Veteran entertainer Barry Manilow had to scrap plans to include a collaboration with the late Frank Sinatra on his new duets album after failing to obtain permission from the crooner's estate. The Mandy singer's new album, My Dream Duets, features Manilow singing with a number of late legends, including Louis Armstrong, Andy Williams and Whitney Houston, but he couldn't get clearance to sing with Sinatra, because the Rat Pack legend's family are preparing to release a new project of their own to mark what will be the singer/actor's 100th birthday next year (15).
Manilow explains, "Sinatra didn't make the list because they wouldn't give me permission to do it! This (coming) year is the 100th birthday and they're putting out a big CD box, so I couldn't get permission to do it."
Manilow also had to abandon his hopes of harmonising with Michael Jackson because he couldn't find the right song, until it was too late.
He adds, "The only other one I should have done then was Michael Jackson. I tried, I listened to all of the wonderful Michael uptempo things and that didn't sound good with me, but I didn't think about Ben... I would've done Ben, it could've been a good duet."
Jazz great Louis Armstrong is set to be posthumously honoured at New York's legendary Apollo Theater's Walk of Fame. The iconic musician will have a marker added to the walk in front of Harlem's popular venue on Friday (07Nov14).
Armstrong is one of 18 recipients of the honour, including other greats such as James Brown, Michael Jackson, Aretha Franklin and Patti LaBelle.
The event will kick off the theater's New Orleans to Harlem Jazz Weekend, and feature a Big Easy-style parade as well as presentations in tribute to Armstrong, who was a native of New Orleans.
Apollo executive producer Mikki Shepard salutes the musicians' contributions to entertainment in a statement which reads: "From Ella Fitzgerald to Duke Ellington to Louis Armstrong, the Apollo's lauded lineage has earned it the distinction of being one of Harlem's original jazz shrines.
"We are excited to celebrate the Apollo's jazz legacy, as well as the birthplace of this genre, by inducting Louis Armstrong into the Walk of Fame and presenting performances by some of the best jazz musicians performing today during the New Orleans to Harlem Jazz Weekend."
Sarah Jessica Parker's make-up artist Leslie Lopez has been arrested and charged with grand theft after allegedly stealing three designer handbags from a top Florida department store.
The beauty expert stands accused of swiping one Fendi and two Louis Vuitton purses from Saks Fifth Avenue in the six months since her first alleged shoplifting incident in January (14). The bags she reportedly walked out with were worth a total of $9,300 (£5,813). Lopez turned herself in to authorities in the village of Bal Harbour on Wednesday (15Oct14) and was slapped with three counts of grand theft. According to TMZ.com, the make-up artist has been suffering from depression since the death of her mother last year (13), and wanted to make amends for her alleged behaviour by surrendering to cops and paying for the stolen goods. Lopez previously hit headlines for two similar incidents in Norway in 2012, when she was fined for stealing a pair of sunglasses and then stopped by security guards for appearing to take a lipstick from a store without paying for it. She insisted that incident had been a mistake. Parker has been working with Lopez since 2005 and appeared on the cover of The Hollywood Reporter with the Sex and the City actress in late 2012. Lopez also counts country star Carrie Underwood among her previous clients.
Grey'S Anatomy star Jesse Williams was one of the thousands who rallied in Missouri over the weekend (ends12Oct14) seeking justice for the the killing of unarmed teenager Michael Brown. In August (14), race riots between locals and law enforcement officials in Ferguson erupted after Brown, an 18-year-old African-American, was shot and killed by a white police officer investigating a robbery.
While a grand jury is still meeting to decide whether the cop who killed Brown will be charged, thousands of citizens gathered in Ferguson on Friday for "Ferguson October", a planned weekend of four-day protests.
Williams joined in on Saturday (11Oct14) as they marched 12 miles from Ferguson to nearby St. Louis, demanding the officer under trial be charged with a crime.
The actor documented his weekend on his various social media accounts, posting photos of himself talking to protesters and in the thick of the crowd's march to St. Louis.
One photo, showing Williams giving comfort to a distraught female protester, was posted alongside the caption, "This is a two way street. Ferguson, MO Oct 11, 2014."
Williams is also part of the Question Bridge: Black Males video project team, which is documenting Ferguson October to "archiving the thoughts and concerns of the people and recording Black males asking and answering the questions that matter to them," according to his Tumblr page.
Williams isn't the only celebrity in town to show support for the protests - artists such as Talib Kweli, dead prez, and Jasiri X performed at a free Hip Hop 4 Justice concert on Sunday (12Oct14).
Harry Styles gave American football star Michael Sam something to smile about last week (27Aug14) when he wore the openly gay sportsman's St. Louis Rams jersey onstage during One Direction's concert in St. Louis, Missouri. Sam, who became the first openly gay man to get drafted by a National Football League team earlier this year (14), thanked the pop star in a tweet, writing, "@Harry_Styles thank you for your support!!!"
However, Styles' jersey tribute wasn't enough to score Sam an NFL place - he was waived by the Rams on Friday (29Aug14).
Check below for the complete winners list for the 2014 Primetime Emmy Awards...
Best Supporting Actor - ComedyTy Burrell, Modern Family
Best Writing - ComedyLouis C.K., Louie ("So Did the Fat Lady")
Best Supporting Actress - ComedyAllison Janney, Mom
Best Directing - ComedyGail Mancuso, Modern Family ("Las Vegas")
Best Lead Actor - ComedyJim Parsons, The Big Bang Theory
Best Lead Actress - ComedyJulia Louis-Dreyfus, Veep
Best Reality ShowThe Amazing Race
Best Writing - Miniseries, TV Movie, or Dramatic SpecialSteven Moffat, Sherlock ("His Last Vow")
Best Supporting Actress - Miniseries or TV MovieKathy Bates, American Horror Story: Coven
Best Supporting Actor - Miniseries or TV MovieMartin Freeman, Sherlock ("His Last Vow")
Best Directing - Miniseries, TV Movie, or Dramatic SpecialColin Bucksey, Fargo ("Buridan's Ass")
Best Lead Actor - Miniseries or TV MovieBenedict Cumberbatch, Sherlock
Best Lead Actress - Miniseries or TV MovieJessica Lange, American Horror Story: Coven
Best TV MovieThe Normal Heart
Best Writing - Variety SpecialSarah Silverman, Sarah Silverman: We Are Miracles
Best Directing - Variety SpecialGlenn Weiss, 67th Annual Tony Awards
Best Variety, Music, or Comedy SeriesThe Colbert Report
Best Supporting Actor - DramaAaron Paul, Breaking Bad
Best Directing - DramaCary Joji Fukunaga, True Detective ("Who Goes There")
Best Supporting Actress - DramaAnna Gunn, Breaking Bad
Best Writing - DramaMoira Walley-Beckett, Breaking Bad ("Ozymandias")
Best Lead Actress - DramaJulianna Margulies, The Good Wife
Best Lead Actor - DramaBryan Cranston, Breaking Bad
Best Comedy SeriesModern Family
Best Drama SeriesBreaking Bad
Actor Jon Hamm has spoken of his anguish after seeing violent protests break out in his home state of Missouri, and he has urged the local community to "pull together". The Mad Men star hails from St. Louis, close to the town of Ferguson which has been the scene of escalating violence since the controversial police shooting of unarmed teenager Michael Brown on 9 August (14).
Local officials have attempted to crack down on the protests by bringing in National Guard troops and enforcing curfews, but they have prompted criticism for using tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse the crowds.
Hamm admits he has been shocked by the disturbing images which have emerged from Ferguson, and he hopes the volatile situation can be resolved soon.
He tells People.com, "I used to ride my bike to Ferguson. I know people from Ferguson... (It has been) rough to watch... It's a bad situation all around. There's no positive spin to it. When all the facts come out, and hopefully all the light is shone on all sides of it, hopefully justice will be carried out. But it's hard. It's really hard. That's my neighbourhood, and I know there's a lot more good people in those neighborhoods than there are bad people.
"St. Louis has had a rough couple of decades now. It'd be nice to turn it around a little bit. People in St. Louis, in my experience, are great people. If anybody can do it, we can, and I hope everybody pulls together for the sake of the community. 'Cause, you know, that's all you've got at the end of the day."
Singer Michael Mcdonald has paid tribute to an African-American teenager killed by a police officer in his native Missouri by releasing a statement about the tragedy. Michael Brown was shot dead by a local police officer investigating a robbery on 9 August (14). The tragedy has sparked a series of heated protests between locals, police and U.S. Marshals in Ferguson, and the former Doobie Brothers singer is saddened to see what is occurring in his hometown.
A statement from McDonald reads: "As someone who spent his first 18 yrs (years) in the St. Louis area, (14 of them in Ferguson...), I pray for the family of Michael Brown and the entire community that is originally my home town to which I still feel a strong connection.
"I pray this tragic event and the still greater issue that it heralds will be faced and dealt with in an honest and responsible manner by the residents of Ferguson and the people in its leadership positions..."
He continues, "However on a larger landscape, mustn't we ask ourselves why we're hearing more and more about the incidents of young black males being gunned down by law enforcement not just in my home town of Ferguson... but all over this country.
"What I think needs to be honestly examined by the larger national community, is the difference between what constitutes a valid reason for use of deadly force when a young white male is the suspected perpetrator of a crime and what those standards seem to be when the suspect is African American. How many tragic losses of this nature must we endure before we're called to conscience on this issue."
Fellow Missouri native Nelly has also spoken out about the ongoing crisis in Ferguson. The rapper also took part in a peace rally earlier this week (beg18Aug14).
British rocker Billy Bragg staged an impromptu concert in St. Louis, Missouri on Tuesday (19Aug14) amid escalating violence in nearby Ferguson. Tensions have been high in the area following the death of teenager Michael Brown, who was gunned down as he attempted to surrender to police investigating a robbery incident on 9 August (14). The incident has prompted violent clashes with protesters and local law enforcement officers, and a number of celebrities have offered up their thoughts on the issues facing the city.
But folk singer and political activist Bragg and touring partner Joe Purdy decided to actually go there to see them for themselves during their current American tour, and decided to take a detour to stage a spontaneous benefit concert.
Bragg tells Rolling Stone, "A number of people said to me on Twitter, 'If you’re going to go to St. Louis, are you going to go to Ferguson?' But we didn't want to just go there and walk through Ferguson and be tourists. We wanted to do something for the community."
Through local connections, Bragg was put in touch with Steven Fitzpatrick Smith, the owner of local St. Louis pub the Royale, who has been attending the protests. Smith not only offered up his venue for the gig, but also asked fans attending to collect food, funds, and medical and school school supplies for a food pantry at a Ferguson church.
During the gig, Bragg performed some of his own tracks such as I Keep Faith, and also covered tunes pointed towards the unrest happening nearby, singing protest songs like Woody Guthrie's Hangknot, Slipknot and George Perkins' Cryin' in the Streets, while Purdy joined him for Bob Dylan's The Times They Are a-Changin'.
Bragg called on the 200 fans at the gig to take action and change the way the troubled city is perceived, stating, "The true enemy of all of us who want to make the world a better place is not capitalism or conservatism, it's cynicism. You have the opportunity to show the world that St. Louis is not a cynical place."
Bragg and Purdy's activism began early on Tuesday, when they met with railroad workers on strike and picketing teachers in Illinois, and they also performed for inmates at the Iowa State Penitentiary.
Actress Keke Palmer and rapper J. Cole have visited protesters in Ferguson, Missouri to show their support over a shooting controversy.
The city near St. Louis has been torn apart by unrest over the past week (begs09Aug14), as groups of campaigners have taken to the streets to express their outrage over the death of unarmed teenager Michael Brown, who was shot by a local police officer.
Heavily armed riot police descended on the city centre and used tear gas and rubber bullets to break up the demonstration, and while the news has sparked outrage among many celebrities, who have taken to Twitter to voice their disgust, both Palmer and J. Cole decided to witness what the tense atmosphere is like first hand.
The 21-year-old actress had already been urging for unity and nonviolence during the protests on her various social media sites, but was spotted in Ferguson on Sunday (17Aug14). Citizens snapped photos of Palmer as she visited the protesters, and shared them on the microblogging site, with one user writing, "@KekePalmer thank you for showing love to my community," and another adding, ""Thank you for standing with the people of Ferguson."
Palmer also made an appearance at the Greater Grace Church in St. Louis, where she spoke at the podium. Meanwhile, rapper J. Cole, who recently released a tribute song, Be Free, in honour of Brown, was also in Ferguson on Sunday, first stopping by the scene of the crime where the teenager was shot.
Cole spoke to the activists about the unrest, and also stopped by a nearby gas station, where Brown was suspected of stealing a box of cigars. Fans and protesters shared photos and videos of Cole at the scene on social media.