Ahmet Ertegun, who co-founded Atlantic Records with Herb Abramson in 1947, died on December 14 of complications from a head injury he suffered on October 29. Ertegun fell at a Rolling Stones concert at New York's Beacon Theater and later slipped into a coma. During his early years with Atlantic Records, he developed the careers of Ruth Brown, Aretha Franklin and Ray Charles. Later, Ertegun helped popularize the British invasion and launched the careers of many pop acts, including Bobby Darin, Sonny & Cher and Bette Midler. His spokesperson announced Ertegun will be buried in a private ceremony in his native Turkey and a public memorial service will be held in New York in January.
Prince William and his younger brother Prince Harry are organizing a benefit concert to mark the 10th anniversary of the death of their mother, Princess Diana. Diana died in a Paris car accident in 1997. The concert will take place at London's Wembley Stadium on July 1, which would have been her 46th birthday. Already signed on to perform are Elton John, Joss Stone, Duran Duran, Bryan Ferry and Pharrell Williams. Proceeds from ticket sales will go to Diana's Princess of Wales Memorial Fund and William and Harry's Centrepoint and Sentebale charities. Tickets went on sale on December 13 and sold out in less than 30 minutes. A message on the event's web site, www.concertfordiana.com , says they hope to make more tickets available after the New Year. Princes William and Harry are also planning a formal memorial service, which will be held on August 31, the actual anniversary of Diana's death.
During the past year, pop newcomer James Blunt has raised more than $200,000 for the international medical humanitarian organization Doctors Without Borders. His fundraising activities included auctioning one-on-one meet-and-greets at each concert stop on his "Back To Bedlam World Tour." Last month, he performed a sold out benefit show at the House of Blues in Los Angeles. Blunt's Back To Bedlam album includes the song "No Bravery," which he wrote in response to the genocide he witnessed in Kosovo while serving with the British army.
Funk rocker Prince will perform the halftime show at Super Bowl XLI. The championship football game will be played at Miami's Dolphin Stadium on February 4. CBS will broadcast the game for the 15th time. Last year's Superbowl XL drew 141.4 million viewers. According to the National Football League's superbowl.com web site, the 10 most-watched programs in television history have all been Super Bowl games.
NEW ALBUM RELEASES
New albums scheduled for release on December 19 include: "Go" by Mario, "Hip Hop Is Dead?" by Nas, "Price of Fame" by Bow Wow, "Back By Thug Demand" by Trick Daddy, and the original motion picture soundtrack to "We Are Marshall."
AWARDS - NOMINATIONS/WINNERS
The Hollywood Foreign Press Association have announced the nominations for the 64th annual Golden Globe Awards. Best Original Score nominees include Alexandre Desplat for The Painted Veil, Clint Mansell for The Fountain, Gustavo Santaolalla for Babel, Carlo Siliotto for Nomad and Hans Zimmer for The Da Vinci Code. Nominated in the category of Best Original Song are "A Father's Way" from The Pursuit of Happyness, "Listen" from Dreamgirls, "Never Gonna Break My Faith" from Bobby, "The Song of the Heart" from Happy Feet and "Try Not to Remember" from Home of the Brave. NBC-TV will air the Golden Globe Awards live from the Beverly Hilton in Beverly Hills, California on January 15.