On December 23, CBS-TV will air the 10th annual "A Home for the Holidays with Faith Hill" special. Her husband Tim McGraw, Melissa Etheridge, Gavin Rossdale and Jamie Foxx will join Hill on the show. Other celebrities will present inspirational stories about foster care adoption. The annual special is presented as part of the Children's Action Network to raise awareness of the joys of adopting and to find homes for children waiting to be adopted.
Billboard Names Leona Lewis Top New Artist
Billboard magazine has issued its year-end edition, which features more than 250 charts ranking the top artists, songs, albums and tours of 2008. British singer Leona Lewis is the Top New Artist. Flo Rida's "Low" tops the year-end Hot 100 Songs chart. Alicia Keys' "No One" is at Number One on the Hot 100 Airplay list and her album As I Am tops the year-end Billboard 200. In addition Keys' "Like You'll Never See Me Again" holds the Number One position on the Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs year-end list. And, James Otto has the Top Country Song of 2008 with "Just Got Started Loving You." All of Billboard's year-end charts are posted at www.billboard.com.
Flo Rida is 2008 No. 1 Digital Artist
In 2008, music fans bought more than one billion digital downloads, according to Nielsen SoundScan. Flo Rida is the Number One digital artist with 4.4-million downloads of his hit single "Low." Coldplay's Viva La Vida Or Death And All His Friends tops Billboard's year-end Digital Albums chart.
Madonna, Guy Ritchie Deny Divorce Settlement Details
Madonna and Guy Ritchie are denying details of their divorce settlement that Madonna's publicist Liz Rosenberg recently gave to the Associated Press. Rosenberg said her client was paying Ritchie between $78 and $92 million in cash and property. Madonna and Guy issued a statement that says, "We have tried to maintain a dignified silence regarding the details of our divorce for the last few months whilst accepting the obvious media interest. A misleading and inaccurate statement, specifically in relation to the sums of money involved, was wrongly issued to AP this week. The financial details of the settlement will remain private, save to say that both of us are happy with our agreement."
Akon Required to do Community Service as Punishment for Concert Violence
Hip-hop star Akon will serve 65 hours of community service and pay a $250 fine for throwing a teenage fan off a concert stage in June 2007. Akon pleaded guilty to harassment in Fishkill Town Court in upstate New York.
Country Artist Mindy McCready Hospitalized After Attempted Suicide
Country singer Mindy McCready is back in the hospital after another apparent suicide attempt. The police report says she cut her wrists and took several pills. This is the third time McCready has attempted to take her own life. In 1996, Mindy topped the Country chart with "Guys Do It All The Time." Since 2004, the 33-year-old has been arrested several times for drug possession, probation violations and various other charges.
Donnie, Marie Osmond to Appear in Reality Show
Donnie and Marie Osmond's new reality show will premiere December 23 on ABC. "Rediscovered" gives 1980s child stars another shot at fame in their adult life. Donnie told Entertainment Tonight, "We're giving these people a second chance to be on camera in front of millions and millions of people, and to get that opportunity for super stardom." Executive producer Dave Broome adds, "What makes this show so different is that, unlike other competition shows, none of our contestants applied. We tracked them down, surprised them, and plucked them from their daily lives for this once in a lifetime chance." Contestants' identities are being kept secret until the first show.
American Idol Promotes New Format for 8th Season
Speaking of reality shows, the eighth season of American Idol will have several format changes. Thirty-six semifinalists will be chosen, up from the previous 24. The show's judges will choose three wild-card picks for the Top 12 finalists. There will be three weeks of programming devoted to audition rounds instead of four. And, a fourth judge, songwriter Kara DioGuardi, will join Paula Abdul, Simon Cowell and Randy Jackson. "American Idol" Season 8 will begin on January 13, 2008.
New Album Releases December 23
"Savage Island" - Savage
"Not Afraid" - Stephanie Smith
"Slumdog Millionaire" - original soundtrack
"Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles" - original soundrack
"Pushing Daisies" - original soundtrack
"Revolutionary Road" - original soundtrack
New Album Releases December 30
"If Tomorrow Comes" - Maino
"She's A Machine" - Alice In Videoland
"Feels So Good!" - Dee Daniels
"Paradise Sky" - Randy Stonehill
Look Who's Going on Tour!
Bon Jovi tops Billboard Boxscore's 2008 list of top-grossing concert tours. The band played to more than two million fans on its "Lost Highway" tour, which brought in over $210 million. Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band's "Magic" tour is in second place with $204.5 million. At Number 3 is Madonna's "Sticky & Sweet" tour, which grossed $162-million. Rounding out the Top 5 are the Police with $150 million and Celine Dion with $91 million. At Number 6 on the overall highest-grossing tours is Kenny Chesney, who had the top Country tour of 2008. His "Poets & Pirates" tour earned $86 million. Other Country artists in the overall Top 10 are the Eagles ($56.6 million) and Rascal Flatts ($55.8 million).