WATERS AND GILMOUR UPDATE
Uncut reports Rogers Waters is planning to perform a Pink Floyd song with ex-bandmate David Gilmour live this year on the UK leg of his The Wall European Tour which starts May 11.
The elaborate show will play for six nights at London O2 Arena, on May 11, 12, 14, 15, 17, and 18. It will then hit the Manchester MEN Arena on May 20 and 21. "I think it's beginning to look now as if he'll [Gilmour] do one gig," Waters said. "He'll do 'Comfortably Numb' at one gig. It's a big secret when."
The band briefly reformed in 2005 for Live 8. Drummer Nick Mason recently spoke out about his hopes that one day the whole band will reform for more live shows.
HMV PROFITS FALL ONCE MORE
ROBIN GIBB HOSPITALIZED
Bee Gees singer Robin Gibb has been forced to axe several shows in Brazil after being rushed to hospital with abdominal pains. The 61-year-old fell ill on April 3, 2011 in Britain and was advised by doctors not to travel. Last year, Robin needed emergency surgery which resulted in the singer having part of his intestine removed. His twin brother Maurice died in 2003 due to complications during surgery to mend a twisted intestine, the same surgery Robin had.
THE PIRATE BAY TOPS FIVE MILLION USERS
The Pirate Bay achieved a new milestone April 4. Its 5 millionth user created an account at the most-visited BitTorrent site on the Internet. Despite efforts from the entertainment industries that have tried to shut the site down for half a decade, The Pirate Bay keeps expanding. Let's see how they got there.
May 31, 2006, only two years after The Pirate Bay was founded, 65 Swedish police officers entered a data center in the outskirts of Stockholm. The officers were tasked with shutting down the largest threat to the entertainment industry at the time. - The Pirate Bay's servers.
In the months leading up to the raid the US Government threatened to put Sweden on the WTO's black list if they refused to deal with the Pirate Bay problem... The pressure worked and The Pirate Bay's servers went down, but to the disappointment of the entertainment industry this only lasted for three days. Instead of calling it quits The Pirate Bay founders fought back and, in an ironic twist, all the attention from the press due to legal troubles helped grow the site to what it is today - the largest BitTorrent site on the Internet...
At the time of the raid The Pirate Bay had only a few hundred thousand registered users, but with the spotlight on the Swedes, the user count soon skyrocketed. At the start of July 2006 the site broke the magical milestone of one million registered users, and that was just the beginning.
Today, despite numerous court cases, blocking attempts by ISPs and two full trials at the Stockholm Court, The Pirate Bay has welcomed its 5 millionth user. Quite a remarkable achievement for a site that doesn't even require registration to download. Day in and day out, a few thousand new users sign up for an account at the most-visited BitTorrent site.
There is of course also a downside to the ever growing list of users, as the site's popularity also makes it a huge target for spammers who want to pass off their fake torrents pointing to malware. TorrentFreak talked to one of the Pirate Bay moderators, who said that indeed hundreds of 'spam' accounts and fake uploads have to be deleted every day...
The current moderator team has about 40 people, half of which are full moderators and the other half 'helpers'. Together these people remove numerous fake torrents and spam accounts every day, abiding to a strict take-down policy that does not cover copyrighted material.
The big question is whether the site will live to welcome its 10 millionth user in a few years from now. The community and moderators - who all work for free - is certainly large enough, but the pressure from the entertainment industry on ISPs and governments is ever increasing. But then again, this never stopped The Pirate Bay before. - ernesto, Torrentfreak.com
Lady Gaga said many things on stage in California recently while finishing her current Monster Ball Tour. She dropped some more hints about the second single to be lifted from the album - 'Judas'. "It's no surprise, I'm sure, to many of you, that Judas is a man of the biblical senses, so expect to see some symbolism in this video. You have to look into what is haunting you, and you need to look into forgiving yourself in order to move on. And it's really fun to dance to and sounds like it could be a pop priest record."
Gaga will announce the release date for 'Judas' soon, meanwhile the new album Born This Way is due on May 23. Lady Gaga is in the studio finishing the final track, You And I.
With the life story of The Borgias on prime time TV, Gaga offering a song called Judas, the Catholic Jesuits coughing up millions for decades of sexual molestation of young boys, it's not looking good for the seat of St Peter. The church will need a man of "Tricky Dick's" calibre as the next papal head.
SHAKIRA DONATES US$400,000 TO HAITI
The hip-swingin' Columbian, Shakira, has donated another US$400,000 to Haiti. She will also see her donation matched by the Inter-American Development Bank. Last year, the singer raised US$600,000 to build schools in Haiti by appearing in an advert for a Spanish cava drink in return for the company, Freixenet, making the donation to her charitable foundation Pies Descalzos.
She said: 'I'm convinced the key to achieve a dignified future for the Haitian people is through education. I'd like to say to the girls that this is an enormous opportunity that life is offering you - education. So make the most of it because I'm sure you can achieve any of your dreams."
She explained: 'Education is a birthright and a quality education is the only tool that a child has to turn dreams into reality. Since I was a girl I have been aware of the tough reality faced by many children."
The super-rich $ingapore government donated US$50,000 to Haiti in January 2010. $ingapore practices "charity comes first at home"? Its prime minister General Lee Hsien Loong is the highest-paid politician in the world and earns close to S$4 million.
CHRISTIAN ROCKERS SUE CHRISTIAN RECORD LABEL
Turn the other "cheek"? HELL NO!
The Christian rockers, POD, have filed a lawsuit against Tennessee label INO Records, claiming the label has failed to pay them US$400,000 (£250,000) promised as an advance. INO Records is an American record label based in Nashville, specializing in Contemporary Christian music. It is distributed through Sony Records, and has been owned by Integrity Media since 2002. It is also the parent label of SRE Recordings, which concentrates more on Christian rock releases.
The band also say that as a result of the lawsuit they will "abandoned their obligations to INO." POD are currently writing the follow-up to their 2008 album 'When Angels And Serpents Dance' and play two UK shows in June. No angels here.
Sepultura have announced that they will release their 12th album 'Kairos' later this year. The album has been recorded in São Paulo with producer/musician Roy Z, best known for his work as a guitarist with Iron Maiden's Bruce Dickinson and Rob Halford of Judas Priest. Speaking to Blabbermouth.net, Sepultura guitarist and songwriter Andreas Kisser said that 'Kairos' is about "living the moment". "Nostalgia is being in the past, trying to relive stuff, and we're not doing that; we're doing something new today," he said.
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AMAZON ON CLOUD 9
In the battle for the hearts and minds of music fans, Amazon.com has beaten Apple to offer the Amazon Cloud, which "allows you to securely store your entire digital music collection using Amazon Cloud Drive and play it on any Mac, PC, or Android device using Amazon Cloud Player."
The one-stop shop approach allows "any new Amazon MP3 Store purchases (to) be saved directly to your Amazon Cloud Drive for free. You can also upload your existing music library to Amazon Cloud Drive so you have all your music in one place, accessible from anywhere."
All new Amazon Cloud Drive accounts are given 5GB of free storage for uploading content. Additional storage is available for an annual fee. The "cloud" is actually a giant storage space where your music can be kept and retrieved anytime, anywhere onto any of your players be it a handphone, iPad, laptop or desktop. Amazon also offers playback on their Amazon Cloud Player. All you need is a computer with a web browser as the player is not a software, but for handphones, you need to download the app.
The idea is for Amazon to play the role of giant library while music fans have smaller libraries allied to the main library. Amazon earns from your purchases of digital music from its service. By offering it as a library cum service, music for the first time is akin to a utility like water or electricity to be turned on on demand.
The service is not available to music fans living outside the USA.
CHINA 'TO OVERTAKE U.S. ON SCIENCE' IN TWO YEARS
China is on course to overtake the U.S. in scientific output possibly as soon as 2013 - far earlier than expected. That is the conclusion of a major new study by the Royal Society, the UK's national science academy. The country that invented the compass, gunpowder, paper and printing is set for a globally important comeback.
An analysis of published research - one of the key measures of scientific effort - reveals an "especially striking" rise by Chinese science. The study, Knowledge, Networks and Nations, charts the challenge to the traditional dominance of the United States, Europe and Japan.
The figures are based on the papers published in recognised international journals listed by the Scopus service of the publishers Elsevier.
In 1996, the first year of the analysis, the US published 292,513 papers - more than 10 times China's 25,474. By 2008, the US total had increased very slightly to 316,317 while China's had surged more than seven-fold to 184,080.
Professor Sir Chris Llewellyn Smith, chair of the report, said he was "not surprised" by this increase because of China's massive boost to investment in R&D. Chinese spending has grown by 20 per cent per year since 1999, now reaching over $100bn, and as many as 1.5 million science and engineering students graduated from Chinese universities in 2006.
The report stresses that American research output will not decline in absolute terms and raises the possibility of countries like Japan and France rising to meet the Chinese challenge. "But the potential for China to match American output in terms of sheer numbers in the near to medium term is clear."
Full report <http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-12885271>here.
Back in 1839 at the start of the First Opium War between England and China, guess who won? The west continues to have better, stronger "gun boats".
BUFFALO SPRINGFIELD TOUR BEGINS JUNE 1
The reformed Buffalo Springfield with Neil Young and Stephen Stills and the rest will start their US-Canada tour on June 1 at The Fox Theatre in Oakland. Find the rest of the dates here.
JACKIE CHAN, NOT DEAD YET
A Twitter out of Australia claimed kung fu actor Jackie Chan was dead. The statement generated 41,750 likes overnight March 30. Chan's Facebook quickly announced he was not. "Jackie is alive and well," the post says. "He did not suffer a heart attack and die, as was reported on many social networking sites and in online news reports". The hoax was generated out of Australia by a fake site made to look like it was Yahoo7 News. Artistically, he's been dead for a decade at least.
SIGH... RADIOHEAD SKIPS ASIA, AFRICA
With the exception of Tokyo, Japan, Radiohead's promo newspaper, The Universal Sigh, won't be available free to fans of the UK band anywhere else in Asia and, for that matter, Africa. The newspaper, The Universal Sigh, is being handed out free globally. Pictures of fans who have already grabbed one are up at Theuniversalsigh.com now. It was launched worldwide on March 28, 2011. The band are giving out the newspapers to tie in with the physical release of their new album, 'The King Of Limbs'. Thom Yorke surprised fans in London when he stood at a street corner in the Brick Lane area to hand them out. Are Radiohead signalling that people should get back to the physical world?
GWEN STEFANI DONATES US$1 MILLION TO JAPAN RELIEF
The singer has given the money to Save The Children's Japan Earthquake-Tsunami Children In Emergency Fund and has also designed a new T-shirt, the profits from sales of which will also go to the charity. According to Billboard, the No Doubt singer said: "I've been inspired by Japan for many years and have a true love, appreciation and respect for the Japanese people. The disaster in Japan is beyond heartbreaking and I want to do anything I can to help." The $ingapore government donated S$500,000 (US$391,000). $ingapore politicians are the highest paid in the world.
Father Michael Seed's superiors are said to be 'appalled'. Fr Seed is seen here with his Chinese friend Xuelin Black.
TONY BLAIR'S CATHOLIC PRIEST FIXED PAPAL KNIGHTHOODS FOR CASH
March 27, 2011: One of Britain's most high-profile Catholic priests has admitted arranging papal knighthoods for wealthy businessmen for money. Father Michael Seed, who regularly celebrated Mass for Tony Blair and his family in Downing Street, now faces questions from his religious order after an investigation by The Mail on Sunday.
The most damaging evidence concerns his attempted cultivation of an Israeli arms dealer, Hezi Bezalel, who was seeking business opportunities in the Balkans. It shows that Fr Seed... had 'agreed' a papal knighthood for Mr Bezalel before approaching him. In return for a £45,000 donation to charity, Fr Seed said he could also introduce Mr Bezalel to influential Balkan politicians 'and the man who looks after all arms for the region'. Mr Bezalel declined the offer, saying he did not give to charity 'under instruction'.
Papal knighthoods are awarded to lay men and women for conspicuous service to the church and society. They are among the highest honours the Pope can bestow. Tonight a source close to Fr Seed's order, the Franciscan Friars of the Atonement, said his superiors were 'appalled'. His order has exclaustrated Fr Seed, meaning he is suspended indefinitely but is bound by his religious vows.
Although he failed to solicit funds from Mr Bezalel, at least four wealthy Britons were impressed by his overtures. Fr Seed admitted they made donations to an Archbishop friend's charity in Serbia to become papal knights. It was unclear last night if the four, who are each understood to have contributed between £25,000 and £50,000, had done anything else to merit their honour.
The Mail On Sunday's inquiries also reveal that:
- Fr Seed is on indefinite leave from his order after claims that he marked the 25th anniversary of his ordination in January with a champagne party at a racy club, with entertainment provided by men dressed as nuns.
- He lives rent-free in a flat owned by one of his wealthy papal knights in exclusive Dolphin Square in Pimlico, Central London.
Fr Seed, who has taken a vow of poverty, denied profiting from any of the deals. But he agreed that trying to solicit funds from Mr Bezalel could be seen as 'morally wrong'.
Read more here.
GERMANY ABOLISHES NATIONAL MILITARY SERVICE
March 24, 2011: The German Parliament on Thursday abolished military conscription, the compulsory enrollment of young people to military service, the DPA news agency reported. The move suspended the draft effective on July 1, 55 years after military conscription was introduced at the height of the Cold War. Compulsory military service has been part of Germany for centuries, expecting in two periods, 1919-35 and 1945-55.
Full report here.
HUGH JACKMAN WANTS ROLE IN BOLLYWOOD FILMS
Hugh Jackman has said that he is actively seeking roles in new Bollywood films. The Australian actor made the announcement at the Ficci Frames convention in the Indian city of Mumbai on March 25, 2011 reports Hollywoodreporter.com.
"I am looking forward to working in Bollywood films," he said. "I am meeting directors." He then joked: "I am a huge fan of [Indian actor] Shah Rukh Khan and I loved his film My Name Is Khan. I want to do a sequel to this film and that will be called My Name Is Jackman And I Am Not A Tourist." The joke was a reference to the original film's tagline, "And I am not a terrorist". Press tongue firmly in cheek.
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