Blog Posts by Wendy Geller

  • Groom-To-Be Books Tom Petty For Wedding; Gets Super-Scammed

    Tom Petty {Photo: David Wolff}Okay, when it comes to wedding planning, we've heard all the horror stories about couples being swindled--fake diamonds, fake contracts, the works. However, here's a new one: A wealthy executive was recently fooled into booking reception music with a totally fake agency, who supposedly secured Tom Petty to play at his July nuptials.

    As first broken by the Smoking Gun on Friday, Brian Valentine, a senior VP for Amazon, decided it would be fun to surprise his-wife-to-be at their Seattle wedding reception with a performance from one of their favorite acts, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. His motive was sentimental: The couple were engaged in 2010 at one of Petty's concerts.

    After doing a little research, Valentine found a booking firm, Lund Live, which claimed to work with Petty, as well as other popular artists such as Run-DMC and Ludacris. After some haggling over the fee, Valentine paid owner Chris Lund a 50% deposit--a whopping $165,000--to secure the date.

    However, after repeatedly

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  • Justin Bieber’s New Video Takes Violent Turn

    Justin Bieber {Photo: Jon Kopaloff}Can't stand Justin Bieber? He drives you so nuts, you'd love to punch him in the face?

    Well, here's some good news for all you haters out there--the 18-year-old actually does get beaten to a pulp, in his brand-new video released this week!

    Yep, that's right: Fans and foes alike will have the pleasure (or agony, depending on which side you fall on) of seeing the Biebs bruised, bloody, and battered in the clip for his latest single, "As Long As You Love Me."

    Those who don't quite despise--or adore--the superstar that much will nevertheless enjoy the video, which is shot in "short film" style and features actor Michael Madsen, whom movie buffs will recognize from Quentin Tarantino's Reservoir Dogs and Kill Bill.

    Madsen plays an overprotective father of a comely young lady that Bieber--naturally--is head-over-heels in love with. The clip opens up with a terse conversation between the two men: "I know what type of guy you are...I used to be the same thing," Madsen growls, before suggesting Bieber hit the highway and stay away from his baby. "Don't come back, 'cause if you do, it's not gonna be good for you."

    Oh, boy. Better not cross this daddy--right?

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  • Pepsi/Billboard’s Nashville Summer Beats Show Lets Fans Take Control

    Music fans in Music City had a more-than-attractive alternative to watching the Olympics Monday night, as Billboard and Pepsi presented the Nashville leg of its Summer Beats concert series at the Cannery Ballroom that evening. The free show featured a smokin' lineup of some of the town's most cutting-edge talent: Gloriana, Jana Kramer, Easton Corbin, Jerrod Niemann and Randy Houser.

    But that's not all. Fans who weren't lucky enough to catch a plane to Nashville were still able to join in--and influence!--the fun. Gloriana's set was streamed live (check out highlights here) on Pepsi's specially enhanced Twitter page, and those watching provided input on the set in real time, as well as what song they'd like to have as an encore performance.

    Houser and Niemann {Photo: Royce DeGrie}The artists involved in the Nashville show uniformly expressed excitement at being part of the experience, as well as talked about the various ways social media in general has enhanced their careers and fan relationships.

    Randy Houser called social

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  • Who’s The Most Popular Music Artist–Ever–On Facebook?

    Eminem {Photo: Jeff Kravitz}Facebook wall, Facebook wall...who's the most popular musician of all? If you made the credible guess of Lady Gaga, you're wrong! Rapper Eminem has pulled ahead of the shock-pop queen--and in fact, has set a record with the amount of likes his music page has received to date.

    So, just how many Facebook users like Eminem? According to recent numbers, we're looking at a whopping 60 million. Em is the first artist ever to reach this milestone.

    Don't feel too bad for Gaga. Always a leader on Facebook (she has historically managed to outdo a variety of celebs--even President Obama--on the platform, and held the most-liked title for a good part of last year), she's still doing just fine; with a more-than-healthy 53 million likes to her name. However, she currently isn't even Em's first runner-up. That title belongs to the Detroit rapper's  "Love The Way You Lie" duet partner, Rihanna, who is hot on his heels with 59 million fans.

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  • New Elvis Project Features Never-Seen Handwritten Thoughts From The King

    Art from "Graphic Elvis" by Jeevan J. Kang/Liquid ComicsJust when it seems that every facet of Elvis Presley has been examined--yet another aspect of his life comes to light. The most recent? The King's love of comic books and superheroes, which are explored in a new book, Graphic Elvis.

    "When I was a child, ladies and gentlemen, I was a dreamer. I read comic books and I was the hero of the comic books," Elvis said in a 1971 speech. The graphic novel, a collaboration between publisher Liquid Comics and Elvis Presley Enterprises, takes this concept literally and actually sketches him as a superhero comic character.

    Written by comic book legend Stan Lee (one of the masterminds behind Spider-Man and the Hulk) and illustrated by a variety of leading artists in the genre, the limited edition book explores a variety of striking artistic takes on Elvis's various iconic looks throughout the decades--including black leather, white jumpsuits, and even an army uniform.

    Notes by Elvis/Liquid ComicsBut it's not just the novelty of seeing Elvis in graphic form here that's notable. The project also takes a look at a side of the legend that is often overlooked--his deep and rich spiritual side. The book features a complementary digital app which contains some never-before-seen handwritten notes from the King himself--small summaries and thoughts about his quest for the meaning of life, which were jotted down in the margins of the many books he read.

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  • Bruno Mars Buys Billionaire-Worthy New Home In Los Angeles

    Bruno Mars famously wrote the lyric "I wanna be a billionaire, so freakin' bad," for Travie McCoy's smash hit early in his career--back when his bank account wasn't quite up to scratch. However, it looks like he doesn't have too much to worry about in that department anymore. The Grammy-winning 26-year-old is now flush enough to have dropped more than $3 million on a stylish Los Angeles abode.

    Mars's impressive new estate

    Mars chose the hip Laurel Canyon area for his new address--a historic enclave that housed Frank Zappa and Joni Mitchell back in their heyday, and where Mars will now have such high-profile neighbors as George Clooney. The clean-lined modern estate measures in at 4,064 square feet, has three bedrooms and three-and-a-half bathrooms, and sold in mid-July for exactly $3,254,000.

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  • Kellie Pickler ‘Out-Daisy Dukes’ Jessica Simpson In New Bucky Covington Video

    Calling all American Idol fans: It's reunion time! At least in the brand-new video from AI vet Bucky Covington, which features none other than his Season 5 buddy and fellow country musician, Kellie Pickler...who burns up the screen with one of country's sexiest cameos ever.

    Covington's clip, "Drinking Side Of Country," takes a humorous spin on the '80s classic TV show The Dukes of Hazzard--featuring cars, guns, moonshine, and a kill-joy sheriff. Pickler takes on the role of Daisy Duke, and Covington claims she's the best one to portray the iconic character yet.

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  • Lady Gaga Sued By Doll Company For Breach Of Contract

    Lady Gaga {Photo: Graham Denholm}All the Little Monsters who were hoping to get their hands on a Lady Gaga doll for Christmas this year will have to wait. A whopping breach-of-contract lawsuit has just been filed against the singer, claiming that she is deliberately holding up production of an upcoming line of dolls in her image.

    The company who filed the suit, MGA Entertainment Inc., is the maker of Bratz toys--well-known for its big-eyed, fashion-forward dolls--and is seeking more than $10 million in damages. According to Bloomberg News, the suit also names Gaga's management company Atom Factory and Universal Music Group-owned merchandising firm Bravado International Group as defendants.

    MGA claims in its suit that it it paid the superstar $1 million to secure rights to a line of Gaga toys and dolls, and that it wase expected the products would ship to retailers this summer in plenty of time for the holiday season--with ultimate expectations of $28 million revenue.

    However, back in April, Bravado allegedly told MGA that Gaga wished to delay production of the dolls until her new album is released next year. Gaga has just recently introduced her new fragrance, Fame, and the suit suggests her camp is choosing to focus on this launch instead.

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  • Taylor Swift Protests Patrick Schwarzenegger Romance Rumors

    Taylor Swift {Photo: Jason Merritt}Another day for Taylor Swift, another rumor about whom she might be dating...and this week, the pop/country superstar is fielding off reports that she's getting cozy with Patrick Schwarzenegger.

    "Patrick's a friend!" Swift told Access Hollywood of her 18-year-old alleged pal--son of former California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and Kennedy scion Maria Shriver. "That's why I don't read any gossip about me, because I don't want to be weirded out by who people think I'm dating."

    Swift commented on the rumor while backstage at Sunday's Teen Choice Awards, where she won in five categories and was escorted by the sedatest of dates--her younger brother, Austin.

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  • Courtesy James Micari for MaximKellie Pickler is a staunch supporter of our nation's troops--she just completed her fifth USO tour overseas this May--and now she's found yet another way to lift soldiers' spirits! The blond cutie chose to honor our armed forces with a sexy and revealing photo shoot for Maxim's new "Salute To The Military" issue.

    Pickler sizzles in an army-green bra and high-waisted shorts for the cover of the issue and most of her pictorial, but also flashes her assets in Naval-inspired stripes...just so the sailors don't feel left out!

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