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Tag: Train Wrecks Averted (1-10 of 17)

Lana Del Rey makes up for past sins on 'Letterman'

Sorry, backlash fans: Lana Del Rey wins this round.

After a certain disastrous late-night television performance (you know the one), ol’ LDR bounced back last night with an improved showing on The Late Show With David Letterman.

Once again singing her breakout hit “Video Games,” the once-wooden starlet looked to have been better oiled and more prepared for a national stage.

Also helping was the fact that the Late Show camera crew mercifully took some of the heat off of Del Rey by periodically focusing on other people, ones equipped with musical instruments and chairs.

Another possible factor for the controversial songstress’ relatively smooth outing? A confidence boost stemming from knowing that her debut effort Born to Die is in the lead for the highly coveted non-Adele top spot on the Billboard 200.

We could keep making guesses, or you could just watch the video below and rate her performance yourself:

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Bruno Mars cleared of cocaine-possession case

Pop star Bruno Mars was cleared of a felony cocaine-possession case in Las Vegas on Wednesday, after his attorneys told a state court judge the Grammy-winning pop star stayed out of trouble, performed community service, and met other conditions of a plea deal reached almost a year ago.

Mars, whose real name is Peter Gene Hernandez, didn’t appear in person for the brief hearing at which Clark County District Court Judge Jessie Walsh dismissed the case. The 26-year-old singer-songwriter of hits including “Just the Way You Are,” ”It Will Rain,” and “Grenade” pleaded guilty on Feb. 16 to cocaine possession, but the judge postponed accepting the plea.

Mars didn’t get formal probation, but the judge fined him $2,000 and ordered him to perform 200 hours of community service and 8 hours of drug counseling.

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Jon Bon Jovi: Dead... or alive? (Hint: It was a hoax)

Reports of his death have been greatly exaggerated. Yesterday, 49-year-old rocker Jon Bon Jovi was the latest casualty of Internet rumors claiming he had died of a massive heart attack. Before fans could indulge in too much gnashing of teeth or plan an epic 21-can Aquanet salute synced to “Blaze of Glory,” Bon Jovi himself took to Facebook and Twitter to set the record straight with a cheeky pic (right) of himself holding a sign that read “Heaven looks a lot like New Jersey Dec. 19, 2011 6:00.” READ FULL STORY

Ke$ha covers Bob Dylan's 'Don't Think Twice, It's All Right,' totally doesn't embarrass herself

In the next issue of Entertainment Weekly, the writers of the music section will be calling out a notoriously awful and ill-advised cover as one of the worst songs of the year (no spoilers here; you’ll have to read our Best & Worst of 2011 issue to find out what it is).

Covers can deadly, especially when the recording involves a pop star taking on a revered piece of rock history. But leave it up to eternal curveball Ke$ha to make us eat our words.

Amnesty International is celebrating its 50th birthday with a compilation called Chimes of Freedom, a four-disc affair that features a whopping 76 covers of Bob Dylan songs. The entirety of the compilation is currently streaming for free on the organization’s Facebook page, with the proper album hitting stores on January 24.

The lineup is all over the place, with a handful of the usual suspects (Joan Baez, Billy Bragg, Tom Morello, Pete Seeger) and some more unusual choices (Adele, Jack’s Mannequin, Airborn Toxic Event, Bad Religion). But the real head-turners are the people from the pure pop universe, including Miley Cyrus, Maroon 5, Darren Criss, and Ke$ha.

The twist is that Ke$ha’s cover of Dylan’s venerable talking blues “Don’t Think Twice, It’s All Right” is actually pretty good. She slows it way, way down and turns it into a slow-burning and devastating torch song, shifting the tone away from Dylan’s flippant indignation into incredible sadness. Give it a listen below. READ FULL STORY

Sly Stone headed to rehab

Sly Stone has had a pretty rough year. He ran afoul of the law, released a poorly-received album, and ended up living in his van. Things could be looking up, though: the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame member is now reportedly headed to rehab.

A source told Radar that Stone is looking to clean up and will be spending the next 90 days in a detox facility. “Sly has fallen on very hard times in the past few years,” the source said.

That’s a bit of an understatement; Stone has repeatedly struggled with drug problems that have been exacerbated by a string of bad business decisions. He spent two decades in relative seclusion but has made sporadic concert appearances since 2007. In his biggest show in recent years, he put on a rambling, fractured set at Coachella 2010.

As noted, Stone (born Sylvester Stewart) is a member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame — he was inducted as a member of Sly & the Family Stone in 1993 — and was one of the key figures to infuse traditional R&B with elements of modern funk, arena rock, and psychedelia. The brew yielded classic genre cornerstones like “Underdog,” “Everyday People,” “Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Agin),” and “Family Affair.”

Read more on EW.com:
Review: Sly Stone, I’m Back! Family & Friends
Sly Stone at Coachella 2010
Sly Stone files suit against ex-manager

Eminem talks addiction, says 'The bigger the crowd, the bigger my habit got'

bad-meets-evil

Eminem hasn’t exactly avoided the topic of his relationship with a variety of illicit chemicals. After all, his last two albums were called Relapse and Recovery. But the man born Marshall Mathers has rarely been as candid about his struggles with addiction in the press.

In the pages of GQ, where he was named a “God of Rock” next to the likes of Keith Richards and Robert Plant, Em let the world know exactly why he is so prone to addiction. “I’m very much a creature of habit,” he told GQ. “If I’m used to waking up in the morning and having [a Red Bull], I could do it every morning for the next ten years straight until I find something else to move on to. So if I’m used to taking a Vicodin when I wake up in the morning because I’m hungover from ­drinking or taking pills … The bigger the crowd, the bigger my habit got.”

Eminem also explained that his drug problems could be traced over the course of his discography, noting that The Slim Shady LP was written almost entirely sober, the dark experiments on The Marshall Mathers LP were the result of more experimentation with substances, and Encore was hampered both artistically and practically thanks to his addiction to prescription medication (including Valium and Ambien). READ FULL STORY

Demi Lovato sings 'Skyscraper' live at VH1's Do Something Awards -- VIDEO

Demi Lovato performed her new single, “Skyscraper,” live for the first time on Vh1’s Do Something Awards, which aired last night.

I remember seeing Lovato sing “Here We Go Again” on The View two years ago, and it was clear she was having some vocal issues. We all know why now. But I’m happy to say that, except for a slightly shaky start, her pipes were in fine form during her spirit and stage-lifting performance of “Skyscraper.”

Check out the belty performance below: READ FULL STORY

Adele, Katy Perry help music sales go up for the first time in seven years

At the halfway point of 2011, it shouldn’t be surprising that Adele’s 21 is the top-selling album of the year. But did you know that thanks to that big boost, alongwith solid entries by the likes of Lady Gaga and Mumford & Sons, album sales are actually up for the first time in seven years?

According to the mid-year report published by Nielsen SoundScan, a few more than 155 million albums have moved in the first six months of 2011, compared to the just under 154 million that sold during the same time in 2010. That’s a whopping one percent gain!

It’s always good to be up, but considering album sales have been in total freefall for years (at this time last year, sales were down 11 percent compared to the same time in 2009), there was really no place to go but up.

There are some real reasons to celebrate, though. READ FULL STORY

Justin Bieber gets tackled during fragrance unveiling in New York

Justin Bieber is diversified, which keeps the teen titan in the black but also apparently forces him to learn a little bit of jujitsu.

During an appearance at Macy’s in New York City to present his brand new fragrance (which is cryptically called Someday), he was accosted by a man who hopped a barricade outside the store.

According to the local New York ABC affiliate, Bieber was holding court inside the store but decided to head out onto the sidewalk to shake some hands and sign some autographs for the thousands of tweens who gathered to get a glimpse of the him but were denied entry into the store.

Bieber took a swing back at the man, who has not been identified, and was not hurt in the incident. UPDATE: According to new reports, the man in question was a plainclothes police officer who was attempting to help the singer and was restrained by Bieber’s bodyguards.

You can track the brief altercation in the video after the jump, but be warned that it’s taken from quite a distance (though it really captures the size of the crowd) and contains a lot of NSFW potty-mouthed narration from the knuckle-headed videographers.

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Amy Winehouse cancels all remaining tour dates

In a move that shouldn’t shock anybody, Amy Winehouse has called off all of the remaining dates on her European tour (that’s 11 shows in all).

The announcement came only a day after the singer canceled dates in Athens and Istanbul following a disastrous performance in Belgrade, Serbia over the weekend. READ FULL STORY

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