Month: June 2010

Iconic UK Artist Howard Jones’s Most Personal Album To Date Releases in U.S.

The iconic UK based artist Howard Jones returns with a seminal new album, Ordinary Heroes, set for US release June 29th, 2010.  The new collection is Jones’ most personal album to date, a stripped down straight ahead pop album filled with classic piano and string infused songs.
In the six years since Jones’ last album, Ordinary Heroes shows Jones to be in a different place musically, moving away from his early synth pop sound  (which put him on the map in the early 1980’s with hits such as “No One is to Blame” and “What is Love”).  Jones is in a more reflective mood with Ordinary Heroes, looking both inward and beyond the personal with a soulful pop album where storytelling is unobstructed by graceful, memorable melodies and supported by simple, elegant instrumentation.
The aptly entitled album is filled with songs about the hero in all of us.  With the title track “Ordinary Heroes” and the opening song “Straight Ahead”, Jones takes us into the lives of regular folks, often unrecognized and unacknowledged, but heroic in their own way.  This universal theme also turns personal for Jones with songs like “Soon You’ll Go” and “You Knew Us So Well” which also reflect his own journey as a father watching his daughter grow up and dealing with the loss of a loved one to suicide.
“For me, both as a creative artist and man, life is about transforming obstacles into something of value.  It’s quite hard to live in the modern world, so with this album I wanted to celebrate the courage and fighting spirit in our every day lives,” explains Jones from his London loft where he wrote and laid down the original songs for the new record.  He continues, “I wanted to create an album that had a simplicity of sound to it, where you would not be distracted from the lyrics.”
Thus, the remainder of the instrumentation was recorded in a studio in the west of England without overdubs on top of his original piano and vocal tracks.  The final touches included a trip to Wales to record the choir for the emotionally touching song,  “Soon You’ll Go.”
With this new album Jones does not let us forget, that even in the most troubled times, love prevails over loss and a sense of optimism and a little courage will carry us forward beyond all obstacles.  With additional heartfelt songs such as “Someone You Need”, “Love Never Wasted” and “Even if I Don’t Say”, Jones has created an album that soothes and inspires even the most wearied souls that better days are ahead.


Robert Pattinson, Miley Cyrus And Many More Young Stars Make Forbes Celebrity Power List

Twilight” stars have already invaded our movie theaters and magazines, so it should come as no surprise that they now occupy the ForbesCelebrity 100 as well. This year’s Forbespower list contains a mix of newcomers and mainstays, featuring everyone from lovebirds Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart to “Harry Potter” star Daniel Radcliffe. Even Britney Spears returned to the top 10 in a big way! Read more>>

Monkee Micky Dolenz Is Releasing First Solo Album In Over 10 Years

Monkee-Micky Dolenz, who is releasing his first solo in over 10 years , on August 3, a tribute to the songs of Carole King: King For A Day (Gigatone Records) has signed on for a special appearance in SyFy’s forthcoming TV-movie Mega Python vs. Gatoroid. The film stars veteran teen idols Debbie Gibson and Tiffany.

Dolenz will play the guest musical performer (‘Micky Dolenz’) at a benefit to save the Everglades and films his appearance later this week in California.

Dolenz will donate his salary to the ongoing Gulf relief efforts, as he will a portion of his participation in early-August at my RecordFantasy: an event put together by Gigatone Records where the superfan can become involved in the final preparation of Dolenz’s album and appear in concert with him (

BOOK BEAT: Paperback Writer By Mark Bego (Publish America Books)

by Anne M. Raso

Having been a longtime friend and fan of Mark Bego’s, I was anxious to pick up his first book about his own life (he has written 55 to 60 celeb bios, both authorized and unauthorized and that is what he is famous for)!
     A former celeb magazine editor and journalist, Mark has been the king of the celebrity bio for something like 35 years now and is no stranger to the New York Times bestseller list. His biggest moneymaker was a tome on Michael Jackson right about the time of the Victory Tour circa 1984 and we are sure he saw interest in it once more when the King Of Pop passed away a little over a year ago. I first met him when I interviewed him for his Aretha Franklin bio back in the mid-80s–it was for some kind of book review magazine that I have long since forgotten the name of.
    Bego’s tales of pal-ing around with The Supremes’ Mary Wilson in Monaco and at Bev Hills parties are quite amusing just because they always seem to encounter a wrench in otherwise glamorous situations–such as Wilson’s angry and violent ex-hubby chasing her down the freeway in her mechanically challenged vintage Rolls or getting lost on the way to a party in Monaco given by Bill Wyman and The Prince that turned out only a few blocks away.
   Other friendships Bego discusses in details are ones with The Village People’s Randy Jones, Three Dog Night’s Jimmy Greenspoon and The Monkee’s Micky Dolenz (not surprisingly, he worked on books with all three). Very often knowing one celeb often led him to getting him book collaboration deals with another, as is the case with these three.  Along the way, Bego went the standard agent route–the agents would ask him for ideas on hot celebs and he would pitch ’em. He was able to write whole books out of only one interview apiece with Cher, Aretha and Madonna–and as most aspiring biographers go, that is an amazing feat–but Bego knows how to get celebs’ friends and family to talk!
    I enjoyed this book but I have to say that as a journalist, I enjoyed hearing another journalist’s stories about not getting paid and wish Bego came up with antidote for the “check’s in the mail syndrome.” I always like to hear how other journalists and authors prevent getting ripped off in the crooked writing business (yes, it is arguably even worse that the music or fashion business in terms of rip-offs). Bego’s stories about making ends meet include his stint as being the Easter Bunny’s assistant at kids’ photo ops in a Michigan mall….and even once donning the bunny suit! That is light years away from his photo ops with rock and Hollywood royalty, but that’s what makes this tell-all tome so enjoyable!
    I am still wondering why mustachioed mark is sitting on a lounge chair pointing at a large slice of watermelon on the cover. I am thinking that maybe it is one of those “Paul Is Dead” type clues that only those on the very inside of Bego’s world would “get”–but I will be sure to ask him about this if there is a NYC launch party for the publication of Paperback Writer! For more info on Paperback writer, go to

BOOK BEAT: PAPERBACK WRITER BY MARK BEGO (Publish America Books, $29.95, available on

Elton John: The Bitch Is Back
Get Mark Bego’s  Elton John: The Bitch Is Back

Rock’s Aerosmith Steven Tyler Writing Rock Book

Aerosmith frontman Steven Tyler is set to open up about the heated feuds with his bandmates, which prompted him to briefly quit the group last yea r (09), in a new book.
The Dude Looks Like A Lady singer admits tension reached a high after h e fell off a stage during a South Dakota concert last summer (09). The in cident left him with multiple injuries and forced the band to cancel a No rth American tour with ZZ top.
While he was recuperating, Tyler announced his plans to take a two-year hiatus, and then abruptly quit the group.
Guitarist Joe Perry confirmed Tyler’s decision to quit, while reports s uggested the band was on a search on replace the lead singer for 2010 and 2011 commitments.
Tyler has since mended his relationship with his bandmates and the grou p is back together and touring the globe, and now he’s keen to reveal all about his tumultuous relationship with his Aerosmith buddies.
He tells the Associated Press, “I’m doing a book called Does the Noise in My Head Bother You, and I will be speaking about what it’s like to be married to four other guys, and what I’ve had to put up with.
“There will never be another band like Aerosmith, and I just don’t want to do anything to hurt that. I love the band so much.” Does the Noise in My Head Bother You is set to hit shelves in October ( 10).

Lady Gaga Tops Broadway Wish List

Lady Gaga has topped a list of superstars fans would most like to see in a Broadway show.
The flamboyant performer played Adelaide in a high school production of Guys & Dolls and now GaGa fans are urging the native New Yorker to take her eccentric act to the professional stage.
The singer scored 32 per cent of votes on a poll, ahead of fel low popprincess Britney Spears with 28 per cent. Twenty six per cent of voters want to see Tom Cruise follow in the footsteps of his wife Katie H olmes, who enjoyed a run in Arthur Miller’s All My Sons on Broadway in 2008.
Teen superstars Miley Cyrus and Justin Bieber sealed fourth and fifth places in the poll with 12 and five per cent of votes respectively.

Eclipse: The Twilight Story

The producers hired him to inject more action scenes in the Eclipse. The actions included in this movie increased the pace of the movie and made the appearance of film more fatal. Surprisingly, Eclipse doesn’t only feature fatal actions; it also has some elements of love and romance. According to the director David Slade, the viewers who look for love elements in the movie will definitely like Eclipse. Fans think Slade gave the required horror-flick touch to turn this film into dark and bloody tale.
The premiere of Eclipse was held just two days ago in Los Angeles and the enthusiasm noticed among fans is really phenomenon. Fans gathered in thousand to see their favourite Twilight stars especially Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson and Taylor Lautner. In this latest episode of Twilight, Bella will be haunted by a group of fresh new vampires. Jacob and Edward’s main job will be to save Bella from getting haunted. Kristen Stewart, Robert Pattinson and Taylor Lautner acted in the role of Bella, Edward and Jacob’s role respectively. Eclipse will be released in theatres across the country on 30th June.

Eminem – Sober Eminem Can’t Revisit ‘Creepy’ Home Studio

Eminem can’t go down to the recording studio he built in his Michigan hom e anymore – because it reminds him of a very dark period in his life.
The rapper admits he spent a lot of time down there at the height of th e drug addiction, which kept him out of the spotlight for two years – and couldn’t face returning to a place full of bad memories.
Instead he recorded most of his new album Recovery in a new hometown st udio.
He tells Billboard magazine, “I still have the studio at my house, but it reminds me of when I was in a really dark place.
“As soon as all the pills were flushed out of my system and I started s eeing things clearer, going downstairs in my basement and recording creep ed me out a little bit.”

Willie Nelson’s Hippie Look Made Him An Outsider In Nashville

Willie Nelson fears his hippie look held him back at the beginning of his career – because straight-laced Nashville, Tennessee music executives di dn’t give him the credit he deserved.
The country music legend was inducted into Nashville’s music mecca the Grand Ole Opry in 1965, but he now admits he never felt he belonged in Music City – because of the way he looked.
He tells Parade magazine, “The executives in music were a little prejud iced and biased about someone’s appearance. They never stopped to think that maybe that long-haired hippie out there might have a little talent.
“There are a lot of people that hate change and want to keep things the way they’ve always been. Nashville was one of the last places to be lenient toward the hippies and the long hairs. That’s one of the things that held it back.
“I felt like they failed to realise that I really knew what I was talki ng about. I was writing some pretty good songs and my singing wasn’t that bad. I had a base in Texas. But the majority of the people that I record ed for and the publishing companies that I wrote for had heard stories ab out how popular I was in Texas. But they never left their desks in Nashvi lle long enough to come by and check it out.
“Whenever I’d go down to Texas to play to thousands of people on the we ekend, they didn’t know anything about it in Nashville. So it was a big d isconnect between Nashville and the rest of the world for me back in those days.”

Toy Story 3 Still Tops-Tom Cruise Disappoints

The toys and the grownups  rule the U.S. box office, combining to make $100 million over the weekend.
Adam Sandler’s comedy opened with $41 million but failed to steal the top spot from Toy Story 3, which raked in $59 million in its second week on release.
Tom Cruise and Cameron Diaz’s action comedy Knight and Day opened in third place with a distant and disappointing $20.5 million- the worst opening for a Cruise film in 20 years.
The Karate Kid and The A-Team round out the new top five.