Archive for the ‘News’ Category

The Roots map out tour for Japan, North America

By Quibian Salazar-Moreno The Roots dropped their Def Jam debut, Game Theory, earlier this year and so far it’s only sold a disappointing 160,000 copies. So like every blue collar hip-hop outfit, The Roots will make their living on the road. The group is just finishing dates up in Europe and will be heading to Japan in January and taking care of the U.S. and Canada from February to April with some dates featuring Lupe Fiasco.. In the meantime, ?uestlove is remixing Pharrell’s entire debut album, In My Mind. The remixed version of the album will drop on Interscope sometime next year. ?uest will also be working on the next project from legendary soul singer Al Green. Here’s the tour itinerary for The Roots: JAPAN 1/12/06 Osaka Japan @ Blue Note 1/13/06 Osaka Japan @ Blue Note 1/15/06 Tokyo Japan @ On Air East 1/16/06 Tokyo, Japan @ On Air East 1/17/06 Tokyo, Japan @ On Air East 1/18/06 Nagoya, Japan @ Blue Note US 2/1/07 Vancouver, Canada Roots performance @ Commodore 2/2/07 Vancouver , Canada Roots performance @ Commodore 2/3/07 Seattle, WA Roots performance @ Showbox 2/5/07 Portland, OR Roots performance @ Crystal Ballroom 2/7/07 San Francisco, CA Roots performance @ Fillmore 2/8/07 San Francisco, CA Roots performance @ Fillmore 2/10/07 Los Angeles, CA Roots with Jill Scott and Lupe Fiasco @ Gibson Ampitheatre 2/12/07 San Diego, CA Roots performance @ HOB 2/14/07 Anaheim, CA Roots performance @ HOB 2/14/07 Anaheim, CA Roots performance @ HOB 2/16/07 Salt Lake, UT Roots performance @ Harry O’s w/ Lupe Fiasco 2/17/07 Denver, CO Roots performance @ Fillmore w/ Lupe Fiasco 2/19/07 Dallas, TX Roots performance @ Gypsea Tea Room w/ Lupe Fiasco 2/20/07 Austin, TX Roots performance @ Stubbs w/ Lupe Fiasco 2/22/07 NO, LA Roots performance @ HOB w/ Lupe Fiasco 2/24/07 Orlando, FL Roots performance @ HOB w/ Lupe Fiasco 2/25/07 Ft. Lauderdale, FL Roots performance @ Revolution 3/3/07 Myrtle Beach, SC Roots performance @ HOB 3/4/07 Atlanta, GA Roots performance @ Tabernacle w/ Lupe Fiasco 3/7/07 Norfolk, VA Roots performance @ NORVA w/ Lupe Fiasco 3/8/07 Baltimore, MD Roots performance @ Meyerhoff Hall w/ Lupe Fiasco & Marsha 3/9/07 Wash DC Roots performance @ Constitution Hall w/ Lupe Fiasco & Marsha 3/13/07 Boston, MA Roots performance @ Avalon w/ Lupe Fiasco 3/17/07 Chicago, IL Roots performance @ Chicago Theatre w/ Lupe Fiasco 3/18/07 Milwaukee , WI Roots performance @ The Rave 3/20/07 Minneapolis, IN Roots performance @Myth 3/22/07 St. Louis, MO Roots performance @ Pagent 3/23/07 Cincinatti, OH Roots performance @ Bogarts 3/24/07 Toronto, Canada Roots performance @ Kool Haus 3/27/07 Montreal, Canada Roots performance @ Metropolis 4/3/07 Philly, PA Roots performance @ Kimmel Center 4/4/07 Philly, PA Roots performance @ Kimmel Center

Insurance Company Turns Their Back on 50 Cent

By: Rizoh 50 Cent’s insurance company says it is not liable for any damages in a lawsuit based on a brawl allegedly involving the U.S. rapper last year. According to The New York Post, National Fire has claimed that the rapper, who is being sued by radio personality "Zxulu" Dunkerson, violated his insurance coverage by waiting more than a year to report the suit to the insurance company. In the $10 million lawsuit, Dunkerson claimed that during a radio interview in Washington last year, a member of 50 Cent’s entourage attacked him and stole his phone. In addition to the alleged assault, supposedly brought about by an off color remark made by Dunkerson on, 50 Cent’s G-Unit then released a song that insulted the radio DJ and the city of Washington. The song in question is the remix to The Game’s "Hate It or Love It" which features 50 Cent, Tony Yayo, Lloyd Banks and Tony Yayo. On the song, Game quips, "Ni**az betta get up outta mine /Fo’ I creep and turn your projects into columbine/ And I’m rap’s MVP /Don’t make me remind y’all what happened to DC."

Common sets sights on Hollywood, new album

By Quibian Salazar-Moreno Believe it or not, Common has been rocking mics professionally since 1992 and it’s taken quite awhile for him to get his props outside of underground hip-hop circles. But nowadays it’s been all about Common and his new Gap ads as well as parts in two upcoming films and a new album coming next year. Slated to drop in June, Common’s new album, Finding Forever was once again produced by Kanye West and is a mixture of hip-hop sprinkled with vintage soul, progressive jazz and what Common calls “futuristic boom bap.” "I’d be lying if I said I don’t want to sell millions and become a household name, but I won’t lose myself to do it," Common told Newsweek. "I see a lot of people in hip-hop who don’t love the music. It’s become the new dope game—they’re in it to make money. If they could obtain that same kind of money or fame by dancing on one leg like a fool, they’d be doing that." You can also Common in two upcoming films. One film, American Gangster, stars Denzel Washington and Russell Crowe and is a Ridley Scott flick about NYPD trying to take down a Harlem drug kingpin. The other film, Smokin’ Aces, stars Jeremy Piven (Entourage) and tells the story of a Vegas magician who snitches on the mob. Common plays bad guys in both films. Look for the films to drop in 2007.

Boots (of The Coup) speaks on bus crash, asks for donations

By Quibian Salazar-Moreno Last week the bus carrying hip-hop group The Coup, Mr. Lif and their road crew crashed when leaving San Diego as part of their month-long tour. After the announcement of the cancellation of the tour, Boots of The Coup went on his blog to give his side of the story. He said he was watching “Anchorman” when everything started to go wrong. “Shortly after the acapella singing of "Afternoon Delight" by Ferrell et al., a big bump, then another, then plummeting down as we tipped over to the left,” Boots wrote on his blog. “I was sitting in the diner-like booth that many of these buses have in the front. I held on to the table with one hand and tried to guard my head with the other, all the while thinking that I was probably about to die. I don’t remember seeing everyone flying and flipping around me as it was happening, but Carter’s (the road manager) and Wiz’s face were covered in blood, and everybody seemed to be laying around hurt.” Boots said that once everybody got off of the bus it caught on fire and destroyed everything on board including clothes, laptops, all of the bands instruments, recording equipment and everything else needed to live while on tour for a month. Boots is now asking for donations to help out the band and its road crew. “Most ofthe band touring with The Coup has kids, rent that won’t quit, bills, and holiday expenses coming,” Boots writes. “We need money, because like I said the band doesn’t have the tools that they make a living with. Not only did we lose cash and material things on the bus, but we also were depending on this tour for money to make it through. It may take a year for us to see any money from the insurance company.” Boots has setup a PayPal account for the donations that you can access at paypal and send a donation to Mr. Lif will be setting up a separate account shortly.

Beyonce plans European tour for spring

By Quibian Salazar-Moreno Despite rumors of marriage, beefing with folks about ‘Dreamgirls’ (she received Golden Globe nominations for Best Actress and Best Song this week) and really being 32 instead of 25, Beyonce is moving ahead with her tour plans. She will kick things off this Spring in Europe on April 30 in Frankfurt, Germany. She will tour all over Europe before finally ending on June 9 in Dublin, Ireland. Once she returns from Europe she will begin a U.S. summer tour that will run until December, although the dates have yet to be announced. "I go on tour the end of April until September," Beyonce recently told MTV News. "I love to tour. I love to perform every night. It’s kinda like I get to be my own director and do my own production. It’s exciting. I always try to find new dancers. I was given an opportunity and I like to give new people opportunity … so I have auditions all across America. It’ll be the same type of show: broken down with me singing, big production, and dancers and a band, the whole nine." Here’s the itinerary for the European trek: 04/30/07 Frankfurt, GER Festhalle 05/01/07 Stuttgart, GER Schleyerhalle 05/03/07 Stockholm, SWE Stockholm Globe Arena 05/04/07 Hamar, NOR Vikingeskibet 05/05/07 Copenhagen, DEN Forum 05/07/07 Munich, GER Olympiahalle 05/08/07 Vienna, AUT Stadthalle 05/09/07 Zurich, SWI Hallenstadion Zurich 05/10/07 Milan, ITA Fila Forum 05/12/07 Halle, GER Garry Weber Stadium 05/13/07 Berlin, GER Max Schmeling Halle 05/14/07 Hamburg, GER Color Line Arena 05/16/07 Paris, FRA Palais Omnisports 05/17/07 Oberhausen, GER Konig-Pilsener Arena 05/18/07 Rotterdam, NET Ahoy 05/19/07 Antwerp, BEL Sportpaleis Antwerpen 05/21/07 Marseille, FRA Le Dome 05/22/07 Barcelona, SPA Palau Sant Jordi 05/23/07 Madrid, SPA Palacio de los Deportes 05/24/07 Lisbon, POR Atlantic Pavilion 05/26/07 Lyon, FRA Halle Tony Garnier 05/27/07 Barcelona, SPA Palau Sant Jordi 05/29/07 Birmingham, UK NEC Arena 05/30/07 Manchester, UK Manchester Evening News Arena 05/31/07 Nottingham, UK Nottingham Arena 06/03/07 London, UK Wembley Arena 06/04/07 London, UK Wembley Arena 06/06/07 Dublin, IRE The Point 06/07/07 Manchester, UK Manchester Evening News Arena 06/09/07 Dublin, IRE The Point

Eminem’s Friend Proof to Release a New Album

By: Rizoh An album by deceased Detroit rapper Proof (aka Deshaun Holton) will be released next year. The album, titled Time Will Tell, will feature 18 songs recorded before Proof’s death earlier this year. The album will be released through Detroit-based label Iron Fist. Iron Fist exec, Cleveland Hurd says Proof was challenged by a friend to write an record an album in one day. The company also has plans to premiere a film exploring the recording process at Detroit‘s Star Southfield before releasing the album. "The world was cheated. They never got to see this side of Proof," said Hurd. "It shows how serious Proof was about recording. As soon as he came in, he went to work and didn’t stop until time was up," he added. Hurd says they started recording at midnight and never slowed down. Proof was shot and killed at CCC Club on East 8 Mile Roadon April 11.

Atlantic Co-Founder Ahmet Ertegun Dies

By: Rizoh Ahmet Ertegun, the Turkish diplomat’s son who co-founded Atlantic Records with Herb Abramson in 1947, died Thursday (December 14, 2006) of a brain injury. He was 83. As previously reported, Ertegun never recovered from a fall he sustained on October 29 at a Rolling Stones event. The music community has lost a pioneer and an icon, and we have lost our father," said Atlantic CEO Craig Kallman. Ahmet changed the course of modern music and culture, and he will live on through the timeless legacy of work that was created under his direction and care." Ertegun’s Atlantic lineup included Ray Charles, Aretha Franklin, Led Zeppelin, Otis Redding, Bette Midler, Eric Clapton and Crosby, Stills & Nash, as well as many stars of modern jazz. Jerry Heller, co-founder of Eazy-E’s Ruthless Records and manager of N.W.A. issued a statement crediting Ahmet Ertegun as being responsible for the first West Coast hip-hop group to go gold. Ruthless’ JJ Fad became the first West Coast rap group to go gold with the success of their hit album "Supersonic." Heller says of Ertegun, "Ahmet brought integrity, vision, style and class to the music business. A giant among mere mortals. His presence will be sorely missed by those of us who had the privilege of knowing him." A private funeral will be held in Turkey next week.

Kelley’s Tell-All Book Targets Oprah Winfrey

By: Rizoh Kelley’s Tell-All Book Targets Oprah Winfrey Kitty Kelley, whose best sellers include biographies of Frank Sinatra, Nancy Reagan and the Bush family, has selected Oprah Winfrey as her next target. Kelley plans to speak with hundreds of sources for the book. While the author has spoken disparagingly of the Bushes, comparing them to the Corleones, she appears to have a positive opinion of Winfrey in the book. "Oprah Winfrey has fascinated me for many years — as a woman, she has wielded an unprecedented amount of influence over the American culture and psyche," Kelley said via a statement issued Wednesday by the Crown Publishing Group, an imprint of Random House, Inc. A publication date for the book is yet to be revealed.

Diddy and Snoop heading to Europe

By Quibian Salazar-Moreno Snoop recently announced that he’ll join Ice Cube on tour in January, now the Doggfather will also join Diddy for his European Tour. The tour will go through 18 cities across nine countries beginning on March 12 in Oslo, Norway and end on April 2 in Nottingham Arena in the United Kingdom. Both Diddy and Snoop will be promoting their latest projects, Diddy’s Press Play and Snoop’s Tha Blue Carpet Treatment. Here’s the current tour itinerary: MARCH 12 Oslo, Norway Spektrum 13 Copenhagen, Denmark The Forum 14 Berlin, Germany Max Schmelling Halle 15 Stuttgart, Germany Schleyerhalle 16 Hamburg, Germany Sporthalle 17 Frankfurt, Germany Festhalle 18 Munich, Germany Olympiahalle 19 Zurich, Switzerland Hallenstadion 21 Paris, France Bercy 22 Paris, France Bercy 23 Dusseldorf, Germany Philipshalle 24 Brussels, Belgium Forest National 25 Amsterdam, Holland Heineken Music Hall 27 London, UK Wembley Arena 28 Cardiff, UK Cardiff International Arena 29 Manchester, UK MEN Arena 30 Glasgow, UK SECC (Hall 4) 31 Dublin, Ireland The Point APRIL 1 Dublin, Ireland The Point 2 Nottingham, UK Nottingham Arena

Usher opens Atlanta wine bar

By: Quibian Salazar-Moreno This entire week Usher has been preparing for the opening of his first franchise, The Grape, a wine bar targeted towards young adults. Usher hosted a meet-n-greet and private party last night and the bar will open to the public today. Usher also plans to open a Grape in New York (to coincide with his 2007 album), Las Vegas, and Los Angeles. They’re also looking at Chicago and possibly overseas at places like South America, Shanghai and Tokyo. Usher’s partner in the venture is Jack Mazur, who launched The Grape franchise in 2000 in Atlanta. The Franchise is known for its copyrighted list of 10 numbered styles, which allows new drinkers to describe their preference.

Birdman’s Sister Dies in Car Crash

By: Rizoh Mother of three and sister to Cashmoney Records’ co-founder Bryan "Baby" Williams died when her vehicle was struck by a motorist driving in the wrong direction down Causeway Boulevard early Monday morning. Tamara Williams, 26, was pronounced dead at the scene on the Causeway overpass at Interstate 10 in irie, said Col. John Fortunato, spokesman for the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office. The accident occurred just after midnight as Tamara Williams was driving north on Causeway Boulevard in her 2006 Toyota Camry, Fortunato said. She was in the far left lane on the up-slope of the northbound overpass when Jason Williams rounded the top of the hill in his 2001 Chevrolet Silverado and hit her head-on. Tamara was the youngest of six siblings.

Andre 3000 Lands Another Acting Gig

By: Rizoh Fresh off their "Idlewild" movie success, Outkast star Andre 3000 (Andre Benjamin) is set to appear in a 1970s basketball comedy due out in 2008. Andre, who recently launched his own animated series "Class of 3000" on Cartoon Network, will play a hotshot star alongside Woody Harrelson. "Semi-Pro" will pit the acting talents of the rapper alongside Will Ferrell, who stars as a basketball team coach for the minor league team the Tropics. Benjamin plays a self-styled ladies’ man who is the best player on the team.

BET gets down with iTunes

By Quibian Salazar-Moreno As of late, BET has been bringing some pretty good programming to the airwaves. With the success of shows like “American Gangster” and “Beef: The Series”, the network has decided to make the shows available for download on iTunes. “We are delighted that BET programming is now available on iTunes as an important element in BET’s global digital strategy," said BET Networks Chairman and CEO Debra Lee. "As the world’s most popular digital download store, iTunes is a key platform for serving our existing audience of African- American media super-consumers, and for introducing our breakthrough programming franchises to other audiences." iTunes will also carry the full seasons of “Lil Kim: Countdown to Lockdown”, “Best of BET Comic View”, “DMX: Soul of a Man” and “The Christies: Committed.” Each show will be $1.99 per episode with more BET programming on the way.

Atlantic Records Co-Founder on Life Support

By: Rizoh The music industry gears up for bad news as Atlanic Records co-founder Ahmet Ertegun has been reported critically ill, following his fall at a Rolling Stones concert in October. Doctors say the 83-year old’s chances of "meaningful recovery" are very slim. The accident responsible for Ertegun’s current state occured at a Rolling Stones concert on Broadway in New York City; Ertegun slipped while coming out of a rest room, and fell down a flight of stairs. He has been in an intensive care unit ever since. "His situation is very critical….His recovery, speaking medically, does not look possible. He may be able to live for a while on support units. But his will does clarify that he does not want to live this way. The final decision, however, will have to be made by his wife Mica." Mice Ertegun, meanwhile, has said that when her husband dies, she wants to bury him in Istanbul‘s Uskudar neighborhood, where his family already has a large plot in a cemetary there. Ertegun, the son of a Turkish diplomat, has worked with Ray Charles, Aretha Franklin, Ella Fitzgerald, Miles Davis, Herbie Mann, the Rolling Stones, Otis Redding, Eric Clapton, Bette Midler, John Coltrane, Led Zeppelin, Tori Amos, and many others. Atlantic is home to rappers T.I. and Lupe Fiasco.

Evel Knievel suing Kanye West

By Quibian Salazar-Moreno Looks like 70’s dare devil Evel Knievel is not feeling Kanye West at all. The 68-year old Knievel filed a lawsuit against West claiming infringement on his trademark name and likeness in West’s video for “Touch The Sky.” In the video Kanye poses as “Evel Kanyevel”, a parody of Knievel (parodies are legal under copyright laws), and sports similar clothing and rides a rocket over a canyon similar to the vehicle Knievel used in his failed attempt to jump over Idaho’s Snake River Canyon in 1974. "That video that Kanye West put out is the most worthless piece of crap I’ve ever seen in my life, and he uses my image to catapult himself on the public," Knievel told the Associated Press. “The guy just went too far using me to promote his filth to the world. I’m not in any way that kind of a person." Knievel is mostly offended by Pamela Anderson’s appearance and the funny bit done by Nia Long (Love Jones, Best Man) and Tracee Ellis Ross (Girlfriends). The lawsuit seeks damages and also a halt to distribution of the video. Kanye had no comment on the lawsuit.


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