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Monday, February 13, 2006

Alica Keys

Alica Keys (born January 25, 1981) is an American R&B/soul singer, songwriter,composer, record producer, and pianist. Keys is a renowned artist who has sold over 20 million albums and singles worldwide and won numerous awards, including nine Grammys,10 Billboard Music Awards and 3 American Music Awards.

Alica Family and musical background

Keys was born Alica Augello Cook to a Puerto Rican and Italian mother, Terri Augello, and a African-American father, Craig Cook, in Manhattan, New York, and was raised in the Hell's Kitchen neighborhood of New York City. She began playing piano when she was seven, learning classical music by composers such as Beethoven, Mozart, and her favorite Chopin. She wrote her first song "Butterflyz" at the age of fourteen; the song was later recorded for her debut album. Keys' mother and father separated during her early childhood, thus she was raised by her mother during her formative years; her mother was the one who most supported her during the time she was developing her musical talents. It has been reported by the press that Keys reconciled her relationship with her father [1]. However, Keys has denied this but says she does not hold on to negative feelings towards her father .

Alica Keys Education and early career

Keys graduated as valedictorian from the Professional Performing Arts School, a public high school in Manhattan at the age of sixteen. She briefly attended Columbia University on a scholarship before devoting herself to a full-time musical career. Keys signed a demo deal with Jermaine Dupri and his So So Def label, then distributed to Columbia Records. She wrote and recorded a song entitled "Dah Dee Dah (Sexy Thing)" which appeared on the soundtrack for the 1997 blockbuster, Men In Black. The song was Keys' first professional recording, it was never released as a single and her record contract with Columbia Records was ended quickly and Keys later met Clive Davis who signed her to Arista Records, which has since disbanded. Following her mentor Clive Davis to his newly-formed J Records label, she recorded songs "Rear View Mirror" and "Rock with you" which featured on the soundtracks to the movies Shaft (remake) and Nutty Professor: The Klumps respectively, both the films and the soundtracks were released in 2000. Keys then released her debut album Songs in A Minor in 2001, the title being a reference to both her classical aspirations and to the fact that she wrote most of the songs at a very young age.

ALica Keys Current activities

* Keys contributed her vocals to two tributes albums by late soul singers Ray Charles and Luther Vandross. Keys' duet with Jermaine Paul (one of her backing vocalists featured on her World Tours and on her Unplugged album) of Vandross' song "If This World Were Mine" can be heard on So Amazing: An All-Star Tribute to Luther Vandross, released in September 2005 [11], is currently nominated for the Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals. This is Keys' fifth nomination at the 2006 Grammy Awards. Keys duetted with the late Ray Charles on his song "America the Beautiful" as part of his tribute album Genius and Friends, also released in September 2005.

* Keys was approached by Jerry Bruckheimer to appear on the soundtrack for his basketball film "Glory Road." Keys is featured on three songs on the soundtrack. She sings "I Will Make the Darkness Light" and the duet "Glory Road" with Trevor Rabin and a cover with Lyfe Jennings of the Curtis Mayfield and the Impressions' classic "People Get Ready." The soundtrack was released on January 10, 2006 and the movie on January 13. Songs on the soundtrack and in the movie include Marvin Gaye's "Ain't That Peculiar," Stevie Wonder's "Uptight (Everything's Alright)", Martha and the Vandellas' "Dancing in the Street".

* Keys has already began working on her third studio album, which is likely to be released in 2007. Rollingstone magazine reported in December 2005 that Keys and her longtime songwriting partner Kerry "Krucial" Brothers will start working seriously on Keys' third studio album in the latter half of 2006. Keys has explained that her new upcoming album has a more edgier feel than her first two albums and she is keen to do strange and unexpected collobrations outside the R&B and Hip Hop worlds .

* Keys recently opened a new recording studio in New York, which she co-owns with her co-production and co-songwriting partner Kerry "Krucial" Brothers . Keys and Kerry Brothers are co-founders of KrucialKeys Enterprises, a production and songwriting team who assisted Keys in creating her award-winning albums as well as create music for other artists.

* Keys has finished shooting a film alongside Ben Affleck, Ray Liotta, Andy Garcia, Jeremy Piven and Ryan Reynolds entitled Smokin' Aces (scheduled for release in 2006), in which she plays an assassin. Keys has received much praise from her co-stars in the film; Ryan Reynolds said Keys has "natural" acting ability as he was suprised she had not starred in movies before. Keys will also play piano prodigy Philippa Schuyler in an upcoming movie entitled Compositions in Black and White scheduled for release in 2007 (shooting to begin in 2006).

* Keys and her longtime manager, Jeff Robinson, have formed a Televison production company called Big Pita. Their first project will be a US-UPN Network TV series inspired by Keys' experiences as a biracial youngster growing up in New York. Keys has been tapped to executively produce an upcoming TV drama. The title and airing date are presently unconfirmed


* VH1 conducted a recent poll that asked music lovers which artists topped their wish lists this holiday season (Christmas 2005). Keys' "Unplugged" ranked #2 in a telephone poll commissioned by VH1 that surveyed a random national sample of approximately 1,000 20-49 year-olds who listen to music. Ray Charles' "Genius and Friends" ranked #1.

* In 2005, TIME magazine named Keys one of "The Most Influential People In The World".

* In July 2005, The Sun newspaper reported that Keys had been voted the second most powerful artist in the pop industry in the Los Angeles Times 2005 Pop Power List, after fellow R&B star Usher. The list was compiled by producers such as Jermaine Dupri, Rick Rubin and entrepreneur Russell Simmons.

* Keys became an Honorary Member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. on September 24, 2004.

* She is seen in episode number 1-22 of "The Cosby Show". She played the role of a girl named Maria, who was one of Rudy's friends. She was then credited as her real name, "Alicia Cook". The episode was called "Slumber Party" and aired on March 28, 1985.

2005 Unplugged [CD & DVD]
2005 Unplugged
2004 Diary of Alicia Keys [Import Bonus Track]
2004 Diary of Alicia Keys [Germany Bonus CD]
2004 Diary of Alicia Keys [Australia Bonus CD]

2006 Smokin' Aces
2005 Shelter From the Storm: A Concert for the Gulf Coast
2004 With All Deliberate Speed
2003 Alicia Keys: From Start to Stardom

External links

Monday, February 06, 2006

Jodie Sweeten

Jodie Leanne Sweetin (born January 19, 1982 in Los Angeles, California) is an American actress best known for her role as "Stephanie Tanner" on the sitcom Full House. She stayed with the program for its entire run, from 1987-1995. It is said that the producers cast her in the role based on her smile.

Sweetin first stepped into showbiz by doing a hot dog ad. Her debut role was in The Hogan Family in 1987, in which she played Pamela, the niece of Mrs. Poole.

Following the end of Full House, she said she'd try to be a "normal" teenager. She graduated from Los Alamitos High School in 1999 and attended Chapman University in southern California from 1999-2003. She majored in mass communications, looking forward to a show business career in teaching acting. She was also a member of Alpha Phi Fraternity while in college.

Sweetin also did a few guest appearances on TV shows, such as Party of Five, Brotherly Love, and Yes, Dear, after Full House ended. She currently resides in Los Alamitos, California.

Sweetin married police officer Shaun Holguin on July 27, 2002 and her flower girl was Full House co-star Candace Cameron's daughter, Natasha. In 2006, she told Good Morning America that she was in the process of a divorce.

While on GMA, she also revealed that she voluntarily checked herself into rehab in March 2005 to recover from a methamphetamine addiction. She said she's now clean and sober and denied tabloid reports of a "three-day bender" and an intervention from her former Full House castmates.

During an appearance on Good Morning America, Sweetin, who played middle sister Stephanie Tanner on the hit sitcom Full House, revealed that she is a recovering meth addict and once battled a daily drug habit, reports E!Online.

The ex-actress, 24, said she had trouble figuring out how to adjust to a regular childhood existence after Full House ended its run in 1995.

External links

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Bubba Sparx

Bubba Sparxxx (born Warren Anderson Mathis on March 6, 1977, in LaGrange, Georgia) is an American rapper. Sparx is most notable for his 2001 hit single "Ugly", and for being, like Eminem, one of the few Caucasian rappers to find commercial success.

Bubba Spaarx is a native of LaGrange, Georgia, a young Andy Mathis was introduced to hip hop music by a neighbor (his closest at a half mile away) who received mixed tapes mailed from New York City. He began recording with Lil Devil in a group called One Card Shi in 1996, but the partnership did not last. A subsequent release saw some success in Georgia, and the album Dark Days, Bright Nights caught the attention of Jimmy Iovine of Interscope Records.

Bubba Sparx signed to Interscope after a bidding war and began working with record producers Timbaland and Organized Noize. The major-label version of Dark Days, Bright Nights, which now included five collaborations with Timbaland and two with Organized Noise, debuted at #3 on the Billboard Music Charts. In late 2003, he returned with his commercially interesting sophomore album, Deliverance.

Babba Sparx is currently signed to OutKast's Purple Ribbon Label, distributed through Virgin Records.


* Dark Days, Bright Nights (2001)
* Deliverance (2003)
* The Charm (2006)


From Dark Days, Bright Nights:

* "Ugly" (2001)
* "Lovely" (2002)

From Deliverance:

* "Deliverance" (2003)
* "Back in the Mud" (2003)

From The Charm:

* "The Other Side" (with Petey Pablo and Sleepy Brown) (2005)
* "Ms New Booty" (with The Ying Yang Twins) (2005) #85 US; #45 CHR/RHY; #6 BUB
* "Hey!") (2005)

Babba Sparx Links

Jhon Lennon

John Winston Lennon (later John Winston Ono Lennon) (October 9, 1940 – December 8, 1980) was best known as a singer, songwriter, poet and guitarist for the British rock band The Beatles. Jhon Lennon creative career also included the roles of solo musician, political activist, artist, actor and author. As half of the legendary Lennon-McCartney songwriting team, he heavily influenced the development of rock music, leading it towards more serious and political messages.

Jhon Lennon is recognized as one of the greatest music icons of the 20th century and many of his songs, such as "Imagine" and "Strawberry Fields Forever", are often ranked among the best songs in popular music history. In 2002, the BBC conducted a vote to discover the 100 Greatest Britons of all time, and the British public voted Lennon into 8th place.

Jhon Lennon Youth

Lennon was born in Liverpool 9 October 1940. Both of his parents had musical backgrounds and experience, though neither pursued them seriously. Lennon lived with his parents in Liverpool until his father Alfred (nicknamed Alf, and later "Freddy"), a merchant seaman, walked out on the family when John was five years old. (John later met with his father during his musical career) His mother Julia (under pressure from the local authorities) decided that she was unable to care for her son, and so gave him to her sister Mimi. Lennon lived with Aunt Mimi and her husband George at Mendips, 251 Menlove Avenue, Liverpool throughout the rest of his childhood and adolescence.

Like much of the population of Liverpool, Lennon had some Irish heritage. His grandfather, James Lennon, was born in Dublin in 1858, and his grandmother Mary (née Maguire), was Irish-born as well. John Lennon's mother Julia (née Stanley) was of Welsh descent. Although he had little exposure to his Irish heritage growing up, he came to identify with it later in life. He lived in the working class section of Liverpool, from where the Beatles emerged.

Lennon developed severe myopia as he grew up, and was obliged to wear glasses in order to see clearly. During his early Beatle career, Lennon wore contacts or prescription sunglasses (or simply "toughed it out" without them). In 1966, on the set of How I Won The War, Lennon was issued a pair of National Health spectacles. He continued to wear these round, wire-rimmed glasses which became part of his iconic public image.

Although John lived apart from his mother, he still kept in contact with her through regular visits, and during his younger years Julia cultivated his lifelong interest in music by teaching him how to play the banjo. She had actually learned the instrument from John's father when they were dating, and when John began to play guitar, he started out playing the same four-string chords, leaving the bass strings untuned. It wasn't until Paul McCartney entered John's life that John began to learn proper guitar chords.

On 15 July 1958, when John was 17, Julia was killed after being struck by a car driven by a drunk off-duty police officer. John had to go to the morgue to identify her body. Julia's death was one of the factors that cemented his friendship with McCartney, who had lost his own mother to breast cancer in 1956, when he was 14. The time of his mother's death was a very emotionally depressing time. Years later, Lennon wrote the songs "Julia", "Mother" and "My Mummy's Dead" regarding his mother, as well as naming his firstborn son, Julian, after her.

Though failing in grammar school, Lennon was accepted into the Liverpool College of Art with help from his school's headmaster and his Aunt Mimi. It was there that he met his future wife, Cynthia Powell. Lennon would steadily grow to hate the conformity of art school, which proved to be little different from his earlier school experience, and ultimately dropped out. He instead devoted himself to music, inspired by American Rock 'n' Roll and singers like Elvis Presley, Chuck Berry, Buddy Holly and Little Richard. He had started a skiffle band in grammar school called the Quarry Men (after his alma mater, Quarry Bank). With the addition of Paul McCartney and George Harrison, the band changed to playing rock 'n' roll, taking the name "Johnny and the Moondogs", followed by "The Silver Beetles" (a tribute to Buddy Holly's Crickets), which was later shortened to The Beatles. He married Powell in 1962, after she became pregnant with Julian.

Jhon Lennon Role in The Beatles

Lennon had a profound influence on rock and roll and in expanding the genre's boundaries during the 1960s. He is widely considered, along with songwriting partner Paul McCartney, as one of the most influential singer-songwriter-musicians of the 20th century. Many of the songs written exclusively or primarily by Lennon, however, are more introspective — often in the first person — and more personal than McCartney's. His most surreal pieces of songwriting, "Strawberry Fields Forever" and "I Am the Walrus", are fine examples of his unique style. Lennon's partnership in songwriting with McCartney many times involved him in complementing and counterbalancing McCartney's upbeat positive outlook with the other side of the coin, as one of their songs, "Getting Better" demonstrates:

The Break-up of The Beatles

The failed Get Back/Let It Be recording/filming sessions did nothing to improve relations within the band. After both Lennon and Ono were injured in the summer of 1969 in a car accident in Scotland, Lennon arranged for Ono to be constantly with him in the studio (including having a full-sized bed rolled in) as he worked on The Beatles' last album, Abbey Road. While the group managed to hang together to produce one last superior musical work, soon thereafter business issues related to Apple Corps came between them.

Lennon decided to quit The Beatles but was talked out of saying anything publicly. Phil Spector's involvement in trying to revive the Let It Be material then drove a further wedge between Lennon (who supported Spector) and McCartney (who opposed him). Though the split would only become legal some time later, Lennon and McCartney's partnership had come to a bitter end. McCartney soon made a press announcement, declaring he had quit The Beatles, and promoting his new solo record.

In 1970 Jann Wenner recorded an inteview with Lennon that was played on BBC in 2005. The interview reveals his bitterness towards Paul McCartney and the hostility of the other members towards Yoko Ono. Lennon said: "One of the main reasons the Beatles ended is because . . . I pretty well know, we got fed up with being sidemen for Paul. After Brian [Epstein] died we collapsed. Paul took over and supposedly led us. But what is leading us when we went round in circles? Paul had the impression we should be thankful for what he did, for keeping The Beatles going. But he kept it going for his own sake."

Jhon Lennon Solo career
John Lennon, early 1970; his Beatle locks shorn - as were Yoko's - for a charity auction.
John Lennon, early 1970; his Beatle locks shorn - as were Yoko's - for a charity auction.

Of the four former Beatles, Lennon had perhaps the most varied recording career. While he was still a Beatle, Lennon and Ono recorded three albums of experimental and difficult electronic music, Unfinished Music No.1: Two Virgins, Unfinished Music No.2: Life with the Lions, and Wedding Album. His first 'solo' album of popular music was Live Peace in Toronto 1969, recorded in 1969 (prior to the breakup of The Beatles) at the Rock 'n' Roll Festival in Toronto with The Plastic Ono Band, which included Eric Clapton and Klaus Voormann. He also recorded three singles in his initial solo phase, the anti-war anthem "Give Peace a Chance", "Cold Turkey" (about his struggles with heroin addiction) and "Instant Karma!"

Following The Beatles' split in 1970, he released the John Lennon/Plastic Ono Band album, a raw, brutally personal record, heavily influenced by Arthur Janov's Primal therapy, which Lennon had undergone previously. The influence of the therapy, which consists literally of screaming out one's emotional pain, is most obvious on the songs "Mother" ("Mama don't go!/Daddy come home!") and "Well Well Well." The centrepiece is "God," in which he lists all the things he does not believe in, ending with "Beatles". Many consider "Plastic Ono Band" to be a major influence on later hard rock and punk music. Lennon continued this effort to demythologize his old band with a long, confrontational interview published in Rolling Stone magazine.

This was followed in 1971 by Imagine, his most successful solo album, which alternates in tone between dreaminess and anger. The title track has become an anthem for anti-war movements, and was matched in image by Lennon's "white period" (white clothes, white piano, white room, etc).

Perhaps in reaction, his next album, Some Time in New York City, was loud, raucous, and explicitly political, with songs about prison riots, racial and sexual relations, the British role in the sectarian troubles in Northern Ireland, and his own problems in obtaining a United States Green Card. This record is generally seen as the nadir of Lennon's career, full of heavy-handed and simplistic messaging not redeemed by much artistic value. Lennon had been interested in left-wing politics since the late 1960s, and was alleged to have given donations to the Trotskyist Workers Revolutionary Party [3]. It was during the period of the recording of this album that his links to this group were perhaps at their strongest. On 30 August 1972 Lennon and his backing band Elephant's Memory staged two benefit concerts at Madison Square Garden in New York; it was to be his last full-length concert appearance. Lennon and Ono also did a week-long guest co-host stint on the Mike Douglas Show, in an appearance that showed Lennon's wit and humour still intact.

In 1972, Lennon released an anti-sexism song, "Woman Is the Nigger of the World", implying that as black people were discriminated against in some countries, so were women globally. Radio refused to broadcast the song, and it was banned nearly everywhere, although he managed to play it to television viewers during his second appearance in the The Dick Cavett Show.

Lennon rebounded in 1973 with Mind Games, which featured a strong title tune and some vague mumblings about a "conceptual country" called "Nutopia", which satirized his ongoing immigration case. His most striking song of that year was the wry "I'm the Greatest," which he wrote for Ringo Starr's very successful Ringo album.

In 1973, Lennon's personal life fell into disrepair when Yoko kicked John out of the house. Yoko approached May Pang, their personal assistant at the time, with a unique proposal. Yoko, who thought May Pang to be an "ideal companion" for John, asked her to "be with John and to help him out and see to it that he gets whatever he wanted." John and May soon moved to Los Angeles which had been dubbed the "lost weekend" though it lasted until the beginning of 1975. During their time together, May encouraged John to spend time with his son, Julian Lennon, and became friends with Cynthia Lennon. Though John's public drunkenness had been the subject of gossip during 1974, Pang wrote that John was usually sober in his private life and created a large body of work.

Despite alleged episodes of drunkenness, Lennon put together the well-received album, Walls and Bridges, which featured a collaboration with Elton John on the up-tempo number one hit "Whatever Gets You Thru the Night". Another top ten hit from the album was the Beatlesque reverie "#9 Dream". Lennon capped the year by making a surprise guest appearance at an Elton John concert in Madison Square Garden where they performed "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds", "Whatever Gets You Thru the Night" and "I Saw Her Standing There" together. It was to be his last-ever concert appearance.

In 1975, Lennon released the Rock 'n' Roll album of cover versions of old rock and roll songs of his youth. This project was complicated by Phil Spector's involvement as producer and by several legal battles; the result received generally negative reviews, though it yielded a powerful, lauded cover of "Stand by Me".
John Lennon and Yoko Ono in one of their last photo shoots, 21 November 1980
John Lennon and Yoko Ono in one of their last photo shoots, 21 November 1980

At this point Yoko was pregnant with what would be their first child, and Lennon — saddened by the fact that due to Beatlemania he had never gotten to experience fatherhood with his first son Julian — retired from music and dedicated himself to family life. This was made easier in 1976 when his US immigration status was finally resolved favourably, after a years-long battle with the Nixon administration that included an FBI investigation involving surveillance, wiretaps, and agents literally following Lennon around as he travelled. Lennon claimed the investigation was politically motivated.

Also in 1975, David Bowie achieved his first US number one hit with "Fame", co-written by Bowie, Lennon (who also contributed backing vocals) and Carlos Alomar.

Lennon's retirement, which he began following the birth of his second son, Sean in 1975, lasted until 1980 when Lennon, for the first time in five years, picked up his guitar again. At first only curious to see if he could still write music, he felt refreshed and full of ideas, completely reinvigorated by the experiences of fatherhood and the long break from the business. He wrote an impressive amount of material during a Caribbean vacation and began thinking about a new album. For this comeback, he and Ono produced Double Fantasy, a concept album dealing with their relationship. The name came from a flower Lennon saw at an exposition; he liked the name, and thought it was a perfect description of his marriage to Yoko. "(Just Like) Starting Over" began climbing the singles charts, and Lennon started thinking about a brand new world tour. Lennon also commenced work on Milk and Honey which he would leave unfinished. It was some time before Ono could bring herself to complete it.

Towards the end of his life, Lennon expressed his displeasure with the scant credit he was given as an influence on George Harrison in the latter's autobiography I Me Mine. According to Yoko, he was also unhappy that Paul McCartney's Beatles songs, such as "Yesterday", "Hey Jude" and "Let It Be" were more covered than his own contributions.


Throughout his solo career, Lennon appeared on his own albums (as well as those of other artists like Elton John) under such pseudonyms as Dr Winston O'Boogie, Mel Torment (a play on singer Mel Tormé), and The Reverend Fred Gherkin. He and Ono (as Ada Gherkin and other sobriquets) also travelled under such names, thus avoiding unwanted public attention.

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Angelina Joli

Angelina Joli (born Angelina Jolie Voight on June 4, 1975) is an Oscar-winning American actress.< Angelina Joli is known for her exotic looks, her tumultuous off-screen life, and her humanitarian work with refugees. She has received three Golden Globes as well as an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her performance in the film Girl, Interrupted.

Angelina Joli Biography

Angelina Jolie was born in Los Angeles, California, to actors Jon Voight and Marcheline Bertrand. She is the niece of Chip Taylor and the goddaughter of Jacqueline Bisset and Maximilian Schell. She is also the sister of James Haven. In a 2004 article in Vogue she stated that her mother is from Chicago. At the Premiere Magazine "Women in Hollywood" Awards she said her mom was born in a bowling alley and has stated that because of her name people often assume that her mother is French. Jolie's grandparents were French Canadian. Her paternal grandfather was from Czechoslovakia. Her mother also studied with Lee Strasberg. She is of Czech, French Canadian, English, and Iroquois descent. As a teenager, Jolie dreamed of becoming a funeral director.[1] She attended the Lee Strasberg Theatre Institute from the age of 11, later attending Beverly Hills High School. Though she enrolled at the film school at New York University after finishing Gia, she did not complete her studies.

Angelina Joli has been long estranged from her father, though a reconciliation was attempted by his appearing with her in Lara Croft: Tomb Raider. In the October 2004 issue of Premiere Magazine, Jolie indicated that she was no longer interested in pursuing a relationship with her father, but that she did not hate him but that she realized that "...we only have so much energy in this life." Soon after, he claimed that she has "serious emotional problems" on Access Hollywood, and she legally dropped Voight as her last name, taking "Angelina Jolie" as her legal name.


Her first starring role came in the 1995 movie Hackers.

In 1998 she achieved a major critical success, starring in the TV movie "Gia," the true tale of a '70s supermodel who died of AIDS. Jolie won Golden Globe, Screen Actors Guild and Golden Satellite awards, and was nominated for an Emmy. She also was honored at the Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Film Festival for her role as the bisexual model.

Angelna Joli had roles in several box office flops until 1999, when she co-starred in The Bone Collector with Denzel Washington and won an Oscar for Girl, Interrupted. Her first headlining blockbuster role came from 2001's video game based Lara Croft: Tomb Raider.

Several of her subsequent movies, such as Life or Something Like It, Alexander, and Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow , were major box office disappointments, although Jolie herself usually received good notices. She did provide the voice of Lola in the successful animated film, Shark Tale. Nonetheless she has become one of Hollywood's most "in-demand" actresses. Following the success of Mr. & Mrs. Smith, she's set to earn up to $15 million to star in the film The Good Shepherd.

Besides her acting and humanitarian endeavors, Jolie has also worked as a professional model in London, New York and Los Angeles and appeared in numerous music videos including those of Korn, Meat Loaf, Lenny Kravitz, and The Rolling Stones.

Angelina Joli is preparing for the next Sin City movie


Reggaton is a form of dance music which became popular with Latin American youth during the late 1990s and spread to North American and European audiences during the first few years of the 21st century. Reggaton (also spelled with the Spanish accent as Reggaetón, and sometimes as Reguetón in Spanish) - blends Jamaican music influences of reggae and dancehall with those of Latin America, such as bomba and plena, as well as that of hip hop. The music is also combined with rapping (generally) in Spanish. Reggaeton has empowered the Spanish Caribbean youth,

Reggaton Distinguishing features

The genre's most notably unique feature is a driving drum-machine track, almost identical across different songs, derived from Trinidadian soca music and Jamaican dancehall rhythms. This beat is called "Dem Bow" after the beat in a Shabba Ranks song of the same name. It has been heavily influenced by other forms of electronic dance music, such as techno, house, and genres such as the merengue hip hop (also called merenhouse) of groups such as Proyecto Uno and Zona 7.

Reggaton History

The birthplace of the music genre is a subject of debate between those who believe it was started in Panama and those who believe it originated in Puerto Rico, however, it is known that the first Latin American reggae recordings were made in Panama during the 1970s. Reportedly, Reggae is said first to have arrived in Latin America with Jamaican labourers who came to help build the Panama Canal in the early 20th Century.

Artists such as El General, Nando Boom, Chicho Man, Rene Renegado, Black Apache are considered the first raggamuffin deejays from Panama. El General has been identified as one of the fathers of reggaeton, blending Jamaican reggae into a Latin-ised version

Meanwhile, during the 1980s the Puerto Rican rapper Vico C released Spanish-language hip hop records in his native country. His production of cassettes throughout the 1980s, mixing reggae and hip hop, helped spread the early reggaeton sound, and he is widely credited with this achievement. At this point the two main influences of the genre were in place, as well as the two main producing countries.

During the 1990s reggae production took off seriously in Panama; this also occurred separately in Puerto Rico due to the increased popularity of Jamaican ragga imports. It was common practice to translate the lyrics of Jamaican reggae song into Spanish and sing them over the original melodies. Towards the middle of the decade, Puerto Ricans were producing their own "riddims" with clear influences from hip hop and other styles. These are considered the first proper reggaeton tracks, initially called "under", a short form of "Underground". The 'under' scene widened when Puerto Rican and Cuban styles mixed with Panamanian-style reggae. DJ Playero was one of the most famous producers at the time, releasing several "underground" cassettes that featured early performances of some soon-to-be-famous artists like Daddy Yankee.

The genre morphed through the years, at various points being termed Melaza, musica underground and reggae de Puerto Rico. A breakthrough was by the Jamaican artist Shabba Ranks who released a track Dem Bow in the early 1990s. The beat and rhythm from this song became the eventual background for the developing genre; at one point the genre became known as Dem Bow.

The name reggaeton only gained prominence in the mid-1990s (from the 1994 to 1995 period), with the Dem Bow beat characterizing the genre; this is in contrast to the more reggae, dancehall and hip hop -derived tracks previously created. The name was reportedly created in Puerto Rico to signify the hybrid sound created from the years of mixing the different genres. Today, the music flourishes throughout Latin America.

Reggaeton soon increased in popularity with Latino youth in the United States when DJ Blass worked with artists such as Plan B and Speedy in albums such as Reggaeton Sex. The first song which introduced Reggaeton to a big amount of fans is the song Tra Tra by Don Chezina. From there on reggaeton gained fans with songs such as Amor Con La Ropa by Speedy, No Puedo Estar Sin Sexo by Plan B, and Dembow by Yandel.

Reggaeton expanded and became known when other producers followed the steps of DJ Playero, like DJ Nelson and DJ Eric. In the mid 90s albums like Playero 37 (In which Daddy Yankee became known) and The Noise 5 and 6 were very popular in Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic. Singers like Don Chezina, Master Joe, Mey Vidal, Baby Rasta Y Gringo, Polaco among others were very popular.

Many now popular producers, such as Noreaga, Luny Tunes, and Eliel, first appeared in the reggaeton scene in 2003. Albums such as Mas Flow, The Last Don, and Las Gargolas 4 expanded reggaeton's popularity among Hispanics in the United States.

2004 was the year that reggaeton gained widespread popularity in the United States, eventually gaining attention in many 'Western' countries. This has been due to N.O.R.E. introducing the genre on to mainstream America with the song Oye Mi Canto, and when Daddy Yankee came out with his album Barrio Fino and his hit single Gasolina. Another important artist that contribuited to gain popularity to reggaeton, especially in Europe, is Don Omar, with singles like 'Pobre Diabla' and 'Dale Don Dale'.

Reggaeton has been a huge hit all across the globe, especially in Latin American countries, such as the Caribbean nations like Colombia, Venezuela, and in some Central American countries. In some countries (such as Venezuela, with Calle Ciega, Doble Impakto and Mr. Brian), domestic "reggaetoneros" have arisen, expanding the Pan-latin feel of the genre. Reggaeton has become staple music in most reunions and parties across Venezuela, complementing the common mix of merengue, salsa and "changa" (mostly everything from Trance to House, electronic music) and has paved a huge fan base all across the country.

Today Reggaton continues to see growth, with new artists and new fans in regions across the world.

Julez Santana

Julez Santana (born LaRon Louis James on February 18, 1982)
is a half African American and half dominican rapper from Harlem, who first became known for his "featured" status on Cam'ron's 2002 hits, "Oh Boy" and "Hey Ma".

Juelz Music career

Santana began writing rhymes at the age of 12. He was originally signed to Priority Records as one half a duo called Draft Pick. The group had several shows around New York City while together, including Amateur Night at the Apollo Theatre, where they won two weeks in a row. Some time after this, he was introduced to Cam'ron through a cousin; in 1998, he became a member of the group, The Diplomats, whose members include Cam'ron, Jim Jones, 40 Cal, J.R Writer, Hell Rell, Jha-Jha, SAS, and Freekey Zeekey. He is now signed as a solo artist to DipSet but unlike the rest of The Diplomats, who are signed to Koch Records, Santana is currently signed to Def Jam.

He was voted #2 in the VIBE Vixen top 50 sexiest rappers behind T.I. at #1.

In his latest work, his second album, "What The Game's Been Missing!", he continues his unique flow. He was featured in Chris Brown's #1 hit "Run It!" and in the remix of Mariah Carey's # 1 single "Don't Forget About Us". Santana also had the summer hit "Mic Check" which also is on "What The Game's Been Missing!"

Juelz is best known for his ability to flow without any specific rhyme scheme.

9/11 Lyrics controversy

He is well known for the controversy over his words about the September 11th, 2001 terrorist attacks, "I worship the late prophet/The great Mohammed Omar Atta/For his courage behind the wheel of the plane/Reminds me of when I was dealing caine". (The August 2nd New York Post called the lyrics "detestable".) "I didn't say nothing bad about September 11th", says Santana. "I just stated the fact of Atta's courage. A lot of people are not willing to do what he did, and that's the same way I feel about my Diplomat family. I'd do anything for them, and he did anything for what he believed in."

His lyrics on Cam'ron's track "I Love You" on Diplomatic Immunity Disc Two (2003) are as follows: "I still smell the rotting people that lay/down in Ground Zero/forgotten, left there for days/probably left there to stay/left to decay/broken pieces of towers left as their graves/I pray: let them be saved.

Year Title
2002 Oh Boy (Cam'ron feat. Juelz Sanatana)
2002 Hey Ma (Cam'ron feat.Juelz Santana)
2005 Mic Check
2005 Run It! (Chris Brown feat. Juelz Santana)
2005 There It Go (The Whistle Song)
2005 Oh Yes


Gorrillaz is a virtual band, comprised of four fictional animated band members: 2D, Murdoc, Noodle and Russel. They play a variety of music styles – to quote one of their lyrics, they have recorded everything from "Rap, Hip-Hop, Punk, Ska, to Heavy Metal". The band was created by Damon Albarn from the Britpop band Blur, and Jamie Hewlett, the creator of the comic book Tank Girl.

The band's first album, 2001's Gorillaz, sold over 3 million copies and earned them an entry in the Guinness Book of Records as the Most Successful Virtual Band

Gorillaz Early career (1998–2000)

The people behind Gorillaz, Damon Albarn and Jamie Hewlett, formed in April 1998. They originally identified themselves under the name "Gorilla," and first song they recorded was "Ghost Train" (1998), later released as a B-side on their single "Rock the House" and "G-Sides".

Gorrillaz Fictional band history

The backstory of the animated band members of Gorrillaz, as established by Albarn and Hewlett.

The story of Gorrillaz begins in 1997. Stu-Pot was a mentally deficient keyboard enthusiast and star employee at Uncle Norm's Organ Emporium. Satanist hoodlum Murdoc Niccals decided to ramraid Uncle Norm's Organ Emporium to procure synthesizer equipment in order to establish a "chart topping" musical group. However, Murdoc ended up driving his Vauxhall Astra through the building and directly into Stu-Pot, permanently damaging ("fracturing") Stu-Pot's left eye and putting him into a catatonic state. Murdoc was sentenced to "30,000 hours of community service, plus 10 hours every week of caring for the vegetabilised Stu-Pot". Not long after, Murdoc again injured Stu-Pot in an car accident in Nottingham's Tesco parking lot when attempting a 360°, which permanently damaged Stu-Pot's right eye, but revived him from his coma. Murdoc then recruited the newly recovered (albeit still mentally defective) Stu-Pot as the keyboardist and vocalist for his group, re-dubbing him 2D for the matching pair of dents in his head from the accidents.

Murdoc then found a drummer for the group in a Soho rap record store: African-American expatriate Russel Hobbs. Russel was a middle-class New York native and was deeply troubled as a youth. He was expelled from an expensive private school for suffering from demonic possession. The trauma of said possession resulted in a four year coma from which Russel was roused only by an elaborately executed exorcism. After his recovery, Russel began attending Brooklyn High School, where he quickly cultivated friendships with a group of rappers, DJs, and street musicians. He has said that "hip-hop saved [his] soul."

This was a short-lived respite, however, as all of Russel's newfound friends were suddenly gunned-down one night in a drive-by shooting. Russel, the sole survivor, became the unwilling receptacle for the spirits of all of his slain compatriots, most notable of whom was the rhyme dropping blue phantom, Del. With their latent possession of his body, Russel gained incredible musical prowess in percussion, rap, and hip-hop as well as a disturbing side-effect: his eyes glowed an eerie white. With this new and violent turn of events, Russel's family shipped him off to England in hopes of helping him recover from his traumas quietly -- not realizing they'd put him directly into the path of Murdoc's aspirations to superstardom, and the excesses that came along with it.

At that point, all the fledgling group needed was a guitarist. Like so many British bands before them, the trio placed an advertisement in NME. The very day the ad ran, a FedEx freight container from Japan was delivered to their doorstep and out jumped a mysterious amnesiac 10-year-old wielding a Gibson Les Paul. The tiny girl made an incomprehensible introduction in Japanese and tore into a "riff to end all riffs" which ended with an impressive karate kick to the air. She then spoke a single word in English to the stunned boys, which became her moniker: "Noodle". In the later part of 1998, the Gorillaz played their first show at the Camden Brownhouse which ended prematurely due to a riot during their song "Punk". EMI A&R man Whiffy Smiffy discharged several rounds from shotgun to disperse the crowd enough to make his way to the stage and quickly signed them to the label. Ten months later they had recorded their self-titled debut LP.

In the winter of 1999 Murdoc acquired the property of Kong Studios, a sprawling haunted studio with a rather shady history, situated atop a hill in the midst of a run-down cemetery and landfill in Districtshire, Essex. The Gorillaz lived and recorded in Kong Studios up until their 2002 11-month tour of North America. At the end of July of that year, the Gorillaz took a six month break in L.A.. There they attempted to get a movie project off the ground. Meanwhile, that Halloween, Kong Studios had been shut down tight in its owner's absence by local law enforcement after an unknown man was seen running, naked and in hysterics, in the marshes near the studio. The police proceeded to keep the area secured while they investigated the strange paranormal events surrounding Kong. The Gorillaz spent the interim period working on their movie, while living in a large rented home in the Hollywood Hills.

Alas, the film was not meant to be, due in part to extensive over-partying, in-fighting, and disagreements with producers, directors, and a notable incident of Murdoc getting himself banned from the Playboy Mansion for stealing ashtrays. Understandably, at this point the Gorillaz went on a year and half hiatus, each of the members going their separate ways to find themselves. Murdoc headed to Mexico to booze it up in Tijuana brothels, getting himself arrested for passing bad cheques in the process. He enjoyed little company in his Mexican jail cell aside from his raven, Cortez, and two Mexican mobsters who would later help break him out. 2D went back home to work for his father at his carnival, re-establish his grip on reality, and come to terms with his newfound pop icon status with the ladies.

Russel disappeared into the States to literally and figuratively exorcise his personal demons, regrettably including the ghost of Del, leaving Russel a mentally and spiritually exhausted wandering shadow of the man he once was. After shambling around Los Angeles for some time, Russel was taken in by Ike Turner and helped to recover, and while living in Turner's basement Russel recorded his own solo album which was shelved due to strange supernatural activity inherent in the music itself, which Russel described as something of a "cosmic disruption".

Noodle travelled to Japan, in a fruitful attempt to uncover the secrets of her own past which included not only the revelation that she was a test subject in a secret government super soldier project, but that she also speaks fluent English. Armed with her newfound knowledge and iron resolve, Noodle was the first to return to Kong Studios. There she went to task battling the zombie and monster-infested darkness of the building, set up the "Search For A Star" contest, and began the process of pulling the band back together to record their new album, Demon Days.

Gorrillz Band members

Cartoon members

2D (about 27, born in 1978) - vocals, keyboard
Murdoc Niccals (39, born June 6, 1966) - bass
Noodle (about 14, born in 1991) - guitar, vocals
Russel Hobbs (about 31) - drums, percussion

In phase one, Del, the blue phantom in the "Clint Eastwood" & "Rock the House" music videos and the Gorilla Bite "Jump The Gut" was, one could say, another band member. In 2003, he was exorcised; it took Russel a year to recover. (In real life Albarn and Hewlett didn't ask the real Del to come back.)

2D's ex-girlfriend Paula was the band's original guitarist. She was ultimately dropped and replaced with Noodle after Paula was caught having an affair with Murdoc in the studio restroom. The state of Murdoc's nose today is a direct result of Russel breaking it in seven or eight different places. This would not be the last affair Murdoc would have with one of 2D's girlfriends; the second affair was with Rachel Stevens of S Club 7. (In reality, Paula was removed because Albarn & Hewlett thought she was too similar to Murdoc.)

Note that the establishment of Murdoc's birthday and the celebration of it numerous times on the official fansite proves that the cartoon band members do age. The music video for "DARE" has also seen physical change in Noodle over 4 years. In 2000 when the "Tomorrow Comes Today" EP was released, the accompanying promotional booklet stated that their ages were 23, 34, 10 and 27. These are not their current ages.

According to the original promotional booklet, Noodle is 14 as of January 2006. However, there seems to be quite a bit of confusion about it, even for Noodle herself. She has repeatedly referred to herself as '13' during 2005. She stated she was '15' during a (live) Habbo Hotel interview, and in direct interviews (e.g. her 2005 NME interview). Noodle's multiple and varied assertions of her age could be attributed to errors by various people doing promotional work, such as magazine editors.

Actual members

There have been waves of speculation and controversy surrounding who is actually behind Gorillaz ever since "Tomorrow Comes Today" was first released. In the half-hour TV mockumentary Charts Of Darkness it was explicitly stated that Damon Albarn and Jamie Hewlett were behind the project. However, many people work on various aspects of Gorillaz. To quote Albarn, "There could be fifty [people] here, but there's two."

Many fans believe guest artists listed in the liner notes of the first album complete the band with this lineup: Albarn as 2D, Hewlett or Dan "The Automator" Nakamura as Murdoc, former Cibo Matto vocalist Miho Hatori as Noodle, and Del Tha Funkee Homosapien of Deltron 3030 as Russel.

The band's artwork and music videos are created by Zombie Flesh Eaters (Hewlett's own company) and Passion Pictures (animators including Pete Candeland and 2000AD artist Rufus Dayglo).

For example, there are several people who make up the identity of "Noodle", including: Miho Hatori and Talking Heads' Tina Weymouth, who both provided the singing vocals for Noodle on the first album; Haruka Kuroda, an actress who provides Noodle's speaking voice; Rosie Wilson, who performs Noodle's lead vocal in "DARE"; or Simon Katz, Simon Tong, and Damon Albarn himself, who have all played guitar for Gorrillaz at some point.

During the "hidden" credits to the DVD Phase One: Celebrity Take Down, it states the names of the creators, the voice talents and those responsible for performing live. The list of integral performers in the group changed drastically for the second album, with the exception of Albarn himself.

In short, the Gorrillaz as real human beings don't exist. Rather, they represent all the people working on the project. For a more or less complete list of people involved in Gorrillaz, see this site.

Daddy Yanky

Raymond Ayala (born on February 3, 1977 in Río Piedras, Puerto Rico), known publicly as Daddy Yanky, is a successful reggaeton recording artist.

Ayala's rapid ascent to wealth and fame is a result of the hit song "Gasolina", from his 2004 album "Barrio Fino". The album has sold over 1,000,000 copies in Puerto Rico alone and has also sold well in the United States and Europe. He has appeared on over 70 albums, including compilations such as; "Más Flow 2" and "Blin Blin Vol. 1". Ayala is famous for recording songs in both English and Spanish, although the latter is more prominently used.

Daddy Yanky first became involved in recording music in the early 1990s alongside Playero DJ, a pioneer of reggaeton music. He has also performed with Nicky Jam, Luny Tunes, DJ Blass, DJ Eric, Eliel, Nas, DJ Tony Touch and many others.

In 2005, Ayala was cast in a Paramount Pictures film, tentatively titled "Talento de Barrio" (Barrio talent). Ayala says that although the movie is not autobiographical, it does represent the lives of himself and others living on the streets of Latin America. The movie is expected to première in theaters in February 2006.

Also due out in 2006 is Ayala's own clothing line, titled DY. He has also teamed up with Reebok to have his own shoes and sporting goods, also to be available in 2006.

With over 15 years of upward growth in the entertainment industry and the Latin music scene, Daddy Yankee has developed to be one of the most respected and influential reggaeton artists.

Yankee’s carefully crafted lyrics and his free-style abilities have allowed him to share his views and reach the masses, regardless of his intentions. From love to socially-saturated comments on the everyday Puerto Rican culture, many of his songs have remained solid in the club scene and are considered reggaeton classics.

Yankee’s constant focus and rapid development have allowed him to collaborate with artists such as NAS (they recorded “The Profecy” together) and a track with mix tape legend and acclaimed Dj Tony Touch for his “The Peace Maker” album. Daddy was also invited for a cameo appearance in Terror Squad’s video “100% Percent” while his “PosiciÛn” track was also included in “One Tough Cop” soundtrack.

Without a doubt, his record sales confirm his success and popularity within Latin Music. All of his albums, ØEl Cartel de Yankee˜; ØEl Cartel de Yankee II˜; ØEl˜ and ØLos Home-runes˜, have all received platinum status. In 2002, “El” was the biggest selling album in Puerto Rico, his hometown and one of the most prestigious markets within Latin Music.

2003 was one of the most important years in Yankee’s career. Shortly after “Los Home-Runes” album achieved record-breaking sales, one his life-long dreams came true… a full house (12,000+) danced along with him in Puerto Rico’s historic Roberto Clemente Coliseum. The fans went wild as the press acclaimed his ability to bring the house down with his outstanding ability to free-style and his energetic stage performance. The show titled “Ahora Le Toca Al Cangri” quickly turned into Yankee’s most important and a historic moment in reggaeton music.

Without a doubt, his fan’s support along with his personal desire to share his vision with upcoming artists have been key in his development as “El Cangri’s Inc.” and “El Cartel Records” founder and lead producer.

Currently, Yankee has been touring Latin America and The United States gathering thousands of fans in each region. Just recently in Colombia, Yankee performed in front of over 60,000 screaming fans. Also, his energy and dedication to his career have allowed him to record over 130 tracks in as many as 70 feature reggaeton albums.

Finally, in July of 2004, arrives Barrio Fino, the most anticipated album launch in Regetton music. Being a loyal Salsa fan since childhood, this album allowed him to collaborate with one of Puerto Rico’s legendary Salsa’s singers, Andy MontaÒez in “Melao” and is by far, his most complete Album. His goal with the Barrio Fino is to not only maintain his place within the reggaeton music scene but to also introduce the genre and cross-over within the competitive Anglo market.

Daddy Yankee’s “Barrio Fino” album will be supported with a tour and performances in countries like the United States, Puerto Rico, Honduras, Nicaragua, Colombia, Ecuador, Per?, Panam·, Spain, Argentina, Mexico, Venezuela and Santo Domingo to name a few.



1995 No Mercy
2000 El Cartel
2001 El Cartel II
2002 El
2003 Los Homerun-Es Vol. 1
2004 Barrio Fino (2 million world wide)
2005 Ahora Le Toca al Cangri Live (with DJ Nelson)
2005 Barrio Fino En Directo (Live) (US Sales: 100,000(1st week) Worldwide pre-sales: 1,000,000]
2006 El Cartel III


2004: "Gasolina" #1 US LATIN, #5 UK, #12 France, #27 Japan,#3 Italy,#1 Mexico,#1 Spain #1 Colombia #21 Australia
2004: "Lo Que Pasó, Pasó" #2 US LATIN
2004: "Like You" #78 US
2005: "Rompe" #1 US LATIN (True Crime: New York City) soundtrack
2005: "Tu Principe" ft. Zion y Lennox
2006: "Gangsta Zone" ft. Snoop Dogg

Friday, February 03, 2006


Emenim, (born Marshall Bruce Mathers III on October 17, 1972 in Kansas City, Missouri), a Grammy and Oscar-winner, is one of today's most popular and controversial rappers. Emenim currently lives in suburban Detroit and is of mostly Scottish-American descent.

Discovered by rapper/producer Dr. Dre, Emenim is known as one of the most skillful, successful and controversial rappers in the industry. He is noted for his ability to change his own verbal pace ("flow") and style multiple times within one song without losing the beat. Emenim is also praised for his skill in alliteration and assonance. He is infamous for the controversy surrounding many of his lyrics. With the enormous success of his sophomore album The Marshall Mathers LP following its release in May 2000, and its subsequent nomination for four Grammy awards including Album of the Year, critics such as GLAAD denounced his lyrics as homophobic, while others complained that it was also extremely misogynistic and violent. However, he has received a great deal of praise within the hip-hop community for his lyrical ability. He is the second-highest selling rapper of all time, behind Tupac, though the latter has had several posthumous albums released.

While generally avoiding overtly political tones previously, in late 2004 before the presidential election, Emenim released the song "Mosh," which harshly criticizes President George W. Bush. Encore, Mathers' fourth major-label album, was released later that year, but was considered by many critics to be a disappointment in comparison to his previous three albums and sold half of what The Emenim Show had. Though Emenim considers himself neither a militant nor a political artist, he did have his own Hip Hop Political Convention as a parody of the national political conventions held in 2004. His latest release is Curtain Call: The Hits, a compilation which covers many of his past hit songs, and includes three new tracks.

Emenim Early career

Interested in rap from a young age, Mathers began performing as early as thirteen, later gaining some popularity with a group, Soul Intent. In 1996, he released his first independent album, named Infinite (of which he sold about 500 copies out of the back of his car.) The album received no airplay and a mixed critical response, with people claiming Eminem's rapping style sounded too similar to Nas and AZ. Drawing on the negative experiences of his life, in 1997 Eminem followed Infinite up with The Slim Shady EP demo, which saw his lyrics take a decidedly darker turn. He became famous in the hip-hop underground because of his distinctive, cartoonish style and the fact that he was white in a predominantly black genre. Fellow rapper Snoop Dogg referred to him as rap's "great white American hope" in the song "Bitch Please II".

It is said that rap artist and producer Dr. Dre found Emenim's demo on the garage floor of Jimmy Iovine, the Interscope label chief. Though this did not directly lead to a recording contract, Dr. Dre agreed to sign him when Eminem won second place vs. Otherwize at the 1997 Rap Olympics MC battle. Other sources state that an executive at the offices of Interscope handed the demo to Iovine who passed it to Dre, which resulted in a contract.

Emenim Entering the mainstream

Once he joined Interscope, Emenim released The Slim Shady LP, which went on to be one of the most popular records of 1999, going triple platinum by the end of the year. With the album's enormous popularity came controversy surrounding many of the album's lyrics. In "'97 Bonnie and Clyde", Emenim describes a trip with his infant daughter, disposing of the body of his wife. Another song, "Guilty Conscience," ends with Emenim encouraging a man to murder his wife and her lover.

The Marshall Mathers LP was released in May 2000, quickly selling 2 million copies. The first single released from the album, The Real Slim Shady, was a smash -- thanks in part to the catchy rhythm and chorus line, "Won't the real Slim Shady please stand up, please stand up, please stand up?" (adapted from the catch phrase of the TV quiz show To Tell the Truth). It also created some buzz by trash-talking celebrities and making dubious claims about them. In the song, Emenim claims, among other things, that Christina Aguilera gave "head" (oral sex) to Fred Durst (of Limp Bizkit) and Carson Daly (of MTV's Total Request Live). In his second single, "The Way I Am," he reveals to his fans the pressures from his record company to top "My Name Is" and sell more records, and dismisses the alleged controversial link between music such as that of Marilyn Manson and shootings such as at Columbine High School as absurd, instead blaming the parents. In the third single, "Stan" (which samples Dido's "Thank You"), Emenim attempts to deal with his new-found fame, telling the story of a fan so obsessed with Emenim that the fan winds up killing himself and his pregnant girlfriend, mirroring one of the songs on The Slim Shady LP. It is now considered to be one of the classics of the genre.

Emenim Other works and ventures

Emenim made his Hollywood acting debut with the semi-autobiographical 8 Mile, released in November 2002. He recorded several new songs for the soundtrack, including "Lose Yourself," which won Eminem an Academy Award for Best Song; it was not performed at the ceremony, reportedly because ABC wanted him to perform an edited version.

Emenim has done some voice acting, both on Crank Yankers and a web cartoon called "The Slim Shady Show", which has since been pulled offline and is instead sold on DVD.

Emenim has also been linked to "Songs of Hope" by U2 and supported the Boys and Girls Club of America and the Leary Fire Fighters Foundation with various proceeds donated to these causes. In 2004, he held a political convention of his own in New York City, in response to the National Republican Convention. In the song "Mosh", Eminem expresses his support for American troops, but speaks against the Iraq war and the Bush administration. The Raelians Religious Movement, a religious group whose beliefs are centered around communication with extraterrestrial life tried to appoint Eminem as an honorary priest . In addition, he has raised AIDS and other STD awareness in a number of songs portraying infected people having promiscuous sex with numerous partners.

Emenim Shady Records

Dr. Dre's leading protégé succeeded in multi-platinum record sales. Emenim was granted his own record label, a sublabel of Aftermath Entertainment, on which all of his albums so far have been released. He and his manager Paul Rosenberg created Shady Records in late 2000. Emenim and Dr. Dre had signed 50 Cent on a joint venture between Aftermath & Shady Records. His own Detroit collective D12 and rapper Obie Trice were signed to the Shady Records label. In 2003, Eminem and Dr. Dre signed on Atlanta rapper Stat Quo to the roster. DJ Green Lantern, the former deejay for Eminem, was signed to Shady Records until a dispute with 50 Cent forced him to depart from the label, and he is no longer associated with Eminem. The Alchemist is now officially Emenim's tour deejay. In 2005, Eminem officially signed another Atlanta rapper known as Bobby Creekwater to his label. There are also plans to sign a rapper by the name of Fizzy B to Shady Records.

Emenim signed a deal with Sirius Satellite Radio to program a rap-oriented station called Shade 45, which debuted on October 28, 2004. He also owns a clothing line called "Shady Ltd."

Eminem as a producer

Emenim is also active as a producer of rap records. Besides being the executive producer of D12's two albums, Devil's Night and D12 World, he has also produced numerous tracks on Obie Trice's Cheers as well as 50 Cent's Get Rich or Die Tryin' and The Massacre. Most of the The Eminem Show was produced by Eminem himself, with co-production from longtime collaborator Jeff Bass. He split the production with Dr. Dre on Encore. He also executive-produced 2Pac's posthumous album Loyal to the Game with 2Pac's mother Afeni Shakur. On certain tracks, 2Pac's voice was slowed down or sped up, and digitally altered to say things like "2005" and "G-Unit," angering devoted 2Pac fans.

Emenim in D12

In 2001, Emenim brought the rap group he was a member of, D12, to the popular music scene. In 2001, D12 released their hit debut album titled Devil's Night. The first single released off of the album was "Purple Pills," an ode to recreational drug use (although this was preceded in the UK by a song called "Shit On You", which was included on the Special Edition version of the album released in that country). The version of the song released on the radio and music television was heavily rewritten to remove much of the song's offensive nature, and retitled "Purple Hills." While the first single was a massive hit, the album's second single, "Fight Music," was not as successful. Some have attributed this to the emotional change caused in American society due to the September 11, 2001 attacks. After their debut, D12 took 3 years in hiatus from the studio, later regrouping to releasing their sophomore album, D12 World, in 2004, which featured the popular hit single release "My Band." The other members of D12 have also appeared as guests on all of Eminem's albums since The Marshall Mathers LP. D12's third album is tentatively scheduled for a 2006 release.

Emenim Trivia

The second "E" in his stage name has been reversed on his records since his second album The Marshall Mathers LP. The backwards-E has become a logo for him, appearing prominently in his videos and stage set.

Several songs were released in response to the track "Stan" off of The Marshall Mathers LP. Enemy rapper Canibus released the track "U Didn't Care," rapping as the Stan character and implying that Eminem doesn't care about his fans. The Pet Shop Boys released "The Night I Fell in Love," in which a male fan goes backstage at an Eminem concert and has a one-night stand with him. Christian rapper KJ-52 released "Dear Slim" and "Dear Slim pt. 2," open letters to Eminem in a similar style to "Stan."

When Dr. Dre first heard his tape, he thought Eminem was black. [28]

Several of his songs have been parodied. The most famous incident was Weird Al Yankovic's parody of "Lose Yourself," entitled "Couch Potato" and featuring new lyrics about television programming. He has also been parodied twice by the Christian parody band ApologetiX, with "Lose Yourself" ("Look Yourself") and "The Real Slim Shady" ("The Real Sin Savior").

Emenim is left-handed. This can be seen in a scene in 8 Mile where he is sitting on a bus with a pencil in his left hand, as well as in several of the promotional posters for the film, which depict him writing lyrics with his left hand.

Emenim's height: 5'8" (1.73 m)

His real hair color is in fact a dark brown, he bleaches his hair with peroxide (as stated in "White America"); he did not bleach his hair in 8 Mile, and so his natural hair color can be seen in the movie.

Emenim wears glasses, which can be seen in some of his interviews, as well as on the music videos for "Mockingbird" and "Stan".

Emenim's rap group D12, short for "Dirty Dozen," has only 6 members. Many people are often confused by the number. It is "12" because each of the 6 members of the group has two pseudonyms or "personas." (For example, "Eminem" and "Slim Shady").

Emenim was number 6 on VH1's 50 greatest hip hop artists of all time.

Emenim has been awarded nine Grammy awards. He also received nominations for Album of the Year for both The Marshall Mathers LP and The Eminem Show.

The Marshall Mathers LP was the first rap album to be nominated for Album of the Year at the Grammy Awards and Lose Yourself was the first rap song to be nominated for Song of the Year.

Emenim won a Best Song Oscar for his song "Lose Yourself" from the movie 8 Mile.

In November 2002, Eminem had the #1 album (8 Mile Soundtrack), movie (8 Mile), and song (Lose Yourself), all at the same time.

Human Rights Watch claims that Eminem's music was used to torture detainees in a secret Afghanistan prison near Kabul between 2002 and 2004. [29]

Emenim listed his favorite rappers as Redman, Jay-Z, Tupac Shakur, The Notorious B.I.G., André 3000 from OutKast, Jadakiss, Kurupt, and Nas in the song "'Till I Collapse" from his 2002 release, The Eminem Show.

In acceptance of his Grammy for Best Rap Album (for The Eminem Show) in 2003, he credited his rap influences, saying, "I made me a little list of MCs that I wanted to name off that inspired me to, to bring me where I am today - cause honestly, I wouldn't be here without them. So the list goes like this, and it's not in this order, but the list is this: Run-DMC, the Beastie Boys, LL Cool J, Kool G. Rap, Master Ace, Rakim, Big Daddy Kane, Dr. Dre, all of N.W.A., KRS-One, Treach from Naughty By Nature, Nas, Tupac, Biggie, Jay-Z. Thank you, 'cause I learned from all of you. Thank you."

Emenim's manager, Paul Rosenberg (who is featured prominently in several skits on Eminem's solo releases), was once a rapper himself, known as "Paul Bunyan".

Marshall and his wife Kim first met at one of his friends' houses, when Emenim was fifteen and Kim was thirteen. She came over while he was lip synching to LL Cool J songs and jumping on the furniture.

He reportedly reads from the Harry Potter series to his daughter. Sky News.

He is a fan of the TV show "Crank Yankers"; puppets from the show were included in the video for "Ass Like That". He has also lent his voice to the show numerous times, and had one of the puppets, Special Ed, host "Eminem's Special Hits".

His favorite fast food chain is Taco Bell.

He loves South Park, and in the song "Marshall Mathers" [2000, Aftermath Records], from the album of the same name, he compared himself to "...some twenty six year old skinny Cartman (goddamit!)...", In reference to Eric Cartman, one of the most notable characters in South Park.

Charlise Theron

Charlise Theron (born August 7, 1975 in Benoni, South Africa) is an Academy Award winning South African actress.

Early life

Her father, Charles, was a construction company owner of French Huguenot descent; her mother, Gerda, is of German descent and took over her husband's business after his death. Theron's first language is Afrikaans, and her second is English. "Theron" is a French surname pronounced in Afrikaans as "Tronn", although she has stated that she prefers the pronunciation "Thrown".

She grew up as the only child on her parents' farm near Johannesburg and was sent to a boarding school at the age of thirteen. At the age of fifteen, Theron witnessed the death of her father; he was an abusive alcoholic, and her mother shot him in self defense when he attacked her. No charges were pressed.


At the age of sixteen, Theron travelled to Milan, Italy on a one-year modelling contract after winning a local competition. Her contract ended while she was in New York City. She decided to remain there and attended the Joffrey Ballet, where she trained as a ballet dancer and performed in productions of both Swan Lake and The Nutcracker. A knee injury ended this career path at the age of 18. Unable to dance, she bought a ticket to Los Angeles. After eight months in the city she got her first film part, a non-speaking role in the direct-to-video film Children of the Corn III. She followed this with larger roles in widely released films, and her career skyrocketed with box office successes like The Devil's Advocate, The Cider House Rules, and Mighty Joe Young.

In 1999, she posed nude for the May issue of Playboy magazine.

After appearing in a few notable films, Theron starred as serial killer Aileen Wuornos in the film Monster (2003). Receiving praise for her performance (film critic Roger Ebert called it "one of the greatest performances in the history of the cinema" ), Theron won the Best Actress Oscar at the 76th Academy Awards in February 2004, as well as the SAG Award and the Golden Globe Award. She is the first South African to win an Oscar for Best Actress.

On September 30, 2005 she received her own bronze star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. In the same year, she starred in the film Æon Flux and was given positive reviews, as well as a Best Actress Golden Globe nomination, for her lead performance in North Country.

Theron also portrayed Rita, Michael Bluth's (Jason Bateman) love interest on the third season of FOX's critically acclaimed sitcom Arrested Development.

Having signed a deal with John Galliano on 2004, Charlize replaced model Carmen Kass in the J'ADORE by Christian Dior ads.

Personal life

Charlise Theron is the current spokeswoman for Dior perfume. She resides in Los Angeles with her long-term boyfriend, Stuart Townsend, with whom she starred in the 2004 film, "Head in the Clouds"; she has said that she will not marry him until same-sex couples are able to have their marriages recognized. Theron is also involved in women's rights organizations.

Dated lead singer of Third Eye Blind, Stephan Jenkins from January 1998 to July 2001. Jenkins broke up with her after failing to take her requests of marriage seriously.

While filming Æon Flux in Berlin, Germany, she had surgery on a herniated cervical disc in her neck, the result of an injury incurred on the set during a stunt.

Her mother, Gerda, recently married in California, but the media thought Charlize was the one getting married (to Irish boyfriend Stuart Townsend) and the paparazzi got as close as they could for the photos.

Cris Brown

Christopher "Chris" Brown (born on May 5, 1989 in Tappahannock, Virginia) is an American R&B singer. Cris Brown he started out as a rapper, Brown's early discovering of singing talent inspired him to follow singers such as Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder, Usher and others. In 2005 he released his debut album, titled Chris Brown. His debut single "Run It!" is produced by Scott Storch, who also wrote, produced and contributed to most of Brown's self-titled debut album released in 2005. "Run It!" was released in July 2005, and the CD-single version includes a remix featuring Juelz Santana. The next single released was titled "Yo (Excuse Me Miss)" with "Gimme That" being confirmed as the 3rd single. His self-titled release was certified Platinum Jan 12th, 2006. Chris Brown also has a fourth single titled "I May Never Find".

Cris Brown is a lot like the 16-year-old boy living in the house next door to you: one minute he's five-foot-seven, the next he's 6'1. One minute he's a cute little boy trying to dribble a basketball, the next a superstar point guard. One minute he's ducking under the covers pleading for five more minutes of shut-eye, the next he's racing through a day full of recording, performances and interviews.

With his easy-going demeanor and schoolboy charm, Cris Brown could easily be somebody that you know. With his incredible voice and a debut cd laced with clever lyrics, hypnotic tracks and impeccable vocals, he's someone that the world will soon know.

Chris isn't part of some A-list producer's camp. Nor does he hail from any of those famous urban music hubs like NYC, Compton or the ATL. Straight from Tappahannock, VA --- population 2000 – Chris Brown proves that real talent, persistence and charisma still have a place in the music industry.

One listen to Chris' 16-year-old voice and you're tempted to draw comparisons: Michael Jackson, Tevin Campbell, and Usher. But listen a bit longer and those comparisons begin to dissipate as it becomes clear that, while Chris certainly channels the creativity of those who have come before him, he definitely has a style, a flavor and a place in music that are all his own.

His debut CD Young Love takes us on a journey through the malls, parties and teen hangouts as Chris covers a variety of subjects: A girl that he's dying to hit the dance floor with. A girl that's got another man. A girl that has him totally and completely head over heels in love. It's an album about young boys, young girls -- young love.

The first single, the Scott Storch-produced "Run It," is an irresistible up-tempo dance joint with an attention-grabbing hook. "It's basically saying to a girl ‘If you're at the party by yourself, show me how you get down but if your man's here, tell me first. So basically it's talking about runnin' it. Go ahead, do your thing."

The slightly braggadocios "Gimme That" finds Chris running down his credentials to a hottie. "It's just explaining how I'm coming out, the typical bragging about yourself a little bit but not too much and telling the girl who might be older than you ‘You may be three years older , but you hot, Gimme that.'"

The title track, which was produced by The Underdogs and includes an interpolation of Blue Magic's 70s classic "Side Show," addresses the age-old issue of puppy love. "This song is going to be the new teenage anthem," says Chris. "Even when teenagers really are in love with each other a lot of older people are like ‘Love? You're barely old enough to go outside at night!' But what they don't know is that kids our age really do have feelings for each other so this song is basically telling older people that even though we're young, we still love each other. I think all the teenagers can relate to it."

Producers Dre and Vidal serve it up on the melodically pleasing "Yo," a song simply about a boy seeing a beautiful girl that he can't allow to escape his grasp. "It's about a girl that you maybe saw at a party or at a mall. You're telling your boys, ‘I need to holla at her' but you don't know her name and you just say ‘Yo!'"

But when Cris Brown says ‘yo' it's as if he gives new meaning, new depth and whole new feeling to the word. Chris' vocals are fresh and inviting, soulful and soaring. He wraps his emotions around each and every lyric and adds the right amount of passion, fun and swagger at just the right time.

From the vocally acrobatic "Your Man Ain't Me" to the tender, ponderous "Is This Love" (both produced by The Underdogs) to the naughty ‘Poppin' (a tribute to a young lady's physical attributes), Chris Brown explores the many colors of life and love as a teenage boy and he does so without being too infantile or too raunchy. "You don't want to come out too sexual," he explains. "I'm young. I want to appeal to people my age as well as older people. This gives me time to grow with my audience so I can make that change when I'm about 20. But for right now I don't wanna be too kiddie but I don't wanna be too grown."

In selecting songs for Young Love, Cris said he simply relied on his own sense of what was hot and what was real for him and his peers. "When I hear these songs, I feel something. I know I can relate to them. I take myself out of the artist box and I become an audience member and I critique myself."

Chris got his musical initiation early on, inspired by what he refers to as the "eclectic" taste of his parents and soaking in the sounds of his favorites: Michael Jackson, Sam Cooke, Stevie Wonder, Donnie Hathaway, Anita Baker, and Aretha Franklin.
But, like most young boys, Cris was soon drawn to rap and was certain that he would be the first emcee to put Tappahannock on the map. "I was rapping," he recalls. "I didn't understand that I could sing until I was like 11 or 12. My mom heard me singing around the house and she said, ‘What are you doing? You really can sing!' So then I started going to school and singing to the girls."

By the time he was 13, Cris realized that his voice was more than just a chick magnet. And so did his mother as he began to hook his son up with various producers. "When I went in and started working, there were ups and downs but I loved it and I knew I wanted to do it for the rest of my life."

And the rest of his life is off to a great start. Cris Brown comes to the music industry fully-loaded as not only a talented vocalist, but a versatile songwriter, an amazing dancer and a blossoming young businessman who has learned the many intricacies of the music industry. Still, he enjoys a rousing game of basketball and, despite his demanding career, he says. "I still hate waking up."

Cris may still be a lot like the boy who lives next door to you. But not really. You'll see.

jessica simson

Jessica Ann Simpson (born July 10, 1980) is an American pop singer who rose to fame during the late 1990s. Jessica Simson starred with her then-husband Nick Lachey in the MTV reality show Newlyweds, released her own line of beauty products called Dessert, and started a career as an actress with appearances in the TV series That '70s Show and in the film The Dukes of Hazzard.

Early life and beginning

Simson was born in Abilene, Texas and raised in Richardson, a suburb of Dallas, Texas. She is the daughter of Joe Truett Simpson (a former Baptist youth minister) and Tina Ann Drew (a former Sunday School teacher). She has a younger sister, Ashlee, who launched her own music career in mid-2004. Jessica started singing at the age of twelve as a part of her Baptist church choir. At the same age, she made an unsuccessful application for The New Mickey Mouse Club, which starred fellow pop singers Christina Aguilera, Britney Spears and Justin Timberlake, among other future stars.

Simson attended J.J. Pearce High School in Richardson, Texas. She was discovered singing at a church camp by a head of a small contemporary Christian record label and recorded an album over the next three years; however, the label folded before the record could be released. She dropped out in her senior year in order to tour and promote her demo album, which was funded by her grandmother, Joyce (thus the reason for the name of her 2004 holiday album, Rejoyce: The Christmas Album); she later earned her GED. During this time, she toured with the Christian Youth Conference circuit performing with Kirk Franklin, God's Property and CeCe Winans. She and her father sold copies of the album after her performances.

Tommy Mottola of Columbia Records obtained a copy of the album and, thinking she had potential as a pop singer, signed her as such. Christian influences can still be found in much of her music.

1999-2002: Pop music beginnings

In late 1999, Simson released her debut Pop album Sweet Kisses, which reached a peak of number twenty-five on the U.S. Billboard 200 chart and also made the top forty of the U.K. charts. The album proved to be a success, selling two million copies in the U.S. Her first single, the Platinum-selling "I Wanna Love You Forever," reached the top five of the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 singles chart and the top ten in Canada and the U.K. Her second single, a duet with then-boyfriend, now estranged husband Nick Lachey of 98 Degrees, "Where You Are", was a modest radio hit. The last single from the album, the John Mellencamp-sampled "I Think I'm in Love with You" was a top forty hit in the U.S. and a top twenty hit in Canada and the U.K. In 2000, Simpson won two Teen Choice Awards for Choice Breakout Artist and Love Song of the Year ("Where You Are").

Released during the summer of 2001, Simson's sophomore effort Irresistible reached the top ten of the Billboard 200 and top twenty of the Canadian album chart. Despite this improvement over her debut, the album's sales were less than satisfactory; to-date, it has only managed to be certified Gold in the U.S. for selling 500,000 copies. The title track lead single, "Irresistible", reached the top twenty in the U.S., Canada, and the U.K., as well as the top forty in Australia and Switzerland. A follow-up single entitled "A Little Bit" was also released, but failed to achieve much success. In 2002, Simpson released a remix album that failed to generate much interest among fans.

2003-2005: Marriage and career development

On October 26 2002, Jessica married Nick Lachey. Simson famously announced that she remained a virgin until her wedding night, making Lachey the only man she had been with intimately. During the summer of 2003, Simson and Lachey's reality show Newlyweds began airing on MTV. Although Sipson was moderately famous before the series began, the show is considered responsible for transforming her into a star.

Throughout the run of three seasons, she seemed to epitomize the stereotypical dumb blonde, notably when she asked whether the Chicken of the Sea tuna she was eating was chicken or fish, and when she thought that buffalo wings were made from actual buffalo. Her apparent stupidity made the show a huge hit, making the average rating for each episode about 1.4 million viewers. (The gaffe was also a running joke in a Pizza Hut commercial, where she was shown to be annoyed at having her intelligence mocked again.) When introduced to Interior Secretary Gale Norton, Simpson responded: "You've done a nice job decorating the White House."

Banking on the success of her new popularity, she appeared on a variety show with Lachey on the ABC called the Nick and Jessica Variety Hour in 2004. A pilot for a sitcom on ABC was also planned, but was rejected by network executives in May 2004. During that summer, Simpson won three Teen Choice Awards for Female Fashion Icon, Hottie Female, and Female Reality/Variety TV Star, further proving that Newlyweds had greatly strengthened her overall popularity. In 2005, the series won a People's Choice Award for Favorite Reality Show. Shortly after, Newlyweds wrapped.

Coinciding with Newlyweds, her third album, In This Skin, was released during the summer of 2003. On a whole, the record featured a more mature sound compared to her earlier releases. Though the album initially was not a huge success, it got its chance to rebound on the charts when a special collector's edition was released in the spring of 2004. This helped Skin to reach a peak of number two on the Billboard 200 and the top forty of the U.K. charts, due largely to the success of Newlyweds. The album eventually proved to be her most successful, selling three million copies in the U.S. and allowing her music career a second chance. The record yielded arguably her most successful single to-date, "With You".

During the summer of 2005, Simson made her first major film appearance as Daisy Duke in The Dukes of Hazzard. The film debuted at number one in the box-office charts, grossing more than thirty million USD. One of the tracks off the soundtrack for the film, "These Boots Are Made for Walkin'", was sung by Simpson. The track won a People's Choice Award for Favorite Song from a Movie in early 2006.

In November 2005, after months of speculation, Jessica Simson and her husband Nick Lachey officially announced that they had split. Simpson filed for divorce on December 16 2005, citing "irreconcilable differences". She has asked the courts not to grant Lachey spousal support.