Sunday February 8th, 2004


New CD's this past week:

None to report


Music news stories this week:

Jay-Z Says He Plans To Marry Beyonce

Rapper Jay-Z and singer Beyonce Knowles have been dating for almost two
years but the duo has been meticulous about keeping their relationship
private. That is, until last week when Jay-Z announced that he plans to
marry Knowles.
While attending a party in New York on Wednesday, January 28th for Lyor
Cohen, who recently left his post at Island Def Jam to head up Warner
Music Group, Jay-Z took the microphone to congratulate his friend and
said, "You've been one of the best friends I could have had ... Apart from
this woman beside me (Beyonce), who I love and who I will marry very
A source who was present at the event told the San Francisco Chronicle,
"It was really unexpected. As soon as he said it everyone in the place
starting whooping and cheering. Beyonce was standing next to him cooing
and looking totally in love. It was a beautiful moment. If ever there were
any doubts about how much they love each other, then this certainly blew
those away."
No official announcement of an engagement has been made by either camp and
calls to Jay-Z's label, Roc-A-Fella Records were not returned at press

Faith Evans Strikes Deal In Drug Possession Case

Singer Faith Evans and her husband, Todd Russaw, have agreed to enter a
pre-trial intervention program for drug abuse, according the Atlanta
Journal-Constitution. The agreement was reached at a hearing on Wednesday,
February 4th, in Fulton County Magistrate Court in Atlanta, Georgia.
Evans and Russaw will complete a 13-week drug rehabilitation program and
in return the case will be closed unless the couple is later arrested on
similar charges. Erik Friedly, a spokesperson for the District Attorney,
explained what would happen if the couple does not complete the program.
He said, "The drug charges will be resurrected, and we would proceed with
Evans and Russaw were pulled over on January 27th in Hapeville, Georgia,
for having a temporary tag without an expiration date. Police discovered a
small amount of cocaine and marijuana in their 2003 Hummer H2.
Evans, who was driving, was charged with having an improper tag, and two
violations of Georgia's controlled substance act for possession of
marijuana and cocaine. Russaw was charged with possession of powdered
cocaine and possession of less than an ounce of marijuana.

Nona Gaye To Sing National Anthem With Her Father At The NBA All-Star Game

Singer Nona Gaye will perform a duet of "The Star Spangled Banner" with
her late father, Marvin Gaye, at the NBA All-Star Game at the Staples
Center in Los Angeles on February 15th. The game and performance will be
televised on TNT (check your local listings for times).
Marvin Gaye sang a spirited rendition of the national anthem at the 1983
All-Star Game, which was also held in Los Angeles. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar,
who was present that night, shared his thoughts on Gaye's performance with
the Los Angeles Times. He said, "It reminded me of Jimi Hendrix's anthem
at Woodstock. Marvin changed the whole template and that broadened
people's minds. We can have a different interpretation (of the anthem) and
that's OK."
Digitally enhanced video and remastered audio of Gaye's 1983 performance
will be used to pull off the duet, which will be produced by Jimmy Jam.
Nona Gaye, who was 8 years old when she watched her dad perform the
national anthem, explained that she was both excited and nervous. She
said, "I'm nervous and exhilarated and honored at the same time. I can't
believe I'm going to sing with my daddy."
Marvin Gaye was shot and killed by his father, Marvin Gay, Sr., on April
1st, 1984, during an argument.

Janet Jackson’s New Album “Damta Jo” Due March 30th

While Janet Jackson is grabbing headlines for her "special guest" that
popped out during the Super Bowl, she is also preparing to release a new
album, which may or may not be a coincidence. The new album is titled
Damita Jo, which is Jackson's middle name, and leads off with the
unofficial first single "Just A Little While." The song was co-written and
produced by Dallas Austin. "Just A Little While" was not officially chosen
by the record label as the first single, but due to unauthorized Internet
downloading of the track and overwhelming demand, the song was digitally
distributed to radio stations Monday morning (February 2nd). The song's
release comes on the heels of Jackson's controversial breast-baring
halftime performance with Justin Timberlake at Super Bowl XXXVIII.
Damita Jo finds Jackson reunited with longtime friends Jimmy Jam and Terry
Lewis, who have produced every one of her albums since her 1986
breakthrough set, Control. Others who contributed to the album include
Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds, Rich Harrison, and newcomer Kanye West.
Damita Jo will be released on March 30th.

Luther Vandoss Unable To Attend The Grammy Awards

Luther Vandross will not be able to attend Sunday's Grammy Awards in Los
Angeles, after there was some hope he would be able to make it. "It would
have been a tremendous moment for Luther to attend the Grammy Awards this
year. But on the advice of his doctors, I regret to say that Luther won't
be able to make this trip," his business manager said in a statement on
Monday (February 2nd).
The 52-year-old star suffered a severe stroke last April, and is currently
recovering in a rehabilitation facility in the New York City area. He is
still in a wheelchair.
Vandross is nominated for five Grammy awards, including Song Of The Year
for the title song of his latest album, Dance With My Father. The album,
which was released last summer, became the fast-selling disc of his career
and has sold nearly two million copies. The title track is a song he
co-wrote with Richard Marx in which he pays tribute to his late father.
Despite the fact that Vandross will not be in Los Angeles for the show,
Celine Dion and Alicia Keys will take part in a special Grammy tribute to
the star during the live telecast.


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