Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Lady Gaga named Billboard's 'Rising Star'...so well deserved....

Lady Gaga named Billboard's 'Rising Star'
Rewards artists achieving success in early stages of career
By Mariel Concepcion, Billboard
Sept 28, 2009, 05:19 PM ET

Lady Gaga (Getty)NEW YORK --

Billboard announced today that pop sensation Lady Gaga will be named its "Rising Star" at the 2009 Billboard Women In Music event, taking place on Oct. 2nd in New York City.

The Billboard Rising Star Award rewards artists that have achieved a level of success and proven to have vast potential in the early stages of their career.

Lady Gaga is the undisputed break-out star of the year for many reasons, including the success of her debut album, "The Fame" (Streamline Records), which has spawned four Billboard Hot 100 hit singles like "Just Dance" and "Poker Face," both which reached No. 1 on the tally.

"Just Dance" and "Poker Face" are also the Nos. 2 and 8 best-selling digital songs of all time, with 4.6 million and 4 million downloads, respectively.Gaga recently became the third artist in the history of the Mainstream Top 40 Airplay chart to have three No. 1 singles from a debut album.

"The Fame" is also the best-selling album from a debut artist for 2009, with 1,441,000 copies sold in the United States, according to Nielsen SoundScan.

In addition to writing all the tracks on her album, Lady Gaga has previously written for Britney Spears, the Pussycat Dolls, and New Kids on the Block.

"Lady Gaga is one of those rare examples of a truly unique artist with mass appeal," says Bill Werde, Editorial Director of Billboard. "

She has established herself as one of today's top songwriters, and the whole world is waiting to see what her next outrageous but brilliant move or style will be.

It is that ongoing anticipation, combined with her success that makes her a rising star."

The Billboard Women in Music Event celebrates the most powerful and talented women in the music business, and is held in conjunction with the much-anticipated publication of Billboard's Women In Music Power Players List -

recognizing the top female music executives who are leading the industry with their artistic and business vision.

Billboard will also honor Grammy Award-winning artist and pop culture icon Beyonce with the coveted Billboard Woman of The Year Award at the event.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Queen Barbra Streisand......

Streisand Admits At Historic Show:
“Singing ‘People’ Is Boring”

Sunday September 27, 2009

Barbara Streisand, perhaps the greatest performer of her generation, made history last night for her fans as she returned to her Greenwich Village roots after almost 50 years.

As a promotional effort for her latest album, “Love is the Answer,” the eternally youthful looking Streisand brought a four-piece jazz band into the Village Vanguard, a downstairs club in the West Village where she got her start almost five decades ago.
Among the guests were fans who’d won a lottery for the available 78 seats.

But the other fans were also pretty remarkable:
former president Bill Clinton and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton with daughter Chelsea and her fiancee,
actor James Brolin (Streisand’s husband),
Jessica Parker, Nicole Kidman, Donna Karan, famed theater actress Phyllis Newman who is also the widow of Adolph Green, lyricists Alan and Marilyn Bergman, mogul Barry Diller (solo–wife Diane von Furstenberg was away, he told me), the New York Times’s Frank Rich and Alex Witchel, Deborah Lee Furness aka Mrs. Hugh Jackman, Columbia Records chief Rob Stringer, and longtime Hollywood manager Sandy Gallin.

The brilliant record producer Tommy LiPuma, who made “Love is the Answer” with Streisand and Diana Krall, was also there.

Of course, not everyone could fit into the Village Vanguard, so Sony Music, the parent of Columbia Records, arranged for a closed-circuit feed to the Louis XVI suite at the Waldorf Astoria.
That’s where yours truly watched the show on large TV screens, along with about 50 more of Streisand’s friends and family including Joy Behar of ”The View,” another longtime Streisand associate and music exec Charles Koppelman (now CEO of Martha Stewart’s company), and even the rabbi who’s head of the Conservative Jewish movement in Israel!

Streisand started the hour long show, which can be seen on AOL Broadband this evening, introduced by her devoted manager of 48 years, Marty Ehrlichman.
She also introduced Jimmy Cobb, the legendary (now 80 year old) jazz drummer who played her early albums (and was Miles Davis’s drummer), as well as the waiter who gave her career tips all those years ago.

From our vantage point in the Waldord, Streisand looked like “buttah” in the most intimate setting she’s performed in for years.
Maybe because of that, she was a little too relaxed.
Speaking off the cuff, Streisand introduced over a dozen songs with many reminscinces.
Some of them were telling: “When I sing songs like ‘People’ over and over, I get a little bored,” she admitted.
So “People.” one of her signature numbers, was not in the show.

Instead she sang “My Funny Valentine” at the suggestion of a friend, after not singing it for years.
She included Jacques Brel’s “If You Go Away” including the anecdote of how and she and her husband (Elliot Gould, presumably) and another couple flew to Marseilles years ago to see Brel, only to have him not sing it himself.
She performed her own hit, “Evergreen,” because she said it was President Clinton’s favorite.
“I feel Virginia’s here, too,” she said, referring to the president’s late mother.
“She was one of my surrogate mothers.”

Some of the other numbers included one by the Bergmans (”I’ve recorded 52 of their songs”), “Bewitched Bothered, and Bewildered,” “My Heart Belongs to Me,” “Wee Small Hours of the Morning,” “Gentle Rain,” “Spring Can Really Hang You Up,” “Make Someone Happy,” “Where Do You Start?” and then through the room a big bone, as it were: the Bergmans’ (with Marvin Hamlisch), “The Way We Were.”
On the screen, you could see Sarah Jessica Parker tear up, like half the room.

It was a night bathed in nostalgia, but it wasn’t always perfect.
The first thing Streisand asked yours truly (of all things) after she and most of the guests transferred up to the Waldorf was:
“Was I okay?
Did my voice sound alright?”
Yes, for real, she was verklempt.
We told her she said, “People” was boring.
“I did?” she exclaimed, “Oh my god!”
The answer is: she told the audience, “I haven’t sung since January.”
She and the band only rehearsed for this gig for two days.
If she were anyone else, Streisand would get an A plus.
But with that little preparation, maybe we’ll say A minus.
She missed some high notes.
Sometimes, toward the end, you could a little hoarseness.
She was not the usual Streisand the perfectionist.
It’s incredibly ingratiating to find out she’s human, taking chances, and real.
It didn’t quite bring her down to a mortal level, but made her accessible in a new way.

Now, if she “practices, practices, practices,” she knows what her next stop will be.
“What about Carnegie Hall?” she asked us, in all seriousness.

She should try it!


Tupac's mother donates writing for research

Drafts of lyrics and poems included in the items

Associated Press

Sept 25, 2009, 06:15 PM ET


Tupac Shakur's mother has donated a collection of the rapper's writing to the Atlanta University Center's main library.

Afeni Shakur has handed over more than 150 of her son's items, ranging from rough drafts of lyrics and poems to a photocopy of his contract with Suge Knight and Death Row Records.

The rapper's collection will be part of the archives at the Robert W. Woodruff Library on the campus of the Atlanta University Center.

The library also houses The Martin Luther King Jr. Collection at Morehouse College.Shakur was one of rap's best-selling artists, becoming an even bigger star after his release from prison in 1995 with his multi-platinum selling album "All Eyez on Me."

He was shot to death a year later.

Tupac's mother donates writing for research

Drafts of lyrics and poems included in the items

Friday, September 25, 2009

Rhino Records Lays Off 30-40.........

Rhino Records lays off 30-40

WMG unit attempts to change with the times


In the latest indication of the shrinking market for compact discs, Warner Music Group's catalog arm Rhino Records laid off between 30 and 40 staffers on Thursday.

Job losses came in all departments, including A&R, marketing, promotion and publicity.

A statement from Rhino cited a "fundamental transformation of the physical new release and catalog business" as a reason for the cuts.

Company said Rhino will evolve into an entity that "handles WMG's global digital catalog initiatives, film, TV, vidgame and commercial licensing, and name and likeness representation for legendary artists."

Move comes as sales of physical recorded music continues to decline steeply.

Rhino has long been considered the industry standard for boxed set retrospectives, but demand for such high-ticket items has been strangled by the music market slump and shift to digital sales.

The Warner unit has been trying to change with the times, placing more emphasis on digital-only offerings, including a recent virtual boxed set devoted to the U.K.'s Factory Records,

and name-and-likeness pacts, such as those made with Frank Sinatra's estate and the Grateful Dead.

Eminem Publisher Takes Apple to Court Over Rights.....

Eminem Publisher Takes Apple to Court Over Rights

An attorney for Apple Inc. defended the company's use of Eminem's songs on iTunes in court on Thursday, as a trial got under way to determine who had the right to offer digital downloads of the rapper's music.

Eight Mile Style LLC, Eminem's music publisher, and an affiliated company, Martin Affiliated LLC, say their contract with Aftermath Records, which controls the recordings, did not entitle it to strike a deal with Apple to sell 93 songs over iTunes.

The case involves millions of dollars and the creative rights behind the hip-hop star. But the issue for the judge here in the rapper's hometown is narrow:

What do contracts between Eight Mile and Aftermath say about the ability to peddle songs beyond traditional compact discs?

In his opening statement, Apple lawyer Glenn Pomerantz said it's a case of ''common sense.''

''Nowhere does it say only compact discs.

Nowhere does it say ... not digital downloads,'' he told U.S. District Judge Anna Diggs Taylor.

Record companies like Aftermath have rights to use the recordings and the compositions -- ''otherwise they couldn't sell records,'' Pomerantz said.

Apple pays Aftermath 70 cents for each iTunes download, and

Eight Mile gets 9.1 cents of that share as the music publisher, he said.

Despite the legal dispute, Eight Mile cashed royalty checks and hasn't asked Apple to stop selling Eminem's songs, Pomerantz said.

''They've been paid a lot of money.

We don't begrudge them that,'' he said.

''But they're not entitled to that money and Apple's profits.''

Eight Mile's lawyers claim Apple has wrongfully gained $2.5 million through iTunes downloads, including $466,915 from Eminem's biggest hit, ''Lose Yourself.''

They say Aftermath has collected $4 million off his songs on iTunes.

Eight Mile attorney Richard Busch said the publisher has a history of making legal distinctions between digital downloads and other ways to distribute Eminem's music.

He referred to an agreement with Universal Music Group to offer ''Lose Yourself'' as a download before iTunes was created.

''The publisher owns these compositions, not Aftermath. ...

If Eight Mile had a direct licensing relationship with Apple, this kind of nonsense would not happen,'' Busch said.

Pomerantz said Apple doesn't make that kind of deal.

The first witness was Eight Mile manager Joel Martin, who said the publishing company can't protect itself financially without a download license with Apple.

''We can't look at their records.

We can't look at their books.

We can never make a claim against Apple -- ever,'' he said.

Eminem, whose real name is Marshall Mathers, was not in court.

He is not a plaintiff in the lawsuit and is not listed as a trial witness.

''He's well aware of what's going on,'' said Mark Bass, a songwriter and producer who, with his brother Jeff, is credited with launching Eminem's career.

''It's important to all songwriters across the board.''

The trial could last a week or more.

The judge is not expected to hear any music, but Pomerantz held up an unusual prop during his opening statement:

a 1940s album by late crooner Bing Crosby.

He used it to explain the history of a music ''album'' and how song delivery has changed over decades.

5 Reasons for Optimism in the Music Industry.....

5 Reasons for Optimism in the Music Industry

By Mitch Bainwol

Published: September 20, 2009

The Wrap.com recently published a list of “5 Ways to Save the Music Industry.”
Hey, we’re always happy to hear of any wise perspective, but a few of the recommendations slightly missed the mark, or were unnecessarily pessimistic.
So, in the spirit of the column and a friendly debate, here are five reasons for optimism:
1. Our product, music, remains as popular as ever.
While other businesses may scrap to generate consumer interest in their product, music remains as popular as ever, according to our surveys, and is an economic catalyst for many other industries.
Think about some of the news in recent weeks: leading technology company Apple rolls out a new line of its phenomenally popular music-listening gadgets as well as a major upgrade of the iTunes music store.
Videogame developers Harmonix and MTV Games introduce a seminal version of its Rock Band franchise featuring the iconic Beatles.
Meanwhile, two of the most popular television programs, "American Idol" and "Dancing With the Stars," are about music.
And music is an essential, distinctive part of many hit shows like "Grey's Anatomy" and “Gossip Girl.” Last spring ABC even launched an online “Music Lounge” for fans to locate and purchase music played on its most popular programs.
The common thread is that all are platforms for music.
We no doubt continue to confront serious challenges to fully monetizing the value of music, but the fundamental relevance of music to the human experience remains as powerful as ever.
2. Long live the album.
The album’s demise is exaggerated.
CD sales may continue to decline (though the success of the Beatles’ remastered catalogue demonstrates an enduring appetite for compelling music in physical form),
but so far in 2009, growth in digital album sales is again outpacing digital singles
(17.5 percent vs. 11.7 percent).
Digital music is still a maturing marketplace, and fans are becoming increasingly comfortable buying not just the latest single online, but the entire album.
Throw in the recent iTunes LP initiative from Apple and the major record companies and the album’s unparalleled significance is taken to the next level.
3. But it’s more than just the album.
Too often, observers assess the health and vitality of the music business simply by comparing year-over-year unit sales.
But that narrow analysis of yesterday’s music business fails to capture the whole story.
The modern music company is an
increasingly diversified,
full-service entertainment firm
deriving revenues
from a variety of different streams.
The success of a new album is not simply based
on unit sales,
but the cumulative revenues earned from
album and single track downloads,
online music videos,
ringtones and other mobile phone content,
digital radio performance royalties,
video games downloads and licensing fees,
background music to television shows and films,
audio streaming sites, and
countless other ancillary revenue streams.
One example?
Revenues from digital platforms like satellite and online radio grew more than 70 percent in 2008 and should experience continuing significant growth this year and beyond.
4. Record labels make or break the day.
A handful of well-known bands have elected to distribute their latest albums without the help of a record label.
More power to them.
But, interestingly and tellingly, what connects the few oft-cited examples is that virtually all are established acts, with a devoted fan base and an established brand.
That notoriety and fan support exists in the first place because of the unique marketing and promotional expertise of a record label.
Digital technologies have indeed made it easier for an artist to “DIY.”
But more often than not, it is the music label that can uniquely help the artist cross the bridge between anonymity and artistic and commercial success.
There were more than 100,000 different albums released in 2008 alone, yet only 950 of them sold more than 25,000 copies.
There are more than 2 million hip hop artists on MySpace and more than 1.8 million rock acts.
It’s a sure bet that most of these acts are hoping that a label will pluck them from the mass of aspiring, unsigned artists online and take their careers to the next level.
Breaking through, developing and cultivating an audience, working with the most talented musicians and top notch equipment, leveraging opportunities in a cluttered multi-platform digital media world -- all are the invaluable and irreplaceable functions of a modern record label.
5. Great music.
TheWrap rightly plugged Jack White’s phenomenal musicianship.
He’s worthy of the accolades, but he’s hardly alone.
This fall, fans will hear another great slate of albums from the world’s most talented bands and artists, including Alicia Keys, Nelly Furtado, Pearl Jam, Norah Jones, Bon Jovi, KISS, Leona Lewis, Tim McGraw, Shakira, Rod Stewart, Carrie Underwood and countless others.
This is yet another encouraging sign of a music business that is energized, vital, relevant and here to stay.


Mitch Bainwol is
Chairman & CEO of the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA),
the trade group that represents the U.S. recording industry.
Its members are the leading record companies that create, manufacture and/or distribute approximately 85 percent of all legitimate sound recordings produced and sold in the United States.
Bainwol is based in Washington, D.C.

Kim Kardashian Shows Off Her QuickTrim Bikini Body.............

Amanda Holden Strips For Cancer

Many of you probably don’t know who Amanda Holden is, she is a judge on
Britain’s Got Talent.

Well she has decided to strip down to nothing but her panties and a pair of shoes covering her boobs, all for a charity campaign to raise money for cancer.

If you get past her surgery – Amanda Holden is pretty hot, I think it should be a law that every hot women should be forced to wear their shoes like this.

Make sure you Holden to those shoes!
Cheeky Amanda uses stilettos to cover her assets [Daily Mail]


At least eleven delegations to the United Nations, including France, Canada and the United States, walked out during a speech given by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad Wednesday night.
Although Ahmadinejad said that his country is ready to shake all hands "that are honestly extended to us,"
he said of Israel,
"It is no longer acceptable that a small minority would dominate the politics,
economy and culture of major parts of the world by its complicated networks,
and establish a new form of slavery to attain its racist ambitions."


Five Washington state baristas charged customers to touch their breasts and buttocks at an espresso stand where servers wear bikinis to draw business, police said.
The five were charged Wednesday with prostitution.

Charging money for that kind of touching falls under the city's definition of prostitution.
The Everett Herald reports the women were charging up to $80 to strip down while fixing lattes and mochas.

New oil discoveries have totaled about 10 billion barrels this year, on a pace to reach the highest level since 2000.

***"Adventureland" star Jesse Eisenberg will portray Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and singer Justin Timberlake will portray Silicon Valley mainstay Sean Parker in "The Social Network," director David Fincher's film adaptation of Ben Mezrich's book "The Accidental Billionaires."

Karina Smirnoff Dances Naked For PETA

Roberta @ Gone Hollywood Wednesday, September 23, 2009

You hear that, Maks?
Karina Smirnoff would rather dance naked than wear fur!

In a new PETA campaign, “I’d Rather Dance Naked Than Wear Fur”, Karina takes it all off.

The “Dancing With The Stars” dancer, who recently broke things off with Maksim Chmerkovskiy has donned nothing but her dancing shoes for the new PETA ad campaign.

The photo was shot by celebrity photographer Robert Sebree.

In a new interview with PETA, she said, “I did wear fur, especially when I was growing up in the Ukraine.
But there are ways of being warm and being fashionable without being cruel.

She joins a long list of celebrity endorsements for the animal rights group.
Among those are Christina Applegate, Sophie Monk, Kimora Lee Simmons, and Nia Long.

I bet Maks is kicking himself right about now!

source: PHOTO: Karina Smirnoff Goes Naked in New PETA Ad – [us magazine]

***A new Michael Jackson single and album will be released in the next few weeks, in advance of the fallen pop star's performance movie.

The "This Is It" single will be the first new music released since the singer died last summer, Sony Music said.
The song, which comes out Oct. 12, features backing vocals by Jackson's brothers.
The double-disc album will contain several versions of the new song and a spoken poem by Jackson.
***Things are looking bright for three-time Russian Grammy winner and recent U.S. transplant Irene Nelson.
Her first single, Sunrise, has been named the #3 most added single on radio stations across the country.
***Legendary rock band KISS inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

***The administration dropped plans to require that banks offer simplified plain vanilla loans and credit cards.
***9 leading executives of Starbuck read this LBN E-Lert daily.
They understand that information is power and the LBN E-Lert is a power-tool.
***Coupon use has caught on among young and well-off shoppers, though digital versions havent gained much according to media expert and author Michael Levine.


***With just a 1.5 rating, "The Jay Leno Show" could make $300 million a year for NBC -- and probably spark other networks to follow suit, according to television execs speaking at a Producers Caucus panel.
Broadcasters are likely to further reduce their reliance on scripted dramas.
***Craigslist founder Craig Newmark is offering advice to the mayor's office of San Francisco on DataSF.org, a new Web site promising up-to-date city government data for public viewing.
The site will post data such as crime statistics, restaurant inspections and street fixes.
***Criminals flooded several online advertising networks with malicious ads over the weekend, causing popular Web sites such as Drudge Report to inadvertently attack their readers.
Malicious ads were placed on networks managed by Google's DoubleClick, among others.

Kim Kardashian Shows Off Her QuickTrim Bikini Body

Roberta @ Gone Hollywood Friday, September 11, 2009

I’m not buying a word of this QuickTrim BS.
Kim Kardashian wants us all to run out to our nearest GNC and pick up some of these magic pills so that we can all look like her....

She tweeted, “Quick Trim DOES A BODY GOOD!” along with “Don’t kill me @NickSaglimbeni 4 posting snapshots of our shoot, they aren’t photoshopped yet, but who needs it!

Quick Trim baby! Go get it!”

She’s really shilling for this stuff, they must’ve lined her pockets with some serious cash.

She tweeted:

U can get Quick Trim now http://tinyurl.com/nqbjuq

It works!

Check out my twitpics!

I lost my last 6 lbs fast & toned up!


The photos both look overexposed and Photoshopped, but she does look good.

What do you think guys?..........................and..................Ladies.............

Thursday, September 24, 2009

51 year young SHARON STONE in Paris Match......

Tisha Fein?( below )

Wednesday September 23, 2009 @ 1:23pm

Normally, I don't do music. (As I often say, I have enough trouble dealing with the scoundrels in Hollywood that I can't possible take on the crooks in the recording biz as well.)
That said, I was leaked the following memo which may be of interest to many of you, especially after the recent death of Pierre Cossette.
(I've edited out some IDs):

From: Tisha Fein
Sent: Wednesday, September 23, 2009 10:57 AM
Subject: Re: (no subject)

Here is the letter that went out.
The responses have been amazing.
Basically saying no one can imagine the Grammys without me:

Dear _________

I am writing to all of you to let you know that Ken Ehrlich informed me that after 30 years in my position as Talent & Coordinating Producer of The Grammy Awards, he wants to make a change and has personal issues working with me.
He said it has nothing whatsoever to do with the “quality of my work”on the show.
It is totally his decision, but told me he's gone to Neil Portnow and Jack Sussman to enlist their support.

I have treasured working with all of you and have given my “heart and soul” to the artists appearing on the Grammys.
I fought hard to keep a level playing field and give as many artists a chance as I was allowed…

Ken also told me the other reason he wanted me gone, is that he feels I take the artists side over Production.
I do care deeply about how artists are treated, and also feel I also know what is best for the show, am collaborative with Production and try to strike a fair balance.
I always strive to make the Grammys a great and rewarding experience for everyone who participates: Artists, Labels, Managers, Agents, and Publicists, bands and crew.
All have an important role in the success of the show, and that should be acknowledged and often isn't.

I honestly feel I am the best for the job and have earned all of your love and respect over the many years I have done the Grammys,

I have treasured working with all of you and look forward to doing so on all my upcoming shows.

Love & Appreciation, Tisha Fein

Canada will boycott Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejads speech at the United Nations on Wednesday, saying his outbursts about the Holocaust and Israel are shameful.
Foreign Minister Lawrence Cannon will be at the world body to attend the opening of the UN General Assemblys annual debate, but officials signal he and other members of the Canadian delegation will vacate the Canadian seats when the Islamic republics president approaches the podium.
Walking out of the chamber is seen as a strong diplomatic show of disgust at the UN and since the chamber is generally packed on the first day of the annual summit, Canadas empty seats will not go unnoticed


An engaged Muslim couple who tried to have sex in a car have been sentenced to be caned (as above) by a Sharia court in Malaysia. Islamic religious police caught Mohamad Shahrin Abdul Majid and Nadiah Najat Hussin wearing only their underwear in a car at an office parking area last May.
They pleaded guilty to trying to have sex out of wedlock and have each been sentenced to 6 strokes of the cane.
They were also fined 1,000 each.
In Malaysia recent harsh punishments for breaking Sharia Law have made headlines.
Earlier this week, an Islamic court ordered a Muslim man to be whipped 6 times and jailed for a year for drinking alcohol at a restaurant.

You wrestle with the reasons
But the reasons never rhyme
Or comfort when the Heart is in decline
And it doesnt really matter
If its chance or its design
Its going to take some time.


A happy life consists not in the absence,
but in the mastery of hardships. (1933).


I really am loving this new Sony camera.
like a credit card and its the thinnest camera Ive ever seen.
I can take 12 megapixel shots, and can blow them up as big as a billboard.
This is ideal for fashion shows.
Its genius

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-T900 Digital Camera with
12.1 Megapixel, 4x Optical Zoom, 3.5" LCD Display, Carl Zeiss Vario-Tessar Lens, Brown

Friday, September 18, 2009

MySpace Music Rolls Out A Sleek, More Interactive Homepage

MySpace may not be the leader in the social networking space anymore, but its free music streaming site, MySpace Music, has been growing fast.
Which is why it’s not surprising that the social network is continuing to improve on this popular product.
Today, it appears that MySpace Music has launched a new version of its homepage with UI redesign and several new features (we’ve confirmed with the company that that the redesign is new).

The new homepage is more visually appealing, with images of artists and bands front and center on the page and a sleek. modern interface.
The site also features a “What’s Hot” section above the fold, which are the highest streamed arists’ and videos on the platform.
Users can also create and share playlists on the homepage that are mixed in with artists’ playlists.

Another interactive section of the site is the karaoke section which lets MySpace Music users upload and share karaoke videos of their favorite artists.
And MySpace is aggregating breaking music news, concert listings and new artists mentions into the homepage design.

All in all, the redesign is an improvement from the original homepage, which needed a bit of a makeover.
Plus, MySpace has added a number of features that make the site more engaging to users.
MySpace Music launched last fall, and has grown its traffic by 190%, according to Nielsen.
New MySpace CEO Owen Van Natta expressed concern recently of whether users know that MySpace Music is a destination for music or not, and perhaps this redesign is a way to make the site standout more as a music destination.
Earlier this year, MySpace unveiled a new executive team for MySpace Music (which is a joint-venture with some major music labels and thus an independent entity) and improved several of its features on the site.
MySpace also recently acquired iLike, a social network based around music.
In the announcement, Van Natta said there were no plans to introduce music streaming from MySpace Music into iLike, but te two businesses would work together to grow the event ticketing business.

by Leena Rao on September 16, 2009

***Two-thirds of the world's eggplant supply is grown in New Jersey.
***The longest one-syllable word in the English language is "screeched."
***On a Canadian two dollar bill, the flag flying over the Parliament Building is an American flag.
***All of the clocks in the movie "Pulp Fiction" are stuck on 4:20.
***No word in the English language rhymes with month, orange, silver or purple.

"During the first period of a man's life the greatest danger is not to take the risk."
- Soren Kierkegaard.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Diablo Cody: How I Punked the Establishment...

Diablo Cody: How I Punked the Establishment

By Diablo Cody (to Eric Estrin)

Published: September 15, 2009

This is a typical story about a small-town girl who wants nothing more than to take off her clothes in front of strangers and relate it in a raunchy Internet blog, but ends up getting discovered and asked to write a screenplay, which becomes the hit movie “Juno” and wins her an Academy Award.
OK, maybe it’s not so typical, but for Diablo Cody, whose new film, “Jennifer’s Body,” opens this weekend, it’s all kind of mind-numbingly real.
She talks with Eric Estrin about how she punked the Hollywood establishment, her pressure-filled follow-up act, and what can happen when you tell your daughter to cross her legs.

You know, I was really not planning to do a lot with my life.
I was really just blogging and writing for my own pleasure.
And I was lucky enough to be spotted by somebody who had connections and said, I think you could write a movie;
I think you could be doing more than what you’re doing. It took somebody else’s ambition to get me started.

To me what makes this especially funny is that I spent years making an ass out of myself before I became a public figure, so that’s part of who I am. I don’t think there is a detail of my life in my twenties that I did not share with anyone who cared to know.
I had this kind of dirty, weird little blog called The Pussy Ranch.
It was a little like an experiment, like I was an open source human in some way.

I think maybe it comes from growing up in a fairly conservative atmosphere and being shushed all the time.

Then you grow up and say, Oh, I wasn’t allowed to see R-rated movies, so now I’m going to make them.

I was always being told to cross my legs when I sat down; well, now I’m gonna take my pants off.

The blog was an opportunity to try on a totally different persona.

I just invented this name and this life and ran with it.

I never had a big audience in mind when I started writing it, but then a lot of people started reading it and getting in touch with me -- some normal, some totally creepy and disingenuous.

Luckily, the guy who wound up being my manager and producing partner was the real deal.

That’s Mason Novick, who I still work with.

At first I didn’t trust him at all.

I ignored his first few emails.

When you are representing yourself in the way that I was, you can’t really trust anybody who contacts you.

It’s like, they’re probably a pervert or just not trustworthy.

But he was so professional and all business.

He just wanted to make movies.

I said, Screenwriting is not that interesting to me.

To be honest, I was enjoying the kind of gonzo sex writing that I was doing.

But he said, No, writing a movie is easy.

If you can pull this off just once, you won’t really have to work anymore.

You can sit outside and write every day.

And I thought, that doesn’t sound so bad.

I’ll take a crack at this.

I had nothing to lose.

By the time I started writing “Juno” I had quit stripping and started working as a temp at an insurance company, processing insurance claims over the phone.

And my lunch hour would roll around; there wasn’t really anything else to do.

I was like in this industrial office park in the middle of nowhere, so I would just work on “Juno” every day on my lunch hour.

It was pleasurable to me.

Now, every time I sit down to write something there’s money at stake;

my reputation is at stake;

I have to think about how the actors are going to interpret it;

it’s not play any more.

But at that time, what did I have to worry about?

That one dude in California might not like it?

So I just kind of went nuts.

I think that’s why a lot of the dialogue is so stylized and bizarre -- because I was just playing with words.

Mine is a a pretty f---ed up story, and I’m especially cognizant of that now.

To win an Academy Award for my first script -- it just doesn’t work that way.

It’s still funny to me.

I feel like I kind of punked the establishment or something.

Megan Fox ......in Rolling Stone Un....Cover......ed....!

Albert Einstein:

Imagination is more important than knowledge.

For knowledge is limited, whereas imagination embraces the entire world, stimulating progress, giving birth to evolution. (1931)

***New York based producer Zachary Lezberg has acquired the ShowBiz Expo name and trademark, from previous owners J.D. Events.
Under Lezbergs direction, ShowBiz Expo returns to the Los Angeles Convention Center for a one-day show on Saturday, October 17.
Plans are to expand ShowBiz Expo into a two-day event in April/May 2010 for NYC and LA respectively.
The last time ShowBiz Expo was presented in Los Angeles was in 2002.
***After an all-night negotiation session which ended with a signed contract at 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday, The Weinstein Company acquired distribution rights to designer-turned-director Tom Ford's "A Single Man," the hottest movie at the Venice and Toronto film festivals.
***Final Nielsen numbers show Jay Leno attracted 18.4 million viewers Monday.
Meanwhile, the Leno halo gave Conan O'Brien's "The Tonight Show" a ratings shot, giving the him his best performance in the adults 18-49 demo since June 26.
***Mega-powerful music attorney John Branca having lunch yesterday with old friend Hollywood publicist Michael Levine at the Grill on the Alley in Beverly Hills.

***The national anthem of Greece has 158 verses.
***There are 293 ways to make change for a dollar.
***The average person's left hand does 56% of the typing.
***A shark is the only fish that can blink with both eyes.
***There are more chickens than people in the world.

"I'd rather have a rectal examination on live TV by a fellow with cold hands than have a Facebook page"
-- George Clooney.

***Money and success dont always come hand in handbut for Facebook, they finally do.
The social-networking powerhouse turned its first profit, in the second quarter of 2009, it announced Tuesday.
Advertising Age notes that the most significant aspect of the news is that Facebook has accomplished its goal without a fully developed advertising business.
The company is still tweaking how it advertises to its millions of users, and its virtual gifts products are still in the early stage.
The company at the root of Facebooks advertising revenue?
The granddaddy of them all, Microsoft.
***Finn M. W. Caspersen, a prominent philanthropist, was suspected of secreting millions of dollars at LGT, a private bank controlled by Liechtensteins royal family.
***Ben S. Bernanke said the U.S. economy was probably growing now, but it would not be sufficient to prevent the unemployment rate from rising.
***Apple Inc. said Tuesday it hired Intel Corp.'s top lawyer, Bruce Sewell, a day after the chip maker announced his departure.
***Apple said Sewell will report to CEO Steve Jobs as the company's general counsel and senior vice president for legal and government affairs.Vivek Kundra, the federal government's chief information officer, is pushing agencies to use cloud-based computing to modernize themselves, save money and become more energy-efficient.
***After three decades as one of the nations top-grossing independent restaurants, Tavern on the Green in NYC, facing a decline in profitable corporate events and tourism, filed for bankruptcy.

MICHAEL MOORE (Oscar and Emmy-winning director ):
My crew and I had one thought in mind while we were filming Capitalism:
What if the powers-that-be refuse to give us funding for the next movie after they see what we've put in this one?

Dr. Arnold Klein has sued Dr. Steven Hoefflin in the Michael Jackson prescription drug saga -- sued him for defamation of character.
According to the suit, Dr. Klein claims Dr. Hoefflin told The Sun in the minutes following Jackson's death, "[Dr. Conrad] Murray definitely called Klein because Klein taught him how to administer Propofol ... Murray would have counted on Klein to be the source of Propofol and guide him on its use."
Klein claims Hoefflin's conduct was "willful, fraudulent, malicious, oppressive and reckless" and was done "with the intent to injure and harm Dr. Klein."

***Dan Brown's "The Lost Symbol," the newly released follow-up novel to "The Da Vinci Code," has broken the first-day sales record for adult fiction at Barnes & Noble and Amazon.com.
Doubleday, part of Bertelsmann, is making a first printing of 5 million copies for the U.S. market.
***19-year-old Emmett Rensin, son of David Rensin, has made profitable use of his required reading list of the classics with the sale of "Twitterature" to Penguin U.K. and U.S.
Set for a December 2009 release, "Twitterature" answers the burning question -- what if the likes of Charles Dickens, Charlotte Bronte, William Shakespeare and Jack Kerouac had Twitter accounts?

Applied Materials is one of the most important U.S. companies youve probably never heard of.
It makes the machines that make the microchips that go inside your computer.
The chip business, though, is volatile, so in 2004 Mike Splinter, Applied Materialss C.E.O., decided to add a new business line to take advantage of the companys nanotechnology capabilities making the machines that make solar panels.
The other day, Splinter gave me a tour of the companys Silicon Valley facility, culminating with a visit to its war room, where Applied maintains a real-time global interaction with all 14 solar panel factories its built around the world in the last two years.
I could only laugh because crying would have been too embarrassing.
Not a single one is in America.


Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Facebook Makes Money, Hits Member Milestone...

Long before his "jackass" turn at the VMAs, Kanye West was allowed to style a shoot for the October issue of Elle.
The result is a spread featuring his girlfriend, model Amber Rose, in crotch and ass-baring poses and "body conscious" clothing.

Amber tells the magazine she is "not like his Barbie" and cites their clash over what she should wear to the 125th Anniversary Gala of the Met in March as evidence.
Kanye wanted her to wear a gown to the formal event;
Amber opted for a white cocktail dress with a thigh-high slit.

"I didn't want to wear a long gown," Amber told the magazine.
"So then we get to the Met and everybody has a long gown.
I was like, great. I didn't know what the Met was!"

LBN-SEE IT:.....Aretha Franklin
After sparking a fashion frenzy with her big-bowed Inauguration headgear,
Queen of Soul rocked another fabulous chapeau while walking on her own power near Central Park on Monday.


It has been observed that a pure democracy if it were practicable would be the most perfect government.
Experience has proved that no position is more false than this. (1788)

The first reviews of Jay Leno's return to NBC - in primetime - are in and by all accounts, the only really new thing about the show is its time slot.
Translation-"Hand me the remote."
I predict Leno will find a way to change this quick cause he's a smart, survivor.

Facebook Makes Money, Hits Member Milestone
By Brian Kraemer, ChannelWeb
5:23 PM EDT Tue. Sep. 15, 2009

For social networks, being popular and making money haven't yet come hand in hand, which is why Facebook's revelation that it hit another member milestone and is making money is a boast to which you might want to pay attention.

Facebook, the popular social networking site, revealed that it is now home to
300 million users worldwide and, importantly, is cash-flow-positive for the first time.

"As of today, Facebook now serves 300 million people across the world.
It's a large number, but the way we think about this is that we're just getting started on our goal of connecting everyone," Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, wrote in a blog post.

The milestone of 300 million users comes quickly on the heels of the last publicly announced number, 250 million users, which Facebook hit on July 15.

Of course, Facebook isn't alone in its growth, with Twitter also seeing huge growth as more people begin to adopt the service for business as well as personal means.

Moore's 'Capitalism' Not a 'Love Story,' a Call for Revolt
Published: September 15, 2009

In “Capitalism: A Love Story,” documentarian and overall troublemaker Michael Moore takes on the economic system that underpins the Western world -- and rejects it.

“Capitalism is an evil,” he states at the end of the film, in case there were any ambiguity about his point of view.
“You have to eliminate it and replace it with something.”

People will differ as to whether his critique is a cogent one.
Over at the Wall Street Journal, they are not planning a screening for the editorial board.

Moore is not an economist.
But he is a very shrewd filmmaker.

For however much the financial world may dismiss Moore’s analysis (and you can count on that), the filmmaker is a master at tapping into public outrage, consistently finding the lever – humor, at its best – to offer a culprit for widely-felt dissatisfaction.

This time, it’s the entire system – Adam Smith, the profit motive, Gordon Gekko’s greed-is-good – that Moore condemns for having, in his view, subverted democracy and converted it into a “plutonomy,” an economy run by a few rich people on the backs of the working poor and ever-shrinking middle class.

This is pretty close to national heresy. Here in America, capitalism is celebrated as being at the core of our national identity.
Isn't that why the Commies lost?

Moore says it’s not.
Capitalism, he says, is antithetical to democracy.
He even finds a priest who calls it “radically evil.”
(Of course, that priest is in Flint, where everybody’s out of work. )

In this film, Moore stages fewer stunts than usual, although he does put crime scene tape around J.P. Morgan on Wall Street.

But he finds angry people who make his point for him.
A family being turned out of their home after 22 years because of a predatory loan.
A widow who learned that her dead husband’s company took out a policy on him that is actually referred to as “dead peasants” insurance.

Moore’s timing is good.
With millions unemployed, the middle class a shrunken shadow of itself, with the car industry on federal life support, and housing foreclosures sweeping the country, it may be more surprising that Moore is the first prominent voice on the media landscape to challenge the basic premise of our economy.

At the press conference after the initial Toronto screening, Moore was asked with what he would replace capitalism.

“I’m not an economist,” he said.
“I’m a filmmaker who sees something he doesn’t like… I think we can do better.
It’s not capitalsim versus socialism, or communism.
In the 21st century, aren’t we smart enough to come up with something better than we have now?”

Moore’s film reprises the familiar wealth disparity that has become shockingly acceptable in recent decades, the fact that one percent of the population holds 95 % of the country’s wealth.

The film highlights other indicators of economic disparity that have worsened in recent years – bankruptcy rising, debt on an upward spike, wages staying even while productivity climbs higher (this courtesy of the Reagan years).

“Greed is the dark side of human nature,” Moore said at the news conference.
“Capitalism is not a moral code that keeps greed in check. “

Moore said that he is supposed to do the rounds of talk shows to talk about his new film, but that some shows (he wouldn’t name them) were afraid of offending their advertisers with the filmmaker’s views.

He’ll be more welcome, no doubt, when he shows the film at an AFL-CIO convention this week.

Overture will be taking the film out on more than 2,000 screens, hoping it will ignite the same kind of response as “Fahrenheit 9-11,” Moore’s controversial examination of the government’s response to Osama Bin Laden.

That one was incendiary.
But this is the closest Moore gets to fomenting class revolt.
“I refuse to live in a country like this," Moore says in the film.
"And I’m not leaving.”

Lily Allen was named Woman of the Year by the
UK version of GQ.

The British singer was so excited she took off her clothes for the accompanying photo shoot in the October issue of the lad mag.

There are actually three covers for the magazine, the other two feature Take That and Mickey Rourke.
Which would you buy?