Sunday January 8th, 2006                                                


New CD's this past week:

None to report

Music news headlines this week:

Beyonce Putting Film Ahead Of New Album

With Destiny's Child having split last fall, group member Beyonce is
focusing on her role in the upcoming film "Dreamgirls" before she
transitions back into recording mode. Discussions are under way about her
possibly hitting the studio in May, with an eye toward a September release
date via Columbia, but that hinges on when the "Dreamgirls" filming ends.
"I'm not going to write for the album until I finish doing the movie,"
Beyonce tells Billboard. "I've never been so excited about a movie in my
life. I want to give 100% to this film, because I know I was born for this
The album will be the follow-up to 2003's smash solo debut "Dangerously in
Love," which has sold more than 4.2 million copies in the United States,
according to Nielsen SoundScan.
As for the chances of a Destiny's Child reunion down the road, the ladies
aren't shutting that door. "We haven't said that we'll never perform
together," Beyonce points out. "It's not 'the end' like we're never going
to perform together or be on each other's records."
As previously reported, group member Kelly Rowland is at work on her
second solo album with collaborators Rich Harrison, Sean Garrett,
Beyonce's sister Solange and fellow Destiny's Child cohort Michelle
Williams' next studio project will get underway this month, with an eye on
a summer release. "This album will still have an inspirational twist, but
it will be R&B," she tells Billboard.


Temptations Together Again On New Album

Legendary R&B vocal act the Temptations will release their latest studio
album, "Reflections," Jan. 31 via Universal Music's New Door imprint. The
set features 15 new recordings of such Motown staples as "I Hear a
Symphony," "Ain't No Mountain High Enough," "I'll Be There," "Ooo Baby
Baby" and "How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved by You)."
"Reflections" is rounded out by interpretations of "What Becomes of the
Brokenhearted," "Never Can Say Goodbye," "Reach Out and Touch (Somebody's
Hand)" and "Can I Get a Witness," among others.
It's the follow-up to the Temptations' 2004 effort "Legacy," which debuted
at No. 18 on Billboard's Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart.
The group will support the album with the Reflections U.S. tour, which
kicks off with a Jan. 13-14 stand at the Grand Opera House in Galveston,

Grammy-Winning Singer Lou Rawls Dies Of Cancer In LA At 72

Lou Rawls, the velvet-voiced singer who started as a church choir boy and
went on to sell more than 40 million albums and win three Grammys in a
career that spanned nearly five decades and a range of genres, has died,
his publicist said. He was 72.
Rawls died early Friday at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, where he was
hospitalized last month for treatment of lung and brain cancer, his
publicist Paul Shefrin said. His wife Nina was at his bedside when he
died, Shefrin said.
The family and Shefrin said Rawls was 72, although other records indicate
he was 70.
Rawls' voice was his inimitable trademark.
Jazz historian Leonard Feather wrote in "The Encyclopedia of Jazz in the
Sixties" that Rawls "has a vigorous, confident style, a strong affinity
for the blues and a personal sound."
"I've gone the full spectrum, from gospel to blues to jazz to soul to
pop," Rawls once said on his Web site. "And the public has accepted what
I've done through it all."
Rawls' grandmother introduced him to gospel in his hometown of Chicago.
The singer moved to Los Angeles in the mid-1950s to join a touring gospel
group, the Pilgrim Travelers.
After a two-year stint in the Army, Rawls returned to Los Angeles and
rejoined the Pilgrim Travelers, where he sang with Sam Cooke. Rawls
performed with Dick Clark at the Hollywood Bowl in 1959, and two years
later, he opened for The Beatles at Crosley Field in Cincinnati.
Rawls was playing small blues and R&B clubs in Los Angeles when his
four-octave range caught the ear of a Capitol Records producer, who signed
him to the label in 1962.
His debut effort, "Stormy Monday," recorded with the Les McCann Trio, was
the first of 28 albums Rawls made with Capitol.
His 1966 hit, "Love Is a Hurtin' Thing," topped the charts and earned
Rawls his first two Grammy nominations. He received 13 during his career.
Rawls, whose hits included "Dead End Street" and "You'll Never Find
Another Love Like Mine," released his most recent album, "Seasons 4 U," in
1998 on his own label, Rawls & Brokaw Records.
The stalwart singer also appeared in 18 movies, including "Leaving Las
Vegas" and "Blues Brothers 2000," and 16 television series, including
"Fantasy Island" and "The Fall Guy."
A longtime community activist, Rawls visited schools, playgrounds and
community centers in the 1960s, encouraging children to continue their
studies and have confidence in their abilities. In the '80s, he helped the
United Negro College Fund raise more than $200 million through telethons.
In 1976, Rawls became the corporate spokesman for the Anheuser-Busch Cos.
Rawls was diagnosed with lung cancer in December 2004 and brain cancer in
May 2005.
Besides his wife Nina, Rawls is survived by four children, Louanna Rawls,
Lou Rawls Jr., Kendra Smith and Aiden Rawls.
Funeral arrangements were incomplete, Shefrin said.


Toni Braxton Chooses To Forget About 2002 Album Flop

Unbreak My Heart singer Toni Braxton insists her last album, More Than A
Woman, is like a bad ex-boyfriend - she'd prefer to pretend it never
The soul star admits the album, which she recorded with rap mogul Irv
Gotti, was a big mistake because she was persuaded to be more gritty, and
she accepts her fans never bought her as a hardcore R+b girl.
She says, "That's like the flop of my career so I don't count that one.
It's like, girls, when you date a guy and you're like, 'Gosh, why did I
date him? Ok, it doesn't count.'
"It didn't connect well with me... People don't want to hear Toni Braxton
say, 'Whuz up, shorty? Big boi.' (It was like) 'What is she doing?'"


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