Yoko Ono has opened up about her desperate days as a starving child in her native Japan after granting officials at an anti-poverty campaign in Tokyo the rights to use her late husband John Lennon's track Imagine as an anthem. The signature peace tune will provide the soundtrack to WhyHunger's 'Imagine There's No Hunger' campaign ads, and the initiative brought back bad memories for Ono as she attended an event for the charity in Tokyo.
She said, "I remember being hungry and I know it's so difficult to just be hungry. One day I didn't bring a lunchbox (to school). The other kids asked, don't you want to eat? I just said, no, I'm not hungry."
Ono insists her late husband would have approved of the use of Imagine in WhyHunger's campaign, which will help officials offer sustainable farming in 22 countries.
She added, "My husband and I really wanted to do something for the world, especially for the children. Children have pride, too, so they don't beg you, but they are in pain and they are starving."
Paul McCartney enlisted a Beatles covers band to perform at his wife's birthday party last month (Nov13). The singer hired The Parrots for Nancy Shevell's surprise celebration in Tokyo, Japan and even joined them onstage to sing the Fab Four's 1964 hit, I Saw Her Standing There.
A Queen tribute act, called Gueen, also performed at the party.
McCartney is currently performing in Japan as part of a world tour in support of his album New.
The Rolling Stones have shows in the Middle East and Asia to their dates in Australia and New Zealand next year (14). The rockers' 14 On Fire tour will begin in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates on 21 February (14), and continue with three concerts at the Tokyo Dome in Japan and one in Macau before they arrive in Perth for a series of gigs Down Under.
Two further "big concerts" in Asia will be announced soon.
Guitarist Mick Taylor, who joined the group for its 50 & Counting tour this year (13) will be a special guest. Taylor was a member of the Rolling Stones from 1969 to 1974.
British rockers While She Sleeps have cancelled a number of upcoming shows after doctors told frontman Lawrence Taylor he needs surgery to fix persistent vocal problems. The frontman has been struggling with voice troubles over the last few months, and now it has emerged he will have to undergo an operation to fix the issue.
A statement posted on the band's website reads, "After repeat trips to specialists and further assessment by the local hospital it's been decided he (Taylor) will have throat surgery in the coming weeks. Because of this we are forced to take a break from touring... We won't be able to play our upcoming shows in Japan or in Sheffield (England) for Xmas...
"This has now developed into a situation where we have to take things very seriously and fix them before they could develop further, and potentially compromise the band's ability to record & tour in the coming years.
"Everyone is incredibly gutted to be forced to pull out of our upcoming dates and we can't apologise enough to those who bought tickets to the shows. We promise we will come back and we promise we'll keep everyone updated this progresses."
The group will return to the spotlight next year (14) for a European tour, as well as a slot at Britain's Download Festival in June (14).
Supermodel Naomi Campbell was honoured with a traditional Japanese tea ceremony on Saturday (30Nov13) in recognition of her generous donation to the country's tsunami relief fund. The British beauty was left heartbroken by the natural disaster, which devastated the coast of Japan in 2011 and claimed more than 15,000 lives.
While in Sydney, Australia to launch the country's version of her modelling TV show The Face, Campbell was invited to the Japanese Consul-General's residence, where officials held a tea ceremony in her honour.
The special event was in response to the star donating more than $300,000 (£200,000) to the tsunami relief effort through her charity, Fashion for Relief.
Campbell says, "I'm so grateful to be able to experience this traditional tea ceremony. Japan has been a big part of my career. I want to see Japan come back on its feet and, even though we are a little late, I think we still have ongoing progress even though it is not in the headlines."
Singer Sir Paul McCartney has thrown his support behind a Japanese sumo wrestling event by sponsoring it. The former Beatle has been a fan of the sport for several years and he recently paid for the sleeve of his new album, New, to be emblazoned on flags during the Kyushu Grand Sumo Tournament in the city of Fukuoka.
McCartney, who attended the finale this week (begs25Nov13) with his wife Nancy and an entourage, says, "I like sumo, I got hooked on it many years ago."
His spokesperson tells NME.com, "Bizarrely Macca (McCartney) really got into Sumo Wrestling when he first toured Japan in 1993. He took his crew to one of the matches when they were over there recently and was explaining to everyone the rules and the scoring and how it all worked.
"Between rounds traditionally dressed Japanese people were carrying NEW album cover artwork on bamboo billboards around the stadium."
Lady Gaga has been turned into a life-size robot - manufacturers in Japan have created high-tech dolls of the singer featuring tracks from her new album Artpop. The Applause hitmaker is in the country to promote the release of her latest record, and on Wednesday (27Nov13) she came face to face with robots which were eerily made in her likeness.
Gaga posted a photo of herself sitting in between two identical dolls, along with the caption, "Who needs Barbie when you can own your own life size pop star that sings to you."
According to the Gaga Doll website, music from Artpop blasts through a speaker hidden in the mannequins.
Splash NewsAlec Baldwin's recent career could be mistaken for one extremely long audition for the role of The Incredible Hulk. Only last week, his weekly MSNBC show was suspended for two episodes after he was filmed using a homophobic slur against a photographer during a New York street encounter. But it's not just photographers who don't like him when he's angry. Everyone from his eleven-year-old daughter to American Airlines flight attendants have felt the wrath of the Thomas & The Magic Railroad star for next to nothing over the past few years. Here's a more in-depth look at five of his victims.Ireland BaldwinBaldwin's most astonishing rant was directed towards his then eleven-year-old daughter Ireland in 2007 after she missed a pre-arranged phone call. Foregoing any chances of a "Father of the Year" award, the raging actor repeatedly called her a 'rude little pig' while also taking a pot shot at her mother, Kim Basinger, who later denied getting her revenge by leaking the voicemail to the press.Jay From StarbucksA poor unfortunate barista named Jay had the misfortune to catch Baldwin on one of his many off days when he apparently failed to treat the star with the utmost worship, resulting in a very personal and public review on his favourite platform for abuse, Twitter: "Starbucks on 93 and B’Way. Uptight Queen barista named JAY has an attitude problem."American Airlines Flight AttendantsUnable to tear himself away from the importance of playing Words With Friends, Baldwin was kicked off an American Airlines flight in 2011 after he refused to turn off his smart phone. Despite inconveniencing hundreds of his fellow travellers, the word game addict still believed he was the wronged party and subsequently launched into a misogynistic rant on where else but Twitter.The New York PostAfter claiming that the New York Post's Gary Miller had assaulted him outside his home earlier this year, Baldwin was then accused of hurling a string of racial slurs at the photographer. When asked about the allegations by one of the newspaper's reporters, a charming Baldwin then replied, "I want you to choke to death."Daily Mail Journalist George StarkCertainly not the first celebrity to take issue with a story printed on the venomous Daily Mail website, Baldwin perhaps understandably took umbrage with journalist George Stark following the claim that his wife Hilaria had been tweeting during James Gandolfini's funeral. Less understandable is the vicious and vile way he chose to respond, describing the hack as "a toxic little queen" while also threatening to "put his foot up his f****ng ass."
Sir Paul McCartney showed his support for victims of Japan's 2011 nuclear disaster by inviting a group of those affected to his concert in Tokyo on Monday night (18Nov13). Around 300,000 residents were evacuated from the area around the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant in March, 2011 after a deadly earthquake and tsunami caused equipment failures at the site and led to the release of radioactive material.
McCartney is currently touring Japan, and he met with 10 survivors of the Fukushima disaster after inviting them to watch his concert at the Tokyo Dome on Monday night (18Nov13).
The Beatles star shook hands with the lucky attendees and listened to their stories, while also insisting he hopes his music can help the country heal.
He says, "At this time, we are focused on a lot of the problems that Japan has had, particularly in the last year or two. So, I always like to think that our concerts can have a healing effect, that they can help people through crises."
During the show, the first of three at the Tokyo venue, McCartney reportedly dedicated Beatles hit Yesterday to the victims of the Fukushima disaster.