American Idol 2 winner Ruben Studdard was hospitalized November 22. The 26-year-old singer, who was at home in Alabama, reportedly had been feeling ill over the past two weeks. A spokesperson at his record company said exhaustion was to blame, but he was expected to remain hospitalized for several days so doctors could perform more tests. Studdard's new CD, I Need An Angel, was released on November 23.
Heavy metal star Ozzy Osbourne went on British television Tuesday, November 23 to appeal for help in finding $2 million worth of jewelry that robbers stole from his home in the early morning hours of November 22. Ozzy and his wife Sharon were sleeping at their Buckingham mansion, when he heard noises and found intruders in his wife's dressing room. Ozzy grabbed one of the suspects, who broke free and jumped from a window to escape. He says, "He was a big, strong man, but at one point I thought I could kill him to stop him [from] hurting Sharon." The two masked men reportedly climbed a ladder to enter the Osbourne home.
The National Football League, NFL, has invited Sir Paul McCartney to headline the February 6 Super Bowl halftime show. The league's 39th annual championship game will be played at ALLTEL Stadium in Jacksonville, Florida. This year's theme is "Building Bridges," and FOX Sports chairman David Hill says, "He is the world's most influential rock artist, and his music will forever be a part of our culture. His music bridges generations, countries, cultures and musical genres." McCartney said, "We're looking forward to rocking the millions at home and in the stadium."
On November 29, a new version of the benefit single "Do They Know It's Christmas" will be released on Mercury/Universal Records. Issued under the moniker Band Aid 20, the track features Paul McCartney, Dido, U2's Bono, Robbie Williams and Coldplay's Chris Martin, among many others. Proceeds will go to victims of violence in the Darfur region of Sudan. The first "Do They Know It's Christmas" benefit was recorded by Band Aid in 1984. Millions of dollars were raised for famine relief in Ethiopia.
The much-anticipated production of Billy Elliot The Musical will open in Newcastle, England on November 29. Elton John came up with the idea to make a stage show from the film version. He saw the movie at the Cannes Film Festival and said, "I was so moved by the story, I was seen sobbing in my seat and had to be carted out by three people." Elton wrote the songs for the musical, which tells the story about a young boy who dreams of becoming a ballet star. Billy Elliot is scheduled to makes its London debut in March 2005.
On November 29, a three-hour AIDS benefit concert will take place in Toronto, Ontario. Headlining the "UrbanAIDS" show are Alicia Keys, Nelly Furtado and Keshia Chante. Proceeds will go to the Stephen Lewis Foundation and the Keep a Child Alive organization, which work to raise awareness and funds for millions of women and children around the world suffering from HIV/AIDS.
Bruce Springsteen will head to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on December 2 to perform at "Flood Aid 04" with his longtime friend Joe Grushecky and Joe's band, the Houserockers. The benefit will take place at Heinz Hall. Several other Pittsburgh-based bands, including BE Taylor, which was once signed to Epic Records, will perform at the event. Proceeds will be donated to area victims of the September floods, brought on by Hurricane Ivan.
TOUR DATES AND INFORMATION:
Beginning November 28, Country singer LeAnn Rimes will perform a holiday symphonic tour in support of her new Christmas album What A Wonderful World. The first show takes place in Red Bank, New Jersey. Rimes will be backed by a 65-piece symphony orchestra on the 11-city outing, which is scheduled to end in Milwaukee, Wisconsin on December 19.
The "Simply Christmas With Amy Grant and Vince Gill" holiday outing will begin in Baton Rouge, Louisiana on December 2. The Nashville Chamber Orchestra will back the couple on the 14-city tour. Comedian Henry Cho will open the shows, which wrap up on December 18 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.