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Jackson Family Memorabilia to be Auctioned Off; Good Charlotte Tops US, Foreign Charts


Guernsey's auction house plans to auction over 1,000 items once owned by the famous Jackson family. They include Michael Jackson's gold record for his 1981 album Thriller, an autographed program from the Jackson's "Victory" tour, handwritten lyrics and stage costumes. The auction will take place at the Hard Rock hotel resort in Las Vegas on May 30 and May 31. Michael Jackson's spokesperson, Raymone Bain, told reporters, "Mr. Jackson was not aware and he is extremely upset that his memorabilia was included amongst the memorabilia being auctioned off." She added that Michael is considering legal action. Guernsey's founder, Arlan Ettinger, said the memorabilia is currently owned by luggage transportation company Universal Express. The Florida-based business bought it last year from Henry Vaccaro, who runs a New Jersey construction company. Vaccaro formerly owned Kramer Guitars. The Washington Post reports that in 1993, the Vaccaro won a $1.4 million judgment against eight members of the Jackson family for reneging on a deal to save Kramer from bankruptcy by purchasing his company. In 2002, a court held an auction and Vaccaro bought the items for a mere $65,000. He hasn't disclosed how much Universal Express paid him for the collection.

This week (week ending April 14), seven albums debut in the Billboard 200's Top 10. Tim McGraw earned his fourth Number One debut on the list with Let It Go. The various artist hits compilation Now That's What I Call Music 24 entered at Number 2. Coming in at Number 3 is Buck the World by rapper Young Buck. Music Is My Savior by rap newcomer Mims debuts at Number 4. Good Charlotte's latest album, Good Morning Revival, enters at Number 7. Landing on the chart at Number 9 is Elton John, who makes his 16th debut in the Top 10 with Rocket Man: Number Ones. And, Jennifer Lopez came in at Number 10 with her first Spanish-language release, Como Ama Una Mujer.

Good Morning Revival by Good Charlotte not only debuts in the Top 10 here in the U.S., but also in ten other countries. They include Japan (Number One), Canada and New Zealand (Number 2), Hong Kong (Number 4), Australia (Number 5), Mexico (Number 6), Switzerland (Number 7), Thailand (Number 8), Germany and Austria (Number 10). Good Charlotte will kick off a world tour in Jakarta, Indonesia on April 24.

Album sales in the U.S. fell 17 percent in the first three months of 2007. Reasons range from a lack of new releases to illegal and legal downloading. Last year, overall album sales fell 5 percent from 2005. Country music saw the smallest decline in 2006, dropping less than one percent. Classical music had the biggest growth, with an increase of more than 22 percent, thanks to the crossover appeal of artists like Andrea Bocelli, Il Divo and Josh Groban.


New albums scheduled for release on April 10 include: "Live Streisand" by Barbra Streisand, "Satellite" by Guster, and the original motion picture soundtrack to "The Invisible."


The 2007 Country Thunder USA Festival in Florence, Arizona will take place April 12-15. This year's lineup includes Reba McEntire, Brooks & Dunn, Gretchen Wilson, Big & Rich, Jo Dee Messina, Montgomery Gentry, and many others. Country Thunder events will also take place this year in Waxahachie, Texas (May 24-27) and Twin Lakes, Wisconsin (July 18-22).


Singer Nelly Furtado won all five of the 2007 Juno Awards she was nominated for, including Album of the Year and Pop Album of the Year for Loose, Single of the Year for "Promiscuous," Artist of the Year and the Fans Choice Award. The Juno Awards are Canada's equivalent of the Grammy Awards. This year's event took place on April 1 in Saskatchewan. The only other multiple winner was rock group Billy Talent, which won for Group of the Year and Rock Album of the Year for Billy Talent II. The band received three previous Juno Awards for its 2003 self-titled debut album. The Dixie Chicks won this year's International Album of the Year honor for Taking the Long Way. During the ceremony, producer Bob Rock was inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame. Rock has worked with Motley Crue, Metallica, Aerosmith, Bon Jovi and Bryan Adams, among others.


Southern rock group Lynyrd Skynyrd and Country star Hank Williams, Jr. will hit the road together this week on their "Rowdy Frynds Tour." Shows begin in Huntsville, Alabama on April 11 and wrap up on June 16 in St. Charles, Missouri. Lynyrd Skynyrd will stay on the road through September performing solo dates.

On April 12, Country singer Martina McBride will kick off a 45-date U.S. tour in Kansas City, Missouri. She'll be supporting her new CD Waking Up Laughing, which was released on April 3. The album includes Martina's current Top 10 single, "Anyway," one of three tracks she co-wrote for the collection. Joining Martina on the tour are special guests Little Big Town and Rodney Atkins.