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Rickrolling and the league of web fame April 20, 2008

Posted by grhomeboy in Music, Pop Culture.
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 Never Gonna Give You Up reached number one in 1987 > A new internet craze known as ‘rickrolling’ has thrust Newton-le-Willows’ 1980s pop star Rick Astley back into the spotlight, BBC reports.

Rick Astley – Never Gonna Give You Up (Live) 1988 > Rick Astley performing live at the Brits in London, February 1988.

An estimated 13 million internet users have been tricked into watching the video for Rick Astley’s Never Gonna Give You Up in the last couple of weeks.

In one of those moments of mass online hysteria that record companies wish they could replicate at will, thousands of internet users have been sending out links to scurrilous videos and websites, which actually take you directly to a video of Astley’s pop masterpiece.

“I think it’s just one of those odd things where something gets picked up and people run with it,” Astley told the Los Angeles Times last week. “That’s what’s brilliant about the internet.”

But the former teaboy is not the first person to become an unwitting victim of the internet’s infinite interest in the inane.

George Michael’s tour in the US March 27, 2008

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We have received following information from one of our valued readers, and we are happy to repost same as below, with our thanks for keeping us all alerted!

QUOTE: Hi there,

After checking out your blog, I thought your readers may be interested in this. George Michael’s official fan club site, GeorgeMichael.com, is offering ticket pre-sales and four exclusive VIP packages for the “25 LIVE” tour, George’s first North American tour in 17 years.

George Michael fans can get first access to exclusive ticket pre-sales for the 25 LIVE tour by joining the official online fan club on GeorgeMichael.com. In addition, Club members will receive full access to GeorgeMichael.com content, access to members-only contests for chances to win exclusive autographed memorabilia, and the latest official news on George Michael.

Fan Club Pre-Sales: March 31 – April 5
* Mar 31 @ 10AM local – Exclusive pre-sale launches
* Apr 01 @ 12Noon – Exclusive pre-sale ends
* Apr 05 – Fan club ticket sales end on GeorgeMichael.com

The North American leg of the 25 LIVE tour will kick off in San Diego on June 17th and will continue through San Jose, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Seattle, Vancouver, Minneapolis, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, New York and several other major cities. The tour will incorporate 22 shows over the course of seven weeks and Michael will perform material taken from the entire span of his career, including some classic Wham! tracks. Tickets to the 25 LIVE tour will go on sale to the general public the weekend of April 6th.

Fans also have access to VIP packages available on GeorgeMichael.com. The four VIP packages include:

Deluxe Travel Package > Includes hotel accommodations for two nights, transportation to and from the concert, a premium ticket located in rows 2 & 3 on the center floor, access to the welcome reception and pre/post-show party, exclusive merchandise gift item, and an official George Michael USB media wristband.

Escapade Package > Includes premium ticket located within rows 4-7 on the center floor or rows 2-5 on the side floor, access to the pre-show onsite dinner reception, access to VIP entrances (where available), exclusive merchandise gift item, and an official George Michael USB media wristband.

Gold Hot Seat Package > Includes premium ticket within rows 8-12 on the center floor or rows 6-12 on the side floor, exclusive merchandise gift item, and an official George Michael USB media wristband.

Silver Hot Seat Package > Includes premium PL2 ticket, exclusive merchandise gift item, and an official George Michael USB media wristband.

GeorgeMichael.com also includes all the latest tour information, so keep checking back for announcements and other tour news.
Let me know of any questions.
Best, Shaquanna :UNQUOTE.

George Michael plans first US tour in 17 years March 25, 2008

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George Michael has a lot of Faith in his North American fans.

The British pop singer of Greek-Cypriot origins, on Monday unveiled plans for his first tour of the United States and Canada in 17 years, beginning June 17 at San Diego Sports Arena. The 22-date arena trek runs through August 3 at the BankAtlantic Centre in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

Tickets for the 25 Live tour go on sale to the general public on April 6th, a week after fan club members get first dibs. Ticketmaster currently lists one show, the July 7 gig at Saint Paul, MN., where the top price is $175.

While his international appeal remains strong, Michael’s profile in the United States has waned over the past decade, although his last album, 2004’s Patience, managed to peak at No.12 thanks to an appearance on The Oprah Winfrey Show.

Michael, 44, rose to fame in the early 1980s as one-half of the singing duo Wham! and enhanced his popularity with his solo debut, 1987’s Faith, which has been certified for U.S. shipments in excess of 10 million copies. It included the hit singles Father Figure, I Want Your Sex Parts 1 & 2 and the title track.

Subsequent efforts did not sell nearly as well, and Michael’s career ground to a halt in the early 1990s when he unsuccessfully sued Sony to get out of his contract. In 1998, he was arrested for lewd conduct in Beverly Hills, and subsequently disclosed his homosexuality.

The European leg of his 25 Live tour took him to 12 countries, including Greece where he appeared for the first time during his carreer at the Athens Olympic Stadium, where he performed 80 shows for about 1,3 million fans, according to a statement.

The North American tour will promote a double-disc hits set, the second of his career. Twenty-Five is scheduled for US release on April 1, a decade after Michael issued the retrospective Ladies & Gentlemen: The Best of George Michael.

Sir Paul McCartney’s divorce a costly business March 25, 2008

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A British court ordered former Beatle Sir Paul McCartney on Monday to pay his estranged wife Heather Mills £24.3 million after an acrimonious divorce battle.

Speaking after the judge’s ruling, Mills said: “I am so glad it is over. It is an incredible result in the end.”  “We are very, very pleased,” she added. McCartney declined to comment.

McCartney, 65, married the former model and charity campaigner Mills, 40, in 2002 but they split four years later, blaming media intrusion into their private lives. They have a daughter, Beatrice, aged four. Mills criticised McCartney’s lawyer Fiona Shackleton, accusing her of handling the case badly and of calling her names.

Mills, who sacked her lawyer and represented herself in court, urged would-be divorcees to do the same thing. “You can be a litigating person,” she said. “You’d save yourself a fortune.”

Justice Hugh Bennett, giving details of the settlement, said: “She sought an award of almost £125 million. Sir Paul proposed the wife should exit the marriage with assets of £15.8 million inclusive of any lump sum award.

“The judgment decided that the husband should pay the wife a lump sum of £16.5 million, which together with her assets of £7.8 million means that she exits her marriage with total assets of £24.3 million.”

The court ruled that the judgment be made public, but stayed publication pending Mills’ appeal against it being made public. Mills, speaking to a phalanx of reporters on the steps of London’s High Court, said she was appealing “because the judgment involves private secure matters of my daughter … everything about her is in there.”

The split was fought out under a remorseless media spotlight with McCartney, a founder of the world’s most famous pop group, pitted against the outspoken Mills, target of lurid tales in the press about her colourful past. She hit back, saying she had been driven to the brink of suicide because the media had branded her a ‘whore’ and a ‘gold-digger.’

Rolling Stones unveil details of new live album March 19, 2008

Posted by grhomeboy in Movies, Music.
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The Rolling Stones have unveiled the details of their next album, ‘Shine A Light’, to be released by Universal Music/Polydor. The album is from the Martin Scorsese-directed concert film ‘Shine A Light’ and will be released simultaneously with the movie.

From the unmistakeable opening riff of ‘Jumping Jack Flash’ to the classic sounds of Tumbling Dice, Sympathy For The Devil, All Down The Line and Start Me Up plus some unusual gems from the Stones catalogue – ‘You Got The Silver’ and ‘Faraway Eyes’ – ‘Shine A Light’ will be released on 7 April 2008. Included are three stunning collaborations – with blues legend Buddy Guy on ‘Champagne and Reefer’, Jack White from White Stripes on ‘Loving Cup’ while Christina Aguilera duets with Mick Jagger on ‘Live With Me’.

‘Shine A Light’ will be released on double CD worldwide with a single disc version available in the US. ‘Shine a Light’ is a 22 track Rolling Stones live double album recorded during two memorable nights at New York’s Beacon Theatre in 2006. Produced by The Glimmer Twins and mixed by Bob Clearmountain, Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Charlie Watts and Ronnie Wood are supported by their long-standing backline including bassist Darryl Jones, Chuck Leavell keyboards, Bobby Keys on saxophone, backing vocals Lisa Fischer, Blondie Chaplin and Bernard Fowler, and the horn section – Tim Ries, Michael Davies and Kent Smith.

Martin Scorsese’s Shine A Light film recently kick-started the Berlin Film Festival to widespread critical acclaim and receives its New York premiere on March 30 and European premiere in London on 2 April. UK Cinemagoers will have the chance to experience a Stones concert as never before, as the fifth member of the band, from the front row and from behind the scenes.

No stranger to rock concert films, Scorsese filmed the Stones over a two-day period at the Beacon Theatre in New York City. With performances from Buddy Guy, Jack White of the White Stripes and Christina Aguilera, and integrated with rarely seen archival footage, Shine A Light is a unique cinema experience. Twentieth Century Fox will take the ultimate Rolling Stones concert film from Oscar- winning director Martin Scorsese to over 100 cinemas nationwide on 2 April via satellite link for simultaneous premieres alongside the London Leicester Square opening.

For more details visit www.Shinealightmovie.co.uk. Tickets on sale from 7 March.

The feature film Shine a Light, directed by Martin Scorsese, is on UK national cinema release from 11 April 2008.

‘Shine A Light’ the album is released on Polydor/Universal Music on 7 April 2008.

Album track listing >
CD 1 >
Jumping Jack Flash, Shattered ,She Was Hot, All Down the Line, Loving Cup (with Jack White), As Tears Go By, Some Girls, Just My Imagination, Faraway Eyes, Champagne and Reefer (with Buddy Guy), Tumbling Dice, You Got The Silver, Connection.

CD2 > Sympathy For The Devil, Live with Me (with Christina Aguilera), Start Me Up, Brown Sugar, (I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction, Paint It Black, Little T&A, I’m Free, Shine A Light.