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DBT, The Clientele, Ryan Adams, Son Volt, Tigers & Chicks   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Wednesday, June 06, 2007 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl


THE POLYPHONIC SPREE has released a video-less video for "Running Away" from the upcoming LP The Fragile Army, featuring over 70K still photos from a ten-day tour.

THE DRIVE-BY TRUCKERS' long out-of-print live disc, Alabama A** Whuppin', is streaming at NineBullets.net.

ELVIS PERKINS tells London's Guardian -- among other things -- that being named Elvis gave him "an apprehension of dealing with people, because there was no way of getting off on the right foot."

WILCO apparently felt a need to explain their involvement in the the new Volkswagen ad campaign.

THE CLIENTELE frontman Alasdair MacLean tells ChartAttack that the new God Save The Clientele is influenced by "the kind of music I used to love before I became snobbish or had musical taste" -- bubblegum pop like The Monkees and The Banana Splits.  Actually, that influence is pretty subtle, as you'll hear if you stream the whole thing from Merge Records.  I would pick mid-period Kinks and The Thrills as more likely references.

ROBERT POLLARD has confirmed two more albums -- Standard Gargoyle Decisions and Coast to Coast Carpet of Love --will both drop Oct. 9th.  But wait...there's more!  Pollard is starting a year-long singles club via robertpollard.net.

RYAN ADAMS, possibly the only dude as prolific as Pollard, is plotting a multi-disc boxed set of odds-and-ends from his extensive back catalog, according to Billboard.  You can see him play the new "Everybody Knows" and the old "Magnolia Mountain" at Amazon.

SON VOLT mastermind Jay Farrar tells Richmond's Daily Press that the latest album, The Search, draws "from from what would be considered 'Rock 101' sources - The Beatles and The Rolling Stones."  Told that the horns on "The Picture" recall those on The Stones' "B*tch," he applauds the recognition. "We actually were doing that song live for a while," he says.

LILY ALLEN claims her new lifestyle of constant touring has prompted an unhealthy love of booze and that she is heading for an early death.

AMY WINEHOUSE had a screaming bust-up with new hubby Blake Fielder-Civil after being booed at the MTV Movie Awards.  Shocka!

ELENI MANDELL is interviewed by the San Francisco Chronicle about her latest album, Miracle of Five, the crazy dance parties at her house, and more.  You can stream the mini-set she played for The Current last week via MPR.

OKKERVIL RIVER frontman Will Scheff thanks Pitchfork for noticing his more confident singing on the band's upcoming album.  I don't know how he would take Frank's comment at Chromewaves, though I think it's a similar compliment.

LINDSAY LOHAN is still in rehab, but those risque party photos featuring a knife-wielding Li-Lo may put a crimp in the future career of ex-MTV infobabe Vanessa Minnillo.  Meanwhile, E!'s Daily 10 co-host Debbie Matenopoulos blasted a possible reality TV show featuring Mom Dina Lohan -- apparently not knowing that the show would air on the E! channel.

BRITNEY SPEARS saved an elderly couple from a jellyfish-infested beach during her Mexico vacation.  So perhaps it's good karma that her Mom cancelled today's scheduled appearance on The View.

BEYONCE KNOWLES and JAY-Z are reportedly engaged and planning to marry in Hawaii in the autumn.

SASHA BARON COHEN and ISLA FISHER are expecting a baby this winter, a source close to the couple confirms.

THE KATE HUDSON-CHRIS ROBINSON BREAK-UPDATE is now the Kate Hudson-Owen Wilson Break-Update.

BRADGELINA are planning another addition to the rainbow family - this time an orphan boy from the Czech Republic.

TOM-KAT UPDATE:  Holmes's vaguely Stepford-esque performance on Entertainment Tonight is now available for online viewing.  The accompanying text even quotes Holmes on Cruise's reaction to the kissing scenes in her upcoming movie: "I'm on the set when he's working, he's on the set when I'm working, and we're working," she says. "It's not a big deal -- it's a part of the job."  Really?  Having your spouse on-set is part of the job?  Which job is that?

LARRY & LAURIE DAVID are dunzo, which will allow Larry to resume normal toilet-paper consumption.

JON-BENET RAMSEY'S FATHER and NATALEE HOLLOWAY'S MOTHER have been caught canoodling in Mountain Brook, Ala.  Ew.

GIRLS GONE WILD founder Joe Francis is out of the frying pan in Nevada; the fire awaits him in Florida.

THE FRENCH HOTEL in the GREYBAR HOTEL, Day Two:  I forgot to link to the fab statement the heirhead put out upon entering the clink on her probation violation: "In the future, I plan on taking more of an active role in the decisions I make..."

THE BATTLE of MIDWAY ran from June 4-6, 1942, but 15 minutes changed the world.

ISRAEL:  A former Israel Broadcasting Authority news editor admits: "We slanted the news towards a withdrawal from Lebanon - because we had sons there."

IRAN:  Half the country's population of 70 million is aged under 30, there is high unemployment and many young Iranians complain they cannot afford to get married or buy a house.  So Iran's hardline interior minister has ignited controversy by promoting temporary marriage as a way of countering a perceived increase in illegal extra- and pre-marital sex.  The Shia Muslim tradition of temporary marriage, or sigheh, allows a man and a woman in Iran to marry for a set period of time, ranging from an hour to 99 years.

IRAQ:  Moqtada al-Sadr rejected direct talks with the US, threatened a new uprising and revealed that he fears the US will kill him.  ITM's Omar Fadhil reports al-Sadr returned from Iran strong enough to summon seven Iraqi governors to meet him and listen to his instructions about how they should run their respective provinces in central and southern Iraq at the same time his militia was fighting the police forces of at least one of those provinces.  The Islamic Army in Iraq sought to turn popular opinion against Al-Qaeda and its umbrella group, the Islamic State of Iraq, at least since last September, during a series of meetings with influential Saudi clerics known for their not-so-covert backing of Iraqi insurgent groups.  Muslim scholars, including Sunnis, Shiites and Kurdish leaders, announced the establishment of an Islamic union aimed at stopping bloodshed and sectarian violence in Iraq.  Voices of Iraq reports that Parliament voted to approve a decision that gives it the upper hand in deciding any future extension of foreign troops in Iraq, though -- as with the last such vote -- it's not clear this will ever be binding legislation.  US troops detained four suspected insurgents, including an insurgent cell leader believed to have been moving bombs from Iran and militants to Iran, during raids in northeast Baghdad on Tuesday morning.

TIGERS and CHICKS are friends... for now... at Zhejiang Wenling Zoo in Taizhou City, China.

FORGET TUMS or PEPCID:  A man in southeast China says 40 years of swallowing tree frogs and rats live has helped him avoid tummy ache.

AN ESCAPED KANGAROO that surprised residents as it bounded through rural central Indiana during the weekend died Monday after authorities used a tranquilizer dart to capture it.

AN OSTRICH lost his lawsuit claiming three German teenagers made him impotent with their festive firecrackers.

COWS stare unamazed as University of Arkansas scientists get a real-time look at their stomach contents through 4-inch tubes implanted in their sides.

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Band of Bees, New Releases, Live Wilco, Popped Hedgehog   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Tuesday, June 05, 2007 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl


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Sgt. Pepper, New Okkervil River, Live White Stripes, Nessie   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Monday, June 04, 2007 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl


SGT. PEPPER TURNED 40 over the weekend.  Russ Smith has a general overview of the album's place in rock history for the Wall Street Journal, while Daniel J. Levitin, author of This Is Your Brain on Music: The Science of a Human Obsession, offers some scientific reasons for The Beatles' longevity.  The Daily Mail solves the mystery of John Lennon's medals.  NPR has an audio feature on the album, as well as covers of its songs.  The Beatles put up an official video clip on the Tube.  London Weekend Television's 25th Anniversary documentary -- featuring track-by-track breakdowns with Producer George Martin manning the board -- can be seen in full via Google Video, starting with the single of "Strawberry Fields" and "Penny Lane" -- the first Fab single that failed to make No. 1 on the UK charts.

THE PIPETTES:  The band I will be seeing this week talk to Exclaim! about their self-fabricated image: "We're as influenced by the Spice Girls as we are the Sex Pistols." And they may have said that without realizing how much malcolm McLaren shaped the Pistols' image.

NEIL YOUNG:  An Aquarium Drunkard has posted a two-parter from A Perfect Echo -- an 8-disc set of high-quality recordings running chronologically from August 1967 to January 2001.  You can jukebox 'em via the ol' HM.

THE POLICE got a very bad review for the second gig on their reunion tour... from drummer Stewart Copeland, who called it a "disaster gig."

OKKERVIL RIVER has a new track from their upcoming album, "Our Life is Not a Movie" streaming at TheirSpace.  And if you've never heard the band, I would stream "For Real" there also.

THE WHITE STRIPES:  Jack White is playing Elvis Presley in upcoming comedy Walk Hard.  But the above clip is of the band's own "Effect and Cause" from Later with Jools Holland -- one of three clips posted at Stereogum.

BETTYE LaVETTE is backed by Southern rock combo the Drive-By Truckers on her new album, The Scene of the Crime, due Sept. 25th.  Patterson Hood's Dad -- a classic session man -- also joins in the fun.

NEKO CASE'S lingerie sold at auction for 300 bucks.  And no, I was not the winning bidder.

THE FRAY singer Isaac Slade may be the heir to a 15-million-dollar country mansion in the UK.

RYAN ADAMS has listed his Top Five Metal Songs -- and solicits yours -- on his blog.

LINDSAY LOHAN may be in rehab, but the uber-reliable News of the World has pre-hab pics of Lohan holding a knife to a friend's throat and sticking it in her own mouth to go with claims that her obsession with bedding famous men is also at the root of her drink and drugs-fueled madness.  Celebrity Babylon claims that Lohan's DJ pal Samantha Ronson was reportedly making a tidy profit selling Lohan to the paparazzi, including making the pit stop that allowed them to snap the passed-out Li-Lo shortly before she entered rehab.  And sometime beau Calum Best has reportedly persuaded Britney Spears to visit Lohan in rehab, though she may not appreciate it -- if her comments on Best printed in the NotW are true.

BRITNEY SPEARS, btw, may be wondering what her mom will be saying on The View June 6th, in light of reports the pop tart has cut off all ties with her family.

WEEKEND BOX OFFICE:  :  Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End topped the box office again, but it's 43 million represents a 62% drop -- about what Spider-Man 3 dropped in its second weekend.  Both had record openngs and will make money, but both may fall short of the all-time top ten domestic grossers.  Knocked Up came in second with 29 million (on a 30 million budget) and the top per-screen average.  FWIW, I enjoyed it, though I did not find it to be the gut-buster that other reviewers apparently did.  Nor did I find it quite as raunchy as other reviews led me to believe, though perhaps my raunch scale is skewed higher than most.  My guess would be it has legs, unless Ocean's 13 hits the same demo next weekend.  Shrek the Third was indeed third, with 26.7 million, dropping about 50%.  Mr. Brooks opened in fourth place with ten million and looks to be another sub-par outing for both Kevin Costner and Demi Moore.   Spider-Man 3 rounds out the Top Five with another seven million; it has now made 318 million in the US and another 525 million in the rest of the world.  The sleeper Waitress slipped to sixth, but made another two million in expanded release.  Gracie opened in seventh with 1.3 million.  Bug tumbled 62% from fourth to eighth, as boilerplate horror tends to do.  28 Weeks later slid to ninth place with a similar 1.2 million total.  Disturbia clung to the bottom of the Top Ten, having made 76 million US so far on its 20 million budget.

THE MTV MOVIE AWARDS winners are listed at ComingSoon.  And there's full coverage at MTV, natch.

TOM-KAT UPDATE:  Holmes tells Entertainment Tonight (tonight) she's "definitiely' ready to have more Tom-Kittens.  Holmes also says the role of stepmother is one she relishes (even though Nicole Kidman reportedly does not relish Holmes in that role).

KIERA KNIGHTLEY and SIENNA MILLER have become fast friends while shooting The Edge Of Love together.  Pics of the pair out on the town and doing the human wheelbarrow at the link.  And while Knightley has stated before that she hoped some of Miller's social skills would rob off on her, it seems Kiera played the good cop in this video of Sienna slagging the paparazzi.

THE FRENCH HOTEL is ticking off some of her fellow inmates even before she arrives at the LA County Jail, as they believe officials were making room for the starlet at the expense of other inmates already coping with crowded conditions in the 2,200-bed jail.  UPDATE:  The heirhead turned herself in late Sunday night; video at the link.

JOHN TRAVOLTA and Kelly Preston just announced they want to try for their third child - even while they fall under increasing pressure to publicly acknowledge the disability of their son, Jett.  Travolta's lawyer has begun to float the threat of defamation suits against those who mention it.

BRADGELINA:  Pitt reportedly is apparently peeved with Jolie's wacky brother James for blabbing about them to the press.

DAVID HASSELHOFF has dismissed allegations made by his ex-wife Pamela Bach that he has started drinking again.

JESSICA BIEL and JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE had a down moment in a romantic weekend after JT got involved in a fracas with a guest sharing the same Manchester hotel.  BONUS:  Biel wishes she was as funny as the fake Biel Spiel blog.

TERROR in the US:  ICYMI, Four Muslim men, including a naturalized US citizen and former politician from Guyana, have been charged with conspiring to attack NYC's JFK Airport by bombing jet fuel supply tanks and a major fuel pipeline.  An informant was key to stopping the alleged conspiracy.  Though they discussed using dynamite, they had not obtained any explosives or moved beyond an early planning stage.  FBI agents feared but never confirmed the three men were linked to one of the most wanted al Qaeda leaders, Adnan Shukrijumah, known to have operated out of Guyana and Trinidad.  One suspect was arrested as he planned attend an Islamic religious conference in Iran.

IRAN:  Head UN nuclear watchdog Mohamed ElBaradei told the BBC that ""I have no brief other than to make sure we don't go into another war or that we go crazy into killing each other."  In reality, his job is supposed to be to verify that safeguarded nuclear material and activities are not used for military purposes.  His comments will likely make some people distrust his work and thereby increase the possibility of a military strike, not reduce it.  Meanwhile, Iran's president said on Sunday the Lebanese and the Palestinians had pressed a "countdown button" to bring an end to Israel.  And Iran has increased arms shipments to both Iraq's Shiite extremists and Afghanistan's Taliban in recent weeks, according to senior US and European officials.

IRAQ:  The return of Moqtada al-Sadr from his four months of self -mposed exile in Iran has led to a spike in activity against his political leadership and the extremist elements of his fractured Mahdi Army.  In Baghdad, the Amiriyah neighborhood has been pacified, but the US casts a wary eye on its enemies-turned-allies.  The NYT has a leaked military assessment claiming the American and Iraqi forces are far short of their projected goals for the "surge" so far, due in large part to the performance of Iraqi police and army units.  That story seems more solid than the fishy Reuters claim that civilan casualties spiked by 29% in May.  Reuters has been using leaked numbers from Iraqi ministries that greatly understated civilian deaths in past months.  The numbers from iCasualties -- based on AP reports -- have been higher in past months and show an eight percent increase is more likely.

THE LOCH NESS MONSTER is back and there's video. A man has captured what Nessie watchers say is possible footage of the supposed mythical creature beneath Scotland's most mysterious lake.

MONSTER PIG UPDATE:  The pig is apparently not only not a hoax, but also a farm-raised pig named Fred.

KNUT UPDATE:  Berlin Zoo's celebrity polar bear cub is growing from a cuddly ball of fur into a shaggy, powerful predator who could soon pose a serious threat to his devoted human keeper who has nursed him from birth.


COLLAPSE of the HONEYBEE?  Around the world, honeybees are vanishing en masse, leaving their humans engaged in a furious attempt to figure out the meaning of their exodus.  Jeff Pettis, who heads the Bee Research Laboratory of the Agricultural Research Service at the Department of Agriculture in Beltsville, discusses various theories behind the collapse of colonies.

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Rolling Stones, New Raveonettes and Sufjan, Cutout Bin, Hedgehogs   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Friday, June 01, 2007 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl



...with THE ROLLING STONES!  Here's a selection of live, semi-live, and undead clips of less-obvious tracks from the band's heyday: "Mercy, Mercy"; "The Last Time"; "Paint It Black"; "Honky Tonk Women"; and "Dead Flowers."

THE RAVEONETTES guitarist/vocalist Sune Rose Wagner tells the Portland Mercury that the duo's as-yet-untitled fourth album is nearly finished.  You can stream some demos at TheirSpace.

LOU REED talks to Common Ground about health and wellness, tai chi, turning wind into music and why he'd like to run for President.

SUFJAN STEVENS:  The 'Gum can hook you up with his new, Stripes-y rocker, "In The Words Of The Governor" and a La Blogotheque rooftop cover of the Innocence Mission's "The Lakes Of Canada."

TWELVE TRULY SAD SUMMER SONGS are listed by the A.V. Club, whose commenters jump in with additional candidates.

SEEN YOUR VIDEO:  Jane's Addiction plays "Jane Says" on the Show that must remain Name Less.

THE NATIONAL frontman Matt Berninger lists his bests and faves for Pitchfork's "Guest List" feature.

PET SHOP BOYS singer Neil Tennant is the latest skeptic of the Live Earth global warming concerts: "I've always been against the idea of rock stars lecturing people as if they know something the rest of us don't - it looks arrogant."

PETE DOHERTY-KATE MOSS UPDATE:  The supposedly sober supermodel has lapsed into her bad habit... of dressing like her current beau -- in this case, the troubled singer.

THE CUTOUT BIN:  This Friday's fortuitous finds from the ol' HM are: Barry Manilow - Very Strange Medley; Lovin' Spoonful - Summer in the City; Barrett Strong - Money (That's What I Want); Johnny Kidd & The Pirates - Shakin' All Over; The Dixie Cups - Iko Iko; Katrina & The Waves - Walking On Sunshine; The Posies - Solar Sister; Bram Tchaikovsky - Girl Of My Dreams; Guided By Voices - Glad Girls; Hoodoo Gurus - Mars Needs Guitars!; Wilco - Color Me Impressed; Magnolias - When I'm Not; Soul Asylum - Closer To The Stars; Husker Du - Celebrated Summer; The Dead Milkmen - Takin' Retards To The Zoo; Brian Wilson - This Whole World; Jason Falkner - Photograph (Def Leppard); Joan Jett - Summertime Blues; Marvin Gaye - Mercy Mercy Me; and The Dramatics - Hot Pants In The Summertime.

LINDSAY LOHAN is reportedly happy in rehab... or she was before her ex-con Dad told everyone she's in for multiple addictions to alcohol and drugs, including the powerful painkiller OxyContin.  Her beau Calum Best is promising to enter rehab also, after his coke-fueled sex orgy was taped and splashed in the tabloids.  And TMZ dug up a clip of Lohan laughing in an anti-DUI PSA.

NOW SHOWING:  This weekend's wide releases are Judd Apatow's comedy Knocked Up, wich is currently scoring an impressive 91 percent on the ol' Tomatometer; the Kevin Costner-Demi Moore thriller Mr. Brooks, scoring 52 percent; and the sports drama Gracie, scoring 45 percent.

GEORGE MICHAEL had a cocktail of drugs in his system when he was arrested in his car last year, including cannabis, an anti-depressant, and the illegal dance club drug GHB.  No wonder the cops had to wake him before he could go-go.

PAULA ABDUL apparently had a sob-filled meltdown that was taped and sent to Page Six.  What set her off?  The fact that even E! Online is skeptical when she denies yet again that her often bizarre behavior on American Idol stems from drug or alcohol use.  UPDATE: Perez Hilton has posted the audio of the tape.

CARRIE UNDERWOOD has reportedly been benched by Cowboys QB Tony Romo.

GO, SPEED GO!  There are some early details on the Wachowskis' live-action version of Speed Racer at USA Today -- including a live-action Chim-Chim.

WOODY ALLEN could not find a buyer for his latest film, Cassandra's Dream, at the Cannes Film Festival, but the Weinsteins just bought the rights for a US release.

JENNA FISHER, a/k/a Pam on The Office, is recovering from a broken back with help from Zach Braff's cupcakes.

THE 50 BEST DATE MOVIES EVER, according to Nerve.com -- complete with a recommended "best scene to make a move."

LONG SHOTS:  The Daily Film Dose has posted a list of "The Greatest Long Tracking Shots in Cinema," with plenty of embedded video.

THE WIZARDING WORLD of HARRY POTTER is set to open at Universal's Islands of Adventure theme park in late 2009, complete with the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, the Forbidden Forest and Hogsmeade village

JESSICA ALBA displayed her knowledge of single-malt scotches during an interview for Parade magazine.

VENEZUELA:  Radio Caracas Television, the station silenced by Pres. Hugo Chavez, has found a way to continue its daily broadcasts -- on YouTube.  In addition, RCTV's Colombia-based affiliate, Caracol, has agreed to transmit the evening installment of "El Observador" over its international signal, which could reach about 800,000 people in Venezuela.  The Carter Center and Reporters Without Borders issued critical statements , while relative calm returned to the streets after three days of demonstrations.

IRAN:  The US confirmed Thursday that a fourth Iranian-American -- peace activist Ali Shakeri -- is being held at a notorious prison in Tehran.  In a joint statement, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, Reporters without Borders, the International Federation for Human Rights and 2003 Nobel Peace Prize laureate Shirin Ebadi urged Iran to to immediately release the four.  Adding insult to injury, Citibank froze the bank accounts of one of the prisoners under US sanctions law on grounds that she is now a "resident" of Iran.

IRAQ:  The US military is working more aggressively to forge cease-fires with Iraqi militants and quell the violence around Baghdad, judging that 80 percent of enemy combatants are "reconcilable."  Sunni Muslim Iraqi insurgents fought fierce battles on Thursday with al Qaeda-led terrorists for control of a Baghdad neighborhood that has effectively been outside government control for months.  ITM's Omar hears the Sunni insurgents are members of the Islamic Army of Iraq or 1920 Revolutionary Brigades and that that machine guns, RPG's and mortars were used in the clashes.  IraqSlogger is reporting the same.  Bill Roggio reports on the formation of a Babil Awakening, noting that all four provinces around Baghdad have now established Awakening or Salvation Councils to fight AQ.  Michael Yon has exclusive details on the arrest of the once-heroic Gen. Hamid in the city of Hit.  Bobby Ghosh, Baghdad bureau chief for Time magazine, tells WNYC public radio about the progress that would be lost if the US left now.

TINY BABY HEDGEHOGS are proving a handful for carers at a British rescue center, after the mild weather triggered a string of early orphaned arrivals.  More awww...some pics and video at the link.

WAYWARD WHALES UPDATE:  The humpbacks have disappeared near San Francisco Bay.  Researchers are optimistic that they are back in the ocean, but they could be riding the trolley.

XiANG XIANG, the world's only artificially-bred panda living in the wild has plunged to its death -- and may have been "murdered" by other pandas.

A CAMEL went postal on his employer at the C2K Camel Ranch near Grand Junction, CO.

WHACKING DAY:  An 80-year-old Croatian heart surgery patient leapt from his intensive care bed and used his walking stick to beat a deadly viper to death.

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Live Police, New NPs, Richard & Linda Thompson, Barking Shark   Printer-friendly page   Send this story to someone
Thursday, May 31, 2007 - 08:00 AM
Posted by: Karl


THE POLICE reunion tour is off to a good start, according to the Wall Street Journal.  It's as good an excuse as any to post clips from Vancouver of "King of Pain" and "Walking In Your Footsteps."

THE NEW PORNOGRAPHERS:  The band's Challengers album is due in August, but you can -- and should -- stream "My Rights Versus Yours" now.

RICHARD THOMPSON talks to Ents24 about his long career and his picks for new artists.

LINDA THOMPSON, Richard's ex, has a new album coming in August, but you can already stream "Beauty," on which she gets assists from Rufus Wainwright and Antony (of Antony and the Johnsons).  Just check the 'Gum Mix at the link.

FEIST gives Pitchfork some details on the recording of her current album, The Reminder.

SEEN YOUR VIDEO:  Jackie Wilson sings his great "Lonely Teardrops" on Shindig, so you know there will be dancing.  BONUS:  Someone has reposted the Sam Cooke-Jackie Wilson clip.

THE PHIL SPECTOR TRIAL:  A coroner testifying for the prosecution in Phil Spector's murder trial said a gun was probably forced into the mouth of Lana Clarkson, but conceded on cross-examination that that the medical findings could not determine who held the gun.

DALE HAWKINS, who wrote the swamp-rock classic "Suzy Q" and produced the Box Tops, Michael Nesmith, Harry Nilsson and more, is the artist behind this week's Shadow Classic at NPR, including swampy takes on classics like "Hound Dog."

THE 25 GREATEST SONGS off Bad Albums, according to Rolling Stone's blog.

CHRIS CORNELL:  The former Soundgarden and Audioslave frontman's solo LP, Carry On, isn't out until next week, but you can stream it all now via MuchMusic.

LINDSAY LOHAN is in rehab, but at least she missed her boyfriend's coke-fueled orgy with two call girls, which got taped.  Meanwhile, the starlet is the subject of a rant by Marilyn Manson and an endorsement of sorts from Sen. John Kerry.  And the producers of her next film are not dumping her.

ROSIE O'DONNELL:  Seventy-three percent of Americans have read, seen or heard about her early departure from The View, and is viewed favorably by just 25% of Americans -- which is at least better than Paris Hilton, Britney Spears, and Lindsay Lohan.  Nevertheless, sources say O'Donnell has been approached by CBS, NBC and even Telepictures - the producer of the original Rosie O'Donnell Show - about getting her own talk show again.

ANNA KOURNIKOVA and ENRIQUE IGLESIAS, contrary to prior reports, are still together.  A  Kournikova pal told People magazine that Iglesias was only joking about a split to Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet.

THE FRENCH HOTEL is panicking at the prospect of prison, but the prison is prepared for her.

ARETHA FRANKLIN has signed up with Jenny Craig in hopes of shedding the pounds before her wedding next month.

BRITNEY SPEARS had to be carried out of the men's toilets of an exclusive LA hotel bar on Sunday night after she was discovered vomiting uncontrollably.

TOM-KAT UPDATE:  According to OK! Magazine, Holmes and Nicole Kidman are fighting over Kidman's two children with Cruise.  Nicole wants Katie to know she's their real mother, and is said to be angered by the young bride's role in her children's life.

JENNIFER ANISTON is denying a report by Star magazine that she is writing a dishy book spilling the details of her four-year marriage to Brad Pitt and their 2005 divorce.

REESE & RYAN BREAK-UPDATE:  After three months of dating, Reese Witherspoon and Jake Gyllenhaal are maintaining their low-key relationship.

DAVID HYDE PIERCE, best known as Dr. Niles Crane from Frasier, was apparently outed by the AP. NTTAWWT.

HARRY POTTER and the ORDER of the PHOENIX has moved up its opening date from Friday, July 13th to Wednesday, July 11th.  And it's probably about padding the opening box office numbers, not superstition.

VENEZUELA:  A top opponent of Pres. Hugo Chavez demanded the release of jailed protesters as university students continued to pour into the streets to protest the removal of a leading opposition TV station from the air.  Concern that protests will turn violent again caused Venezuelan government debt to tumble in local markets.

ISLAMISM in the UK:  The wife of an Islamic religious leader actively encouraged him to become a terrorist, and hoped their baby son would follow him into "martyrdom", the Old Bailey was told.  The couple were arrested after they flew into the UK allegedly carrying blueprints for missiles and bombs to be used against the West.

IRAQ:  Foreign Minister Zebari said that the Mahdi Army was most likely behind the kidnapping of five Brits in Baghdad, probably assisted by local police, but Az-Zaman quoted al-Hurra television, which claimed that Zebari denied making such accusations.  The UK is weighing its options, icluding dispatching an SAS team.  According to al-Hayat, Moqtada al-Sadr criticized Iran for "recognizing the American mandate over Iraq," which is consistent with al-Sadr's recent effort to position himself as a nationalist, rather than as a tool of Iran.  Turkey is making bellicose statements and began to relocate twenty additional tanks to the Iraq border on Wednesday, which -- in light of recent statements denying interest in crossing the border -- may reflect Turkish election politics.  The US transferred control of three provinces to the Kurdish Regional Gov't.  Contacts are underway between Prime Minister al-Maliki and the Baathist faction of Izzat al-Douri (Saddam's old VP), according to a Kurdish media report.  VOA surveys conditions in Mosul.  A Sunni police chief praised by US forces for clearing the city of Hit of insurgents has been arrested following an investigation into alleged murder, corruption and crimes against the Iraqi people, the US military says.  Michael Yon was there, says the US avoided a bloodbath, more details to follow.  Local authorities and about 100 tribes have formed an "operations room" to coordinate anti-terror efforts in Diayala province.

...AND NOW FOR SOMETHING COMPLETELY DIFFERENT:  A Rare Barking Sand Shark, though that may be a dog off-camera. (Thanks, Dad.)

...AND NOW FOR SOMETHING COMPLETELY DIFFERENT: An Albino Wallaby and an Albino Magpie.

MONSTER PIG UPDATE:  A website claims the massive porker is the result of fauxtography, but the family which shot it and the local taxidermist beg to differ.

THE SQUIRREL THREAT:  A suicide squirrel took down the grid in Puget Sound.

THE HAMSTER THREAT:  A British man was hospitalized with serious breathing difficulties after being viciously attacked by a hamster.  Richard Gere was unavailable for comment.

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