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.
TO crate diggers and muso-nerds, this won’t be news at all, but to the occasional rock fan, you may not know that Led Zeppelin’s iconic ‘Stairway To Heaven’ has been accused of being a rip-off for quite some time.
And now, someone is suing the band over it.
Zep just so happen to be on the cusp of re-releasing their first three albums, which is handy as ‘Stairway’ is on the fourth and they might have to change the songwriting credits if they lose the case.
So what’s the craic?
THE Dos Equis guy has nothing on actor, William Smith. No – I didn’t say Will Smith. We’re not talking about the Fresh Prince here, folks. I’m talking about William Smith the world’s biggest badass and Renaissance Man.
Never heard of him? Although he’s been in over 300 movies and TV shows, William Smith was never much of a headline actor – usually playing a supporting role as the stereotypical tough-guy villain. You may recognize his face since he’s played everything from Conan the Barbarian’s father to the Russian commander in Red Dawn. But he’s by no means a household name.
ONE thing you can always rely on, with the music industry, is that someone is going to sue someone else, trying to stake a claim to a song, or music, they had no part in writing.
And people wonder why the music industry is on its arse.
This time, the High Court in London is hearing arguments in a copyright dispute over 13 songs by Bob Marley. You’ll know Bob Marley because, to 90% of the world, he’s the only human on Earth who ever recorded a reggae record.
FANS of the Black Keys are, like the band themselves, people who look back at a fabled ‘golden age’ of rock that doesn’t actually exist.
See, a lot of fans of bluesy dadrock will tell themselves that, once upon a time, music was made by ‘real’ people who played ‘real’ instruments. Everything was honest. The lunatic were ruling the asylum and people were able to express themselves artistically in a way that people aren’t now.
Of course, that’s complete piss. Music has always been a cesspool and decade on decade, there was exactly the same amount of great music and complete dreck thrown toward the public.
IF there’s one thing you can say about Mötley Crüe, is that their band name is a total pain in the arse to type on a computer, if you want to do it correctly.
Of course, there’s more to Mötley Crüe than that – they’re a hilarious hot-mess too.
It goes without saying that not everyone likes their music. However, as court jesters of rock ‘n’ roll, you can’t help but feel pleased they’re around. Media training is something that passed them all by and, in their day, they were rich, badly behaved and thick as pigshit – everything you’d want from a celebrity.
YOU may have seen Rita Ora’s face knocking around and indeed, may have heard some of her songs on the radio. However, putting the sounds to the face is a trickier prospect. While Miley Cyrus and One Direction swiped the pop crown from Lady GaGa and Taylor Swift (for a bit), Rita Ora is lording it up in the VIP section.
See, Rita Ora is being billed as a superstar without actually being one. And it looks like she’s believing in it too.
Obviously, Ora isn’t the first pop singer to be heralded and championed without reason, but there’s something unusual about this occasion.
IN this video Dr Brule plays the part of the love interest (formerly Scarlett Johansson) in Spike Jonze’s Her:
Set in the Los Angeles of the slight future, the story follows Theodore Twombly, a complex, soulful man who makes his living writing touching, personal letters for other people. Heartbroken after the end of a long relationship, he becomes intrigued with a new, advanced operating system, which promises to be an intuitive entity in its own right, individual to each user. Upon initiating it, he is delighted to meet “Dr. Steve Brule,” a childlike, male voice, who is severely naive, socially awkward and largely ignorant. As his needs and desires grow, in tandem with Theodore’s own, their friendship deepens into an eventual love for each other.
IN Nick Pisa’s report on the Rolf Harris sex trial, he tells Sky News readers:
The woman told the court she was assaulted in 1969 and was staying with friends when she woke up, came downstairs in her pyjamas and found Harris polishing wood.
PS – If you want to know the outcome of the case, it might be best not to check Mr Pisa against other sources.
DID you watch the film 12 Years A Slave and think ‘ nice threads, dude’?
You did. Because someone at Sainsbury’s heard your mind whirring and started offering shoppers the chance to dress like a black slave in the American deep south. You don’t need to be black to get the look. Sure it helps. But we don’t doubt that Sainsbury’s sensitive shop assistants at its Heyford Hill, Oxford, branch can direct you to boot polish section.
IT seems weird when really famous bands don’t get back together, especially when the lead singer is still alive. Look at Abba. Look at Talking Heads. Look at The Smiths.
Look at Led Zeppelin.
With the latter, Bonzo has obviously gone, but rest of them are still hanging around and even got it on for one night in London. So what’s the problem? Roll out the hits, don’t embarrass yourself and let everyone listen to ‘Black Dog’ really loud. Sounds like a winner, right?
Well, Jimmy Page has said that he is ‘fed up’ with Robert Plant for delaying Led Zeppelin reunion plans, so if you’re looking for someone to blame, blame ‘Percy’.
SHEILA Vogel-Coupe is back in the news. Connected X Factor wannabe Katie Waissel is the star of Channel 4’s My Granny The Escort. The Sun says Sheila is “Britain’s oldest prostitute — who charges £250 an hour for romps with men as young as 20.”
Adult woman has legal sex with mature men. Read all about it. When the story broke that Sheila was an embrace for hire, Sheila’s income suffered, as she told us: “Katie joined the X Factor and went to the press. She has ruined my career. I’m afraid she has. But I still wish her well and I love her.”
Sheila operated under the name Grand Dame Cecilia Bird. In 2010, the News of the World wrote about her in the story ‘Gum and get it’. The Sun called her the ‘£250-an-hour crinkly tart’ today in its customary cheapo recap of its sister paper’s exclusives.
Sheila entertains frustrated men in need of intelligent conversation, charming company and a harmless ejaculation while cradled in her arms.
HALLELUJA! It’s bearded space alien Jesus in a leisure suit is awesome at karate!
YouTuber theSadistVideos explains this 1986 ride:
A bearded ‘superman’ with no powers comes to earth in a powder-blue velour tracksuit to drive a silver dune buggy into an unrelated blaxploitation film about urban literacy. Appropriately released under two titles, this is Alien Warrior / King of the Streets !
THE Sun going for an Amy Willerton double-header today. In Colin Robertson’s story, Amy is at Cannes. No, not for a tanning, but for the film festival. Yes, the mo-del is an actor:
Amy got noticed. Chiefly by the Sun. Robertson trills:
A few months ago, during her appearance in I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here, Amy’s acting skills were shown to the world when she pretended she didn’t have contraband make-up with her in the jungle.
THE Sun can “exclusively reveal that “Brooklyn Beckham has landed a weekend job in a coffee shop”.
Teenager gets part-time job in shop is a shocker to the Sun, but comes as little surprise to we who have long known about Brooklyn’s appreciation of buns and pastries:
The Sun’s story is about how normal and unaffected Brooklyn the part-time model is with fame and fortune. He’s so normal that like many famous and rich people he has his own unnamed “source” to speak on his behalf to the media:
“Brooklyn has got the world at his fingertips and could have a life of luxury if he wanted — but the lad is not that way inclined… They’re chuffed they’re back in London too, as American children are more spoilt and that’s not what they want to instil in their own kids.”
BY now you’ll be wondering what Paraguayan model Larissa Riquelme has been up since showing off her mobile phone holders at World Cup 2010? Well, Larissa, who famously vowed to cover her body in the country’s colours (tangerine, old gold and ‘varicose blue’) if they beat Spain (they didn’t – but still she streked), has undergone liposuction in order be in shape for the demands of World Cup 2014, and new tablet-sized phones and gadgets. Lest we forget:
NOVEMBER 1 1965:
Liberace, piano virtuoso who became known as Mr. Showmanship, is shown with Elvis Presley at the Riviera Hotel in Las Vegas in November, 1956. (AP Photo)
GARETH Edwards’ Godzilla opens this week in theaters, and the question remains: will the new film assume its place among the classics of the giant monster movie genre, or falter badly instead, much like the 1998 version of the same material directed by Roland Emmerich?
Perhaps the answer to that question will only be answered by the passage of time. How will the new Godzilla age, given advances in special effects? Will the film’s central metaphor about Godzilla and nature prove as sturdy as the original Godzilla’s (1954) anti-nuclear message?
YOU’RE down the pub and someone walks in with a haircut like Steve Strange, and you shout “ALRIGHT SEAGULL HEAD?” If you don’t get a smack in the mouth, you go back to sipping your pint, chuckling to yourself.
Or maybe, you’re mucking around on Twitter and you see a selfie which is hilarious, so you screengrab it and share it with everyone, saying “Look at this fella! He looks like someone drew a dog on a butternut squash!”
When you get famous, you have to watch out for that because you’ll get branded as a cyberbully. Of course, everyone is a cyber bully from time-to-time. You slag off someone on TV? That’s basically the same thing? You call a writer from a newspaper names, that’s basically the same.
However, if you’re famous, EVERYBODY sees it.
And so, to Rihanna, who is being accused of cyberbullying after she took the piss out of a teen fan’s homemade prom outfit. Alexis Carter, a Baltimore high school student, designed a caped prom outfit which was inspired by an outfit worn by RiRi at the 2010 Echo Awards.
The outfit had a plunging neckline and a cape that resembled bat wings.
Carter’s photos were stumbled across and shared online, becoming a viral hit, with people referring to the girl as #PromBat. That was dismissed, but inevitably hurt. Then, Rihanna found them and posted about them, with a side-by-side comparison.
The second tweet compared the prom-semble to the Wu-Tang Clan logo.
“I was very offended,” Alexis said about Rihanna’s tweets. “Why throw shade on it when you had on the exact same thing. The poses was different but the outfit wasn’t.”
Carter was so unhappy with Rihanna’s tweets that she said she was no longer a fan, and that for her next prom, she would not dress up as her former idol. “She doesn’t love her fans like she says she does.”
Bants, going wrong since time began.
IN the 1970s, the glorious afro emerged into mainstream culture as an affirmation of Black African heritage and a rejection of Eurocentric standards of beauty. The popularity of this “natural” hair style among blacks is often traced back to activists Angela Davis and Stokely Carmichael. After their radical hair statement hit televisions screens across the US, it didn’t take long for it to become widely accepted. “Say It Loud, I’m Black and I’m Proud,” sang James Brown, who had also adopted the look.
And “the look” actually had many variations. We tend to think of the generic globe afro, but the styles in the 70s came in a dazzling variety…
Make no mistake, the afro is still alive and well; however, it by no means is at the level of popularity it enjoyed in the 1970s. So, in tribute to the Golden Age of the Afro, here are the top ten in no particular order.
Gamble was a decent baseball player, but nothing close to Hall of Fame level. However, he is perhaps better remembered than most of the names lining the halls of Cooperstown. This unique notoriety is due to a couple Gamble legacies.
First, there’s the infamous quote: “They don’t think it be like it is, but it do.” Originally a reference to racism in major league baseball, it has become a successful meme and viral quotation on the internet.
Second, there’s the mighty afro which Yankee’s manager, George Steinbrenner, forced him to crop. It was among the biggest in the sporting world, but it still doesn’t account for why he is so indelibly linked with the hairstyle. Look up any article on the subject and you will undoubtedly see his name brought up. And so, here he is again on Anorak, further cementing his status as symbol and spokesman for the mighty ‘fro.
After kicking ass and taking names in Blaxploitation flicks like Cleopatra Jones (1973) and Cleopatra Jones and the Casino of Gold (1975), Dobson (unlike her afro wearing counterpart, Pam Grier) faded into obscurity in the 1980s. But her fro will live on forever.
But wait, there’s another Tamara Dobson afro connection…
In the Buck Rogers in the 25th Century episode “Happy Birthday, Buck” (Season 1, Episode 15), Tamara Dobson played a non-afro wearing “psychic courier” named Raylyn. And while Tamara, herself, didn’t unleash her mighty ‘fro on the show, her co-star in this episode most certainly did. The incognito assassin, Traeger (played by Peter MacLean), sports what may be the most insanely terrible afro to ever grace the small screen.
There was an embarrassment of riches of Afrotastic musical acts in the Seventies, so it’s hard to choose the best. The Jackson 5 sported a worthy lineup of ‘fros, but the Sylvers kicked it up a notch and earns the prize.
Bob Ross’ show transcended painting – it was a life affirming stroll through inner peace. It was a land where “mistakes” were actually “happy accidents”. You could do no wrong in this world. Bob’s soft tones lulled your mind into a state of tranquility only achievable elsewhere via an overdose on Benzodiazepines .
And then there was the Ross ‘fro where literally small woodland creatures would make their home. His afro was as much a part of nature as the “happy trees” in his paintings. Indeed, Bob Ross’ hair wasn’t as much a fashion statement as it was a living, breathing ecosystem.
Luke Cage (AKA Power Man) and Black Lightning were some badass black superheroes, but neither had an exceptional ‘fro. So the honor should go to Misty Knight, a former police officer and kung-fu specialist with a bionic hand given to her by Iron Man. She always played a supporting role in her various comic book appearances. Her most notable moment came when she had an inter-racial relationship with Power-Man.
In later years, her costume got a change, exhibiting a “cleavage window” made famous by Power Girl. But while her costume may have changed, her ‘fro mercifully remained intact.
You can’t have a list of top afros and not name one of the main individuals responsible for popularizing it. Whether or not you subscribed to her radical views and pro-Communist stance, her ‘fro was all over the airwaves, hurtling the style into the mainstream.
There may be a number of people who earned the right to be called the “Fifth Beatle”, but only one sports an afro big enough to engulf a small child. As Stuart Mackenzie says in So, I Married an Axe Murder: “That’s a huge noggin. That’s a virtual planetoid… Has its own weather system.”
I could have easily chosen Barbara Streisand, who had a grand Jew-fro in the 70s. Conway Twitty, believe it or not, also wore a white-person ‘fro which was nothing to sneeze at. But Leo Sayer wins based on both circumference and flair. His was akin to Richard Simmons’, but without the male pattern baldness setting in.
Sure, this close-cut afro didn’t have the volume, but it was a groundbreaker. Tyson donned the natural style on the TV show East Side/West Side long before it achieved mainstream acceptance. Audiences were appalled and outraged, but it proved to be a huge stepping stone in the emergence of the afro in popular culture. Sure, Cicely has tons of awards and accolades for her acting, but this little accomplishment deserves some kudos as well.
OVER the years, there have been a veritable zoo of musical acts with animal names: The Monkees, The Turtles, Three Dog Night, Gorillaz, Echo & the Bunnymen, The Eagles, The Byrds, A Flock of Seagulls, etc. We could go on all the live-long day. And while that may be a fun mental exercise, there’s not much sport in it. We’re hunting rarer game – so, here are 10 records by lesser known musical species.
Mid-eighties heavy metal had quite the menagerie of animal band names: Whitesnake, White Lion, Glass Tiger, Great White, Def Leppard, Britny Fox… the list goes on and on. Please, by all means, drop some names in the comments section – we’d love to read them. (Take note: it doesn’t matter if the artist is named after an animal, only that an animal is within the name – in other words, both Cat Power and Cat Stephens will work!)
BENNET & BEE
Pop music is swarming with insect bands: The Beatles, Papa Roach, Iron Butterfly, Buddy Holly and the Crickets, W.A.S.P., Adam and the Ants, etc., but none compare to Bennet & Bee. Take a listen to their rendition of Sonny & Cher’s “I Got U Babe” and you can thank me later… Actually, you’ll probably curse my name with clenched fists and tears of rage, but let’s not split hairs.
LAS GATITAS (THE KITTENS)
Of all the feline named bands (Stray Cats, White Lion, Pussy Riot, El Tigre, Pantera, Faster Pussycat, etc.) Las Gatitas are my favorite. No, I actually have never heard any of their music. I just have a really good feeling about them.
THE BEAR BROTHERS
The Bear Brothers earn extra points for not only having an animal name, but also having a tacky zebra print background. Brother Bear on the left has what may very well be the greatest haircut ever worn by man. Part mullet, part pompadour, this is a head of hair to be reckoned with.
The only other Arthropod band I can think of at the moment are the Scorpions. Spider may be among the more obscure animal named bands, but still worth a listen..
Perhaps the most well-known marine band is Phish, but there are plenty more: The Eels, Jellyfish, Great White, Blue Oyster Cult, etc. In the 1970s, prog rock bands went by names like Gong, Can, Rush and Yes. Cod seems a natural fit.
Next to Sgt. Pepper, this may be the greatest album cover of all time. Yet, the Zebras never achieved the international recognition they clearly did not deserve. And while other hooved animal bands may have been more talented (Buffalo Springfield and Neil Young’s Crazyhorse, for instance), none made thumping baby-making music better than The Zebras.
Snoop Doggy Dog, The Bloodhound Gang, Three Dog Night, Fleet Foxes, Bow Wow Wow (does that count?), Steppenwolf, Samantha Fox and Los Lobos are some pretty well-known canine acts. But what about the late-seventies Chicago band, The Hounds? They were like Loverboy crossed with The Cars; unfortunately, they never got on board the MTV gravy train and The Hounds became roadkill.
Well, I certainly wish I had a video to share with you for the eponymous 1973 album by Wolf Moon. Alas, Wolf Moon is probably extinct – which is a shame because this is some serious booger-nosed funk, produced by the one and only Swamp Dogg (yet another animal artist). They don’t make ‘em like this anymore, folks.
I can think of no better way to end this list than with a Soul Train line dance. Enjoy Foxy’s “Get Off” whilst the Soul Train dancers teach you what it means to Get Down. Enjoy.
AUGUST 22, 1977:
Mourning fans of the late Elvis Presley, dance on a traffic island outside the Palais de Danse hall in Nottingham where the convention of the dead star’s official British fan club was held.
SINCE his first silver screen appearance in 1954, Toho’s giant monster Godzilla has starred in more than two dozen epic movies.
The big green lizard has been featured as a terrifying villain, as a defender of the Earth, and, occasionally, even traveled to American shores to wreak havoc. In this span, Godzilla has stood alone, acted as a tag team player (with friends like Anguirus and Rodan…), battled ancient threats to humanity, and even fended off alien invaders on more than one occasion (Monster Zero , Final Wars ).