BartCop Entertainment Archives - Wednesday, 27 July, 2011


27 July, 2011

(Updated Daily)

[1463 days in a row]


M Is FOR MASHUP - July 27th, 2011

Mainstream vs Mashup!

By DJ Useo

Almost everyone is familiar with mainstream pop music, hence the name. Even if you make little attempt to access them, mainstream pop songs will find you as they're in every aspect of modern communication, tv, movies, & the net. Not nearly so many of us are familiar with mashups. Mainly you have to seek them out for yourself. Between the mainstream & you stands the mashup producer; generally people who have dj experience with lots of music & through that, have refined tastes. They mostly have respect for mainstream music, but suffer from the delusion that it can be even better. Lol. So you get a perfectly acceptable Lady Gaga song & a very good already U2 track that end up being part of the same 4 minutes!

To examine the relationship existing between the mainstream & the mashup, I have taken 5 recent top 40 tracks & 5 popular-with-that-crowd mashups & subjected them to my useo-patented 1-10 ratings system. I leave the final decisions to you. I make no claims as to the superiority of either style, instead I acknowledge that the bootleg mixes would of course never exist without the hard work & talent of the source artists. May they thrive! As far as I know this is the first examination of this subject, & can by no means be considered the final word on the matter. Lets pop a cold drink & begin.


Rihanna-California King Bed

( )

   Mix - 10

   Production Sound - 9

   Musical Appeal - 9

   Tweak Advice - not applicable

   Final Score - 9

   Comment - A great Sheryl Crow-like song performed very well.

   No points for originality, but 10 for quality.
   The production sound could be a tiny bit more lush & deeper.
   Sounds great otherwise.
   I've already heard this singing in many mashups before I heard this actual version.

MASHUP track #1

DJ Britboy-The One Who Changed The Way I Love

(R.E.M. vs Example)

( )

   Mix - 8

   Production Sound - 9

   Musical Appeal - 9

   Tweak Advice - A touch less compression overall. Most people forget about it completely .lol.

   Final Score - 9

   Comment - This completely revives an old R.E.M. standard.

   One to savour repeatedly. DOES NOT SOUND LIKE A BOOTLEG.

   Production is handled better than many label releases.


Kardinal Offishall Ft. Pitbull, Lil' Jon & Clinton Sparks-Smash The Club

( )

   Mix -10

   Production Sound-10

   Musical Appeal - 10

   Tweak Advice - not applicable

   Final Score -10

   Comment - This totally sounds like a great mashup already with it's blend of styles on display.

   The sound is strong & clear. Great use of guests.

   Sounds fairly original though the arrangement when it's actually old skool rap.

   I would buy this.

MASHUP track #2

Hi-Brid-Summertime Can't Turn Around

(DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince vs Farley 'Jackmaster' Funk vs Emiliana Torrini)

( )

   Mix - 10

   Production Sound - 10

   Musical Appeal - 10

   Tweak Advice - As if!

    Final Score -10

   Comment - A wonderful,bootleg sound, yet very appreciable & rewarding.

   Maintains a timeless vibe while sounding new!

   What a feat!


Jordin Sparks - I Am Woman

( )

   Mix - 8

   Production Sound - 7

   Musical Appeal - 7

   Tweak Advice - Use different backing music, perhaps a different style.

   Final Score - 7

   Comment - I was so relieved it wasn't a cover of Helen Reddy, I almost gave it an eleven! Lol!

   This is actually an ok track, but the exact type of track I feel would be better in a bootleg mix.

   The backing music doesn't keep up with the quite good vocal.

   Some dub step would spice it right up.

MASHUP track #3

[MMM] MadMixMustang-The Double Dutch Jump

(Van Halen vs Malcolm McLaren)

( )

( )

   Mix -9

   Production Sound - 9

   Musical Appeal - 9

   Tweak Advice - not applicable

   Final Score - 9

   Comment - Imagine African pop vs David Lee Roth!

   It's like a livelier Paul Simon track.

   Nearly perfect sound on this baby.

   Very inspired & successful mix.


Holy Ghost!-Wait & See

( )

   Mix - 8

   Production Sound - 8

   Musical Appeal -8

   Tweak Advice - Go for a richer, warmer sound in the production.

   The levelling amongst the instrumentation I would handle differently.

   They just come at you here. Where is the finesse?

   The new Yes album had vastly superior production sound.

   Final Score - 8

   Comment - The song grew on me & I liked it.

   Reminded me of many an 80's group, but that quality played well here.

MASHUP track #4

Gauffie-Seek Bromance Idiot

(Lena Philipsson vs Tim Berg)

( )

   Mix -10

   Production Sound -10

   Musical Appeal -10

   Tweak Advice - No way.

   Final Score -10

   Comment - This sounds so very mainstream, & so very great.

   It is a pleaser for mainstream fans & also for mashup fans.

   You know I love my harder music, but this works in the best way.

   No one would ever guess it's a mashup!


Simple Plan ft. Natasha Bedingfield-Jet Lag

( )

   Mix - 7

   Production Sound - 6

   Musical Appeal - 8

   Tweak Advice - Again, the production sound here is very dull.

   Shel Talmy was good for the sixties. Not 2011.

   More dull even than the Holy Ghost! track.

   Amost sounds mono!

   Final Score - 7

   Comment - I liked the vocal team-up.

   The song was a bit hackneyed.

   I applaud the effort to jam it up a little.

   Needs actual rocking-out sound & arrangement.

MASHUP track #5

Dan Mei - Hurtful Sunshine

(Katrina & The Waves vs Eric Hassle)

( )

( )

   Mix - 10

   Production Sound - 10

   Musical Appeal -10

   Tweak Advice - Not applicable

   Final Score -10

   Comment -The smile on your face will spread when you realize it's a mashup. That won't happen right away as it will defy your mashup expectations & sound like any great song.

   This really improves the Waves track for me.

There you go, 5 mainstream pop songs & 5 mashups. Well, I can only say at this point that I felt the benefit of both styles. If you feel like it, drop me a line concerning your thoughts on this article & I can run them next week.

Mix Of The Week

Solcofn - Headspace (Music I Unwind To) is a damn great mix. It's full of incredible tracks by The Dust Brothers, U.N.K.L.E., Luke Vibert, DJ Krush & more. Solcofn is a must-not-miss mixer.

See what I mean here )

Mashup Tip : Feel free to mash whatever you like, but watch out for Black Garvey. He hates all forms of bootleg music & has been known to gut people with a big knife for simple looping.

Latest Useo Thing

I actually have a batch of new tracks at my site ( ) But the one that got big response (& therefore blows my mind) is 'Nikesclubbing' (Popeye vs Iggy Pop). Done as a joke, & apparently succeeding well at that, people actually sed stuff back to me.

Have your fun listening here
( )

Podgornio, The Mashup Psychic Predicts

Mashups will be considered cool when one cheers us up after the earth splits in two next month.


Ratings Agencies Create Whole New Grade For Boehner's Debt Ceiling Plan






(observing 57 year old Oregon state representative David Wu exhibiting more questionable behavior...after being caught in a tiger now caught in a sex scandal with an 18 year old suit...he is stepping down...the US congress is part of our me wonder who's running the show...I am for less john boener, eric cantor, mitch mcconnell why dont you all just step all like mr. wu ...... unfit to govern!!)

zEN mAN archives



Recommended Reading

from Bruce

Paul Krugman's Blog: The Fatal Delusion (New York Times)
The thing that strikes me is that this administration just keeps on making the same mistake. Again and again, policy is predicated on the notion that Republicans will act reasonably; again and again, they don't. And yet Obama and company never seem to learn. Is it too early to start drinking?

The enormity of this just keeps growing. Women - as noted in here - are particularly disadvantaged. It is outrageous, and - because so many Republican candidates for President don't "believe in" the global climate crisis or universal health care or regulation (or evolution) - it threatens our well-being.

Miss Celania: Whose Ideal was This Anyway? (
As part of my day job I teach media literacy to children in 5th and 6th grade -- just before they go off to junior high school, and hopefully just before they are inundated with the maximum number of messages about who they should be.

John Patterson: Gilda is pure, undistilled Rita Hayworth (Guardian)
Evergreen noir thriller is the reason your parents' generation say they preferred it when actors kept their clothes on.

Matthew Sweet: The troubled heart of Ealing and British postwar cinema (Guardian)
Decades of rainy-Sunday screenings have blinded us to the true nature of postwar British cinema - freedom, naughtiness and a very black humour indeed.

Jill Harness: The Real Life Inspirations For 14 'Simpsons' Characters (Neatorama)
I don't know about you guys, but I love 'The Simpson's and I must say that getting to watch 'The Simpsons' while writing about the show was a dream come true for me. Getting to learn about the stories behind many of my favorite characters made this one of the most fun articles I've written for Neatorama so far. I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it.

The 5 Greatest Movies About the End of Summer (Slate)
The end of summer is a sultry, heady, emotional time-which is why it makes such a good setting for films. Here, David Robert Mitchell shares his list of the five greatest movies set in that most hormonal of seasons.

Amy Winehouse - a losing game (Guardian)
Amy Winehouse had talent to burn and she sang because she had to. Alexis Petridis remembers an artist whose enormous impact rested on a handful of unforgettable songs.

Evan Sawdey: "20 Questions: Cassettes Won't Listen" (PopMatters)
…when [CWL's mastermind Jason Drake] was prepping for the release of his third full-length album of immaculately-crafted indie electro-pop tunes, he wound up settling upon the name of KEVINSPACEY, which seemed to accurately reflect that marture, thoughtful, but still playfully fun sound of the record. The two-time Oscar winner, however, was not amused, and a cease-and-desist letter followed in no time. In thinking of a way to avoid this legal quagmire, Drake then came across a brilliant idea: take a letter off.

David Bruce: Wise Up! Doctors (Athens News)
Mother Angela Gillespie of the Sisters of the Holy Cross, South Bend, Indiana, helped a Dr. Franklin performed surgeries on wounded soldiers during the American Civil War. Once, she was assisting in a surgery in a room whose ceiling was dripping blood from the wounded soldiers who had been carried upstairs. Only after the surgery was completed did Dr. Franklin look at her and see that her coif and shoulders were bloody.

David Bruce has 42 Kindle books on with 250 anecdotes in each book. Each book is $1, so for $42 you can buy 10,500 anecdotes. Search for "Funniest People," "Coolest People, "Most Interesting People," "Kindest People," "Religious Anecdotes," "Maximum Cool," and "Resist Psychic Death."


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Trivia Question of the Day

Whose career started with her portrayal of "Happy Hotpoint", a tiny elf who danced on Hotpoint appliances in TV commercials?


Send your answer to Marty

Trivia Question from Yesterday

Who was born Sonia Phyllis Hurwitz?

   Shari Lewis                                                      Source

Shari Lewis (January 17, 1933 – August 2, 1998) was an American ventriloquist, puppeteer, and children's television show host, most popular during the 1960s and 1990s. She is best known as the original puppeteer of Lamb Chop, first appearing on Hi Mom, a local morning show that aired on WNBC in New York.

Lewis was born as Sonia Phyllis Hurwitz to Abraham Hurwitz, an education professor at Yeshiva University, and Ann Ritz. She had one sister. Her parents encouraged her to perform, and by age 13 her father taught her to perform specialized magic acts. He had been named New York City's "official magician" by Mayor Fiorello H. LaGuardia during the Great Depression.        Source

Alan J was first, and correct, with:
   Shari Lewis

Charlie wrote:
   Shari Lewis.
  A profound influence on my youth,

Sally said:
  TV's Shari Lewis, was born Sonia Phyllis Hurwitz, and was the original puppeteer for the hand puppet, "Lamb Chop," and other, equally dumb characters...

  Sorry, I'm a major Muppet fan...
  PS: Thank you JoeS for sharing some of the nice, rainy weather down here yesterday! Temps were in the 70's, with a gentle rain falling throughout the afternoon and evening. After the 100 degree heat wave we've been having, it was a welcome respite, let me tell you!

Jim from CA, retired to ID, replied:
   Congratulations on 10's amswer is Shari Lewis

BttbB responded:
   Shari Lewis...

  Trivia within trivia: Shari wrote, with her husband, an episode for the original series
  Star Trek The Lights of Zetar (episode) - Memory Alpha, the Star Trek Wiki

Adam answered:
   Shari Lewis, puppetter and ventriloquist extrordinaire.

Marian said:
   Shari Lewis

Ed K (The Thalia Street Gallery) replied:
   Bill O'Reilly?

MAM   wrote:
   Famed ventriloquist Shari Lewis

  Lamb Chop and Shari Lewis
  My kids watched her show during the 60's, and then I sort of lost track of her. I don't think I ever saw any of the 90's shows, but I most certainly enjoyed the YouTube clips that are available. Had computer problems all day, due to a power loss during a thunder storm last night. First no sound. Got that sorted out. Then no internet. Finally got that sorted out. Outage sure did disturb all the connections on the back of my computer tower! And now I know why my computer geek son says to turn the power strip with all the plugs in it OFF during a storm!

And, Joe S     answered:
   Shari Lewis

  Happy birthday BCE, and Marty thanks for everything you do.
  It's also the 7th anniversary of the Traverse City Film Festival started by Michael Moore.
  (...and Sally, it's 63° here and perfect sleeping weather, just thought you would want to know)



3< 4 5 Caterpillars

Gulf Fritillary Butterfly

Gulf Fritillary butterfly

Here are today's pictures:

Caterpillar #1 - pupated (but not looking so good)

Caterpillar #2 - pupated

Caterpillar #3

Caterpillar #4

Caterpillar #5 - the newest addition

Gulf Fritillary Butterfly Page


Reader Suggestion

Michelle in AZ

Keli Goff: The Most Shocking Thing My Mother Ever Told Me About Sex (And How It's Shaped My Politics)

Slaughtered sparrows simile wins bad writing contest - books -

Twitter Revolt: Social Media Users Vent Anger at Washington - ABC News

The GPS: A Fatally Misleading Travel Companion : NPR

Two States Protect Lake Tahoe, But One Eyes Changes : NPR

Daily Kos: Goodwin Liu: Federal Court's Loss is California's Gain

Thanks, Michelle!


Sick Days


From The Creator of 'Avery Ant'

"The Problem With Young People Today"

(Crabby Old Fart)



Selected Readings

from that Mad Cat, JD
















Ark Of Darkness


In The Chaos Household

Last Night

Sunny and a bit humid.

Oops. Forgot to include Michelle in AZ in yesterda's thank yous. Sigh.

Tonight, Wednesday:

CBS starts the night with a FRESH 'Big Brother', followed by a RERUN 'Criminal Minds', then a RERUN 'CSI: The Original One'.
Scheduled on a FRESH Dave are Craig Ferguson and Anna Calvi.
Scheduled on a FRESH Craig are Mary McCormack and golfer David Feherty.

NBC opens the night with a FRESH 'Minute To Win It', followed by a FRESH 'America's Got Talent', then a FRESH 'Love In The Wild'.
Scheduled on a FRESH Leno are Chris Tucker, Skipper Bivins & Trent Jackson, and Vanessa Carlton.
Scheduled on a FRESH Jimmy Fallon are Neil Patrick Harris, Fran Lebowitz, and They Might Be Giants.
On a RERUN Carson 'The Scab' Daly (from 3/15/11) are Lykke Li, Grace Potter, and School of Seven Bells.

ABC begins the night with a RERUN 'The Middle', followed by a RERUN 'Modern Family', then another RERUN 'Modern Family', followed by a RERUN 'Happy Endings', then 'Primetime Nightline'.
Scheduled on a FRESH Jimmy Kimmel are Olivia Wilde and Chris Young.

The CW offers a RERUN 'America's Next Top Model', followed by another RERUN 'America's Top Model'.

Faux fills the night with a FRESH 'So You Think You Can Dance?'.

MY has an old 'Burn Notice', followed by another old 'Burn Notice'.

A&E has 'The First 48', 'Storage Wars', another 'Storage Wars', still another 'Storage Wars', yet another 'Storage Wars', followed by a FRESH 'Storage Wars', then another FRESH 'Storage Wars'.

AMC offers the movie 'A Few Good Men', followed by the movie 'The Shawshank Redemption'.

BBC  -   
 [6:00 AM]   BBC World News
 [7:00 AM]   BBC World News
 [8:00 AM]   The Graham Norton Show - Ep 7 Jimmy Carr
 [9:00 AM]   Gordon Ramsay's F Word - Episode 8
 [10:00 AM]   Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares - Ep 6 Clubway 41
 [11:00 AM]   Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares - Ep 1 The Secret Garden
 [12:00 PM]   Dragons' Den - Episode 1
 [1:00 PM]   Gordon Ramsay's F Word - Episode 8
 [2:00 PM]   Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares - Ep 4 The Fish and Anchor
 [3:00 PM]   Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares - Ep 7 Jack's Waterfront
 [4:00 PM]   Star Trek: The Next Generation - Ep 7 The Enemy
 [5:00 PM]   Doctor Who - Ep 10 Blink
 [6:00 PM]   Doctor Who - Ep 11 Utopia
 [7:00 PM]   Top Gear - Episode 8
 [8:00 PM]   Top Gear - Episode 7
 [9:00 PM]   My Big Breasts and Me - My Big Breasts And Me
 [10:00 PM]   The Tudors - Episode 2
 [11:00 PM]   The Tudors - Episode 3
 [12:00 AM]   My Big Breasts and Me - My Big Breasts And Me
 [1:00 AM]   The Tudors - Episode 2
 [2:00 AM]   The Tudors - Episode 3
 [3:00 AM]   The Tudors - Episode 2
 [4:00 AM]   The Tudors - Episode 3
 [5:00 AM]   BBC World News    (ALL TIMES EST)

Bravo has 'Rocco's Dinner Party', 'Real Housewives Of NJ', 'Flipping Out', followed by a FRESH 'Rocco's Dinner Party'.

Comedy Central has last night's 'Jon Stewart', last night's 'Colbert Report', 'Chappelle's Show', another 'Chappelle's Show', 'South Park', another 'South Park', still another 'South Park', followed by a FRESH 'Jon Benjamin Has A Van'.
Scheduled on a FRESH Jon Stewart is Rachel Weisz.
Scheduled on a FRESH Colbert Report is Mary "Missy" Cummings.

FX has '2½ Men', another '2½ Men', followed by the movie 'Taken', then a FRESH 'Rescue Me'.

History has 'Modern Marvels', 'Swamp People', followed by a FRESH 'Meat America'.

IFC  -   
 [6:00 AM]   Debt
 [6:15 AM]   The Florentine
 [8:30 AM]   City of Men
 [10:45 AM]   Cache
 [1:15 PM]   The Florentine
 [3:30 PM]   City of Men
 [5:45 PM]   Derailed
 [8:00 PM]   Slow Burn
 [10:00 PM]   Basic Instinct
 [12:45 AM]   Slow Burn
 [2:45 AM]   Black Christmas
 [4:30 AM]   The Larry Sanders Show
 [5:00 AM]   The Larry Sanders Show
 [5:30 AM]   Rhett & Link: Commercial Kings     (ALL TIMES EST)

Sundance  -    7:30 AM]   Made in China
 [9:00 AM]   Wild Combination: A Portrait Of Arthur Russell
 [10:15 AM]   Man On Wire
 [11:55 AM]   The Tunnel Dwellers of New York
 [12:50 PM]   Made in China
 [2:20 PM]   Man On Wire
 [4:00 PM]   ALL ON THE LINE - From A to Joe Zee (Episode 9, Season 1)
 [5:00 PM]   Love Lust & Sex Symbols
 [6:00 PM]   LUDO BITES AMERICA: Omaha (Episode 2, Season 1)
 [7:00 PM]   MY SO-CALLED LIFE - On the Wagon (Episode 14, Season 1)
 [8:00 PM]   Toe to Toe
 [10:00 PM]   Lucia, Lucia
 [11:50 PM]   Shooting Fish
 [1:35 AM]   LUDO BITES AMERICA: Santa Fe (Episode 1, Season 1)
 [2:35 AM]   LUDO BITES AMERICA: Omaha (Episode 2, Season 1)
 [3:35 AM]   Love Lust & The Undead
 [4:35 AM]   Toe to Toe     (ALL TIMES EST)

SyFy has 'Ghost Hunters', another 'Ghost Hunters', followed by a FRESH 'Ghost Hunters International', then a FRESH 'Legend Quest'.

Scheduled on a FRESH Conan are Kevin Connolly, Jeff Lewis, and Funeral Party.
Scheduled on a FRESH Lopez Tonight are Kate Walsh, The Miz, and Austin Brown.

 [7:30 AM]      Daisy Kenyon (1947)
 [9:30 AM]      The Mouse That Roared (1959)
 [11:00 AM]      Tom Sawyer (1973)
 [1:00 PM]      The Big Heat (1953)
 [2:45 PM]      For Pete's Sake (1974)
 [4:30 PM]      Sleeper (1973)
 [6:00 PM]      Picnic (1955)
 [8:00 PM]      Sitting Pretty (1948)
 [9:30 PM]      Kathleen (1941)
 [11:15 PM]      The Nanny (1965)
 [1:00 AM]      A Woman's Face (1941)
 [3:00 AM]      Every Little Crook And Nanny (1972)
 [4:45 AM]      My Pal, Wolf (1944)     (ALL TIMES EST)

Thursday  -  07/27/11

 [6:00 AM]      MGM Parade Show #4 (1955)
 [6:30 AM]      On With The Show (1929)
 [8:15 AM]      Top Speed (1930)
 [9:30 AM]      Going Wild (1931)
 [10:45 AM]      Local Boy Makes Good (1931)
 [12:00 PM]      Sit Tight (1931)
 [1:30 PM]      6 Day Bike Rider (1934)
 [2:45 PM]      A Very Honorable Guy (1934)
 [4:00 PM]      Polo Joe (1936)
 [5:15 PM]      Sons O' Guns (1936)
 [6:45 PM]      When's Your Birthday? (1937)
 [8:00 PM]      Princess Tam Tam (1935)
 [9:30 PM]      The Band's Visit (2007)
 [11:15 PM]      Rana's Wedding (2003)
 [1:00 AM]      La Battaglia di Algieri (1967)
 [3:15 AM]      Taste of Cherry (1997)
 [5:00 AM]      THE MGM STORY (1950)     (ALL TIMES EST)

TNT has a FRESH 'Franklin & Bash'.

USA has a FRESH 'Royal Pains', followed by a FRESH 'Necessary Roughness'.

Antenna TV


RTV - The Retro Television Network

This TV

Any opinions?   Marty

Or reviews?   Marty

Support the e-page!

(See below for addresses)


In this publicity image released by NBC Universal, actors Steve Carell, left, and Julianne Moore appear on the "Today" show to promote their new movie "Crazy, Stupid, Love," Tuesday, July 26, 2011 in New York.
Photo by Peter Kramer


Vidiot Speak


Auctioning Car To Aid Joplin, Mo

Sheryl Crow

Some winning bidder will soon be cruising life's winding road in Sheryl Crow's 1959 Mercedes-Benz 190SL Roadster.

The Grammy award-winning singer said Monday that she's auctioning off the classic car next month and that the proceeds will go toward helping rebuild the tornado-ravaged city of Joplin in her native state of Missouri.

Crow says she loves the car and has had it for six years, but doesn't drive it anymore.

The Springfield News-Leader reports that Crow hopes the car will fetch up to $500,000 at the Aug. 21 auction in Pebble Beach, Calif. But she says she'd be happy if it raises $100,000.

Crow was a schoolteacher before launching her singing career, and the money will go to the Joplin Schools Recovery Fund.

Sheryl Crow


US singer Justin Timberlake, right, US actress Mila Kunis and director Will Gluck pose before their film premiere of "Friends with Benefits" in Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, July 26, 2011.
Photo by Mikhail Metzel


Israeli Orchestra Plays In Germany

Richard Wagner

An Israeli orchestra on Tuesday broke a taboo as it played the music of Adolf Hitler's favorite composer, Richard Wagner, in Germany.

Some 700 spectators in Wagner's hometown of Bayreuth loudly applauded the Israel Chamber Orchestra as its 34 musicians concluded their concert with the Siegfried Idyll, becoming the first Israeli ensemble to perform a Wagner piece in Germany.

Since its founding in 1948, Israel has observed an informal ban on Wagner's music because of its use in Nazi propaganda before and during World War II.

The Wagner family also had close connections to the German fascists and their ideology, and performances of the 19th-century composer are kept off Israeli stages and airwaves out of respect to the country's 220,000 Holocaust survivors.

The musicians, many of whom are children of Holocaust survivors, had only started rehearsing the roughly 15-minute Wagner piece upon their arrival in Bayreuth on Sunday due to sensitivities in Israel. "We didn't want to harm any of the survivors," Hershkovitz said.

Richard Wagner


Wake-up Call


Returning To "General Hospital"

James Franco

The unstoppable force that is James Franco has signed on for yet another stint on "General Hospital."

The "127 Hours" Oscar nominee will return to the ABC soap opera as artist/murderer Robert "Franco" Frank for a long-term arc that will begin on September 20, the network confirms to TheWrap. This will mark the workaholic actor's fourth run on the daytime drama since 2009.

Franco's return to the show will come at a point in the "General Hospital" narrative when the object of his character's affection, hired gun James Morgan, prepares to marry Samantha McCall (played by Kelly Monaco).

As soap fans wait to find out what kind of havoc Franco will wreak, the rest of the world can concern itself with when Franco -- whose films "Sal" and "Cherry" are underway and who will also star in "Oz: The Great and Powerful" -- will collapse in exhaustion.

James Franco


"Conejta Pinta Caritas," of Guatemala holds her daughter"Conejita" as they watch the III Latin American Clown Congress parade from a street corner in Guatemala City's historic center, Tuesday July 26, 2011. More than 200 clowns from North and Central America and the Caribbean are gathering in the capital city for the third year to attend workshops and exchange experiences.
Photo by Rodrigo Abd


Movie House For Sale

'Amityville Horror'

The New Jersey home that was filmed for the 1979 movie "The Amityville Horror" is for sale.

The 10-room colonial-style structure in Toms River was built in the 1920s and is listed for $1.35 million.

For the movie, a superstructure was built around the outside to make it look like the home in Amityville, N.Y., whose owners claimed was possessed by evil spirits.

Owner Odalys Fragoso tells the Asbury Park Press the home isn't haunted.

'Amityville Horror'


The Sideshow - by Avedon Carol


Kisses & Tells

Crystal Harris

Hugh Hefner's runaway bride is dishing on her sex life with the Playboy founder -- and according to her, it wasn't exactly X-rated.

Crystal Harris, 25, told radio shock jock Howard Stern on Tuesday that she had never seen the 85 year-old magazine mogul naked, and that their sex life left a lot to be desired.

"Hef doesn't really take off his clothes. I have never seen him naked," she giggled in an appearance on Stern's SiriusXM radio show.

Harris, who left Hefner and his Playboy Mansion five days before their planned June 18 wedding, claimed the pair only had sex once during their two-year relationship, and that it lasted "like about two seconds."

Crystal Harris


Children dressed as a soldier and nurses prepare to march during a school parade on a school holiday in Villa El Salvador in Lima July 26, 2011. President-elect Ollanta Humala will be sworn in as president on July 28, the Independence Day of Peru.
Photo by Mariana Bazo


Reaches Labor Deal


The International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees has reached a three-year agreement with Fremantle Media.

The agreement covers domestic programs produced for network and basic cable.

Fremantle's programs include "American Idol," "America's Got Talent" and the upcoming "The X Factor."

As for IATSE, it poorly represents makeup artists, lighting specialists and other production-crew workers.



Goebbels Ghost Grins


Radio talk show host and right-wing propagandist Glenn Beck said on his show that the camp in Norway where a gunman opened fire on young people sounds "like Hitler Youth."

The camp "sounds a little like the Hitler Youth or whatever," Beck said. "Who does a camp for kids that's all about politics? Disturbing."

Torbjorn Eriksen, a former press secretary to Norway prime minister Jens Stoltenberg, told The Daily Telegraph in England that the comments were a "new low" for Beck.

"Young political activists have gathered at Utoya for over 60 years to learn about and be part of democracy, the very opposite of what the Hitler Youth was about," Eriksen said. "Glenn Beck's comments are ignorant, incorrect and extremely hurtful."



A photographer takes a picture of dummies in a demonstration of Toyota Motor Corp.'s safety technology at its facility in Susono near Mount Fuji, west of Tokyo, Japan, Thursday, July 21, 2011.
Photo by Koji Sasahara


Website Blocked

Amnesty International

Amnesty International said its website had been blocked in Saudi Arabia after the rights group published a leaked draft of an anti-terror law and accused the kingdom of planning to use the legislation to crush dissent.

Amnesty International published the draft law online on Friday, saying it would allow Saudi Arabia to detain suspects without charge for long periods and jail people for 10 years or more for criticizing the king or crown prince.

Saudi Arabia rejected the accusation, saying the law was designed to stop terrorists, not protesters.

Amnesty said several journalists and human rights activists in the kingdom reported they could not access on Monday.

The site also appeared to be blocked on Tuesday.

Amnesty International


Court Rules Against Son

Belva Plain

A New Jersey court has rejected an attempt by the son of late author Belva Plain to invalidate her will in a bitter dispute that dates back two decades.

John Plain had claimed his mother, the best-selling author of more than 20 novels, and sisters had schemed to cut him out of her will. Attorneys for Belva Plain's estate argued that her son had signed an agreement in the 1990s vowing not to contest her will.

Belva Plain died in her sleep at her home in northern New Jersey last fall at age 95. At the time of her death, more than 28 million copies of her books were in print. Her first, "Evergreen," was published in 1978 and spent more than 40 weeks on The New York Times best-seller list, and it was developed into a popular TV miniseries. Her last, "Heartwood," was published in February.

Attorneys for Belva Plain's estate countered that John Plain signed documents in 1993 that prevented him from challenging her will and that he was not named as a beneficiary on any of 10 wills his mother wrote starting in 1990.

They also noted that under the same 1993 agreement, John Plain received more than $500,000 from his mother since then. Belva Plain sought and was granted multiple restraining orders against her son under the New Jersey Prevention of Domestic Violence Act, according to the court record.

Belva Plain


In this Monday, July 25, 2011 photograph, Indian artists rest in front of closed shops as it rains during a procession of "Bonalu" festival in Hyderabad, India. Bonalu is a Hindu folk festival of the Telangana region in the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh.
Photo by Mahesh Kumar


Another Sanctimonious Conservative

Billy Long

A first-term Missouri congressman is apologizing to people offended by his online post using the death of British singer Amy Winehouse to make a point about the federal government.

Republican Billy Long posted a Twitter message Monday saying: "No one could reach (hash)AmyWinehouse before it was too late. Can anyone reach Washington before it's too late? Both addicted - same fate???"

Long says he thinks spending more than is collected also is an addiction. He told the Springfield News-Leader he meant no disrespect to Winehouse and apologized if anyone was offended.

Long is serving his first term in Congress after working for years as an auctioneer and realtor.

Billy Long


Changes Mind


Arnold $chwarzenegger has amended a divorce filing and withdrawn a request that a judge terminate Maria Shriver's rights to spousal support.

The "actor" and former California governor's filing replaces a document he submitted last week that also indicated he wanted Shriver to pay her own attorney's fees. The amended response filed Monday in Los Angeles states $chwarzenegger is also willing to pay his estranged wife's attorney.

Shriver filed for divorce July 1. Her petition to end the couple's 25-year-marriage came weeks after $chwarzenegger revealed he fathered a child with a member of his household staff years ago.



Participants flip during a mass handstand event organized by Taiwan artist Huang Ming-cheng at the Huashan Creative Park in Taipei July 24, 2011. Around 400 people took part in the art experiment by Huang who previously spent five months taking pictures of himself doing handstands in various locations around Taiwan.
Photo by Nicky Loh


Polystyrene Fake

Belgium UFO

An unidentified flying object photographed high in the Belgian sky that puzzled even NASA scientists turns out to have been a fake made out of foam, the man behind the hoax said Tuesday.

Though scientists pored over the picture of a triangular-shaped flying saucer with four lights, allegedly photographed in April 1990 by a young worker, the mystery remained intact until the man's revelation on the RTL-TVI network.

Made of polystyrene in a matter of hours and photographed that night, the picture was released after several sightings of UFOs over Belgium in 1989 and 1990.

Then aged 18, the man identified only as Patrick said he and a few friends "made it, painted it, hung it up and then photographed it".

"It's too easy to fool people, even with a cheap model," said Patrick, adding he had decided it was time to come clean.

Belgium UFO


Prime-Time Nielsens


Prime-time viewership numbers compiled by the Nielsen Co. for July 18-24. Listings include the week's ranking and viewership.

    1. "America's Got Talent" (Tuesday), NBC, 13.04 million.
    2. "America's Got Talent" (Wednesday), NBC, 10.318 million.
    2. "NCIS," CBS, 10.318 million.
    4. "60 Minutes," CBS, 8.43 million.
    5. "NCIS: Los Angeles," CBS, 8.08 million.
    6. "The Bachelorette," ABC, 8 million.
    7. "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation," CBS, 7.34 million.
    8. "Big Brother 13" (Wednesday), CBS, 7.16 million.
    9. "Big Brother 13" (Sunday), CBS, 7.03 million.
   10. "Big Brother 13" (Thursday), CBS," 6.9 million.
   11. "It's Worth What?" NBC, 6.73 million.
   12. "Wipeout" (Thursday), ABC, 6.55 million.
   13. "Flashpoint," CBS, 6.35 million.
   14. "The Mentalist," CBS, 6.33 million.
   15. "The Big Bang Theory," CBS, 6.31 million.
   16. "Criminal Minds," CBS, 6.26 million.
   17. "Blue Bloods," CBS, 6.09 million.
   18. "Crimetime Saturday," CBS million, 6.06 million.
   19. "CSI: N.Y.," CBS, 6.01 million.
   20. "Two and a Half Men," CBS, 5.98 million.




In Memory

Robert Ettinger

Robert Ettinger, pioneer of the cryonics movement that advocates freezing the dead in the hope that medical technology will enable them to live again someday, has died. He was 92.

Ettinger died Saturday at home in the Detroit suburb of Clinton Township after weeks of declining health, son David Ettinger said. His body became the 106th to be stored in at the Cryonics Institute, which he founded in 1976.

Robert Ettinger, who taught physics at Wayne State University, was seriously wounded during the Battle of the Bulge in World War II and spent years in hospitals. The bone graft surgery that spared his legs inspired his optimism about the future prospects of preserving life through technology, a Cryonics Institute statement said.

His son said Ettinger also was inspired by science fiction writings about deep-freezing the dead and expected researchers to make serious progress toward developing the idea. But when nothing seemed to be happening, he wrote a 1964 book, "The Prospect of Immortality," introducing the concept of cryonics.

Ettinger promoted his theory in other writings and appearances on television talk shows. The Cryonics Institute has 900 members. Similar facilities for preserving dead bodies operate in Arizona, California and Russia. Ettinger also established the Immortalist Society, a research and education group devoted to cryonics and extending the human life span.

The Cryonics Institute charges $28,000 to prepare a body and store it long-term in a tank of liquid nitrogen at minus-321 degrees Fahrenheit. The first person frozen there was Ettinger's mother, Rhea Ettinger, who died in 1977. His two wives, Elaine and Mae, also are patients at the Institute.

Ettinger was never bothered by ridicule and was a "reluctant prophet," his son said.

"He did what he thought was necessary and appropriate and didn't worry much about what people thought," David Ettinger said. "The people who are scoffers are like the people who said heavier-than-air flight won't work."

Robert Ettinger


In Memory

G.D. Spradlin

Gervase Duan "G.D." Spradlin, a former lawyer and oil producer who found a second act as a prolific character actor playing authority figures in such films as "Apocalypse Now" and "The Godfather: Part II," has died. He was 90.

Spradlin died of natural causes Sunday at his San Luis Obispo ranch in Central California, his grandson Justin Demko told the Los Angeles Times on Monday.

Born on Aug. 31, 1920, in Pauls Valley, Oklahoma, Spradlin turned to acting in his 40s after serving in the Army Air Forces in China during World War II, working as an attorney for Phillips Petroleum Co. and striking it rich as an independent oil producer. He also dabbled in politics as director of John F. Kennedy's 1960 presidential campaign in Oklahoma and had an unsuccessful run for mayor of Oklahoma City in 1965.

Spradlin got his start in acting after taking his daughter Wendy to audition for a local production of "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" and wound up landing a part in the play himself.

When he moved his family to Los Angeles, he found steady work playing politicians, preachers, doctors, judges and military officers.

In a career spanning more than three decades, his most notable parts included the corrupt senator in "The Godfather: Part II," and the Army general who sent Martin Sheen up river to find and kill Marlon Brando's Col. Kurtz in "Apocalypse Now."

His other film credits include "The War of the Roses" and "Ed Wood." He retired after playing Washington Post editor Ben Bradlee in the 1999 comedy "Dick."

Spradlin's first wife, Nell, with whom he had daughters Tamara Kelly and Wendy Spradlin, died in 2000. He's survived by his second wife, Frances Hendrickson, his two daughters and five grandchildren.

G.D. Spradlin


In Memory

Frank Foster

Frank Foster, a jazz saxophonist who played with the Count Basie Orchestra and composed Basie's hit, "Shiny Stockings," died Tuesday. He was 82.

Foster died Tuesday morning at home in Chesapeake, Va., of complications from kidney failure, according to Cecilia Foster, his wife of 45 years.

Foster was recognized in 2002 as a Jazz Master by the National Endowment for the Arts. In a statement expressing sadness at Foster's death, NEA Chairman Rocco Landesman called him "an extraordinary saxophonist, composer, arranger, bandleader, and educator."

According to the NEA, Foster's many compositions included material for singers Sarah Vaughan and Frank Sinatra, and a commissioned piece written for jazz orchestra for the 1980 Winter Olympics: "Lake Placid Suite."

Foster was a native of Cincinnati. He told NEA interviewer Don Ball in 2008 that he "had an ear for music" from an early age. He said his mother took him to hear opera when he was just 6.

Jazz big bands caught his attention when he was 12. Foster's first instrument was clarinet, but at age 13 he took up the sax. Foster told the interviewer he played in a dance band at Wilberforce University and went on to join Basie's band a few years later.

He eventually assumed leadership of the Count Basie Orchestra from Thad Jones in 1986. However, Cecelia Foster said he was proudest of his own big band: Frank Foster's Loud Minority.

Foster also served as a musical consultant in the New York City public schools and taught at Queens College and the State University of New York at Buffalo. He won two Grammy Awards.

Frank Foster


In Memory

Gilbert 'Magu' Lujan

His colorful expressive works, reflecting everything from cartoonish-looking characters to Aztec warriors, would come to cover everything from the walls of subways to those of major museums during a long career that put Gilbert "Magu" Lujan at the forefront of the Chicano Art Movement.

Lujan died Sunday at Methodist Hospital of Southern California. He was 70 and had suffered from cancer, said his son Naiche Starhawk Lujan.

Lujan's style - colorful, often humorous and just as often political - sprung from the sidewalks, freeway overpasses and low-rider cars of largely Hispanic East Los Angeles in the 1970s. Like the work of such contemporaries as Carlos Almaraz, Frank Romero and Beto de la Rocha, his murals and other creations have come to define Chicano art.

Perhaps best known as a painter, Lujan also worked in a variety of media including sculpture, prints and even whimsical assemblages of sticks and twigs. He painted on canvases, parking structures and low-rider cars.

One of his best known, and most widely seen, creations is "Hooray for Hollywood," which graces the subway station at the famous intersection of Hollywood and Vine. It includes a "yellow brick road" directing people from the plaza to the train platform, as well as benches sculpted in the form of low-riders and support pillars that look like palm trees.

Other works have been exhibited at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Brooklyn Museum, the Houston Museum of Fine Art and numerous galleries.

Although Lujan's work always reflected his barrio roots, it came to transcend all genres, said prominent Chicano author Luis J. Rodriguez.

Lujan was born in the California town of French Camp in 1940 and grew up in East Los Angeles.

After serving in the Air Force, he earned a degree in ceramic sculpture from California State University, Long Beach, and a master's in fine art at the University of California, Irvine. It was there that he joined with Almaraz, Romero and de la Rocha as "Los Four" for a groundbreaking exhibition of Chicano art in the early 1970s.

In the late 1970s, he taught at Fresno City College and served as chairman of the school's La Raza Studies Department.

In addition to his son, Lujan is survived by his other children Risa Liviana, Otono Amarillo, Joasia and Michelle; his mother, Josefina; brothers Richard, Robert, Phillip, Ronnie and Mark; and several grandchildren.

Gilbert 'Magu' Lujan


In Memory

Dan Peek

Dan Peek, a founding member of the popular 1970s band America, has died. He was 60.

His father, Milton Peek, says Dan Peek was found dead Sunday in bed in his home in Farmington, Mo., about 60 miles southwest of St. Louis. The cause of death isn't yet known. An autopsy is planned.

Peek sang high harmonies for America on hits that included "A Horse With No Name" and "Ventura Highway."

Peek was born in Florida. His dad was in the military, so the family moved frequently.

They were living in London in the late 1960s when Peek met singers Dewey Bunnell and Gerry Beckley. They eventually became the trio America.

Dan Peek



A hot air balloon rises into the early morning sky in front of the Canary Wharf financial district of London, July 25, 2011. Seven balloons took part in the flight over London as part of a collaboration between the London Sky Orchestra project, the 30th anniversary of the London International Festival of Theatre, and the Greater London Authority which is marking a year to go before the 2012 Olympic Games.
Photo by Andrew Winning


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