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Bon Jovi's 'Lost Highway' Tops Billboard Charts; Artists Prepare for Multi-Continent 'Live Earth' Concert


Bon Jovi earns its first Number One debut on the Billboard 200 chart for the week ending July 7. First week sales of the band's new Country-flavored album, Lost Highway surpassed 291,000 copies. The set also debuted at Number One on Billboard's Rock Albums chart and albums charts in Canada, Germany, Switzerland, Holland, Austria, Thailand and Japan. Bon Jovi has had only two other Number One albums, 1987's Slippery When Wet and 1988's New Jersey.

Britain's Prince William and Prince Harry, sons of the late Princess Diana, will stage a concert in her memory on July 1. The "Concert For Diana" will take place at London's new Wembley Stadium on what would have been her 46th birthday. Performers will include Elton John, Joss Stone, Natasha Bedingfield, Lily Allen, Kanye West, Duran Duran, Rod Stewart, and many others. NBC-TV will air portions of the "Concert For Diana" as a two-hour special that same evening. Proceeds from ticket sales will go to Centrepoint, which assists the homeless, and Sentebale, a charity Prince Harry co-founded to help children in Lesotho. The princes will hold a formal church service on August 31 to mark the 10th anniversary of Diana's death.

Gospel singer Yolanda Adams, Country star Dierks Bentley, American Idol finalist Elliott Yamin, Little Richard and the National Symphony Orchestra will be the entertainment at "A Capitol Fourth 2007." The show will take place on the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol and will be broadcast live on PBS.

The multi-continent "Live Earth" concerts to raise awareness of global climate control will take place on July 7. Shows will take place in New York, London, Shanghai, Sydney, Johannesburg, Rio de Janeiro, Hamburg, Chiba and Tokyo. A "Live Earth" concert that was planned in Istanbul was recently cancelled, but organizers hope to bring TV feeds from other venues to big screens in that city.

Former Vice President Al Gore, who co-founded the Save Our Selves (SOS) Campaign, says, "In order to solve the climate crisis, we have to reach billions of people. We are launching SOS and 'Live Earth' to begin a process of communication that will mobilize people all over the world to take action." More than 100 of the world's top performers will appear at the events. They include The Police, Madonna, Enrique Iglesias, Joss Stone, Angelique Kidjo, Genesis, Bon Jovi, Kelly Clarkson and Alicia Keys. The complete list of artists and where they're performing can be found at www.LiveEarth.msn.com http://www.LiveEarth.msn.com.

On June 28, the Spice Girls made the announcement that they'll reunite for an 11-city, 6-continent world tour. The trek will begin in Los Angeles on December 7. They'll also stop in Las Vegas, New York, London, Cologne, Madrid, Beijing, Hong Kong, Sydney, Cape Town and Buenos Aires, where the tour wraps up on January 24, 2008. Geri Halliwell left the all-female vocal group in 1997. The remaining four members, Victoria Beckham, Melanie Brown, Melanie Chisholm and Emma Bunton, announced the group's official break-up in 2001.

NEW ALBUM RELEASES:

New albums scheduled for release on July 3 include: T.I. vs. T.I.P. by T.I. (guests include Eminem, Justin Timberlake, R. Kelly, Nelly, Akon and Lil' Wayne), Libertad by Velvet Revolver, Last 2 Walk by Three 6 Mafia, Ms. Kelly by Kelly Rowland and the original motion picture soundtrack to Evan Almighty.

MUSICAL EVENTS/FESTIVALS/BENEFITS:

A convention for Beatles fans will be held July 1-3 at The Mirage Hotel in Las Vegas. "Fest for Beatles Fans" will feature a Beatles marketplace, two nightly concerts, talent contests, special guests, art and photograph exhibits, videos and more.

The 2007 Essence Music Festival will take place at the Louisville Superdome in New Orleans July 5-7. Main stage headliners include Beyonce, Lionel Richie, Mary J. Blige, Chris Brown, Maze with Frankie Beverly, Ciara, Ludacris, Robin Thicke, Ne-Yo, and the O'Jays with Keith Sweat and Johnny Gill.

AWARDS PRESENTATIONS/WINNERS:

Beyonce and Jennifer Hudson were both double winners at the 2007 BET Awards, presented on June 26 in Los Angeles. Beyonce was named Best Female R&B Artist and also earned the Video of the Year honor for "Irreplaceable." Hudson took home the Best Actress and Best New Artist trophies. Other winners included Gnarls Barkley, named Best Group; T.I., Best Hip-Hop Artist; Ludacris and Mary J. Blige, who shared the Best Collaboration award for "Runaway Love;" Ne-Yo, Best Male R&B Artist; Kirk Franklin, Best Gospel Artist; and Birdman and Lil Wayne, who won the Viewers Choice Award for "Stuntin' Like My Daddy." In addition, Diana Ross was given BET's Lifetime Achievement Award and the late Gerald Levert was honored with the "BET J Cool Like That" award.

TOUR DATES AND INFORMATION:

On July 1, the 2007 Nashville Star Tour will begin in Hershey, Pennsylvania. This year's Nashville Star winner Angela Hacker and finalists Joshua Stevens, David St. Romain and Zac Hacker will perform 32 concerts through September 30.

This week, pop singer Clay Aiken will launch a six-week tour in Dallas, Texas. He'll perform with local symphony orchestras in each city as he supports his latest album, "A Thousand Different Ways." The 20-city tour wraps up on August 19 in Orlando, Florida.

On July 3, Hootie & the Blowfish will kick off their 14-city "Homegrown" tour in Lewiston, New York. Fans are asked to donate school supplies, which the band gives to economically disadvantaged schools in each city. Since 2003, Hootie & the Blowfish have performed similar shows to raise awareness to the needs of local school children. Lead singer Darius Rucker says, "The children are our best resource and our most hopeful investment. With proper tools, our children can receive a well-rounded and meaningful education." To date, the band has donated $100,000 worth of school supplies.

The Top 10 finalists from the sixth season of American Idol will begin their "American Idols Live" tour on July 6. Joining winner Jordin Sparks on the 56-city U.S. tour are Gina Glocksen, Haley Scarnato, Blake Lewis, LaKisha Jones, Chris Richardson, Chris Sligh, Melinda Doolittle, Phil Stacey and Sanjaya Malakar. The tour ends on September 22 in Manchester, New Hampshire.

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