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News 01/28/2007

B.B. King was hospitalized for undisclosed reasons Thursday, but was said to be in good condition early Friday. The 81-year-old King of the Blues had been scheduled to perform a concert in Galveston, Texas, before he was admitted. He was expected to be released later on Friday or on Saturday.

Rod Stewart, Norah Jones, Van Morrison, Dr. John, and Allen Toussaint are among the headliners for the 2007 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, which spans two weekends in April and May.

James Brown's six adult children are claiming the Godfather of Soul's estate was mismanaged and filing an emergency petition to have the trustees removed, alleging that some assets were in danger of being "lost or dissipated or stolen." A hearing in the matter was set for Feb. 1.

Michael Jackson has confirmed he has officially returned to the United States after over a year of self-imposed exile in overseas destinations, including Bahrain, France, and Ireland. The self-proclaimed King of Pop is readying a comeback tour of sorts, with a pair of fan appreciation events in Japan in March.

EMI, home of Coldplay, the Rolling Stones, and the Beatles, is merging its Capitol and Virgin labels in the U.S. to form the Capitol Music Group. The combined label is part of EMI's recent restructuring strategy designed to save $217 million a year.

Chris Daughtry is slated to perform a free concert in Greensboro, North Carolina on March 23 as a prelude to the NCAA women's basketball tournament games on March 24 and 26. The former "American Idol" contestant's debut release topped the charts this week, with almost 1.3 million copies sold.

Keith Urban has announced that the North American leg of his tour will kick off June 8 in Phoenix, marking his comeback to U.S. stages after a lengthy stint in rehab. "I'm looking forward to getting back on the road, to reconnecting with everyone and to doing what it is that I love to do," Urban said in a statement Thursday.

News 01/24/2007

A restaurant trade group is objecting to an upcoming Super Bowl ad for Nationwide Mutual Insurance that features Kevin Federline daydreaming about performing in a music video as he toils as a fast-food worker. According to the National Restaurant Association, the ad amounts to a "strong and direct insult to the 12.8 million Americans who work in the restaurant industry" because it suggests that working in an eatery is "demeaning and unpleasant."

Snoop Dogg pled not guilty Wednesday to a felony charge of possessing a deadly weapon, stemming from his alleged attempt to board a plane while carrying a collapsible police baton in his carry-on luggage at John Wayne Airport in September. The rapper claimed the baton was a prop for a video and that he did not know it was illegal. A judge has set a pretrial hearing for April 5.

Brandy was involved in a fatal multi-car crash Dec. 30 on a Southern California freeway, which apparently began when she rear-ended another vehicle, sending it spinning into the center lane, where it was hit broadside by a third car, police said. The driver was transported to the hospital, where she later died. Police are investigating whether mechanical failure contributed to the collision before determining whether there was any negligence on Brandy's part.

Brent Liles, a former bassist for '80s punk rock group Social Distortion, was struck and killed by a truck while riding a bike earlier this month, officials said Wednesday. He was 43. No immediate charges were brought against the driver.

Heather Mills McCartney's sister, Fiona Mills, posted an impassioned statement on heathermills.org, claiming the British press' "vicious agenda" has resulted in death threats against Mills McCartney and her three-year-old daughter. Mills also accused Paul McCartney of failing to provide adequate protection for his estranged wife and daughter, stating, "Heather and Beatrice no longer receive the protection that would be afforded to any other member of the McCartney family facing such threats."

Madame Tussauds New York unveiled wax sculptures of David and Victoria Beckham Tuesday, which were brought over from London in celebration of the soccer star's landmark deal with the Los Angeles Galaxy. The figures will return to the U.K. in two weeks, while the real Beckhams are expected to move to the States this spring.

Michael Jackson's former attorney, Mark Geragos, testified Tuesday in his lawsuit against private jet company XtraJet that having his conversations with Jackson secretly recorded during a November 2003 flight was one of the most egregious experiences of his professional career. Two XtraJet employees pled guilty in 2005 to installing the recording equipment to monitor Jackson's conversations with his attorney as he flew to turn himself in on child molestation charges.

News 01/23/2007

Babyshambles have signed a long-term deal with record label Parlaphone, thanks to the songwriting talents of troubled frontman Pete Doherty, the company said Tuesday.

News 01/22/2007

Keith Urban posted a video message to his fans on his official Website Monday, explaining there was "no cataclysmic event" that inspired him to enter rehab, but that his life had become "unmanageable" before he checked into the Betty Ford Clinic in October. Urban thanked his friends and family for their support, especially Nicole Kidman, whom he said was "extraordinarily strong and loving" during the three months he was in rehab.

Billy Joel will perform the National Anthem before the Super Bowl showdown between the Indianapolis Colts and the Chicago Bears Feb. 4, making him the only singer to perform the anthem twice at the Super Bowl.

Heather Mills McCartney is denying she had agreed to a financial settlement in her divorce proceedings from Paul McCartney after a report in Sunday's News of the World claimed the ex-Beatle had offered her $63 million.

Travis Barker has dropped out of +44's European tour due to an unhealed fractured arm, according to a statement from his record label. The former Blink-182 drummer injured his arm in September while filming a video.

All news gathered from E! Online and other sources

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