Marvel will get a slightly bigger cut of its film grosses under the new deal:

Marvel Studios has renegotiated its distribution pact with Par, under which it will now pay out 8% of its film grosses to the studio for its next five films, rather than the 10% it previously ponied up for “Iron Man.”

And the film division of the company is already off to a rolling box office start; its first two films grossed over $800 in a single summer movie season:

Marvel successfully launched its film division this year with the release of “Iron Man” and “The Incredible Hulk,” through Universal; the pics went on to earn a combined $824 million worldwide this summer.

Oh, and just in case you’re in the market for a new computer, Paramount and Dell have teamed up to offer PCs that come pre-loaded with Iron Man:

PC manufacturer Dell and Paramount Pictures are opening a new front in digital distribution with an offering allowing consumers to order “Iron Man” preloaded into newly purchased computers.

For now, Paramount is the only studio that has signed on, and “Iron Man” — which will be available accompanied by exclusive bonus footage for $20 beginning Tuesday (September 30), the same day as its DVD release — is the only film being offered.

The offering is the first step Dell is taking toward setting up a broader digital content storefront that could create significant competition for Apple’s dominant iTunes Store.

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Janet Jackson Released From Hospital

Singer Janet Jackson cancelled her Montreal concert on Monday after being hospitalized for an undisclosed medical condition.

A representative for Janet Jackson says the singer has been hospitalized after falling ill shortly before a concert.

According to statement released by W&W Public Relations, the singer canceled her concert in Montreal on Monday after she “got suddenly ill” during her sound check and had to be rushed to the hospital just before show time.

The statement says Jackson is being monitored at the hospital and hopes to reschedule the show. No further information was given about Jackson’s condition.

A phone call placed to W&W after hours went unanswered, and a representative did not immediately return an e-mail seeking more information.

Rumours have suggested that Jackson is suffering from exhaustion:

Jackson has complained of exhaustion, a source close to boyfriend Jermaine Dupri tells PEOPLE. “A 42-year-old body can’t handle what a 22-year-old body can,” says the source. “I can tell you that she’s definitely tired. It was probably exhaustion. She is doing back-to-back, three-hour shows, and her body isn’t the same as it used to be.”

Jackson was released from a Montreal hospital on Tuesday and is expected to perform at her scheduled concert in Boston on Wednesday night:

Janet Jackson has been released from the Royal Victoria Hospital in Montreal, according to a hospital rep.

“Yesterday evening she was checked into the Royal Victoria Hospital and left a couple of hours later,” Rebecca Burns, the spokeswoman for the McGill University Health Centre, which operates the hospital, told PEOPLE

Jackson, 42, cancelled her show in Montreal on Monday and was taken to the hospital after she “got suddenly ill” during her sound check, according to a statement from W&W Public Relations.

Further details of the singer’s condition were not immediately available, and reps for Jackson did not return requests for additional comment.

Jackson kicked off her Rock Witchu tour promoting her latest album, Discipline, in Vancouver on Sept. 10.

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No Felony Charges in Kanye’s Clash With Paparazzi

Rapper Kanye West has avoided felony charges after getting into a ‘scuffle’ with a photographer at Los Angeles International Airport earlier in September in which a photographer’s camera was smashed.

Los Angeles officials on Friday declined to press felony charges against rap singer Kanye West stemming from his arrest after a scuffle with photographers at Los Angeles International Airport this month.

West, however, could face a lesser charge of a misdemeanor crime, said Frank Mateljan, spokesman for the L.A. City Attorney’s Office.

The Grammy winner was arrested at the airport on Sept. 11 after rushing at a photographer and grabbing his camera. In the ensuing struggle, West threw the camera to the ground.

West, 31, was booked on suspicion of felony vandalism and released on bail the same day.

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