Country music veteran George Riddle has lost his battle with throat cancer at the age of 78. The singer/songwriter passed away on Saturday (19Jul14), two months after undergoing surgery to treat his condition.
Riddle began his career as a musician in the 1960s, performing with the late George Jones, and went on to land a regular gig playing the fiddle at country music mecca the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville, Tennessee.
As a songwriter, he penned tracks for his close friend Jones, Ray Charles, Tammy Wynette and Melba Montgomery, who turned his tunes The Greatest One of All and Hall of Shame into chart hits.
He was also a beloved classic country radio DJ in his native Indiana.
R&B legend Melba Moore is taking aim at a New York Post story, in which she reportedly offers her support to her ex-husband as he prepares to stand trial for allegedly running a $5 million (£3.13 million) Ponzi scheme, insisting she has never spoken to the publication. Huggins faces up to 20 years behind bars amid allegations he conned wealthy clients, including comedian Steve Harvey, into investing in diamond and gold mining in West Africa, only to use the money to fund a record company and other business ventures from 2008 to 2011.
Moore appeared to have put her differences with her ex aside in the Post article, in which she was quoted as saying, "Charles is in a place in his life now that he needs me, and I'm probably the closest person to him right now. We can't live in the past. I'm there for him now."
But she insists her remarks are made up, stating, "I have made no statements to the New York Post or any other periodical or media of any kind regarding the details of the of the court case of Charles Huggins or any of the details of his personal life. The New York Post's supposed quotes of me are completely and totally erroneous and bogus.
"I have stayed away from it and made no public comments primarily for the safety and security of our daughter... I don't know anything about it, I haven't been involved in it... I have purposely not made myself aware of it... I don't (even) talk about it with my daughter."
R&B singer Melba Moore is lending her support to her embattled ex-husband, music producer Charles Huggins, as he prepares to stand trial for allegedly running a $5 million (£3.13 million) Ponzi scheme. Huggins faces up to 20 years behind bars amid allegations he conned wealthy clients, including comedian Steve Harvey and American football great Emmitt Smith, into investing in diamond and gold mining in West Africa, only to use the money to fund a record company and other business ventures from 2008 to 2011.
He is due to stand trial this week (begs10Feb14) and Moore reveals she will be there to support to her ex, despite the fact he left her broke following a nasty divorce battle in 1991.
The Lean On Me hitmaker tells the New York Post, "Charles took everything, but I had to start all over again, and I did.
"Charles is in a place in his life now that he needs me, and I'm probably the closest person to him right now. We can't live in the past. I'm there for him now."
Moore, who accused Huggins of "economic spousal abuse" during their lengthy marriage, insists she is simply repaying the kindness her former husband showed her at the start of their relationship decades ago.
She says, "I know that Charles did all of those horrible things to me. But what I choose to focus on now is the Charles that helped guide my career and teach me the ropes."
Downton is abuzz with an impending party .. but when are they not having one?
Lady Mary Crawley (Michelle Dockery) is surprised by the appearance of the newly named Lord Gillingham (Tom Cullen). They begin to bond and Mary begins to resemble her former self. Is it too much to hope for the slight-delivering, passive aggressive Lady Mary from Series 1? Lady Edith (Laura Carmichael) invites Michael Gregson (Charles Edwards) in the hopes that he will win the respect of her parents. Good luck, Lady Edith ... you’re the 1920’s answer to the Cathy comics. Ack! Terence Sampson (Patrick Kennedy) arrives on the scene and convinces everyone to play cards including Earl Grantham (Hugh Bonneville). Luckily, Mr. Gregson wins back all the money and exposes the dirty dealings of Sampson.
Meanwhile, everyone seems to be really inconsiderate of poor Tom (Allen Leech). A guest asks him about Lady Sybil. Isobel (Penelope Wilton) arrives to the party despite mourning. Then in true shady fashion she complains about her sadness to Tom despite the fact that he’s a widower. Sure, she lost a child but is it anyone’s place to give someone survivor’s guilt? Tom confesses that he doesn’t feel like he belongs with the family. Scheming Miss Braithwaite (MyAnna Buring) brings him a huge glass of whiskey and then shows up at his room late in the night.
The drama: Lady Rose MacClare (Lily James) surprises everyone, including Lady Mary, by bringing down Matthew’s old phonograph. Lord Grantham has Australian opera singer Nellie Melba (Kiri Te Kanawa) dine in her room until Cora Crawley (Elizabeth McGovern) corrects his error. Also, what the hell is going to happen if anyone founds out that Tom slummed it with Braithwaite?
Carson (Jim Carter) is his usually stern self as everyone is working double duty in entertaining mode. Lord Gillingham’s valet (Nigel Harman), known only as Mr. Gillingham, arrives on the scene and befriends Anna (Joanne Froggatt) much to Mr. Bates’ dismay (Brendan Coyle). Trying to impress Ivy (Cara Theobold) Jimmy (Ed Speleers) falls and hurts his hand. A broke Mr. Molesley (Kevin Doyle), has been complaining all over town how broke he is and taking odd jobs. And yet, when asked to be a footman in place of Jimmy, he complains a lot.
Mrs. Patmore (Lesley Nicol) has a panic attack. Alfred (Matt Milne) makes the sauce and discovers a love for cooking. Anna has a headache so she excuses herself during the opera performance. In a disturbing turn of events, Anna gets violently raped by Mr. Gillingham. Too scared to tell her husband, she enlists Mrs. Hughes (Phyllis Logan) for help in covering it up. This is a huge departure from Downton's normal drama. Is having lovable and sweet Anna attacked too far or is it the right level of drama for the show? After all, times are changing as we approach the 1920s.
The drama: Anna can’t tell Mr. Bates because she’s worried he will go nuts and kill her attacker. Clearly, he’s a little unhinged. If memory serves he didn’t even kill his wife despite being arrested for her murder.
What does one say to a singer? - Lord Grantham
Screaming in the servant’s hall, singers chatting to his lordship and a footman cooking the dinner what a topsy-turvy world we’ve come to. - Carson
I’m afraid Tom’s small talk is very small. - Dowager Countess (Maggie Smith)
Darrin (Cuba Gooding Jr.) an advertising executive living in New York is totally bankrupt--both morally and financially. On the same day he gets fired from his job for embellishing his résumé Darrin finds out his aunt has died and he must travel back to his hometown in Georgia to attend her funeral. Turns out auntie left a small fortune for Darrin in her will but there's a catch: In order to collect the inheritance he must first lead the local church gospel choir to success at the annual Gospel Explosion--a national competition. But the choir which consists of a handful of older churchgoing folk is in shambles. Desperate for results Darrin draws potential members by opening the choir to just about anyone including prison inmates and atheists. Unfortunately the most talented singer in town is a jazz singer named Lilly (Beyoncé Knowles) who wants nothing to do with the church. Will Darrin be able to convince her to join the choir on a tune and join him on a date? Predictable from beginning to end this pic has one great thing going for it--the music. With gospel styles as diverse as traditional Southern to contemporary with a touch of hip-hop The Fighting Temptations will have you anxiously anticipating each musical number.
Gooding who last starred in the shipwreck Boat Trip misleadingly gets top billing in the comedy The Fighting Temptations. Sure the film revolves around his smarmy character Darrin but Gooding is outshined here by talented cast members that are either funnier or more musically inclined than he is. As Gooding's love interest Lilly Knowles who made her big-screen debut in last year's Austin Powers in Goldmember has found a perfect vehicle to show off both her multi-octave range and her developing acting skills. Unsurprisingly her musical numbers including her steamy nightclub rendition of "Fever " are much more memorable than her dialogue. But sandwiched between the sentimental scenes and rollicking musical numbers are two performances that really stand out. The first is Mike Epps as Lucius Monte Carlo's Caddy-driving welcoming committee. Epps (Friday After Next) livens up every scene he is in and the comedian consistently peppers his laugh-out-loud lines with subtle mispronunciations: "(Lilly's) in a spectrum of fine-ness; the energy is so potnent that she got a class-action suit against her right now for reckless endangerment." Adding to the comedy is Steve Harvey as the gossip-spreading local radio DJ. Like Epps Harvey's scenes many of which have him sitting behind a card table while reporting live from community events are refreshingly funny.
In a career that spans nearly four decades director Jonathan Lynn has amassed a diverse hit-or-miss filmography that includes the cross-dressing comedy Nuns on the Run the fish-out-of-water hit My Cousin Vinny the not-so-distinguished The Distinguished Gentleman and the screwball comedy The Whole Nine Yards. While The Fighting Temptations is not a hit for the director it is not exactly a miss either; it is middle of the road. With the church scenes for example Lynn really gives moviegoers a sense of the feverish rejuvenation that takes place during religious musical performances complete with patrons being 'slain in the Spirit' and falling to the ground. Regrettably the story by scribes Elizabeth Hunter and Saladin K. Patterson also falls to the floor like a fainting churchgoer; the musical numbers liven up the otherwise humdrum plot involving Darrin and Lilly. Assembled under the guidance of music-savvy producers such as Loretha Jones and Benny Medina the movie ends up being surprisingly entertaining. Some of the top scenes in the film include Knowles' a cappella solo "Swing Low Sweet Chariot " The O'Jays barbershop rendition of "Loves Me Like a Rock" and a moving Gospel Explosion performance by the Blind Boys of Alabama.