One month before a child custody trial was to begin, Britney Spears' ex-husband Kevin Federline has been granted sole custody of their two sons, 2-year-old Sean Preston and 1-year-old Jayden James.  Federline's attorney Mark Vincent Kaplan told E! News, "The case has been settled.  The court still has to approve it."  "Nobody could have anticipated the terms of events that have occurred...." he added. "This was a two-year journey that will be halted at a point that is good for these children.  Custody is always modifiable. If there is a final order, it means there is nothing to try."  Britney will have visitation rights.

Natalie Cole: Previous Drug Use May Have Caused Hepatitis

Grammy-winning singer Natalie Cole was recently diagnosed with Hepatitis C.  A press release from Rhino Entertainment says the infectious disease was found during a routine examination and was "likely the result of her drug use many decades ago."  Dr. Graham Woolf, Associate Clinical Professor of Medicine at U.C.L.A./Cedars Sinai Medical Center said, "Natalie has had a terrific response to her medication and is now virus negative."  Cole released a statement saying, "I've been so fortunate to have learned so much from my past experiences.  I am embraced by the love and support of my family and friends; I am committed to my belief in myself and in my abiding faith to meet this challenge with a heartfelt optimism and determination.  This is how I intend to deal with this current challenge in my life."  Natalie has been working on her new album Still Unforgettable, which is due out on September 9.

U2 to Release Revamped 80s Albums

While U2 fans await the release of the Irish rock group's new studio project, Island Records will issue re-mastered, expanded editions of its first three albums from the early 1980s.  Single-disc, vinyl and double CD packages of Boy, Octoberand Warwill be out on July 22.  According to U2's website, all three will include new liner notes, lyrics and previously unseen photos.  The 2-CD set will feature a bonus disc of b-sides, live recordings and rare tracks.

Lachey to Host High School Musical Reality Show

The new Disney reality show High School Musical: Get in the Picture debuts on July 20.  One grand prize winner will earn the chance to appear in a music video shown in the end credits of the upcoming film, High School Musical 3: Senior Year.  The movie is scheduled to hit theaters on October 24.  Nick Lachey hosts the reality series, which will air on ABC-TV.

Sugarland's New Album to Include Special Fan Package

Mercury Records will release a deluxe fan edition of Sugarland's new album Love On The Inside on July 22.  In addition to the 12 songs included on the regular CD (due out July 29), the special fan package features five bonus tracks and videos.  The Country duo will support "Love On The Inside" with a 25-city U.S. tour, which begins in Asheville, North Carolina on September 13.

Blues Legend Buddy Guy Says Childhood Memories Inspired New Album

Buddy Guy's new album, Skin Deep, will be released on July 22.  The collection features all original songs and collaborations with Eric Clapton, Robert Randolph, Susan Tedeschi and Derek Trucks.  Guy says the title of the album was inspired by a childhood memory.  "I used to play with this boy, ride horses, down close to where I was born," he explains.  "Then when we were 13, his parents made us stop.  They used to say you had black blood or white blood, but we'd get a flashlight and hold it up to our skin and we'd just see red blood. That's what I mean by 'Skin Deep.'"  The 71-year-old blues legend (turns 72 on July 30) wrapped up a European tour on July 13.  He'll begin U.S. concerts on July 23 in Silverton, Oregon.

James Brown Medal Fetches $10,000 at Christie's Auction

Christie's New York auction house was given the go-ahead by South Carolina's Court of Appeals to sell hundreds of personal items that belonged to the late soul legend James Brown.  They include stage costumes, handwritten lyrics, photographs, a Grammy Award and his 2003 Kennedy Center Honors medal, which sold on July 17 for $10,000.  His medical bracelet was auctioned for more than $32,000.  Cleveland's Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is reportedly interested in obtaining some of the items.  Following Brown's death in 2006, his family and business managers began battling over his estate.  The auction was ordered by a judge to pay legal bills and estate taxes.


New albums scheduled for release on July 22 include: "Breakout" by Miley Cyrus, "The Slip" by Nine Inch Nails, "Into the Sun" by Candlebox and "CSNY/Déjà vu Live" by Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young.


The first Pemberton Music Festival will take place July 25-27 in Pemberton, British Columbia.  More than 50 bands will perform on two stages during the three-day event.  Headliners include Coldplay, Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers, Jay-Z and Nine Inch Nails.


On July 25, Maroon 5 and Counting Crows will kick off a co-headlining tour in Virginia Beach, Virginia.  Maroon 5 will support its 2007 album It Won't Be Soon Before Long.  Counting Crows will promote its new release, Saturday Nights & Sunday Mornings.  Newcomer Sara Bareilles opens concerts through August 26.  The San Diego-based four-man-band Augustana will fill the opening slot for the remainder of the 38-city tour, which wraps up on October 4 in West Palm Beach, Florida.