Monthly Archives: February 2013

Richard Street of the Temptations dead at 70

The Temptations

The Temptations – 2012
Photo: Randy Miramontez

Richard Street, a past member of the singing group The Temptations died Wednesday at Saint Rose Dominican Hospital in Las Vegas due to a blood clot in one of his lungs. He was 70.

Wife Cindy told CNN, “He was really fighting for his life. He’s a fighter,” referencing another past member of the legendary Motown group she added, “They’re dancing up there in heaven, him and Damon. I’m in disbelief right now.”

Ottis “Damon” Harris died earlier this month due to prostate cancer, he was 62.

Read about Damon Harris

The Temptations’ were popular in the ‘60’s and ‘70s, and were known for their tight choreography, distinct harmonies, and flashy suits.

While Street was not an original member he joined the band in the early ‘70s and stayed with the group for the better part of 20 years. He was also the first member of the group that hailed from Detroit, where Motown originated.

During his time with the Temptations Street took part in the release of some of their most memorable songs including “Superstar (Remember How You Got Where You Are)” and “Papa Was a Rollin’ Stone,” released in 1971 and 1972 respectively.

According to his wife he was proud to have been a part of black history while with the Temptations.

Street is survived by his wife and four children. Protection Status

The Copyright Alert System is now watching you

Copyright Alert System

Copyright Alert System
Photo: Center for Copyright Information

Yesterday the Center for Copyright Information began implementation of their latest weapon against online piracy. The Copyright Alert System aims to identify internet users who illegally share music, movies or TV shows through their internet service providers.

Initially users will receive a warning notice from their service provider informing them that they are violating copyright law. Violators ignoring the notice could face an Internet slow-down for 48 hours. Those who claim they’re innocent can protest, but for a fee.

In the mid-2000s the recording industry aggressively pursued users they identified as trading copyrighted material. Filing costly lawsuits for those identified, the recording industry was met with a public relations nightmare as they ensnared young kids and the elderly alike, driving some families into financial ruin.

This latest effort is aimed at educating the casual Internet ‘pirates’ and convincing them to stop, with multiple chances to make amends, and no real, or legal consequences under the program if they don’t.

If a person believes they’ve been wrongly accused, they will have multiple chances to delete the material and move on without any repercussion. If the problem continues, the offending party can pay $35 to appeal. The fee is meant as a deterrent and can be waived.

The center’s director, Jill Lesser, said their goal is to educate the average Internet user, rather than punishing them, and no one will have their Internet access cut off.

David Sohn, general counsel for the Center for Democracy and Technology, a Washington-based civil liberties group believes the effort has some merit, but some questions remain.

Will the system be successful at ensuring the responsible account holder receives and reads the notices?

How effective will the system be at avoiding mistakes?

If and when mistakes do occur, how effectively will the system remedy them?  Will the appeal process prove simple and practical enough for consumers to use when needed?

So if you are looking to catch up on shows like “Game of Thrones” and “Downton Abbey,” or you’re streaming your latest tunes through a questionable source, you’d best beware.


‘Dancing With the Stars’ season 16 cast announced


Dancing with the stars

Season 16 cast
Photo: ABC/Rick Roswell

“Dancing With the Stars” released season 16‘s list of contestants today, bringing another group of diverse cast members to the competition show

Country music legend Wynonna Judd will dance in this season’s competition with partner Dovolani, who won season 15 with Melissa Rycroft. Judd has won five Grammys for her singing abilities, so let’s see what she can do on the dance floor.

Olympic gymnast Aly Raisman will also be joining the ABC series. Past contestant and gymnast Shawn Johnson won the 8th season of “Dancing With the Stars,” raising the bar for Raisman.

Other sports stars joining in the new season include ice skating legend Dorothy Hamill, boxer Victor Ortiz and Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Jacoby Jones .
Reality TV star Lisa Vanderpump will be taking a break from her weekly drama “Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.”

Former “American Idol” contestant Kellie Pickler will also be on the show, marking the first time an “Idol” star has joined the show.

Comedians D.L. Hugley and Andy Dick, will join soap opera star Ingo Rademacher and Disney star Zendaya Coleman on the show as well.

The two-hour season 16 premiere of “Dancing With the Stars” airs Monday, March 18 at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.

West Sacramento officer accused of assault and kidnapping

Sergio Alvarez

Sergio Alvarez
Photo: Sacramento PD

On Monday a West Sacramento police officer was arrested on suspicion of sexually assaulting and kidnapping numerous women while on duty.

Sergio Alvarez was arrested after a five-month investigation that began in September, after a woman told another officer that she had been sexually assaulted by a uniformed officer.

According to Police Chief Dan Drummond the 37-year-old Alvarez was immediately placed on administrative leave, and Sacramento Police Department detectives were asked to aid in the investigation.

Investigators have identified five more victims, bringing the total to six known victims. A grand jury was convened over the weekend at the direction of the Yolo County district attorney, resulting in an indictment.

Drummond said Alvarez was officially terminated on Monday and booked into Yolo County jail, with his bail set at $26.3 million.

Alvarez graduated from River City High School in West Sacramento and is married with children.

In 2007 Alvarez joined the West Sacramento Police Department as a patrol officer, his first law enforcement job.

“I’m personally just appalled and sick that someone who was put in a position of trust would violate that trust in such a despicable an egregious manner,” Drummond said at the press conference.

The alleged assaults happened during Alvarez’s late night or early morning patrols, with the assaults occurring inside and outside of his patrol car.

The time period of the assaults has been narrowed down to between October 2011 and September 2012, with victims ranging between 20 and 47 years old, all frequenting the West Capitol Avenue area.

Drummond said patrol officers typically work alone, but procedures are now being reviewed to ensure appropriate controls are in place to alleviate any future incidents.

Anyone with information on the case is asked to call West Sacramento police at (916) 617-4775

Hawaii comes to Thunder Valley Casino

Tia Carrere

Tia Carrere
Photo: Randy Miramontez

There was a whole lot of pupu’ing going on at Thunder Valley Casino Resort on Saturday as Hawaiian natives Tia Carrere, Daniel Ho, and the band Kapala entertained fans with some old-fashioned Hawaiian music.

Kicking off the show was Grammy Award winners Tia Carrere and Daniel Ho singing “He Aloha Melee” and “Pupu Hinuhinu.”

Carrere’s performance was flawless, as was Ho’s incredible guitar work. Carrere’s voice was smooth and silky as she continued on with “Me Ke Aloha Pumehana” and “He Nani,” from their award winning album ‘He Nani.’

You may recall Tia Carrere is a veteran actress who has starred in numerous movies and television shows, her most notable role was as rock singer Cassandra in the movie ‘Wayne’s World.’ She’s also the voice of Nani, in the movie and TV series of ‘Lilo and Stitch.’

Daniel Ho

Daniel Ho
Photo: Randy Miramontez

Carrere has come a long way since her start on the TV series ‘General Hospital,’ not only as an actor, but as a singer. Teaming up with childhood friend Daniel Ho, they have garnered a number of Grammy Awards including best album for ‘Ikena’ and ‘Huana Ke Aloha.’

Daniel Ho has released 18 solo albums and produced over 50 albums. Providing backup vocals for Tia on a number of songs, he played several instruments throughout the night including the piano, ukulele and guitar.


Photo: Randy Miramontez

When the band Kapala stormed the stage it was nothing but pure energy as band members Lance Kalanikai Artis, Ashley Kimo Artis, Richard Lanakila Heirakuji, Lopaka Ho’opi’i, Adriano Kawika Larioza and Zanuck Kapala Lindsey, put on a high energy and very entertaining show, kicking off their set with “96795” and “Chigasaki.”

The crowd really got into Kapala’s set as the band made their way through a number of their hits including “Come on Home” and “Palapalai.” Some fans headed to the back of Pano Hall to dance, while others danced at their seats.

It was a great night out, with Carrere and Ho putting on a spectacular show, and Kapala finishing up the night with some high energy tunes.


Cleotha Staples of The Staple Singers dead at 78

The Staple Singers

The Staple Singers
Photo: Stax Records

According to the Detroit News, yesterday Cleotha Staples of the influential gospel group The Staple Singers has died. She was 78.

According to her publicist Bill Carpenter Staples died at her Chicago home after suffering from Alzheimer’s disease.

The Staple Singers got their start with a man named Roebuck “Pops” Staples, a manual laborer who strummed a $10 guitar while teaching his children gospel songs. In 1948 Pops had his children sing at church and three encores The Staple Singers were born.

Read: Damon Harris of the Temptations dead at 61

Signing on to the Stax label, the home music stars Otis Redding and Booker T. & the MGs, The Staples went on to create such hits as, “On My Way to Heaven,” “Will the Circle be Unbroken” and their signature hit “Uncloudy Day.”

Inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with her family in 1999, they went on to win a lifetime achievement award from the Grammys in 2005.

The Staples family were active in the civil rights movement and even went on to perform at events for the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.

The song “I’ll Take You There” spent a week at No. 1 on the Billboard pop singles chart.

Temptations singer Otis ‘Damon’ Harris dead at 62

The Temptations

The Temptations – 2012
Photo: Randy Miramontez

The Baltimore Sun reported yesterday that former Temptations singer Otis “Damon” Harris has died at the age of 62.

The Temptations’ were popular in the ‘60’s, ‘70s, and ’80 and were known for their choreography, distinct harmonies, and flashy suits.

Joining the group in 1971, replacing Eddie Kendricks, Harris sang on one of The Temptations biggest hits from 1972, “Papa Was a Rollin’ Stone.”

A Baltimore native, Harris was a resident of Owings Mills and died at the Joseph Richey Hospice in Seton Hill, after battling prostate cancer for 14 years. Family spokesman Chuck Woodson said he was in remission until three years ago. The cancer had “gotten pretty bad” by the end of last summer, Woodson said, leaving Harris in the hospital from November until last week, when he was transferred to the hospice.The Temptations

Harris was diagnosed with the disease at the age of 47, when he was trying to make a comeback in the music industry. After being treated, Harris founded The Damon Harris Cancer Foundation in 2001. The organization is a non-profit company, designed to heighten awareness of prostate cancer diagnoses and treatments. The organization has a special focus in reaching African-American audiences.

Harris was with the band when they won three Grammy Awards and lent his voice to such hits as “Take a Look Around” and “Masterpiece.”

Coming into the group Harris had to change his name from Otis to Damon since the group already had an Otis in the lineup, founding member Otis Williams.

Harris left The Temptations in 1975.

Blues guitarist Magic Slim dead at 75

Magic Slim

Magic Slim’s Bad Boy
Photo: Blind Pig

According to the Hollywood Reporter Chicago’s blues guitarist Magic Slim died yesterday at a Philadelphia hospital at the age of 75.

Slim’s recording started in the ‘60s as he built a reputation for his blues guitar playing, and pure raw vocals, helping shape Chicago’s electric blues. He became so well known in the area that Eddie Vedder asked Slim and his backing band, The Teardrops, to open for Pearl Jam in 1994.

Slim started out at an early age playing piano, but had to drop the piano after an accident left him shy a pinkie finger, at which point he decided to give the guitar a try and never looked back.

Read about rapper Kenny Clutch’s Las Vegas death

Slim’s recording career began with a series of singles in 1966, recording his first album in 1977. Since that time he had churned out over 35 albums with both Wolf Records and Blind Pig Records. “Bad Boy” was his most recent album which dropped in 2012.

“Magic Slim embodied the heart and soul of this label,” comments Blind Pig Records owner Jerry Del Giudice. “It was Magic Slim, and the guys like him, and their music, that inspired us to start the label in the first place.”

Slim has always had a relentless touring schedule, building a die-hard fan base. On his website Slim is quoted saying, “I’ve got the blues deep down in my heart and I’ll keep on playing till I can’t no more”. Slim toured until the very end, when he started suffering health problems while on tour in Pennsylvania, eventually landing him in the hospital.

Funeral arrangements and a Memorial Service will be announced later this week.

Top 10 artists of 2012

Billboard has released their top 40 money making artists for 2012. Interestingly concerts made up close to 70% of the revenue for the 40 artists on Billboard’s Moneymakers list. There were only two exception of the list, Adele and Taylor Swift, neither earned any income from concerts.

Madonna tops the list, in large part that’s because of her wildly successful MDNA tour which made up 93.5% of her total revenue. Runner-up Bruce Springsteen earned 92% of his revenue from live shows.

Justin Bieber made it into the top 10 this year, but live shows only accounted for 60% of his income.

According to Billboard estimates artists pocketed $373 million from concerts after paying agents, managers and expenses, up from $329 million in 2011.

The most popular touring artists are well past their peak, but continue to command large audiences due to their loyal fan base. Their aging fan base can afford to attend their concerts, but generally are not well versed in online access, impacting the artists sales in streaming music and digital download.

As Billboard points out with the aging rock band Rush, they earned 77% from their live shows, but only brought in 16% of their revenue in digital sales and only .04% from streaming.


Island Records


10. Justin Bieber


Justin Bieber kicked off 2013 by becoming the first artist to score five Billboard No. 1 albums before the age of 19. In 2012 he released his fourth album, Believe. The 18-year-old kicked off a tour in support of his new album which included hits, “Girlfriend” and “As Long As You Love Me.”

The pop-star accumulated $2.6 million in physical album sales, with another $806,000 in digital album sales, and a whopping $1.8 million in digital track sales. Add $10 million from his sold-out Believe tour and the Biebs comes in at No. 10






Capital Records



9. Coldplay


The bulk of Coldplay’s cold hard cash comes from touring in support of their album “Mylo Xyloto.” The tour made it’s way through North America, Europe and Australia, bringing the band a total of $13.9 million in revenue.

Single sales accounted for $954,000 in revenue, while albums at physical and digital retailers brought in another $1.3 million.





Broken Bow records



8. Jason Aldean


Jason Aldean’s  ‘My Kinda Party’ tour was No. 13 on -Billboard’s list of 2012’s top 25 tours with a gross of nearly $40 million for 59 shows. Each and every show was a sellout. He had strong record sales with “Night Train” selling more than one million records in 2012 and “My Kinda Party” sold over 590,000 records.









7. Tim McGraw


Curb Records


Tim McGraw‘s ‘Brothers of the Sun’ tour with Kenny Chesney landed him in seventh place and tied for the sixth-best concert-earner of the year. Overall, the tour was No. 7 on Billboard’s Top 25 Tours tally, grossing over $96 million with a total attendance of 1.1 million in only 23 shows.

Only 7% of McGraw’s revenue came from CD royalties, while 3.7% came from digital track royalties and 1.4% was from digital album royalties.








6. Dave Matthews Band


Dave Matthews Band remains one of the most consistent earners in the music business, Dave Matthews Band earned $41 million from just 41 shows. They are said to be one of the most efficiently run touring operations in the industry. They also take advantage of their own in-house Bama Rags merchandising business.

DMB’s revenue included the selling of 1.4 million digital tracks and 367,000 physical albums. These figures do not include Dave Matthews’ financial interest in the ATO Record label.





BNA Entertainment


5. Kenny Chesney


Kenny Chesney is the most successful touring act in country music history, building his shows into lifestyle events enjoyed by more than 1 million fans every year. Adding to his success Chesney invited country superstar Tim McGraw along for the ride increasing his gross concert sales to nearly $100 million

Chesney adds to his revenue with the sale of 64,142 ringtones and downloads of 4.6 million digital tracks.







Interscope Records



4. Van Halen


Van Halen’s tour ended sooner than expected with a total of 32 canceled shows, but that didn’t stop them from grossing $54 million from 46 shows. The tour was in support of “A Different Kind of Truth” and the fact that David Lee Roth was brought back to front the band. The tour was cut short due to exhaustion.

Van Halen sold 621,614 physical records and 213,524 digital albums in the United States, spiking non-touring earnings of an estimated $1.2 million for the band.






Island Records



3. Roger Waters


Roger Waters made it to No. 3 with “The Wall Live” tour, a song-for-song rendering of the landmark 1980 Floyd album, featuring stunning  visual elements wowing fans worldwide.

The tour finished as the fifth-highest-grossing of all time, with a total gross of $377,895,537 and total attendance of 3.3 million from 192 shows worldwide.







Columbia Records


2. Bruce Springsteen


Bruce Springsteen reunited with the E Street Band in 1999, Springsteen’s tours have been the most financially successful of his career. His latest tour “Wrecking Ball” in support of the album helped him capture the top draw award, based on Boxscore attendance, at the 2012 Billboard Touring Awards.

Springsteen finished close to $200 million gross, second only to Madonna among all tours. His shows have topped the 2 million mark as they continued on into 2013.

Springsteen sold 600,000 physical albums in 2012, and 1.6 million digital track downloads, more than any other artist on this chart that broke in the ’70s.



Madonna MDNA standard edition album cover

Boy Toys, Inc.


10. Madonna


Madonna scored in a big way with her, at times, controversial ‘MDNA’ tour. The Material Girl achieved the No. 1 spot on the Moneymakers list for a second time, with her tour bringing in $305 million gross.

Madonna generated $1.5 million in physical and digital album sales for her “MDNA” album.


Boy Toy, Inc.

Rapper Kenny Clutch killed in Las Vegas melee


Kenny Clutch Photo: Facebook - Kenny Clutch

Kenny Clutch
Photo: Facebook – Kenny Clutch

CNN is reporting that rapper Kenneth Cherry Jr., better known as Kenny Clutch was one of several people killed early Thursday morning in a wild shootout.

At approximately 4:30 Thursday morning a black Range Rover started shooting at a gray Maserati. Both vehicles were racing toward one of the busiest intersections on the strip, with the Maserati running a red light plowing into a taxi that exploded into flames killing two people inside the taxi.

Three more cars and a utility truck ended up colliding at the intersection of Bellagio, Caesars Palace and Bally’s, injuring at least six more people, with the Range Rover speeding off into the darkness.

The Maserati driver was pronounced dead at a hospital.

Officials are working with a passenger in the Maserati to try and piece together the events leading up to the shooting. Apparently it began with a dispute in the valet lot of the Aria Hotel, about a block away. Investigators haven’t confirmed the cause of the altercation, but have said it spilled onto the street as someone in a black Range Rover Sport fired several shots at the Maserati as it headed north on Las Vegas Boulevard.

The driver of the Maserati was hit by a bullet and continued into the intersection colliding with a taxi, resulting in the taxi exploding into flames, killing two people.

Las Vegas has had it’s share of problems this month with two people critically wounded in a shooting at a parking garage on Feb. 6, and a tourist stabbed Saturday in an elevator at The Hotel at Mandalay Bay.

Clark County Sheriff Doug Gillespie faced reporters several hours after Thursday’s attack. “What happened will not be tolerated,” Gillespie said. Promising the shooters will be “found and prosecuted to the full extent of the law.”

The strip remained closed as darkness descended on the city, with investigators still   searching for clues.

Police are contacting authorities in neighboring states in hopes of locating the Range Rover Sport. The Range Rover was reported to have dark tinted windows and distinctive black custom rims and plates. It had a car dealer’s advertisement in place of a license plate.

In 1996 rapper Tupac Shakur was killed in a drive-by shooting about a block away under similar circumstances, with assailants opening fire on vehicle on Flamingo Road. The killing has never been solved.

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