Friday, March 30, 2007
LONDON, England (AP) -- First off, there's the diminutive singer's look: a black beehive of hair, mascara-drenched eyes, old-style sailor tattoos. It's part Dusty Springfield, part Morticia Addams.
Then, there's the 23-year-old's extraordinary voice, like Billie Holiday channeling the Shangri-Las.
The combination helped push Winehouse's second album, the soaring, Phil Spector-ish "Back to Black," to the top of the British charts and many critics' year-end best lists in 2006. It was released in the U.S. in mid-March. (Watch Winehouse on loving "all or nothing" Video
But her music is not the only thing about her that garners attention. Her high-voltage personality and reputation for heavy drinking and smoking, and blunt speaking, have landed her, time and again, in the pages of the tabloid press.
It's an image Winehouse's songs do nothing to dispel. "Back to Black" spawned the hit song "Rehab," with its autobiographical refrain: "They tried to make me go to rehab/I said no, no, no."
"I listen to a lot of '60s music, but society is different now," said Winehouse, fresh from winning a Brit Award as the year's best female British act. "I'm a young woman, and I'm going to write about what I know."
It's a winning formula -- "Back to Black" is a compelling combination of the retro and the risque.
Whereas Winehouse's first album, 2003's "Frank," drew on hip-hop and jazz, "Back to Black" turns for inspiration to the dense harmonies, soaring, orchestral arrangements and heart-on-sleeve emotion of early Motown and 1960s girl groups.
If the sound is shimmering, the lyrics are lacerating. "I told you I was trouble/You know that I'm no good," she sings on "You Know I'm No Good."
Winehouse says it's the unashamed emotionalism of the decades-old music that appeals to her.
"A lot of music now is trying to be cool and like, 'Yeah, I don't really care about you' -- a really blase attitude," she said. "I think it's much nicer to be in love, and throw yourself into it, and want to lie in the road for that person.
"It's like the difference between having a dance in the middle of the party and standing around the outside with a beer bottle trying to look cool."
She says the Shangri-Las -- the girl-group behind "Leader of the Pack" and other drama-drenched '60s singles -- "pretty much had a song for every stage of a relationship: being lonely, then finding someone, being in love with them, then breaking up with the boy, then crying about it. They've got a song for every occasion. Saw me through a fair few good and bad times, definitely."
Winehouse's good and bad times have been gleefully chronicled in the British press. The tabloids have feasted on accounts of binge-drinking, drug use and feuds with fellow musicians. She is famously blunt in her assessment of her peers, once describing Dido's sound as "background music -- the background to death" and saying of pop princess Kylie Minogue, "she's not an artist ... she's a pony."
Winehouse freely acknowledges that she likes to smoke marijuana and drink -- as her occasionally ragged live performances attest -- and has admitted she is "a terrible drunk."
She has also talked about her eating disorders and told a newspaper that she has been diagnosed as manic depressive but refuses to take medication.
"Frank," a moderate hit in Britain, was followed by a creative slump during which she broke up with her boyfriend and spent $390 a week on marijuana -- a habit she has since cut back, she says.
During the same period, she suffered from debilitating writer's block -- hence the three-year gap between "Frank" and "Back to Black."
"I had writer's block for so long," she said. "And as a writer, your self-worth is literally based on the last thing you wrote. ... I used to think, 'What happened to me?'
"At one point it had been two years since the last record and (the record company) actually said to me, 'Do you even want to make another record?' I was like, 'I swear it's coming.' I said to them, 'Once I start writing, I will write and write and write. But I just have to start it.' "
'I'm just a musician'
Veteran music journalist John Aizlewood says there is a danger Winehouse's tabloid image will overshadow her music. But he thinks her recent, sober concert appearances suggest she is aware of the risk.
"I think she is trying to put the bacchanalian, debauched Amy Winehouse behind her," Aizlewood said.
Speaking to The Associated Press between magazine cover shoots in a north London photo studio, Winehouse is strikingly -- almost disappointingly -- articulate, professional and friendly, the opposite of her tabloid image.
The daughter of a taxi driver father and pharmacist mother, she grew up in the London suburbs and attended the Sylvia Young Theatre School, a factory for British music and acting moppets. She also went to the Brit School -- a performing arts academy in the "Fame" mold -- and originally was signed to "American Idol" creator Simon Fuller's 19 Management.
But she says she never sought fame.
"I'm so lucky to get to do music that I like, but I think the record company knows that I wouldn't kill myself if I didn't sell 2 million records," she said.
"When I was 18, I wasn't banging their door down. I didn't go out looking to be famous. I'm just a musician."
If it all went sour, "I would pack this in and go and be a waitress or a housewife."
Now, however, Winehouse is eager to go back into the studio to work on new material. Before that, there's the album's U.S. release and a handful of high-profile stateside dates.
Aizlewood thinks Winehouse's "fantastic soul voice" has a chance of winning over Americans.
"A lot of British bands fail in America because they give America something Americans do better -- that's why most British hip-hop has failed," he said. "But they won't have come across anything quite like Amy Winehouse."
At home there's the continuing media scrutiny, recently centering on drug use, her weight loss and an alleged feud with singer Lily Allen.
Winehouse insists she is not bothered by the attention -- "It's not nice, but it comes with the job." But it clearly rankles. She says the tabloids do not tend to run pictures of her on the many times when she is sober and calm.
"I had my eyes closed there," she tells an AP photographer snapping her picture. "You can sell that one to the tabloids and say I was drunk."
Thursday, March 29, 2007
The 40-year-old actress, who was devastated when her marriage to baseball player David Justice collapsed in 1996, only changed her mind after thinking of the effect it would have on her mother.
She told Parade magazine: "I was sitting in my car, and I knew the gas was coming, when I had an image of my mother finding me. She sacrificed so much for her children, and to end my life would be an incredibly selfish thing to do.
"It was all about a relationship. My sense of worth was so low. I had to re-programme myself to see the good in me. Because someone didn't love me didn't mean I was unlovable. I promised myself I would never be a coward again."
Halle received therapy after the incident and went on to marry musician Eric Benet in 2001. The couple divorced in 2005.
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The Oscar-winning actress, who is now dating model Gabriel Aubry, has revealed she is desperate to start a family.
Halle said: "Now my sights are set on a different chapter in my life, which is motherhood. That's the goal I have very clearly set for myself."
Wednesday, March 28, 2007
Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie are planning an Easter Caribbean wedding, it has been reported.
The Hollywood couple fell in love with the Dominican Republic during a recent holiday and have allegedly decided it is the perfect place for their nuptials.
A source told Britain's OK! magazine: "While they were in the Dominican Republic, Brad bought a huge plot of land and helped design a fabulous house.
"It's there they intend to become Mr and Mrs Pitt."
Brad, 43, and Angelina, 31 - who have three adopted children, Pax Thien, Maddox and Zahara, and a daughter Shiloh together - are expected to fly out to the exotic country in the next two weeks and want the ceremony to be a "family affair".
Click here to find out more!
The source added: "Pax and Maddox are old enough to be page boys and it's always been Angie's dream that this wedding will be a true family affair."
Brad recently ruled out getting married until "everyone else in the US who wants to be married is legally able".
Angelina has also avoided the issue in the past saying: "We've both been married before so it's not marriage that necessarily kept some people together. We are legally bound to our children, not to each other, and I think that's the most important thing."
Brad was previously married to Jennifer Aniston, their divorce was finalised in October 2005.
Angelina has two failed marriages to Jonny Lee Miller and Billy Bob Thornton.
Tuesday, March 27, 2007
Joss Stone has a crush on Jared Leto - only to discover the actor has never heard of her.
The British singer has revealed she has not been on a date in months since her heartbreaking split from boyfriend Beau Dozier, but admits she has the hots for Jared.
Joss told a US TV show: "I think he's simply gorgeous, so sexy. He would be my ideal date."
However, Jared - who previously dated Hollywood beauty Cameron Diaz and has been linked with Scarlett Johansson - told friends he has no idea who the 19-year-old singer is.
Joss split from producer Beau 18 months ago. She said their split was a source of inspiration for her latest album 'Introducing Joss Stone', released earlier this year.
Joss was heavily criticised for speaking with a 'fake' American accent at the BRIT Awards in February.
Monday, March 26, 2007
DANIA BEACH, Fla. - Playboy Playmate Anna Nicole Smith died of an accidental overdose of a sleeping medication and at least eight other prescription drugs, and she had recently had a bacterial infection from injecting drugs into her buttocks, authorities said Monday.
Broward County Medical Examiner Joshua Perper said Smith died of "combined drug intoxication" with the sleeping medication chloral hydrate as the major factor. She had been taking a lengthy list of medications, including methadone for pain and valium, he said.
A bacterial infection from injecting medication in her buttocks and a viral infection contributed to her death, the autopsy report said.
Chloral hydrate is a sedative used to treat insomnia and alcohol withdrawal, relieve anxiety and ease post-surgery pain. Perper said Smith had been on several antidepressant and antianxiety drugs and had recently taken longevity medications, B12 and growth hormone. The detailed autopsy showed no evidence of disease.
"We found nothing to indicate any foul play," said Chief Charlie Tiger of the Seminole police department.
Smith, 39, was found Feb. 8 in her room at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Hollywood, which is on one of the tribe's reservations.
Dr. Chip Walls, a forensic toxicologist for the Miller School of Medicine at the University of Miami, said chloral hydrate is rarely prescribed and is known to be fatal if combined with certain other drugs — including the sedative Lorazepam, which the autopsy showed she was taking.
"It's very toxic if you mix it with any other central nervous system depressant drugs," Walls said. "You could get profound sedation leading up to coma and respiratory arrest."
Tiger said authorities examined laptop computers belonging to Smith and her lawyer-turned-companion, Howard K. Stern, and found nothing unusual related to her death. Tiger also said nothing came up during an exhaustive review of tapes from hotel security cameras and from interviews with numerous witnesses.
Perper said Smith felt ill shortly after arriving in Fort Lauderdale from the Bahamas on Feb. 5 and that she eventually developed a fever of 105 degrees. Perper said Smith had a blood infection that could have been caused by a contaminated needle, but it was brought under control by antibiotics and an ice bath.
"Her temperature never went again above 100 and, except for an episode of vomiting, she felt relatively well expect for feeling very weak," he said.
The weeks after Smith's death were filled with public courtroom drama and private whispers about what might have killed her. Officials delayed releasing the autopsy results because of additional evidence, not publicly released.
Perper's initial examination had revealed no serious injuries to her body. Perper said then that prescription drugs, but no illegal drugs, were found in Smith's hotel room, though he wouldn't identify them.
Smith had arrived at the Hard Rock on Feb. 5 and planned to leave four days later aboard a new yacht that her companion Howard K. Stern was arranging to buy. She was seldom seen outside her room during her stay: She was said to be suffering from a stomach flu before she died.
Because her death was so sudden, and because her 20-year-old son Daniel died under suspicious circumstances five months earlier, there has been speculation about possible criminal activity surrounding the deaths. The Seminole Police Department investigated the case because the casino is on tribal land.
An inquest into Daniel's death is scheduled to start Tuesday in the Bahamas, where he died.
Smith grew up in Texas and went from topless dancer to Playboy Playmate of the Year, Guess jeans model and bride of 89-year-old oilman J. Howard Marshall II. She took her fight for Marshall's estimated $500 million fortune as far as the Supreme Court, and the ongoing battle could make her infant daughter, Dannielynn, very wealthy. Stern and two other men have claimed to be the baby's father.
Friday, March 23, 2007
Jenna Jameson Image Source:
Jenna Jameson and her ex-husband Justin Sterling are engaged in a vicious war of words across MySpace, of all things, that has culminated in the model accusing Justin of rape.
Justin posted a bulletin on Tuesday criticising Jenna of shameless publicity-seeking (never!), so Jenna replied back almost instantly, saying that "He wants to be a star so bad, and has ridden my coat tails for years"
In the comments for that last blog Jenna again is forced to respond to another jibe from Justin.
Earlier today she wrote: "Why don't you go rape another girl... and try to pass it off like nothing happened...Why dont you give me my things back, jay? because your a goldigger and a glorified pimp..."
Harsh words, and ones that won't go away quietly. The only confusing thing is that Justin is allowed to leave comments on Jenna's page: doesn't she know that her MySpace friends can be deleted?!
Tuesday, March 20, 2007
Uma Thurman has split from her lover Andre Balazs.
The break-up comes just days after rumours surfaced the couple, who have been dating on and off for three years, were planning to marry this summer.
Uma's representative, Robert Garlock, declined to comment yesterday (18.03.07).
Uma, 36, and Andre, 50, were said to be planning to marry on a secluded West Indies island, with friends insisting "they can't keep it a secret much longer".
Uma's ex-husband, actor Ethan Hawke, was even said to have given his blessing and planned to attend the intimate Caribbean ceremony.
Ethan said: "They are a good match. Sometimes I think he makes Uma much happier than I did."
Last March, Uma appeared at the Oscars without Andre, fuelling speculation the relationship had ended. Uma's publicist confirmed the split a few days later.
However, the pair were reunited last October and embarked on a series of romantic trips around Europe and the US.
Andre, who was previously married to model Katherine Ford, owns some of the world's premier hotels, including New York's Mercer and the Chateau Marmont and the Standard, in Los Angeles.
Uma was married to Ethan for six years, before the couple split in 2003. They have two children, eight-year-old daughter Maya Ray and five-year-old son Levon Roan.
The 'Kill Bill' star is currently filming 'The Accidental Husband', in which she plays a radio DJ who gets into trouble after advising people on their love lives.
Friday, March 16, 2007
(AP) Brad Delp, the lead singer for the band Boston who killed himself last week, left behind a note in which he called himself "a lonely soul," according to police reports released Thursday.
The note was paper-clipped to the neck of Delp's shirt when police found his body on the bathroom floor of his Atkinson, N.H., home, his head on a pillow. He had sealed himself inside with two charcoal grills; toxicology tests showed he had committed suicide by carbon monoxide poisoning.
"Mr. Brad Delp. J'ai une ame solitaire. I am a lonely soul," the note read.
"I take complete and sole responsibility for my present situation. I have lost my desire to live."
Delp joined Boston in the mid-1970s and sang two of its biggest hits, "More than a Feeling" and "Long Time." He was cremated Wednesday, after a private funeral earlier in the week.
His fiancée, Pamela Sullivan, called police March 9 after noticing a dryer vent tube connected to the exhaust pipe of Delp's car. In the garage, police found a note taped to the door leading into the house.
"To whoever finds this I have hopefully committed suicide. Plan B was to asphyxiate myself in my car."
In another note on a door at the top of the stairs, Delp cautioned that there was carbon monoxide inside.
"I take complete and sole responsibility for my present situation. I have lost my desire to live," he wrote. The note also included instructions on how to contact his fiancée: "Unfortunately she is totally unaware of what I have done."
Police later found four sealed letters in an office addressed to Sullivan, his children, their mother, Micki Delp, and another couple whose identity was not disclosed. Police Lt. William Baldwin said police gave the letters to family members without reading them.
Sullivan told police that Delp "had been depressed for some time, feeling emotional (and) bad about himself," according to the reports.
He had planned to marry Sullivan this summer during a break in a tour with Boston. A lifelong Beatles fan, Delp also played with the tribute band Beatle Juice.
Thursday, March 15, 2007
Pouting mega-star Brad Pitt will send himself up in a comedy called 'Chad Schmitt'.
Pitt plays Schmitt, an aspiring actor coming to Hollywood in the late 80's looking for a break. Trouble is, he bears an uncanny resemblance to the young Brad Pitt, whose star is rising rapidly. The film charts Schmitt's life as opportunity after opportunity is thwarted by the similarity he bears to the star.
Sounds ridiculously self indulgent? Well yes, it is. Sounds an awfully lot like Eddie Murphy's film Bowfinger? Well, yes it does. Will there be queues round the block to see it when it comes out in 2008? Unfortunately, yes there will...
Pamela Anderson has been seen kissing ex-husband Tommy Lee.
The couple - who split in 1998 - lunched with their sons, ten-year-old Brandon and nine-year-old Dylan at fashionable Santa Monica restaurant The Ivy at the weekend, and were seen kissing as they left together.
A source told Us Weekly magazine: "The family left the restaurant together and as they were saying goodbye, Tommy leant into the car and gave Pamela a lingering kiss.
"She didn't mind, she put her arm around him and kissed him back."
The former 'Baywatch' star split from second husband Kid Rock last November after just four months of marriage.
The couple, who were previously engaged before splitting in 2003, married on a yacht in St Tropez last summer after meeting up on holiday.
After the split Pamela, 39, warned her fans to take heed of her hasty nuptials, saying: "Don't get married on vacation.
Tuesday, March 13, 2007
Leonardo DiCaprio arrived in Israel with supermodel Bar Refaeli this weekend, creating a paparazzi storm.
The 32-year-old Hollywood actor and Refaeli, 21, have been romantically linked for about a year, and Israeli newspapers regularly run updates on their relationship.
They apparently hoped to slip into the country unnoticed on a night flight from Frankfurt, Germany, on Sunday. But the plane was also carrying a group of Israeli entertainment reporters on their way back from a press junket in Ireland.
By the time DiCaprio and Refaeli headed for her family's home in an upscale Tel Aviv suburb, it had been besieged by dozens of photographers.
Monday, March 12, 2007
Comedian Richard Jeni has been found dead at his West Hollywood, Los Angeles apartment. Authorities suspect he committed suicide.
The Brooklyn-born comedian staged a series of popular TV specials and, according to his own website, he has appeared on America's The Tonight Show more than any other stand-up comic.
Jeni, who also appeared opposite Jim Carrey in "The Mask", was scheduled to perform in Chicago on Saturday, but cancelled the show last month.
The comedian won a CableACE Award for one of his HBO TV specials, and went on to star in his own short-lived sitcom, "Platypus Man."
In 2004, Jeni was named number 57 on US TV network Comedy Central's list of the 100 greatest stand-up comedians of all time.
Friday, March 09, 2007
On the radar! New popular up and comer actor James Holzier who is breaking through and to a wide appeal is sighted here with his dog. Aww look at the rising newcomer with his dog....what a cutie..If I was there I would have to be a stalker and get my fix! According to thebabesandhunks.com , his dog goes by the name of "Baby" and. The dog is a female shih tzu.
Here is everything and more you wanted on celebrity James Holzier. Right now, he is the #1 searched for celebrity in the world and is being listed as a male superstar, along with being profiled in Hello Magazine and all this stuff. But my main thing is, I just don't want him to be another "hot new celebrity". He is a good and inspiring person and that to me is the most important thing. I wrote up a post and I am also sending you an article that was posted on him at makeushot.com. I am sending you both posts because I would like for you to pick which one you like best.
A new and talented actor is on the rise and I am hearing a lot of good things about him! James Holzier is his name and you may not know him yet, but like any other star, we did not know who they were at one time. With Holzier it is not only inspirational, but impressive. This intriguing and astounding new star is a remarkable story. Beginning way back from his very birth.
After doctors told his parents they would not have anymore children...they did. Holzier was born, and doctors then voiced to his parents he would not survive. He did. Beating the odds and adversity is something Holzier has done throughout his entire life. These gems of insights has shaped Holzier into who he is as a person.
Carrying with him a "down to earth and a kick ass attitude", as one source describes him. He is no doubt succeeding on his own terms.
James Holzier is the #1 searched for celebrity in the world on MenCelebs.com. He was one of the most searched for celebrities of 2005 and 2006. Joining Johnny Depp, Orlando Bloom, and David Beckham. All this, of course. is only growing as internet shrines and a devoted large following are calling him their own. But his appeal is branching out to all ages. As one devoted fan says and sums it up nicely, "He makes me believe in myself."
As Holzier is shooting to stardom -- he has had many opportunities for instant stardom and fame. And whilst many in Hollywood sell their souls for stardom or a shot at instant fame. James Holzier has and does not. He operates on his instincts and follows his passion for the love of acting. Not the love for fame or the love for money. A true and unique quality for any authentic talented artist.
Holzier, no doubt is establishing himself as one of the finest young rising talents but you can be certain his career choices respectfully will be all on his own choosing.
If the past is any indication, Holzier's future will involve many more bright areas and continued personal growth.
Holzier recently has said, "I am not better than anyone. No way at all. Not even close. I just think any of us can do anything. Whoever we are." -- Exactly!
Insisting they are still happily married
Courtney Cox and David Arquette have slammed recent reports that their marriage is in trouble.
US tabloids have recently reported that the couple has hit a rocky patch in their seven year marriage.
Some reports even went so far as to speculate that Courtney was getting to close to Josh Stewart, her co-star in her new TV show Dirt.
A representative has however slammed these reports; saying in a statement to US Weekly There is not a shred of truth to the rumours about the state of their marriage.
"They are happily married and, like most married couples, they have some separate friendships and interests."
Both Courtney and David have revealed that they attended couples therapy before they married to work through some issues they had. In January (2007), Arquette admitted "We go to therapy once in a while...but I'm happy, don't get me wrong, I love her."
In Dirt, Courtney plays an unscrupulous tabloid journalist, who will do anything she can to get a celebrity story. Oh, the irony…
Wednesday, March 07, 2007
Anne Hathaway will quit acting if 'Becoming Jane' is a flop.
The US actress, who stars as British writer Jane Austen, will "never forgive herself" if critics slam her performance.
Anne told Britain's Grazia magazine: "If I messed this up, I'd never forgive myself. I might have to stop acting. The key thing was the accent because everybody will be listening for it."
The 23-year-old also branded her co-star James McAvoy "shameless" after he stripped off and ran naked into a lake in the movie.
Anne joked: "That was the most homoerotic scene. And he keeps his boots on! He told me he felt really stupid - this is the man who had to parade around in green tights for 'The Chronicles Of Narnia', so I figure he has very little shame."
'The Devil Wears Prada' actress says her boyfriend Raffaello Follieri banned her from speaking in a British accent when she was away from set.
Anne revealed: "He begged me to stop. I really immersed myself in it, but when I talked to Raffaello, he said, 'Please! It's bad enough you're abroad and I can't see you, now I can't even hear you!' So I spoke as myself with him."
Tuesday, March 06, 2007
Angie's fresh from a United Nations trip to a Darfur refugee camp in Chad, while Brad was left to babysit the kids in the Big Easy.
The tot-adoptin' activists were snapped strolling with daughters Zahara and Shiloh after popping into one of N'awlins' great bakeries.
Their next trip will likely be to Vietnam, where they're said to be in the process of adopting another child.
Saturday, March 03, 2007
Image Credit: © Jamie McCarthy/WireImage.com
Anna Nicole Smith is to be buried in the Bahamas on Friday (02.03.07) after her mother dropped her appeal for custody of her body.
Virgie Arthur will not challenge the decision made by a Florida appeal court that custody of the model's remains should go to Richard Milstein, the court-appointed guardian of her five-month-old daughter, Dannielynn.
Image Credit: © Lester Cohen/WireImage.com
Virgie's attorney Tom Pirtle said: "It's going to be difficult to appeal the ruling, so we're not going to appeal."
Milstein said Anna Nicole will be buried in the Bahamas next to her son Daniel, who died last September.
Virgie had wanted Anna Nicole to be buried near the family home in Texas, and for Daniel's body to be exhumed and buried beside her.
Milstein said: "The funeral is set for Friday. I wish to uphold the decorum and dignity that should be maintained throughout this process, for the sake of Dannielynn and the memories she will have of her mother's funeral."
Image Credit: © Gregg DeGuire/WireImage.com
Anna Nicole died aged 39 on February 8.
Her body has remained in cold storage at a Florida morgue during the court battle over where she is to be buried.
Thursday, March 01, 2007
Victoria Beckham Image Credit:
The ex-Spice Girl has ditched her trademark POB in favour of this stunning new blonde style.
The more relaxed and funky do reflects another new stage in the star's life.
Victoria has left behind her hectic life in Madrid and now hangs out with the beautiful crowd in sunny California.
She has spent the past few months house hunting as she prepares for hubby DAVID'S move to LA Galaxy in the summer.
One onlooker said: "Victoria looks amazing. The colour really suits her."