Pop Culture

Elvis is Still King: ‘Rockabilly’ American Subculture Lives Like it’s the 1950s

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Oh, Doctor! Matt Smith To Attend Wizard World New Orleans Comic Con, Feb. 7-8

Matt Smith, who recently completed an acclaimed four-year run as the 11th incarnation of the Doctor in the landmark British television series “Doctor Who,” will make his first Wizard World appearance at New Orleans Comic Con on February 7-8. Smith will greet fans, sign autographs, pose for photo ops and conduct an interactive Q&A during the event, held at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center.

Smith began his acting career on stage, appearing in various popular London theatrical performances before landing the coveted role in “Doctor Who” in 2010. He received a BAFTA Award nomination in 2011 and his final episode, on Christmas Day, was BBC America’s largest audience ever, attesting to both the popularity of the series in America andSmith’s success in the role.

“Doctor Who” fandom is on full display at Wizard World shows. Fans of the series, which celebrated its 50th Anniversary with a highly-rated program that was simulcast by BBC America at Austin Comic Con, cosplay as numerous characters as well as the TARDIS, the space-time vehicle used in the show.

Smith joins an impressive roster of celebrities scheduled to attend Wizard World New Orleans Comic Con (Feb. 7-9), including Norman Reedus, Steven Yeun, Jon Bernthal and Michael Rooker of “The Walking Dead,” Robert Englund (“Freddy Kruger” of A Nightmare on Elm Street), Eisner Award Hall of Famer Stan Lee, Wil Wheaton (“Star Trek: The Next Generation,” Stand By Me), John Ratzenberger (“Cheers,” Toy Story), WWE® Diva AJ Lee™, Linda Hamilton (Terminator, Beauty and the Beast), Alan Tudyk (“Serenity,” Wreck it Ralph) and many others. It is the second of 16 events currently scheduled in the 2014 series produced by Wizard World, Inc. (OTCBB: WIZD) and will also feature a top-drawer collection of well-known comics artists and writers and a variety of activities, exhibitors and special attractions.

Wizard World Comic Con events bring together thousands of fans of all ages to celebrate the best in pop-fi, pop culture, movies, graphic novels, comics, toys, video gaming, television, sci-fi, gaming, original art, collectibles, contests and more. Wizard World New Orleans Comic Con show hours are Friday, Feb. 7, 3-8 p.m.; Saturday, Feb. 8, 10 a.m.-7 p.m., Sunday, Feb. 9, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.

New Orleans Comic Con is also the place for cosplay, with fans young and old showing off their best costumes throughout the event. Fans dressed as every imaginable character – and some never before dreamed – will roam the convention floor, often stopping by the Show Stage, the ideal place to see and be seen.

For more on the 2014 Wizard World New Orleans Comic Con, visitwww.wizardworld.com/home-neworleans.html.

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Don Everly’s Emotional Moment Before Hearing of Brother’s Death

Singer Don Everly was listening to one of his brother Phil’s songs just moments before he received news of his passing Friday.

The younger of the two Everly Brothers stars passed away in Burbank, California aged 74 after suffering complications from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

In a tribute to his sibling, 76-year-old Don has revealed he had been overcome by emotion after hearing a song Phil wrote just before he received the sad call.

In a statement to the Associated Press, he says, “I was listening to one of my favorite songs that Phil wrote and had an extreme emotional moment just before I got the news of his passing. I took that as a special spiritual message from Phil saying goodbye. Our love was and will always be deeper than any earthly differences we might have had.”

The pair fell out several times during their career, parting ways in 1973 before reuniting 10 years later, and Don insists he never thought he’d have to deal with his brother’s death.

He adds, “I loved my brother very much. I always thought I’d be the one to go first. … The world might be mourning an Everly Brother, but I’m mourning my brother Phil Everly.”

Beatle Fan Tours The World With Paul McCartney

As a 13-year-old New York City schoolgirl, Irene Katz fell in love with The Beatles as did most of her peers. Her favorite was Paul McCartney. When she discovered the group was coming to New York for their first American visit, Irene just had to see them and give them (especially Paul) the chance to see her! What she couldn’t know then was that her face would become one of the most memorable images of American Beatlemania, seen in countless films, documentaries and TV shows.

Knowing that her parents would never allow her to spend all day on the Manhattan streets screaming for an English rock ‘n’ roll group, she cooked up a scheme. She told her parents she was going to stay at a girlfriend’s house, studying Friday night and all day Saturday, but early Saturday morning the girls high-tailed it to the Plaza Hotel and stood screaming words of love towards The Beatles’ rooms, hoping that “The Fab Four” would notice them.

Irene knew she had to stand out from the crowd, so she decided to make a distinctive sign. She thought of a very British expression: “The King is dead, long live the King.” That led her to devise a contemporary adaptation: “Elvis is dead. Long live The Beatles.”

The sign was a standout and drew the attention of TV news crews covering the event, zeroing in on her and making it the lead item that night on the New York City evening news. Consequently, that meant she was busted when her parents saw their daughter on TV. However, that didn’t stop Irene from sneaking out the next day to scream outside the Beatles hotel again.

The following Wednesday (February 12th 1964) Irene saw the Beatles from the decidedly better vantage point in the audience at the group’s debut New York concert at Carnegie Hall.

Time marches on and Irene grew up but never stopped being a Beatles fan. Through the decades, that news footage of the teenaged Irene and her sign continued to be featured in movies, documentaries and TV programs.

Then one day in 2002 she attended a Paul McCartney concert where she suddenly spotted a familiar face right behind Paul as he sang “All My Loving.” There on the giant video screen throughout most of the song was the young Irene Katz in all her Beatlemaniac glory with her memorable sign. As it turns out, McCartney had selected that exact footage for one of the key video montages that plays during his concerts worldwide. So it was that Irene’s teenage fantasy of touring the world with Paul and being with him ever night had actually come true. Today, at 63, the young grandmother is still a Beatles fan and on stage behind Paul at every concert around the world.

Irene Katz will be a special guest at the upcoming 2014 Fest For Beatles Fans, taking place at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in New York City on February 7th through 9th.

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Farrah Fawcett Auction Items Sell For $200,000

Personal items belonging to late actress Farrah Fawcett have fetched $200,000 at auction.

Items including the iconic red swimsuit she wore for an Esquire magazine shoot, her passport, a script from her 1984 TV film The Burning Bed, and a People’s Choice Award went under the hammer at Heritage Auctions in Dallas, Texas on Thursday.

Margaret Barrett, the director of entertainment and music auctions for Heritage, says, “The intense competition for Farrah’s items in this auction speaks to how popular she continues to be with collectors.”

In addition to Fawcett’s belongings, the suit Gene Kelly got wet in 1952 movie Singin’ in the Rain sold for just over $106,000.

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Thousands Gather For Paul Walker’s Memorial

Thousands gathered Sunday to attend a memorial for Paul Walker and his friend Roger Rodas at the site of their fatal accident in Los Angeles, police said.

The memorial included a rally and car cruise, which featured some of the vehicles Walker drove in the “Fast and Furious” franchise, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Fans lined up hundreds of bouquets of flowers at the spot where the red Porsche Rodas crashed into a tree and lamp post before bursting into flames Nov. 30.

Los Angeles County sheriffs officials said they were on hand to monitor the increase in traffic and pedestrians in the area.

“Sheriff’s deputies understand many people are choosing to visit the site to assist in the grieving process. Yet it is important to take legal safety measures to help avoid injury to people in the area,” the department said in a statement.

The nearby North Park Community Church opened up its parking and lot and restrooms for mourners and offered police a staging and rest area inside.

“It’s not something we were looking for but it kind of fell in our laps,” said the church’s pastor, Bob Hudson. “It’s going to be cool and fun and yes, something’s going to go wrong and we’re going to have to fix it, but I enjoy opportunities like this.

“One reason we’re doing this is because this is an opportunity to show God’s love within our community,” he added.

Ariana Grande leads Thanksgiving Day Parade; Stars Tweets Messages

Nickelodeon star Ariana Grande performed at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade this morning (28.11.13).

The 20-year-old star sung ‘Last Christmas’ from her float while clad in a thick coat and large earmuffs to try and keep warm in New York City.

She tweeted: ”Happy Thanksgivinggg my loves…Wishing you a beautiful holiday with your families and loved ones. I am so thankful for you. (sic)”

Elsewhere in the parade, talk show host Jimmy Fallon joined the ‘Sesame Street’ float with Elmo, Cookie Monster, the Count, and Big Bird, who all sang ‘Somebody Come and Play’.

Jimmy had earlier joked on Twitter: ”I’m on the ‘Sesame Street’ float in the parade … But it’ll be awkward when Big Bird asks, ‘What’re you having for dinner?’ ”

Meanwhile on the other side of the US, sitcom star Neil Patrick Harris and Disney star Bella Thorne did their bit to give back last night (27.11.13) by joining hundreds of other volunteers to help to feed Thanksgiving dinner to the homeless at Los Angeles’ LA Mission.

Neil – who was working in the kitchen – tweeted: ”Prepping the turkey for @TheLAMission ‘s annual thanksgiving meal. A wonderful organization. #thankful.

”Super grateful to @MVoltaggio and all the other amazing chefs for lending their time and brawn. I was honored to be included. (sic)”

Bella was joined by her boyfriend, Tristan Klier, and helped to give out meals to the homeless.

Many more celebrities took to social media to send out their best wishes to all.

Lady Gaga tweeted: ”Happy Thanksgiving little turkey+tofurkey monsters, I love you with all my heart and thought all day about how grateful I am to be a performer in this life, writing you songs and singing to you year after year! #thankful4monsters (sic)”

Country star Carrie Underwood wrote: ”I have much to be thankful for…Family,friends and fans! Hope you all have a blessed day. Lots of love from me to you! #HappyThanksgiving.(sic)”

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Jason Derulo, Fall Out Boy, Jennifer Hudson, Enrique Iglesias, and Robin Thicke Confirmed to Perform on "Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest 2014"

Ryan Seacrest hosts the year’s biggest celebration at the crossroads of the world in Times Square with Jenny McCarthy (ABC’s “The View”), while Fergie of the Black Eyed Peas will return to host the west coast party on “Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest 2014,” on TUESDAY, DECEMBER 31 (10:00-11:00 p.m., ET) on the ABC Television Network. West Coast performances feature Jason Derulo, Fall Out Boy, Jennifer Hudson, Enrique Iglesias, and Robin Thicke. More artists to be announced at a later date, for both east and west coast parties.

“As the New Year’s Rockin’ Eve legacy continues, it is an honor to be a part of the largest celebration of the year,” said Fergie. “I am excited to share the stage with so many global stars.”

The bi-coastal celebration will include hours of special performances and reports on New Year’s celebrations from around the globe, and Ryan Seacrest will lead the traditional countdown to midnight from Times Square in New York City.

Here is the complete NYRE rundown for the evening:

“New Year’s Rockin’ Eve Presents The 30 Greatest Women In Music” — Ryan Seacrest, Jenny McCarthy and Fergie host a fascinating two-hour countdown of the 30 greatest female artists in music, through clips and interviews from the archives of dick clark productions. (8:00-10:00 p.m., ET)

“Dick Clark’s Primetime New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest 2014” –Ryan Seacrest spotlights some of the year’s hottest artists, groups and songs. Fergie hosts the Los Angeles party, and Jenny McCarthy is live with all the festivities in Times Square. (10:00-11:00 p.m., ET)

“Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest 2014, Parts 1 & 2” — Ryan Seacrest counts down to midnight live from Times Square, and then the party continues with some of the year’s hottest acts from Los Angeles and New York. (Part 1, 11:30 p.m. – 1:08 a.m., ET) (Part 2, January 1, 1:08 – 2:12 a.m., ET)

Bruce Springsteen’s "Born To Run" Manuscript Up For Sale

A handwritten manuscript of New Jersey rocker Bruce Springsteen‘s classic song, “Born to Run,” is to hit the auction block next week, Sotheby’s said.

“Written entirely in Springsteen’s hand, this early version charts the beginnings of the 1975 hit that
catapulted The Boss to mega-stardom. The manuscript is estimated to fetch $70,000 to $100,000 and is on public view from Nov. 30,” the auction said in a news release Wednesday.

The sale is to take place Dec. 5 in New York.The seller of the lyrics was not mentioned.

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The Making of The Life-Size Lady Gaga Doll-Video

Lady Gaga  has been turned into a life-size robot – manufacturers in Japan have created high-tech dolls of the singer featuring tracks from her new album ARTPOP.
The Applause hitmaker is in the country to promote the release of her latest record, and on Wednesday (Nov.27) she came face to face with robots which were eerily made in her likeness.
Gaga posted a photo of herself sitting in between two identical dolls, along with the caption, “Who needs Barbie when you can own your own life size pop star that sings to you.”
According to the Gaga Doll website, music from Artpop blasts through a speaker hidden in the mannequins.

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