Celebrity news & gossip from the world’s showbiz and glamour magazines (OK!, Hello, National Enquirer and more). We read them so you don’t have to, picking the best bits from the showbiz world’s maw and spitting it back at them. Expect lots of sarcasm.
On December 2014, Cher had three months to live, reported the National Enquirer.
Seven months later Cher was dead.
Cher is not dead.
Angelina Jolie weighs 83lbs. We know this because the National Enquirer leads with the weighty issue on its cover page. The NE loves to talk about Jolie’s weight. Her love-rival, former Mrs Brad Pitt, Jennifer Aniston, sucks the tabloid straw marked ‘Womb News”; Angelina gets “Thin” and “Death”. Brad, well, no-one ever mentions his luxuriant, post-ubiquitous-hat age-defying hair, odd for a middle-aged man seemingly in a state of perpetual “WORRY”.
Lest anyone reading think 83lbs an enviable weight, the NE tells us that Jolie has been on the wrong end of a “Doc’s DEADLY DIAGNOSIS”. It is a “heartbreaking medical crisis”. And Jolie’s not going alone or quietly because Brad Pitt “fears she’s a ‘WALKING TIME BOMB’.
In We Gotta Get Out of This Place: The Soundtrack of the Vietnam War, Doug Bradley and Craig Werner, professor of Afro-American studies at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, narrate the story of the music that whirled about the heads of American fighters.
Women-baiting Sarah Vine is talking about “pushy parents” in her Daily Mail column.
Excuse me while I perform a quick victory jig. A little wiggle of delight. Why? Because a new study reveals that being a pushy parent can actually harm a child’s chances of success in life….
Their ambitions arise out of pure vanity — because it’s all about them, you see. They believe the performance of their offspring directly reflects on them.
Not that Vine would ever be a pushy parent. You can read about how un-pushy Sarah is all over the media:
“Life lesson: Sarah Vine is pictured with her 11-year-old daughter Beatrice and nine-year-old son William” – Daily Mail
“Both my husband and six-year-old son are huge Smiths fans. We have The Sound Of The Smiths in the car CD changer, and on family outings it’s a popular request from the back. And yes, there is singing along” – Times
“One of Beatrice’s own teachers went on strike and then she said that she saw him on Newsround holding a banner going ‘Michael Gove out’ which I think is quite a strange experience for a small child – and I don’t know how it’s going to affect them at all. Part of me wants to put them on a plane to go and live with my mother in Italy, but part of me thinks it will make them tougher… I do think at some point there is going to be payback” – Ham & High
Vine said Beatrice was writing a book about a boy who flies away to “a land without bullies” – Telegraph
Like thousands of families across the UK with children in Year 6, we found out on Monday evening which state secondary our daughter Beatrice, age 10, will be attending. Unlike most other families, however, our choice of school made the news.
This is because Beatrice’s father (for her sins) is not only the current education secretary but also, it transpires, the first ever Conservative education secretary to enrol a child in a state-funded secondary school.
Don’t get me wrong: Grey Coat Hospital Church of England Comprehensive School for Girls (in Westminster) is not exactly Sinkhouse High. It’s an amazing school, rated outstanding by Ofsted. It was the first one we went to visit, back in 2012 when we started thinking about secondaries – Guardian
And this gem:
Michael Gove’s nine-year-old daughter has been pulled out of her ballet classes because of fears that they were making her worry about her weight. The Education Secretary’s wife, Sarah Vine, says she took the decision after Beatrice did not want to eat on the days that she was due to attend the dance lessons.
“It began when she mentioned that some of the girls in her group were better than her, even though they hadn’t been doing ballet as long, because ‘they were more the right size’. Another time, I collected my daughter, customary lollipop in hand (our little ritual), and she refused it. When I asked why, she just said she didn’t want to talk about it. She started complaining of a tummy ache on the days when she had classes.
Then she wanted to wear her old leotard, the one that’s too small for her. She clearly felt that if she could fit into a smaller size, that would be a good thing. That was the final straw. What used to be a fun way of exercising and a good excuse for a floaty skirt and a bit of glitter had become a stressful and somewhat sinister ordeal.”
The columnist, who lives with Gove and their two children in North Kensington, adds: “I only hope I’ve caught the rot early enough.”
You can read about Vine and the rot of making women and girls fret about their weight in her Daily Mail column:
Not such a Klass act
Universal excitement as Jorgie Porter, the pretty, sexy, young one in this year’s I’m A Celebrity … Get Me Out Of Here!, changed into a transparent white bathing costume for that all-important Myleene Klass memorial jungle shower moment.
And briefly, it looked like it was going to be a triumph for the 27-year-old Hollyoaks star: the swept back wet hair, the mouth dripping with water, the half-closed eyes.
And then … the legs. And there all similarities with Myleene Klass end.
Ah, there is a God after all!
You just know who gets to play God at Sarah’s school play…
Did you catch Jodie Marsh Is Exposed Online? It’s on TLC, and it features the fragrant beauty striking a blow for privacy. The blurb tells us:
10 years ago Revenge Porn barely existed, but now thanks to a combination of smart phones and social media, it’s a term that is becoming more and more familiar, with victims ranging from Celebrities to school kids.
Jodie, the subject of bullying throughout her school years, was herself was a victim of an online stalker until recently, so can relate to how it feels to be ‘virtually’ harassed and victimised. She’s also confessed to taking intimate pictures of herself for former partners.
But how does it feel when someone posts images or videos of you doing the most intimate things imaginable, online, for the world to see?
In this film Jodie will talk to victims to see how devastating the effects can be and looks at what is being done to prevent this heinous crime. She’ll talk to tech experts and hackers to highlight how easy it is to hack into our private lives and she’ll meet the perpetrators face to face to see what motivates them to invade someone’s privacy and then share it with the world.
Kiss ‘n’ tell is a low act. But is Marsh the best person to highlight the issue?
In 2009, Marsh wore a T-shirt showing scores of her conquests out of 10.
The same Marsh, reportedly, told the News of The World about one former flame, Blue’s Antony Costa:
“He’s VERY, VERY, VERY, VERY small,the smallest I’ve ever seen in my life. I’m talking like maybe two inches tops. I must be really unlucky when it comes to men’s willies because I always seem to get really small ones. Antony’s very self-conscious about his and tried to make out that it wasn’t a tiddler. But I could tell straight away. It’s not just a little bit small, it’s like a button mushroom.”
Can it be that, as the Mail reports, Charlie Sheen will announce that he is HIV positive on The Today Show?
NBC says Sheen will make a “revealing personal announcement”.
The story goes that Sheen’s interview is scheduled one day before a National Enquirer investigation claims the actor has the virus and, as the Daily Mail alleges, Sheen spent “$5 million to keep the news that he had HIV ‘silent.’”
“Charlie had sex with multiple partners since learning his HIV status without informing them of his potentially deadly HIV infection,” one source told The ENQUIRER.
Adult film star Scottine Ross, who an insider noted didn’t know of Sheen’s HIV status for four months while they had unprotected sex, railed against her ex-fiancé in a video provided to The ENQUIRER: “You exposed me to HIV for a year and a half!” she blasted.
Now Sheen, who doesn’t know how he contracted the virus, “has been tortured by the thought that his acting genius will be forgotten,” explained a source. “Charlie’s worst fear is that he will be remembered not as a great actor, but as someone who contracted the disease.”
Now read on…
Caitlyn Jenner is telling Buzzfeed of “The Moment She Felt Most Proud To Be A Woman In 2015”.
Jenner, patriarch of the Jenner-Kardashian clan, is now an estranged matriach of that same televised tribe, having become a woman and divorced Kris Jenner. His body changed, but did his mind. Because it sounds not a lot unlike Jenner is mansplaining womanhood to, er, women. Not that the Buzzfeed team noticed, telling readers:
We sat down with Caitlyn Jenner backstage at Carnegie Hall to hear her brilliant words of wisdom, and, unsurprisingly, it was incredibly inspiring.
No fewer than three Buzzfeed journalists gave Jenner an audience – and, boy, were Kristin Harris, Whitney Jefferson, Sydney Scott wowed.
Them: “What was the moment that you felt most proud to be a woman in 2015?”
CJ: “Over the last six months it’s really been a progression. I have found that women have so much unleashed power that they don’t really utilize because they don’t have confidence in themselves about who they are, and what they can do. I have always actually been with and attracted to very strong women, and I think I’ve learned a lot from them. The power of the woman has just not even been unleashed around the world.”
Good job a it wasn’t a man saying that because he’d run the risk of coming across as patronising. And Caitlyn’s not finished.
CJ: “I think that’s to come, but I think that’s gonna come from confidence as these women grow up and get in better positions of authority — I think that will come. So, I am SO glad to be on this team and help it along!”
You see, girls. To get ahead and better understand yourselves you need more men. It was ever the way.
The final words are theses.
CJ: “The hardest part about being a woman is figuring out what to wear.”
Over to you, Marc Jacobs…
Subtitle screw up of the day:
Sky News subtitles were running over an item on dress size changes over the past 20 years. The item was a day late lift on a Daily Mail story. The claim is a 10 dress size today would have been a 14 a couple of decades ago.
A gushing Sky commentator repeats the Mail’s headline which compared Kim Kardashian to the ultimate blonde bombshell which was converted by Sky’s superfast text translator as:
” Like comparing Marilyn Monroe to Kincardineshire“
Works for me… both attractive and dead
The deeply unfashionable cardigan wort by Kurt Cobain on MTV: Unplugged in 1993 has been bought at auction for $140,800. The seller was a “friend” of the Cobain family.
Four months after the show, Cobain committed suicide.
Julien’s “Icons and Idols: Rock N Roll” auction advertised it thus:
A blend of acrylic, mohair and Lycra with five-button closure (one button absent), with two exterior pockets, a burn hole and discoloration near left pocket and discoloration on right pocket.
Stoney Emshwiller was 18 when he recorded himself filming his older self. Now age 56, Stoney completes the wheel by replying to his younger self’s questions. His film is called Later That Same Life.
It ‘s the time travel talkshow:
Listen to The Ronettes sing Baby Love You in 1963 – no instruments. Just the sweet voices:
The David Bowie shower curtain.
Buy yours at Fine Art America
Is Tom Jones black? No. He’s not. He’s white. He’s not even black in the way that Rachel Dolezel or Ali G are black.
The Daily Mail reports:
Throughout his career his hair – thick, curly and (once) black – and his baritone voice have led some to believe he is black. Now Sir Tom Jones has revealed that he wants to have his DNA tested to discover if he does really have black ancestry… Recalling an incident shortly after he was born Sir Tom, who is known to tan easily, told The Times magazine: ‘My mother came out in big dark patches all over her body. They asked if she had any black blood and she said she didn’t know.’
In other Daily Mail Tom Jones tan news:
It’s not unusual to see Tom Jones looking bright orange. But on this public appearance, he drew extra attention to his satsuma-like face by waving – and revealing that the spray tan did not extend to his hands and arms.
Next in the Mail: can spray tans make you black?
The Sun says One Direction lead hair Harry Styles has a secret. The 21-year-old is “slim enough to fit into shapely women’s jeans”. Who these shapely women are and why they’re lending Styles their jeans is not investigated. But that’s not the big secret, in any case.
Styles puts knobs of butter in his coffee.
He says: “Bullet coffee. It’s black coffee with a spoonful of butter and a spoonful of coconut oil, all mixed up together. I west 26in wait women’s jeans. Boom.”
Anorak remembers in the old days when pop stars were slim on a diet of groupies and drugs. Now they use fat – which in today’s age of food scare stories might be more controversial.
Al Molinaro, the actor who played Al Delvecchio, owner of Arnold’s Drive-In on the hit TV show Happy Days has died. You might know him as Murray from The Odd Couple.
Spotter: The Hollywood Reporter
Keith Richards smells of sandalwood, write Patrick Doyle in Rolling Stone. I was lucky enough to spend some time with Keith Richards in the late 1980s. He was fun, generous and easy going.
Now age 71, Richards lives in Connecticut. He recalls life in New York before the move:
“On the odd occasion there was a [heroin] drought in the Seventies. We’d have to go down the East Side and carry a shooter. Just in case. A year or two after they were born, I said, ‘I can’t bring the kids up on Fourth Street.’ Not when there’s fresh air and some countryside not far away.”
Ah, those halcyon days:
“Cops used to slap you around the ear and send you home. Now they shoot you.”
Nowadays Richards reads:
He has a large library and is currently reading about the early 19th-century sea captain Thomas Cochrane. He told his biographer, James Fox, to read Patrick O’Brian’s Master and Commander, a historical novel set in 1800, to better understand his “friendship and adversity” with Mick Jagger. (“He felt it was something that explained his sadness,” says Fox.) He orders a vodka and tonic. As the waiter walks away, Richards speaks up: “Double ’em!”
At the Lemmchen elementary school in Mainz, Germany, the cool kids are performing Kraftwerk’s Die Roboter.
Not all school concerts need be painful:
We only read Playboy for the articles (which since Hugh ‘Housecoat’ Hefner’s throbbing organ swore off naked women is truer than ever), and we only watch vintage skin flicks for the music. French music producer Drixxxe has made compilation tapes of ‘70s softcore pornographic films. Called Sextape (natch.) you can tune in to them all on Flashbak.
Jamie Oliver wants us to pay a “sugar tax”. The TV chef wants us to pay a tax on sugary drinks and snacks. He says:
“The discussions that I’ve had haven’t implied that that is written off. I think the discussions that have I’ve had are been robust. Mr Cameron is reviewing everything and seems to be interrogating it really well. We need to make sure that he’s brave.”
And then – shudder:
“It’s symbolic of a government that is willing to fight tooth and nail for public health and most importantly for child health. We need to be bold and brave and frankly act like a parent.”
Josef Fritzl? Princess Diana? Osama bin Laden? Jamie Oliver? Which parent is the model?
“Who is running the country? Is it the businesses who are profiting from ill-health of our children or is it us?”
Dunno. But in 2014, we read this:
On Friday 16 May, Mars Food Australia supported 210 school students local to the Wyong plant to cook with celebrity chef Jamie Oliver on Food Revolution Day.
Mars. Makers of the sugar-laden Mars Bar.
And in 2013:
Mars-owned food brand Uncle Ben’s has renewed its product-placement and sponsorship deal with Channel 4 for Jamie Oliver programming.
Thanks to Mars at least Jamie’s not one of the poor who will be hit and saved by his sugar tax.
See more photos of the great artist Frida Kahlo experimenting with the fluidity of gender on Flashbak.
The many faces of David Bowie by Helen Green:
Mark Steyn celebrates his Sinatra Centenary series with a look at the making of a hit song:
It was 1966. Enter Bert Kaempfert “the German kaiser of kitsch”:
He eschewed the standard 32-bar A-A-B-A song, possibly on the grounds that a middle section was way too much work. Instead, his tunes are built on the slightest of melodic themes, endlessly repeated. Yet they are, as the Germans say, Ohrwürmer – or earworms: maddening tunes that insinuate their way into your head and refuse to get out. “L-O-V-E” is the über-Kaempfert, a tune so simple that its lyricist Milt Gabler turned it into a spelling lesson, an “Alphabet Song” for grown-ups:
L is for the way you look at me
O is for the only one I see
V is very very extraordinary
E is even more…
So Kaempfert had form. And so Jimmy Bowen listens to Hal Fine’s bunch of Kaempfert themes and something called “Beddy-Bye” comes up. And Bowen plays it again, and again. And then he says, “Man, get me a lyric on that, and I’ll do it with Sinatra.”
“Beddy-Bye” sounds to me like yet another minimalist Kaempfert tune: the five-note title phrase, reprised a tone up and a tone down, is about 50 per cent of the tune. Yet a remarkable number of other people claim to have had a hand in its creation. The last time I mentioned the thing in this space David C Tobin of Washington, DC wrote to say that it was composed by Avo Uvezian, a Beirut-born Armenian-American pianist cum cigar manufacturer. He does indeed claim to have written the music, but so does the late Ivo Robić, the crooning Croat, who insisted that he’d composed it for a folk music festival in Split, Yugoslavia. M Philippe-Gérard, the Brazilian-born French composer of “When The World Was Young”, sued on the grounds that the tune was stolen from his “Magic Tango”, but lost in court.
So until these various Croatian-Armenian claims are as litigated as the Franco-Brazilian ones, we’ll stick with the official narrative. In 1966, Bert Kaempfert wrote this tune for his first Hollywood movie score, for the aforementioned A Man Could Get Killed, directed by Ronald Neame. And all it needed now was a lyric and Jimmy Bowen would make good on his promise and get Kaempfert a recording by Frank Sinatra.
Bowen had never made such a pledge before – for a fairly obvious reason: He was in no position to promise any such thing. “Obviously,” he explained subsequently, “nobody knows what Frank is going to do till he says what he’s going to do.” But he knew that that “Beddy-Bye” theme smelled like a hit, and Hal Fine took him at his word. He farmed the tune out to various writers, and submitted a couple of lyrics. Jimmy Bowen didn’t like either of them.
So Hal Fine tried again, this time with Eddie Snyder and Charles Singleton….
For “Beddy-Bye”, Eddie Snyder took his cue from the film and the James Garner/Melina Mercouri characters: They’re strangers, exchanging glances, and, by the time the tune’s reprised in the final moments, you know that, as the song says, they’re “in love forever”. “We had the scene,” recalled Snyder. “A man is sitting across from a girl in a bar. That was it.” But that was all they needed:
Strangers In The Night
Wond’ring in the night
What were the chances
We’d be sharing love
Before the night was through…
Caitlyn Jenner has been Named ‘Woman Of The Year’ by Glamour magazine. No, not a satire.