Reba makes her last appearance as an advisor on NBC's The Voice tonight (Tuesday, May 31st). She has been helping Blake Shelton determine the winners of the battles round, and Reba tells us it's been a blast: "Oh, it's a lot of fun! It's a lot of fun. I love competition, and seein' 'em go head-to-head and gettin' to sing against each other like that . . . I think it's a wonderful concept! I love it!"
Next week's The Voice begins the live episodes. The show airs tonight at at 10 p.m. ET, but the time slot moves to 9 p.m. ET beginning next Tuesday (June 7th).
As we told you earlier, Blake has rented a house in Los Angeles for the month of June in order to do the show.
He also joins Brad Paisley on his H2O II tour beginning on Friday (June 3rd) in Virginia Beach, Virginia.
Taylor Swift began the U.S. leg of her Speak Now World tour with two shows in Omaha, Nebraska on Friday (May 27th) and Saturday (May 28th). The capacity crowd-- 15,000 each night -- was treated to 17 songs throughout the two-hour performance. Taylor opened the show with the song "Sparks Fly," rising up from under the stage, according to the Omaha World-Herald. She had her trademark lucky Number 13 painted on her right hand and the Andy Grammer lyrics "you gotta keep your head up but you can let your hair down" written down her left arm.
Taylor changed clothes at least nine times throughout the show, during which she was backed by nine musicians and singers and eight dancers.
Four hit singles into her 2010 Speak Now CD, Taylor tells us the fans get the credit for this multi-platinum album and sold out new tour. "I would attribute the success of the last couple of years to the fans. I don't know how this happened but they are the reason. You know, I made an album and they determine what that album is, what it becomes and what it will be, and I'm really happy with the choices they've made concerning this record -- really happy about it!"
The Speak Now World tour rolls on to Sunrise, Florida for two sold out shows on Friday (June 2nd) and Saturday (June 3rd).
Taylor's special guests on the tour are pop act Needtobreathe and country newcomer Frankie Ballard.
Shania Twain will be honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on Thursday in Los Angeles. Her star will be unveiled in front of the W Hotel in Hollywood, according to reports.Bo Derek will be on hand to help Shania mark the occasion.
Shania's will be the 2,442nd star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
The honor is bestowed by the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce.
Shania's 1997 album, Come On Over, is the biggest selling album by a female musician of all time across all genres. It is also the top-selling country album ever.
Shania's new docu-series, Why Not? With Shania Twain, airs on Sundays at 10 p.m. ET on the OWN network.
LeAnn Rimes is stepping up to do her part for the victims of the recent tornadoes in Alabama and Missouri. She and her husband, actor Eddie Cibrian, will host An Evening With LeAnn Rimes on June 5th in Jacksonville, Florida. The acoustic concert event, which will be held at Ponte Vedra Concert Hall, will also feature a silent auction. Items going up on the auction block include a post-show meet-and-greet drink with LeAnn and Eddie, along with autographed memorabilia from Reba, Justin Bieber, Kelly Clarkson, Kim Kardashian and the cast ofGlee.
LeAnn issued a statment on the concert hall's website, saying, "We all need a hand sometimes and this is the time."
Tickets are currently available for $65.00. Fans can also purchase VIP tickets for $100, which includes premium seating, an autographed picture, and an after-show Q & A session.
LeAnn and Eddie have been enjoying a delayed honeymoon in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.
The couple tied the knot last month.
So far, this is the first fundraiser announced for Missouri's victims of last week's tornado.
Supergroup Alabama has organized the Bama Rising fundraiser concert on June 14th in Birmingham, Alabama.
Reba and Blake Shelton raised $500,000 with their sold-out, two-night Tornado Relief Concerts last week at the Choctaw Casino Resort in Durant, Oklahoma. The money was donated to the Tushka Disaster Relief fund.
The Franklin, Tennessee farm belonging to Brad Paisley and Kimberly Williams-Paisley played host to a family wedding on Sunday (May 29th). Kimberly's sister, actress Ashley Williams, tied the knot with her longtime boyfriend, producer Neal Dodson.
A call for dancers to strut their stuff at a Kid Rock show in London, Ontario on Saturday night (May 28th) turned into a controversy as several locals wondered whether the venue should even be looking for girls to dance. According to Jam! Music, the John Labatt Centre put out a post on Facebook and Twitter saying, "HEY, Kid Rock Fans! We need 4 girls to dance in the show on Saturday. 2 songs, $200 each. Need a bikini, short shorts, tank top and Cowboy boots are optional!! Recruiting our lucky winners Cowboys Ranch on Friday night. See you there!"
Brian Ohl, general manager of the venue, said that recruiting the girls was part of the contract the arena made with Rock, explaining, "He's looking for four dancers and we were instructed to find some dancers." He added that this was the first time the venue helped an act find dancers.
Megan Walker, executive director of the London Abused Women's Centre, said that the venue was essentially "pimping out" the dancers to Kid Rock. She remarked, "I find it very offensive," adding that the clothing preference indicated that Rock "(wanted) them to dress in an sexually exploitative manner." Walker said that the venue could have found professional dancers instead.
Rock apparently gets four local women to come and dance at each gig on his current tour, according to Ohl.
The singer has been touring behind his 2010 release, Born Free, and next plays in Ottawa, Ontario on Tuesday night (May 31st).
Q. What country superstar once auditioned to be a backup singer for Reba McEntire, but did not make the cut? A. Faith Hill
ON THE TUBE
MASTER SERIES/GAC 8:30PM (ET) Keith Urban, Bill Anderson
LATE SHOW WITH DAVID LETTERMAN/CBS 11:35PM (ET) Emmylou Harris
The Hangover Part II had a big Memorial Day weekend in first place, taking in $105.8 million over the long holiday weekend after debuting on Thursday (May 26th). The total of $137.4 million that the movie's taken in is nearly half what the original movie made in 2009 over its entire run. The Hangover Part IIreunites stars Bradley Cooper, Ed Helms and Zach Galifianakis as they once again wake up with fuzzy memories after a drunken night, this time in Bangkok, and try to piece together what happened. Co-starring are Justin Bartha, Ken Jeong, Paul Giamatti, Mike Tyson and Jeffrey Tambor.
In second place was another sequel, the animated Kung Fu Panda 2, which also opened last Thursday.Jack Black and Angelina Jolie again are the voice stars as the Furious Five heroes go up against a villain trying to conquer ancient China. Also lending their voices are Dustin Hoffman, Gary Oldman,Seth Rogen and Jackie Chan. Falling to third place was last week's top movie, Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides.
Breaking into the top 10 as it expanded to more theaters in its second weekend in limited release was the Woody Allen romance Midnight in Paris, which landed at Number 7. The film stars Owen Wilson as a writer who gets a lesson about romanticizing the past as he gets a chance to meet some of his idols in 1920s Paris.
Director Terrence Malick's drama The Tree of Life, starring Brad Pitt, Sean Penn and Jessica Chastain, made nearly $500,000 after opening in just four theaters in New York City and Los Angeles. The film, which last week won the top prize at the Cannes Film Festival, will expand to more theaters gradually through July 1st.
THIS HOLIDAY WEEKEND'S TOP TEN MOVIES -- MAY 27-30
The Hangover Part II, $105.8 million
Kung Fu Panda 2, $62.2 million
Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, $50.4 million
TONY ROMO MARRIES: Tony Romo and Candice Crawford were married on Saturday (May 28th) night in Dallas, TX. A guest told People magazine, "It was perfect! From the ceremony in beautiful white, to a vibrant after-party and great music selected by Tony himself." A handful of Romo's Dallas Cowboys teammates were among the reported 600 guests in attendance. Romo and Crawford -- the younger sister of Gossip Girl'sChace Crawford -- got engaged last December after a year and a half of dating.
ESTELLA WARREN ESCAPES ESCAPE CHARGE: Estella Warren will not face escape charges for allegedly attempting to flee from custody after she was arrested last week. Law enforcement sources told TMZ that since the model's attempted escape came before she was officially booked -- she did not commit a felony escape. Her charges for assault, hit and run, and DUI remain.
ELLEN AND PORTIA REPORTEDLY SELLING CRAZY EXPENSIVE COMPOUND: Ellen DeGeneresand Portia de Rossi are reportedly selling their Beverly Hills compound -- with a price tag between $49 and $60 million dollars. PerezHilton.com reported that the 9,000 square foot home boasts a master suite, three more guest rooms, and a sunbathing terrace. A guest house features two bedrooms, a living room, dining room and kitchen. There's also a gym, a swimming pool, and garage space for eight to ten cars.
KIM KARDASHIAN WANTS BABIES: Kim Kardashian isn't wasting any time moving forward with her personal life. Not only does she want to wed fiance Kris Humphries this summer -- she wants babies to follow right after. The reality star told People magazine, "In the next year we want to maybe try to start a family."
REALITY STAR WANTED: An arrest warrant has been issued for Rachel Lay, who stars on VH1'sSaddle Ranch. TMZ.com reported that the warrant was issued after Lay failed to appear for a court date stemming from a DUI arrest in March. She told TMZ she plans to sort the situation out in court today (March 31st).
Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi got into a fender-bender in Florence on Monday. According to TMZ, the reality star was driving with Deena Cortese in the passenger seat when she struck her own police escort. Snooki managed to wedge her car between the police car and a wall. Deena actually had to exit the car through a window.
The two officers in the car Snooki hit were put on stretchers and taken to the hospital. At the time they only reported bruises and possible whiplash.
Alcohol was reportedly not involved in the crash.
Snooki and Deena were taken to the police station to fill out an accident report. They were not arrested.
BRAVO ANGRY AT PORN SITE: Bravo is pissed off at a porn site for trying to capitalize on their Real Housewives franchise. TMZ.com reported that the network sent a letter to RealHousewivesofScottsdale.com -- a website that has live XXX performances from several "housewives" -- accusing them of trademark infringement. The site's owner told TMZ that he will not shut down the site, and is willing to go to court over the issue.
'THE HOBBIT' MOVIES GET OFFICIAL RELEASE DATES AND TITLES: According to Variety, the first of Peter Jackson's two Hobbit films, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, will be open December 14, 2012. The second, titled The Hobbit: There And Back Again, will release one year later on December 13th of 2013.
CHANGES IN STORE FOR 'CRIMINAL MINDS': Paget Brewster will reportedly return to Criminal Minds next season, while Rachel Nichols has been let go. Deadline.com reported the casting change, noting that Brewster had modified her contract last year so that she could film a pilot -- but since the show wasn't picked up, CBS wants her back. With the impending return of Bewster and fan favorite A.J. Cook, there reportedly wasn't enough room for Nicholas.
MARISKA HARGITAY WILL MISS CHRISTOPHER MELONI: Mariska Hargitay spoke out on the departure of her Law & Order: SVU costar Chris Meloni. After Chris's rep confirmed that he'll be leaving the show after 12 seasons, Hargitay said, "For the past 12 years Chris has been my partner and friend, both on screen and off. He inspired me every day with his integrity, his extraordinary talent and his commitment to the truth. I love him deeply and will miss him terribly -- I'm so excited to see what he'll do next."
JON HAMM DIRECTING 'MAD MEN': Jon Hamm will direct the season five premiere of Mad Men. Hamm, the show's star, said of the move behind the camera, "The wheels have officially been set in motion to make that happen. It's a very exciting challenge that I'm looking forward to with a mixture of utter fear and excitement." Production on the long-delayed season is expected to begin in August.
TRAILER FOR 'DRAGON TATTOO' RELEASED: Check out the first trailer for The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo:
WILLIAM AND KATE REPORTEDLY LAND 'VANITY FAIR' COVER
Prince William and Catherine Middleton will reportedly appear on the July cover of Vanity Fair. TheNew York Post reported that in addition to new shots of the couple by Mario Testino, the spread will feature photos of Diana, Prince Harry, and Prince Charles.
The issue is expected to hit newsstands not long before the royal couple arrives in Los Angeles on July 8th.
Plans for the couple's North American trip were announced on Monday -- with most of the 11 days abroad spent in Canada.
Although some press reports said that Kate will require at least 40 different outfit changes during the trip, a palace aide would only say, "They want to keep their entourage to a minimum."
A palace source said that the time spent in Los Angeles is " a working visit, not as an opportunity for them to meet celebrities."
The Canadian leg of their visit is as follows:
June 30-July 2: The National Capital Region (Ottawa, Ontario and Gatineau, Quebec)
After years of steadfast denial that a wedding will happen before gay marriage is legal, Brad Pitt says that he and Angelina Jolie are considering tying the knot.
Pitt told USA Weekend, "The kids ask about marriage. It's meaning more and more to them. So it's something we've got to look at."
Married or not, Pitt admitted that being a father of six has had a profound affect on his life. He explained, "Kids hold up a mirror to you. You can't make excuses. You've got to make sure they've brushed their teeth and eaten a good breakfast. You want to be present if they wake up with a bad dream."
He offered a slight look into their family routine -- which often involves traveling for mom and dad's many film projects. Pitt revealed, "On the road, we're a military mobile unit. The kids have got their stuff down to one backpack, and they're each responsible for their own bag. Mom does the packing; she's quite gifted at that. Puts in just what we need -- nothing extra."
ARREST MADE AFTER 'TWO AND A HALF MEN' BOMB THREATS
A Two and a Half Men viewer was arrested on Friday (March 27th) for allegedly making bomb threats to a TV station for airing too many reruns of the sitcom.
The Hollywood Reporter claims that Freddy Caldwell phoned New York's WPIX-11 on May 11th and 23rd, allegedly threatening to blow up the station's headquarters if any more Two and a Half Men reruns aired.
It's unclear what his motives were -- whether he disliked the show in general, or if his threats were related to the show's former star Charlie Sheen.
Regardless, the calls were traced to Caldwell's home in the Bronx and he was charged with "falsely reporting an incident and aggravated harassment."
Christopher Knight and Adrianne Curry have split after five years of marriage. The couple announced their plans to separate on Sunday (May 29th), their fifth anniversary.
The couple's manager Phil Viardo released a statement saying, "After starting a relationship with what seemed to be irreconcilable differences, the couple has reached a period where those differences are no longer appreciated. The decision was mutually reached after it became clear to both that some perspective was needed in order to assess their unique union."
An insider told RadarOnline.com, "People who knew them were aware they were having problems, but were shocked by the split announcement. They had dinner together just last week!"
Knight, best known as Peter Brady and Curry, the first winner of America's Next Top Model, met in 2004 while filming VH1's The Surreal Life. Curry heavily pursued Knight, and their courtship, engagement and marriage was featured on a subsequent reality show, My Fair Brady.
This was 53-year-old Knight's third marriage, and the first for Adrianne, 28.
Jeff Conaway died on Friday (May 27th) at the age of 60. The actor's family confirmed the news toTMZ.com, less than a day after it was reported that he was being taken off life support.
It was originally reported that the 60-year-old was in a coma after overdosing on prescription drugs, butDr. Drew Pinsky later clarified that Conaway's dire state stemmed from pneumonia and sepsis. Conaway's rep said that the overdose was not intentional. Dr. Drew explained the situation, saying that Jeff was "at home, taking too many drugs -- that his doctors were giving him of course -- and aspirated, got pneumonia, was too sort of loaded to know he was getting sick, and by the time he came to the hospital he was in desperate straits."
Pinksy commented on the situation last week, saying, "Jeff Conaway recently is devastating, and just an awful situation. And addictions are fatal, that's a fact. They're chronic illnesses that often lead to death."
Dr. Drew treated Conaway on the first two seasons of Celebrity Rehab, where he struggled to fight addictions to cocaine, alcohol and painkillers.
Conaway is perhaps best known for his roles in the film Grease and on the hit series Taxi. In 2008,Taxi writer Sam Simon said that Conaway's drug problems led to his eventual firing from the series.
In the '80s and '90s he appeared on TV shows like The Bold and the Beautiful and Babylon 5. He had a few bit roles -- mostly in narration -- over the past decade.
FORMER COSTARS REACT
John Travolta, who starred with Conaway in Grease: "Jeff Conaway was a wonderful and decent man and we will miss him. My heartfelt thoughts are with his family and loved ones at this very difficult time."
Marilu Henner, Taxi costar: "He was such a sweetheart. I've known him since Nov. 28, 1972! We did Grease together before we did Taxi. We traveled in the national company of Grease together, so I was connected to him and worked with him quite a few times. We were like babies together, and then when he got Taxi it was so great. He always reminded me of my brother Tommy, and I always reminded him of his sister Michelle, so we felt a real familial kind of connection."
She added, "He was such a sweetheart. You know, a character -- he had this wicked sense of humor but he was so sweet, so sweet, in a way that I think a lot of people don't realize. He was just a doll. Oh, we always talked on the holidays and stuff."
Olivia Newton-John,Grease costar: "It's so very sad. Jeff had a good heart and was so very talented. He was a big part of our family for many years and he will be missed."
DUBIOUS CLAIM GADHAFI READY FOR TRUCE AMID TOP MILITARY DEFECTIONS: After visiting with Moammar Gadhafi Monday (May 30th) in Tripoli, South African President Jacob Zuma said that the embattled Libyan leader is ready for an African Union-initiated truce. However, there were conditions attached from Gadhafi that have nixed previous cease-fire efforts, chief among them a refusal to step down. The Libyan rebels quickly rejected the offer. Meanwhile, in Rome, eight top Libyan army officers, including five generals, defected and appealed to their fellow officers to join the revolt.
OBAMA CHOOSES DEMPSEY TO HEAD JOINT CHIEFS: President Obama yesterday (May 30th) chose Army General Martin Dempsey to succeed Admiral Mike Mullen as the next chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Dempsey, an accomplished veteran of the Iraq war, will have to be confirmed by the Senate. The president also announced that he'd chosen Army General Ray Odierno to replace Dempsey as Army chief of staff, and Navy Admiral James Winnefield to succeed Marine General James Cartwright as vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs.
MISSING COUNT DOWN TO 29 IN JOPLIN AFTER TORNADO: Missouri officials on Monday (May 30th) reduced the number of missing in the wake of the devastating May 22nd tornado in Joplin to 29, down from 43 a day earlier. The official death toll currently stands at 139. Meanwhile, President Obamavisited Joplin on Sunday after returning from his six-day European trip that ended in Poland after stops in Ireland, England and France, where a meeting of the G8 nations was held. Obama consoled residents and vowed to cut through federal red tape to help rebuild the city. The Joplin tornado was rated EF-5, the strongest on the scale, and was the deadliest single tornado in the U.S. since 1947.
GERMANY SAYS WILL SHUT DOWN ITS NUCLEAR PLANTS BY 2022: Germany announced Monday (May 30th) that it has decided to shut down all 17 of its nuclear plants by 2022, and that it plans to replace nuclear power with energy from renewable sources, including solar, wind and hydroelectric power. The decision comes in the wake of the disaster at Japan's Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant, which was severely damaged by the March off-shore earthquake and tsunami. Germany gets just under one quarter of its electricity from nuclear power, about the same as in the U.S. Italy is the only other member of the G8 major industrialized nations to abandon nuclear power, which it voted down after the Chernobyl disaster in 1986.
BLACK BOXES REVEAL INFO ABOUT AIR FRANCE CRASH: Information from the recently-recovered black boxes belonging to an Air France flight that crashed into the Atlantic in June 2009 while en route from Brazil to France has revealed details about the last minutes of the doomed plane. Investigators said Friday (May 27th) that the plane plunged out of control for four minutes from 38,000 feet while rolling left to right before crashing into the ocean, killing all 228 people on board. The black box information also confirmed the suspicion that air speed readings in the cockpit were incorrect, believed to be caused by the icing of sensors outside the plane. It also raised questions about the response of the pilots to a stall warning -- an alert that the plane is about to lose lift -- with France's crash investigation agency saying the pilot pulled the nose of the plane up as it became unstable and an audible stall warning was sounding, which is the exact opposite of the normal response of lowering the nose. The emergency began with the autopilot disengaging itself, apparently in response to a loss of reliable air speed information, followed moments later by the stall alert. Investigators will be trying to determine why the pilot kept the plane's nose up despite it going against one of the most basic things even flight students are taught to do.
HACKERS POST FAKE 'TUPAC IS ALIVE' STORY ON PBS WEBSITE: Hackers unhappy with a recent story about WikiLeaks on the PBS news program Frontline hacked into the network's website, posting a fake story claiming that rapper Tupac Shakur, who was killed in 1996, is alive and living in New Zealand. The phony story had been taken down as of Monday morning (May 30th). The hacking took place nearly a week after Frontline aired the documentary, called WikiSecrets, about the posting of leaked U.S. diplomatic cables on the WikiLeaks website, founded and run by controversial figure Julian Assange. Frontline executive producer David Fanning told AP, "From our point of view, we just see it as a disappointing and irresponsible act, especially since we have been very open to publishing criticism of the film . . . and the film included other points of view. This kind of action is irresponsible and chilling."
PEDIATRICIANS WARN CHILDREN SHOULDN'T HAVE ENERGY DRINKS: The American Academy of Pediatrics, the nation's largest group of pediatricians, is warning about energy drinks, saying that the sweetened beverages that contain caffeine and, often, herbal supplements, quote, "have no place in the diet of children and adolescents." The review authors said parents and doctors need to know about the distinctions between energy drinks like Red Bull and Monster, which kids should never have, and sports drinks like Gatorade that are all right for kids who are athletes to consume. Kids who are less active than athletes, however, don't need sports drinks and having them could contribute to obesity.
MARRIED COUPLES NO LONGER MAJORITY IN U.S.: Data released late last week by the U.S. Census Bureau show that married couples are for the first time in U.S. history no longer the majority, now representing 48 percent of all households, down from 52 percent in 2000. Portland State University demographer Charles Rynerson told AP there are a couple of reasons for the trend -- the fast-growing older population is more likely to be divorced or widowed later in life, and 20-somethings are putting off marriage longer. The median age for first marriages has climbed steadily since the 1960s, from 23 for men and 20 for women then to 28 for men and 26 for women now.
MOSCOW PASSES NYC AS CITY WITH MOST BILLIONAIRES: Moscow has passed New York as the city with the most billionaires, boasting 79 billionaires who call the Russian capital home -- up an amazing 21 in just one year -- to top the Big Apple's 59, according to Forbes. Coming in third is London, with 41 billionaires, followed by Hong Kong with 40 and Istanbul, Turkey, with 36. All those Moscow billionaires have a total combined wealth of $375.3 billion, while for New York it's $220.8 billion.
OHIO STATE FOOTBALL COACH JIM TRESSEL RESIGNS: Ohio State football coach Jim Tresselresigned on Monday (May 30th) amid NCAA violations related to a tattoo-parlor scandal, saying the ongoing investigations and revelations were a distraction and that he was stepping down, quote, "for the greater good of our school." Five Ohio State players, including star quarterback Terrelle Pryor, were found in December to have received cash and discounted tattoos from the owner of a local tattoo parlor who was the subject of a federal drug-trafficking case. It was later learned that Tressel found out about the players' involvement with the tattoo parlor owner in April 2010, however he didn't tell anyone and signed an NCAA compliance form five months later saying he had no knowledge of any wrongdoing by athletes. Tressel was Ohio's state's coach for a decade, posting a 106-22 record and leading the Buckeyes in 2002 to their first national title in 34 years.
NADAL, SHARAPOVA ADVANCE TO FRENCH OPEN QUARTERFINALS: Top-seeded Rafael Nadal is heading to the French Open quarterfinals after beating 37th-ranked Ivan Ljubicic of Croatia 7-5, 6-3, 6-3 Monday (May 30th). Spain's Nadal will face off in the quarters against fifth-seeded Robin Soderling of Sweden, who defeated 18th-seeded Gilles Simon of France 6-2, 6-3, 7-6 (5). Soderling is the only player to have ever defeated Nadal at the French Open, in a fourth-round match in 2009. Meanwhile, second-seeded Serbian Novak Djokovic is already in the semifinals, after his quarterfinal opponent, Italian Fabio Fognini, pulled out of the tournament yesterday because he hurt a leg muscle during his five-set winning match a day earlier. On the women's side, seventh-seeded Maria Sharapovaof Russia is going to the quarterfinals after beating 12th-seeded Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland 7-6 (4), 7-5.
WHELDON WINS INDY 500 AFTER STUNNING LAST LAP CRASH:Dan Wheldon won the Indianapolis 500 on Sunday (May 29th) after leader JR Hildebrand crashed on the final corner of the race, and Wheldon picked up the victory instead of being runner-up again. Wheldon previously won Indy in 2005, and finished in second for the past two years. The 23-year-old rookie Hildebrand was just about to win the race when he went into the final turn too high, lost control and slammed into the outside wall. He wound up skidding across the finish line 2.1 seconds behind Hildebrand.
BRUINS TO FACE CANUCKS FOR STANLEY CUP: When the NHL championship series begins Wednesday (June 1st) in Vancouver, it'll be the Boston Bruins playing the Western Conference champion Canucks for the Stanley Cup after the Bruins beat the Tampa Bay Lighting 1-0 in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference finals on Friday (May 27th). The winning and only goal of the game was scored by Boston'sNathan Horton with 7:33 left in the third period. The Bruins will be in the Stanley Cup finals for the first time in 21 years, trying for their first championship since 1972.
(Headline News, FYI and Sports stories were compiled in part from reports by the Associated Press and Reuters.)
THE ELLEN DEGENERES SHOW - Rob Lowe, Jack Whitehall, Ashlyne Huff THE VIEW - Wayne Brady
LATE NIGHT TALK SHOWS
THE LATE SHOW WITH DAVID LETTERMAN (CBS) - (repeat) THE TONIGHT SHOW WITH JAY LENO (NBC) - (repeat) JIMMY KIMMEL LIVE (ABC) - Carson Daly, Flavor Flav, I See Stars THE LATE LATE SHOW WITH CRAIG FERGUSON (CBS) - Ray Romano, Dr. Lisa Masterson LATE NIGHT WITH JIMMY FALLON (NBC) - (repeat) LAST CALL WITH CARSON DALY (NBC) - (repeat) THE DAILY SHOW WITH JON STEWART (COMEDY CENTRAL) - Jimmy Fallon THE COLBERT REPORT (COMEDY CENTRAL) - James B. Stewart CONAN - (repeat) LOPEZTONIGHT - (repeat)
DUCKLINGS SAVED FROM STORM DRAIN: Massachusetts authorities helped to rescue 10 ducklings that were trapped in a storm drain. One official who was driving in Hyannis on Sunday (May 29th) said he noticed a duck pacing and making a lot of noise around a storm drain in the parking lot of the Cape Cod Times. About the same time, someone had alerted the Hyannis Fire Department who sent three firefighters to the scene. One firefighter descended into the eight-foot drain and rescued the ducklings. Sgt. Sean Sweeney, who initially discovered the mother duck, said, "I couldn't live with myself if something [bad] happened." (UPI)
FAKE PREGNANCY HOAX EARNS HIGH MARKS FOR TEEN: A teenager in Washington State, who faked a pregnancy for her senior project, has earned high marks for the presentation and revelation of the 6 1/2 month hoax. Gaby Rodriguez pretended to be pregnant for her senior project, hiding the truth from everyone except her mother, boyfriend, best friend and principal. One project judge said of Rodriguez' presentation, "I was impressed with her professionalism, how she poised herself up there. She seemed to be very confident and calm." The teen was judged in several categories with a 4 being the highest potential score for each category. She earned an overall average of 3.861. According to a representative for the teen, a book deal and a Lifetime Movie Network opportunity are currently in the works. (AP)
COUPLE CAUGHT ON 30-FOOT-HIGH DIVING BOARD: Gainesville, Florida police caught a couple having sex on a public pool diving board in the middle of the night last Wednesday (May 25th). An officer on patrol heard noises coming from the H. Spurgeon Cherry/ Westside Pool a little after midnight. When he investigated with his flashlight, he found a 24-year-old and 21-year-old woman having intimate relations on a high dive more than 30 feet above the pool. It is actually not illegal to have sex in public places in Gainesville however public exhibition of sexual organs is against the law. The officer issued notices to the man and woman to appear on trespassing charges. A pool supervisor assured reporters that bleach was used to clean the diving board before the pool opened the next morning. (UPI)
MAN WHO GAVE COPS MIDDLE FINGER CLEARED OF CHARGES: A 35-year-old Colorado man who gave a Colorado State trooper 'the finger' has been cleared of all harassment charges. On his way to work in April, Shane Boor saw a trooper pull over a car and decided to extend his middle finger in the officer's direction. Boor was later pulled over, charged with harassment and ordered to court. The American Civil Liberties Union argued that the gesture amounted to protected free speech and the State Patrol subsequently dropped the case. (AOL)
IS THIS BIGFOOT? A Spokane, Washington woman says she accidentally caught Bigfoot on camera while hiking through the woods. The footage is supposedly from an iPhone camera. The videographer says they didn't notice the creature until they went home and watched the video. See the video below. Does this look real?
FAT STIGMA STAYS WITH WOMEN WHO LOSE WEIGHT: Women who lose weight should think twice before they boast about their new figure. Research shows that the stigma of being fat stays with them -- in both good and bad ways. A British study suggested that women look down on a girl who has lost weight -- perhaps because they are worried about the competition she now provides. Men, however, are likely to be more interested in a woman if they hear she once had a weight problem, possibly because they think they are in with a chance of dating her. (Daily Mail)
HOW TO TELL IF YOUR BOSS IS LYING: Superlatives and profanity are possible signs your boss is lying. A study at the Stanford Graduate School of Business examined the transcripts of 30,000 conference calls involving CEOs and CFOs. The study concluded that there were some shared characteristics in calls when a boss was lying. These included increased appeals to vague general knowledge ("as you know," "others know well"), more extreme superlatives ("saying "fantastic" instead of "good" to sound more persuasive), use of the third person instead of saying "I," increased profanity, and fewer hesitation words like "um" and "uh." (AskMen.com)
MORE OLDER WOMEN GETTING ABORTIONS: The number of British women having abortions in their 40s has risen by almost a third in just a decade. The Daily Mail reported that last year, more than 8,000 women aged between 40 and 49 decided to end their pregnancy, a 30 percent increase since 2000. The head of Britain's biggest abortion provider said the surge could be explained by a 'Sex And The City-style' generation of carefree single women and divorcees who take gambles with contraception - and then are surprised when they become pregnant. (Daily Mail)
Reason #1: He's Having Trouble Being Honest: If you and a man hit it off, trade numbers, talk for a while or trade emails, but he never seems to make the initiative to actually see you -- then something else is going on. Men often have a hard time sharing the truth about their feelings with women they've just met. Maybe he's already seeing someone else. It's fine to casually ask in a playful way, "I'm curious since you're kinda cute -- are you dating anyone interesting right now?" Invite honesty from men and you'll get it. If you wait and wonder, you'll end up wasting your own time and energy.
Reason #2: He's Just Looking For a Fling: If a man really likes you, but he is more interested in a casual encounter and senses you're not that kind of girl, he'll move on -- partially out of respect for you (or his own selfish desires). In either case, the timing is off. Not calling you back was his way of letting you know where he's at without having to say it directly. Take heart, in this case he's actually doing you a favor by not calling.
Reason #3: He Was Just Being Polite: Have you ever given your number to a man who asked for it, all the while dreading the idea of ever talking to him again? Men do something similar with women. Sometimes men can enjoy a conversation with you but not really be interested in anything more. In this case, a man was just being polite by asking for your number.
Reason #4: He Lost Interest: He was interested in you at first, but something happened along the way to change his mind about you. Maybe he sensed some anxiety from you that creeped him out. Or maybe he sensed a bit of desperation ("You're going to call me, right?"). Communicating either anxiousness or desperation early on before a man knows you is a sure attraction-killer.
Reason #5: He Lost Your Number or Forgot to Call: Yes, sometimes this really happens. Men lose your number and can't call. Unfortunately, when it does, women often fill their heads with all kinds of wild stories that only make them feel bad about themselves.
DO'S AND DON'TS THAT YOU CAN'T GET MARRIED WITHOUT (TheFrisky.com)
Do: Assume that something will go wrong. It's going to happen. Accepting that fact will make your life easier. Our venue got changed the day our invitations were mailed. Fortunately, it was moved to a church across the street. We sent out notes alerting guests to the change, and everything went fine. It wasn't that big of a deal, and it felt good to get that mini-disaster out of the way.
Do: Have an engagement photo session with your photographer. Even if you have no intention of submitting your pics to the local paper, it's good practice. You'll get to know your photographer, and you'll get the hang of those lovey-dovey shots with your spouse-to-be.
Don't: Put up with crappy sales service from wedding vendors. I decided not to go to one bridesmaid dress store because the lady on the phone was so bitchy to me. I wanted the experience to be as pleasant as possible. (Note: This does not give you carte blanche to be a bridezilla. It means you should patronize companies that make you feel at ease.)
Don't: Spend money on things for your wedding day because magazines tell you to do so. If you love your perfume, you don't need to get a special new one for the special day. If white wine is your favorite drink, no need to freak about a signature cocktail.
Do: Have a master guest list with addresses on hand, in hard copy and online. It will be invaluable when it comes to writing thank you notes. Keep the hard copy in a heavy-duty envelope, because you'll be carrying it around and taking it out again and again. I kept mine with a stash of stationery, stamps, and the little booklet I used to keep track of who gave me what.
Don't: Worry about matching your thank you note stationery to your invitations unless you must. I'm not sure who came up with the rule that every goddamn thing in a wedding, from the save-the-date cards to the invites to the seating cards to the programs to the stationery, has to match. Maybe it was a crazy person.
Do: Enlist your soon-to-be spouse to pitch in with the thank you notes. He/she will be enjoying the gifts too, right? I ended up writing a brief outline to thank-you-note writing for my fiance, since he wasn't as used to writing them as I was, but once he got some practice his were funnier than mine.
Don't: Just write thank you notes to the people who gave you gifts. If you felt especially moved by your rabbi's speech or the care the coordinator at your reception location gave you, let them know.
Don't: Be afraid of bridal magazines. Even if you're the indie-est indie bride who ever lived, you still need ideas for things like the cake and flowers. Magazines are great for this, even if you think the articles are silly.
Do: Periodically cull through your wedding binder and throw away things that are no longer relevant -- dress ideas after you'd purchased your gown, honeymoon articles after you've already booked the trip. Unless you enjoy scoliosis.
Don't: Think The Knot is in charge of your life. You are in charge of your life. Also, The Knot thinks you have to order your cake way earlier than you actually do.
Do: Happily support your friends who get engaged during your engagement. They're not stealing your thunder -- they're joining a team of people whose opinions you can elicit and won't get tired of talking about wedding stuff. If you feel like your wedding is going to be "less special" because someone else is getting married this year, maybe you're not mature enough to get married.
Do: Get over your "dream gown." Odds are the dress you saw in the magazine looks totally different on you. Trust your experts, and your own eyes. While I wish that Oscar de la Renta gown didn't make me look eight months pregnant, I didn't fall apart over that fact.
Don't: Buy a dress in a size smaller than you are and think you'll shame yourself into fitting into it by the wedding. No offense, but if you haven't lost the weight by now, how are you magically going to do it by your wedding date? Buy a dress that fits and dedicate yourself to taking good care of your body. If you happen to lose a ton of weight by the wedding day, get your dress altered.
According to Wikipedia, who rejected NBC's offer to host Late Night -- before the gig went to Conan O'Brien?
A: Dana Carvey
NBC executives hoped to get Carvey to take over the 12:30 a.m. (ET) weeknight spot in the network's lineup in 1993 when David Letterman left his show, Late Night with David Letterman, for an 11:30 p.m. show on CBS. A big Letterman fan, Carvey rejected the offer, causing embarrassment for the network, which had publicly floated his name. The 12:30 spot eventually went to Conan O'Brien.
While most young people are encouraged to go to college, tech tycoon Peter Thiel is paying 20 of them not to. PayPal co-founder Thiel, who was also the first major investor in Facebook, launched the "20 Under 20" fellowship to pay 20 young winners $100,000 to pursue an entrepreneurial project for the next two years that could help change the world instead of going to college. Thiel himself hand-picked the winners based on the potential of their proposed projects, all of which have a high-tech angle, but cover many areas. They include things like creating a mobile banking system for the developing world and creating cheaper biofuels. The fellowship has been launched amid a growing debate in the U.S. over whether college is actually worth the time and money, at a time of ever increasing student loan debt and a tough job market. Thiel -- who himself went to college and then graduated from Stanford Law School -- believes young people can contribute more to society by skipping college and developing their ideas in the real world. He says, "Turning people into debt slaves when they're college students is really not how we end up building a better society."
Are Members of Congress Insider Trading?
A new study has found that members of Congress do better in the stock market, with data showing that from 1985 to 2001, House members made 6.8 percent more on their stock purchases and sales than the average investor. The same researchers found in an earlier investigation that U.S. senators also beat the market. The report in the journal Business and Politics concludes that members of Congress were almost certainly relying on insider information to do better in the stock market. Although corporate executives are strictly banned from trading on their insider knowledge, the same isn't true for members of Congress. The lawmakers are allowed to keep their holdings and trade shares on the market, as well as vote on legislation that could affect their stock portfolios.
Men Like Women Who Use 'Guy Humor'
Women looking to catch a man's eye might want to bone up on their Judd Apatow movies or Star Warsjokes. Time magazine reports on a new survey from online dating site eHarmony of its male users that found the style of humor men most appreciate from a woman is sarcastic, followed by juvenile, geeky and raw, with the last three defined by eHarmony as "guy humor." Interestingly enough, eHarmony also surveyed its female users, and found that women prefer guys who use what it dubbed "gal humor" -- sarcastic, dry or ironic.
I am going to take a little vacation so the daily Blog updates will return on Tuesday, May 31, 2011. Have a wonderful week and a safe Memorial Day Weekend. Noooooooo drinking and driving and put on some suntan lotion!!
Lady Antebellum and Keith Urban are headed to Las Vegas this weekend to perform at the Billboard Music Awards on Sunday (May 22nd). The show will air live from the MGM Grand Garden Arena beginning at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.
Lady A is up for seven awards at the show, including Top Billboard 200 Artist, Top Duo/Group, Top Country Artist, Top Country Album for Need You Now, Top Billboard 200 Album for Need You Now, Top Streaming Song (Audio) for "Need You Now," and Top Country Song for "Need You Now."
Dave Haywood tells us that even though Lady A already has a slew of trophies to their credit, each nomination is still meaningful. "Well, I think every award show nomination that comes along is a huge honor for us. We don't take any of 'em lightly and we don't take any of 'em for granted. I mean, from the very first day we ever got a nomination for anything years ago, we still cherish these moments, so it was an honor to get those."
Lady Antebellum and Keith will be the only country acts performing on the all-genre Billboard Awards. Charles Kelley tells us the trio is proud to take the stage on behalf of the genre. "To represent country music and our genre, it just kind of . . . I don't know! It just feels like it's just another cool pat on the back and hopefully a chance to just keep gettin' in front of all these people and bigger audiences and hopefully bringin' 'em into the format."
Dave and Charles won the 2011 BMI Pop Song of the Year Award for "Need You Now" on Tuesday (May 17th) at the 59th annual BMI Pop Music Awards in Los Angeles.
Lady Antebellum's new single, "Just A Kiss," made Billboard history this week by debuting at Number Seven on the Hot 100 chart. It is the highest debut by a country group in the chart's 52-year history. The single sold over 211,000 digital copies in its first week.
"Just A Kiss" is the debut single from Lady A's upcoming CD.
Taylor Swift took to Twitter yesterday (Thursday, May 19th) to announce that she will expand her fundraising efforts for tornado victims by streaming two performances during Saturday's (May 21st) "Speak Now . . . Help Now" benefit event at Nashville's Bridgestone Arena.
Taylor Tweeted, "I'll be streaming 2 of the songs from the Speak Now/Help Now rehearsal performance worldwide- Saturday at 9pm central on taylorswift.com :)"
Fans can also watch the performances via Ustream.tv/taylorswift, Facebook.com/TaylorSwift, and MySpace.com/TaylorSwift.
The stream will give fans around the world a first look at Taylor's new stage and her show for the North American leg of the Speak Now World tour. Information on how to donate to help tornado victims will be posted during the stream.
"Speak Now. . . Help Now" is the final dress rehearsal for Taylor's Speak Now tour, which officially begins on May 27th in Omaha, Nebraska.
One hundred percent of ticket sales will go directly to help tornado victims via the Speak Now. . . Help Now Fund established through the Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee.
A series of tornadoes touched down in Alabama on April 27th.
The twisters killed more than 230 people across Alabama last month and destroyed or heavily damaged more than 13,000 homes statewide.
The April tornadoes last month have shattered the record set by Hurricane Ivan in 2004 to become the state's costliest disaster ever.
Brad Paisley will attend the NASCAR Sprint All-Star Race on Saturday (May 21st) in Charlotte, North Carolina, where he will world premiere his new video, "Old Alabama," on multiple platforms, including SPEED, NASCAR.com and the world's largest HD video board at the Charlotte Motor Speedway. The first glimpse of the video will be in the 5 p.m. ET hour on the SPEED network.
The video for "Old Alabama" features NASCAR legends Darrell Waltrip, Jeff Gordon and Rick Hendrick as well as supergroup Alabama. Brad and his friends take a visual road trip down memory lane as Alabama music videos from the 1980s play in the background -- but pay attention, because Brad pops up as a fourth member of Alabama in the classic clips.
The video was shot on country roads in Charlotte, and several takes took place at Hendrick Motor Sports Complex in nearby Concord, North Carolina.
As previously reported, artist royalties from the digital single sales of "Old Alabama" are being donated for tornado relief via the American Red Cross.
Brad's new CD, This Is Country Music, will be released on Monday (May 23rd).
The 15-track collection includes 12 songs co-written by Brad and features several guests, including Carrie Underwood, Don Henley, Blake Shelton, Clint Eastwood, an Sheryl Crow.
Brad's last studio album was 2009's American Saturday Night.
He will kick off his H2O II: Wetter & Wilder tour on June 3rd at the Virginia Beach Amphitheatre in Virginia Beach, Virginia.
Carrie Underwood will make her first-ever trip to Australia this summer to promote the June 10th release of Play On: Deluxe Edition in Australia and New Zealand. Carrie's visit down under will launch in mid-June with stops in Melbourne, Sydney, and Brisbane.
Carrie said, "I am really looking forward to my first trip to Australia. I can't wait to meet my fans down under, and hope to make some new fans too! I've always dreamed of playing in Australia, and hope to have time to explore some of the sights this amazing country has to offer!"
The Deluxe Edition features Carrie's current album Play On plus an additional CD that includes six of her previous Number One singles.
Carrie's debut feature film, Soul Surfer, will be released in Australia later this month.
In other Carrie news, the singer has been named American Idol's top earner. Last year, Kelly Clarkson was in the lead with with 10,600,000 albums and 15,900,000 digital tracks sold since 2002. As of May 16th, Carrie's album sales topped 12,296,000 and she's sold more than 18,482,000 digital singles. Kelly has taken in around $32 million in tour revenue, while Carrie has now more than doubled that, earning $66 million.
Carrie is working on the follow up to Play On.
Play On has produced four Number One hits.
The Band Perry got a big compliment on Wednesday (May 18th) night -- American Idol finalist Lauren Alaina performed their Grammy-nominated, chart-topping hit, "If I Die Young," during the live broadcast.
The Band Perry said, "Hearing, 'If I Die Young,' on Idol was a proud moment. It's so exciting to see a song we wrote in our basement walk its way onto one of America's biggest stages. We wish Lauren much luck in the competition and thank her for lending such a sweet voice to our song."
Other country songs that got the Idol touch on Wednesday were Kenny Rogers' "She Believes In Me", Thompson Square's "Are You Gonna Kiss Me Or Not" and Lonestar's "Amazed", all performed by Scotty McCreery, while Lauren Alaina also took on Faith Hill's "Wild One" and Lee Ann Womack's "I Hope You Dance."
The Band Perry's current single, "You Lie," is now in the Top 10 at country radio.
"If I Die Young" was certified platinum for selling over one million copies.
It was the second single off The Band Perry's debut CD.
Blake Shelton's upcoming ninth album will be titled Red River Blue. The project is set for release on July 12th. It will include Blake's latest hit, "Honeybee."
Jennifer Nettles helped raise over $50,000 for the Attic Community Playground through an online auction she recently hosted on CharityBuzz. The Atlanta-based charity helps provide music education opportunities for kids.
The RIAA has issued gold certification to Zac Brown Band's "Pass The Jar" and platinum certification to Jason Aldean's "Don't You Wanna Stay" featuring Kelly Clarkson.
For the third year in a row, Dierks Bentley is teaming up with CMT One Country and the Children's Miracle Network Hospitals to bring his annual "Miles & Music For Kids" fundraiser nationwide. With five events together already under their belt and three planned for this year, "Miles & Music For Kids" heads to Columbus, Ohio on Sunday (May 22nd) with Joe Nichols, Uncle Kracker, Josh Thompson and Miss Willie Brown.
Events are scheduled to take place in Chicago and Nashville later this year, with proceeds being donated to the Children's Miracle Network Hospital in each area.
Each "Miles & Music For Kids" fundraiser event begins with a motorcycle ride that starts at a local Harley dealership and continues through city landmarks before ending at a local venue for a live "jam session" with special celebrity guests.
Dierks tells us he never knows who might show up at "Miles & Music for Kids" from event to event."It's great! It's such a fun thing for everyone involved really, and I enjoy gettin' to call different singers and songwriters and artists to see if they want to come out and be part of it. It's one of the things you organize and plan and get all these people together, but then you get all these last minute calls. A lot of people wanna come out and ride and just jump up and sing and it's just been really fun. It's one of those things you get a chance to do where really there's no down side. I mean, a lot of people put a lot of time in working on it but once the day is there it's just fun for everyone involved."
Since 2006, "Miles & Music For Kids" has raised more than $1.5 million for Children's Miracle Network Hospitals, a charity that raises funds for 170 children's hospitals.
Over the past five years, Dierks has had the help of over 6,000 bikers and 30,000 fans in five different cities come out to support the cause.
"Miles & Music For Kids" began in 2006 in Nashville as a motorcycle ride and concert event benefiting the Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt.
As Willie Nelson's Country Throwdown tour 2011 prepares to launch, Willie, Jamey Johnson, and other Throwdown artists announce that they will donate their performance fees from the Orange Beach, Alabama show on June 5th to tornado relief efforts in Alabama.
Willie said, "I am saddened by the devastation in Alabama from the recent tornadoes that have hit that state. In an effort to pitch in, I am going to donate my income for the upcoming Throwdown date in Orange Beach on June 5. I believe this will assist the relief effort in that state to help people in real need."
Lukas Nelson & Promise of the Real, Caitlyn Smith, and Alabama native Adam Hood will also be donating their performance fees, as well as Randy Houser, Craig Campbell, Lee Brice, and Drake White.
The 24-city Country Throwdown tour begins at the Mann in Philadelphia on May 27th.
iTunes is letting Throwdown fans in on a free download sampler featuring some of the acts on the 2011 Willie Nelson's Country Throwdown tour. The eight-song download features Willie's "Man With The Blues" and Drake White's "50 Years Too Late." The iTunes offer is available at countrythrowdown.com/itunes-download.
The tour will wrap up with Willie's 4th of July Picnic at Billy Bob's in Fort Worth, Texas.
Q. What four acts are the only in Academy of Country Music history to win Entertainer Of The Year three or more times? A. Alabama, Hank Williams, Jr., Garth Brooks, and Kenny Chesney
ON THE TUBE
CMT TOP 20 COUNTDOWN/CMT 11:00AM (ET) Brad Paisley
TOP 20 COUNTRY COUNTDOWN/GAC 8:00PM (ET) Brad Paisley