Posted in Brook Shields, Funerals/Memorials, Jennifer Hudson, John Mayer, King of Pop, Michael Jackson, Music News, Staples Center, Stevie Wonder, Usher

Music News: Jennifer Hudson Sang Her Heart Out!

Jennifer Hudson hasn’t officially come forward and announced that she’s carrying a bun in the oven, but the glowing songstress pretty much confirmed the speculative story with her moving rendition of “Will You Be There” during Michael Jackson’s Memorial Concert.

Hudson’s bump was pretty prominent even thru her loose-fitting white dress and off-stage we couldn’t help but notice that the 27-year-old cautiously touched her tummy several times as she moved up and down from her seat throughout the show. We don’t know exactly when Hudson is expected to give birth, but an inside source close to the Oscar-winner said she could be as far along as eight months.

And while Hudson’s emotive performance was undoubtedly in honor of the late King of Pop, a very close friend told Tarts after the show that the experience was very therapeutic in helping her move forward from her own family tragedy last year in which her mother, brother and nephew were killed in a homicide.

“Being up there and doing this was the best thing for her,” said our source. “She wasn’t just paying tribute to Michael, she was paying tribute to her own family members that she lost.” R.I.P

Hudson joined other notables on the Staples floor including Usher, Brooke Shields, Stevie Wonder and John Mayer.

Source: Fox News

Posted in Corey Feldman, Jackie Jackson, James Brown, Janet Jackson, Jermaine Jackson, Joe Jackson, John Mayer, Just In, King of Pop, La Toya Jackson, Mariah Carey, Marlon Jackson, Michael Jackson, Michael Joseph Jr. (aka Prince Michael), Paris Michael Katherine, Paris Michael Katherine Jackson, photography, photos, Prince Michael II (aka Blanket), Prince Michael Jackson II, Prince Michael Joseph Jackson Jr., Prince Michael Paris Michael Katherine Jackson, Randy Jackson, Reverand Al Sharpton, Reverend Al Sharpton, Smokey Robinson, Smokie Robinson, Staples Center, Stevie Wonder, Tito Jackson, Usher, Youtube

Just In: Michael Jackson Memorial Photos

The Michael Jackson Memorial Photos: The Coffin, The Brochure, The Kids, The Hearse & More…

It’s over. The funeral and the memorial service for the King of Pop have occurred and the Jackson family had their own private luncheon at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Beverly Hills.

It was beautiful, moving, well coordinated and produced. Wonderful performances and eloquent speeches echoed the sentiments of most of the world. Somber but still warm and loving, it was a respectable and fitting tribute.

You’ll be able to see broadcasts and videos of Mariah Carey, Trey, Usher, Smokey Robinson, Stevie Wonder, Lionel Richie, John Mayer and the other performers and speakers, along with his daughter’s heartbreaking comments, played over and over again online, on YouTube, on tv, etc.

But let’s face it, what you really want to see is that coffin, his kids, the brochure and other little incidentals. I’ve got those here for you, thanks to the AP and Getty images.

The Tickets:

The Memorial Brochure Cover:

The back of the memorial brochure:

A sad, Joe Jackson leaving his Encino home, heading for Forest Lawn Cemetery early yesterday morning:

The Motorcade consisted of black Cadillac Escalades, black Ford Explorers and black Rolls Royces:

The Hearse:

The motorcade leaving Forest Lawn cemetery on their way to the Staples Center:

On the freeway:

A good look at that gold-plated Casket (Coffin):

Above and below: The Promethean velvet-lined model by the Batesville Casket Company. Rumor has it that, Michael Jackson ordered it for himself, after seeing that James Brown was buried in the same years ago. It’s a $25,000, solid bronze, 14-karat gold-plated, custom casket.

The pallbearers, those of whom were the Jackson Brothers, each wore a single white sequined glove:

Above: From left: Randy, Tito, Marlon, Jackie and Jermaine


Above: a tender moment as brother Jermaine tosses a rose onto Michael’s casket while singing “Smile”.

The Children: Paris, Prince and Blanket:

Above: Michael Jackson’s children, Paris Michael Katherine, Prince Michael II (aka Blanket) and Michael Joseph Jr. (aka Prince Michael).


Above: Janet (L) and La Toya (R) with Prince Michael Jackson II (Blanket) and Paris Jackson


Above: the heartbreaking and unexpected speech from Paris Jackson

Rev. Al Sharpton (nice eulogy, by the way):

Yes, it’s true, Corey Feldman donned his “Michael Jackson” costume:


Above: A Michael Jackson mural with fan’s signatures stands in front of the Staples Center.


Above: A Michael Jackson impersonator poses outside at the public memorial service at the Staples Center.

See a video of the memorial in its entirety here.

Posted in 22514856, Breaking News, Debbie Rowe, Elizabeth Taylor, Forest Lawn Cemetery, Funeral/Memorials, Jennifer Hudson, John Mayer, King of Pop, Kobe Bryant, La Toya Jackson, Magic Johnson, Mariah Carey, Martin Luther King III, Michael Jackson, Nokia Theater, Reverend Al Sharpton, Smokey Robinson, Staples Center, Stevie Wonder, Teddy Riley, Usher

Breaking News: Michael Jackson’s Body Will Be At Staples Center!

Michael Jackson‘s body will be brought to the memorial service at the Staples Center in downtown Los Angeles on Tuesday, sources involved in the planning said.

A motorcade leaves the Jackson family home in Encino, California, early Tuesday.A motorcade leaves the Jackson family home in Encino, California, early Tuesday.Jackson‘s family and closest friends attended a gathering at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Hollywood Hills on Tuesday morning before going to the public memorial.

Teddy Riley, a singer who worked closely with Jackson on several albums, said Jackson family members told him the casket will be driven in a procession from Forest Lawn to the arena.

A second source familiar with the planning also said the King of Pop‘s body would be delivered to the arena.

It wouldn’t be fair for the fans who are going to appear and be here at the Staples Center not to see his casket,” Riley said.

An army of fans poured in to Los Angeles from places far-flung, hoping to collectively mourn their idol in a massive ceremony.

Parking lots in the area raised their prices, some as high as $30. Airports in Southern California saw a spike in bookings. And several movie theaters in the area announced special screenings of the event, which also will be carried live by some television networks and Web sites.

Police put up concrete barriers around the center, allowing only fans with tickets to the star-studded event to enter.

The first fans — those holding the best seats — began entering the arena at 7:30 a.m. The service is set to start at 10 a.m. (1 p.m. ET).

The stage is set up on one end of the Staples Center’s converted basketball court.

Michael Jackson: The Memorial
On Tuesday, join CNN, HLN and CNN.com Live for all-day coverage as the world celebrates the life of a worldwide pop icon, and don’t miss our prime time coverage starting at 8 p.m. ET.

see full schedule »Wide steps lead up from both sides and two transparent podiums are posed on either side. Drums sit in the background and small floral arrangements rest against the front of the stage, where three rows of chairs form a semicircle.

Police would not say what kind of security measures they have put in place. The cash-strapped city has said it will foot the bill for law enforcement. 

Until the last minute, the Jackson family remained tight-lipped about where the singer will be buried, but signs pointed to Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Hollywood Hills after several carloads of people, La Toya Jackson among them, visited the cemetery Monday.

Tuesday began with a private gathering at the cemetery. A motorcade of mostly sports-utility vehicles was seen departing Jackson‘s parents’ Encino, California, home early Tuesday. California Highway Patrol officers then closed down ramps to the 101 Freeway leading from Encino toward Hollywood.

The procession pulled into Forest Lawn about 15 minutes later. Jackson’s family and his friends began entering the chapel, which can hold about 1,000 people.

The Staples event is expected to feature singers Mariah Carey, Usher and Stevie Wonder.

Also participating will be basketball stars Kobe Bryant and Magic Johnson; singers Jennifer Hudson, John Mayer and Smokey Robinson; and activists Martin Luther King III and the Rev. Al Sharpton, according to an announcement released on behalf of the Jackson family.

Two notable absences will be actress Elizabeth Taylor, a longtime Jackson friend, and Debbie Rowe, Jackson‘s former wife and the mother of his two older children.

Taylor, in a message posted on Twitter and verified by CNN, said she declined an invitation to speak because she “cannot be part of the public whoopla.”

“I just don’t believe that Michael would want me to share my grief with millions of others,” Taylor tweeted. “How I feel is between us. Not a public event.”

Rowe planned on attending but decided against it, said lawyer Marta Almli.

“The onslaught of media attention has made it clear her attendance would be an unnecessary distraction to an event that should focus exclusively on Michael’s legacy,” Almli said.

Fans congregated in downtown Los Angeles, outside the Staples Center regardless of whether they had tickets.

On Monday, organizers used a computer to choose 8,750 names from 1.6 million people who registered for tickets online. Each received a pair of tickets, for a total of 17,500 tickets.

Just 11,000 of those are for seats inside the arena. The other 6,500 are for viewing the memorial telecast across the street at the Nokia Theater. The Jackson family set aside an additional 9,000 Staples Center seats to give out, organizers said.

Two fans waiting to get in to the service Tuesday were surprised at their good fortune.

Michelle Mann and Basra Arte, both 18, flew in from Vancouver, British Columbia, to honor Jackson. They stood outside the Staples Center, brimming with excitement and celebrating the generosity of a complete stranger.

“It’s overwhelming,” Mann said. “We can’t believe that we’re here.”

The two had appeared on Canadian television and said they planned to fly to Los Angeles for the memorial service even though they didn’t have tickets. Six hours before their flight, 15-year-old Karlo Karanan, who’d seen them on TV, tracked them down and gave them his.

“I’m looking forward to being in the presence of other fans,” Arte said. “The energy is going to be amazing.”

Source: CNN

Posted in Andrae Crouch Choir, Bernice A. King, Berry Gordy, Brooke Shields, Funerals/Memorials, Jennifer Hudson, John Mayer, Just In, King of Pop, Kobe Bryant, Lionel Richie, Magic Johnson, Mariah Carey, Martin Luther King III, Michael Jackson, Pastor Lucious Smith, Reverend Al Sharpton, Shaheen Jafargholi, Smokey Robinson, Staples Center, Stevie Wonder, Usher

Just In: Celebrities Participate in Michael Jackson’s Memorial

Mariah Carey, Jennifer Hudson & More To Participate In Michael Jackson Memorial…

Mariah Carey, Jennifer Hudson, Magic Johnson, Smokey Robinson and John Mayer are among the superstar guests set to participate in Tuesday’s public Michael Jackson Memorial, the Jackson family announced in a statement to Access Hollywood.

Michael‘s former girlfriend, actress Brooke Shields, will appear at the event, as will R&B star Usher, legend Stevie Wonder, Motown’s Berry Gordy and Lakers star Kobe Bryant.

Around 17,500 fans have been given tickets to the late King of Pop‘s memorial, which will take place at the Staples Center in downtown Los Angeles on Tuesday morning.

More than 1.6 million fans registered to try and obtain tickets to the event.

Lionel Richie, “Britain’s Got Talent” finalist Shaheen Jafargholi, Martin Luther King III, Bernice A. King, the Andrae Crouch Choir, the Reverend Al Sharpton and family friend Pastor Lucious Smith are also scheduled to participate at the memorial, according to the family’s statement.

Source: Yahoo!

Posted in Cherilyn Lee, Dick Gregory, Dr. John Dombrowski, Dr. John Myers, James Zacny, Joe Jackson, Just In, Katherine Jackson, King of Pop, Londell McMillan, Lou Ferrigno, Marla Gibbs, Michael Jackson, Reynaldo Rey, Stevie Wonder

Just In: Jackson begged for drug

https://i0.wp.com/www.topnews.in/light/files/michael-jackson.jpgMichael Jackson was so distraught over persistent insomnia in recent months that he pleaded for a powerful sedative despite warnings it could be harmful, says a nutritionist who was working with the singer as he prepared his comeback bid.

Cherilyn Lee, a registered nurse whose specialty includes nutritional counseling, said Tuesday that she repeatedly rejected his demands for the drug, Diprivan, which is given intravenously.

But a frantic phone call she received from Jackson four days before his death made her fear that he somehow obtained Diprivan or another drug to induce sleep, Lee said.

While in Florida on June 21, Lee was contacted by a member of Jackson‘s staff.

“He called and was very frantic and said, `Michael needs to see you right away.’ I said, ‘What’s wrong?’ And I could hear Michael in the background …, ‘One side of my body is hot, it’s hot, and one side of my body is cold. It’s very cold,'” Lee said.

“I said, `Tell him he needs to go the hospital. I don’t know what’s going on, but he needs to go to the hospital … right away.”

“At that point, I knew that somebody had given him something that hit the central nervous system,” she said, adding, “He was in trouble Sunday and he was crying out.”

Jackson did not go to the hospital. He died June 25 after suffering cardiac arrest, his family said. Autopsies have been conducted, but an official cause of death is not expected for several weeks.

“I don’t know what happened there. The only thing I can say is he was adamant about this drug,” Lee said.

Following Jackson‘s death, allegations emerged that the 50-year-old King of Pop had been consuming painkillers, sedatives and antidepressants. But Lee said she encountered a man tortured by sleep deprivation and one who expressed opposition to recreational drug use.

“He wasn’t looking to get high or feel good and sedated from drugs,” she said. “This was a person who was not on drugs. This was a person who was seeking help, desperately, to get some sleep, to get some rest.”

Jackson was rehearsing hard for what would have been his big comeback — his “This Is It” tour, a series of performances that would have strained his aging dancer’s body. Also, pain had been a part of his life since 1984, when his scalp was severely burned during a Pepsi commercial shoot.

“The Incredible Hulk” star Lou Ferrigno, who’s been working out with Jackson for the past several months, said Jackson was focused on health.

“When he was with me, he wasn’t different. He wasn’t stoned. He wasn’t high. He wasn’t being aloof or speedy. Never talked about drugs,” Ferrigno said. “I’ve never seen him take drugs. He was always talking about nutrition.”

Several months ago, Jackson had begun badgering Lee about Diprivan, also known as Propofol, Lee said. It is an intravenous anesthetic drug widely used in operating rooms to induce unconsciousness. It is generally given through an IV needle in the hand.

Patients given Propofol take less time to regain consciousness than those administered certain other drugs, and they report waking up more clear-headed and refreshed, said University of Chicago psychopharmacologist James Zacny.

It has also been implicated in drug abuse, with people using it to “chill out” or to commit suicide, Zacny said. Accidental deaths linked to abuse have been reported. The powerful drug has a very narrow therapeutic window, meaning it doesn’t take doses much larger than the medically recommended amount to stop a person’s breathing.

An overdose that stops breathing can result in a buildup of carbon dioxide, causing the heart to beat erratically and leading to cardiac arrest, said Dr. John Dombrowski, a member of the board of directors of the American Society of Anesthesiologists.

Because it is given intravenously and is not the kind of prescription drug typically available from pharmacists, abuse cases have involved anesthesiologists, nurses and other hospital staffers with easy access to the drug, Zacny said.

In recent months, Lee said, Jackson waved away her warnings about it.

“I had an IV and when it hit my vein, I was sleeping. That’s what I want,” Lee said Jackson told her.

“I said, ‘Michael, the only problem with you taking this medication’ — and I had a chill in my body and tears in my eyes three months ago — ‘the only problem is you’re going to take it and you’re not going to wake up,” she recalled.

According to Lee, Jackson said it had been given to him before but he didn’t want to discuss the circumstances or identify the doctor involved.

Londell McMillan, attorney for Katherine and Joe Jackson, talked about Lee‘s disclosures Tuesday on CNN.

“It’s a hearsay comment. It would be inadmissible anywhere in a court of law,” he said. “I also wonder why anyone would make a comment about something that they don’t have much knowledge about. They didn’t see the drug administered. It’s again because of the Michael Jackson factor.”

Lee said the singer drew his own distinctions when it came to drugs versus prescription medicine.

“He said, `I don’t like drugs. I don’t want any drugs. My doctor told me this is a safe medicine,'” Lee said. The next day, she said she brought a copy of the Physician’s Desk Reference to show him the section on Diprivan.

“He said, ‘No, my doctor said it’s safe. It works quick and it’s safe as long as somebody’s here to monitor me and wake me up. It’s going be OK,'” Lee said. She said he did not give the doctor’s name.

Lee said at one point, she spent the night with Jackson to monitor him while he slept. She said she gave him herbal remedies and stayed in a corner chair in his vast bedroom.

After he settled in bed, Lee told Jackson to turn down the lights and music — he had classical music playing in the house. “He also had a computer on the bed because he loved Walt Disney,” she said. “He was watching Donald Duck and it was ongoing. I said, `Maybe if we put on softer music,’ and he said, `No, this is how I go to sleep.'”

Three and a half hours later, Jackson jumped up and looked at Lee, eyes wide open, according to Lee. “This is what happens to me,” she quoted him as saying. “All I want is to be able to sleep. I want to be able to sleep eight hours. I know I’ll feel better the next day.”

Lee, 56, is licensed as a registered nurse and nurse practitioner in California, according to the state Board of Registered Nursing’s Web site. She attended Los Angeles Southwest College and the Charles Drew University of Medicine and Sciences in Los Angeles.

Comedian Dick Gregory, who knows Lee and her work, said he believes Jackson‘s insomnia had its roots in the pop star’s 2005 trial on child molestation charges. Jackson‘s health had deteriorated so much that his parents called Gregory, a natural foods proponent, for help.

Gregory said Jackson wasn’t eating or drinking at the time and, after he was persuaded by Gregory to undergo testing, ended up hospitalized for severe dehydration.

But Jackson obviously was healthy enough to withstand the level of medical scrutiny needed to insure him for the upcoming high-stakes London concerts, Gregory said. “That you don’t trick,” he said of the exams.

Lee, who has also worked with Stevie Wonder, Marla Gibbs, Reynaldo Rey and other celebrities, said she was introduced to Jackson by the mother of one of his staff members. Jackson‘s three children had minor cold symptoms and their pediatrician was out of town.

Lee said she went to the house in January, the first of about 10 visits there through April, and treated the children with vitamins. Michael, intrigued, asked what else she did and took her up on her claim she could boost his energy.

After running blood tests, she devised protein shakes for him and gave him an intravenous vitamin and mineral mixture — known as a “Myers cocktail,” after Dr. John Myers — which Lee said she uses routinely in her practice.

“It wasn’t that he felt sick,” she said. “He just wanted more energy.”

Lee said she decided to speak out to protect Jackson‘s reputation from what she considers unfounded allegations of drug abuse or shortcomings as a parent.

“I think it’s so wrong for people to say these things about him,” she said. “He was a wonderful, loving father who wanted the best for his children.”

Source: AP

Posted in 51st Grammys, Adele, Al Green, Blink 182, Boyz II Men, Carrie Underwood, Chris Brown, Chris Martin, ColdPlay, Dave Grohl, Duke Fakir, Grammys, Jamie Foxx, Jay Z, Jennifer Hudson, Jonas Brothers, Justin Timberlake, Kanye West, Keith Urban, Lil Wayne, Lil' Kim, M.I.A, Miley Cyrus, Motown, Ne-Yo, Paul McCartney, Radiohead, Rihanna, Ringo Starr, Robert Plant Alison Krauss, Smokie Robinson, Stevie Wonder, T.I., Taylor Swift, The Beatles, The Four Tops, U2, USC Trojans Marching Band, Youtube

51st Annual Grammy Awards Recap

Here’s the my brief re-cap of this years Grammy awards ceremony.

Performances:

* U2 kicks the show off with their newest single “Get On Your Boots” off of the new album No Line on the Horizon.
* Al Green, Keith Urban, Justin Timberlake and Boyz II Men perform together in place of Rihanna and Chris Brown.
* Coldplay performed “Lost+”. Set starts off with Chris Martin at piano solo and later joined by Jay-Z to spit his verse. Chris cuts that song and goes to the stage and the rest of the band appears and they perform “Viva La Vida”.
* Carrie Underwood performs.
* Taylor Swift and Miley Cyrus perform together.
* Jonas Brothers perform with Stevie Wonder.
* One of the performances of the night for me was “Swagger Like Us” with T.I., Kanye West, Lil Wayne, Jay-Z and a very pregnant M.I.A. The performance started off with M.I.A. doing a verse of “Paper Planes”, the sample of which “Swagger Like Us” came from. When she hit the words “…swagger like us”, out appeared the four gentlemen above. M.I.A.’s outfit was a bit out there, not my favorite, but I guess her style has always been out there that and add to the fact that she was due to give birth that very day.
* Paul McCartney featuring Dave Grohl from the Foo Fighters on the drums. Performing The Beatles “I Saw Her Standing There”, but Ringo Starr was not to be found on stage.
* Radiohead performance with the USC Trojans Marching band backing, probably one of the better performances of the night for sure.
* T.I. and Justin Timberlake perform “Dead and Gone”
* The Grammys honor and remember Motown legends The Four Tops, doing a medley of songs were Smokie Robinson, Ne-Yo, Jamie Foxx and remaining member of The Four Tops, Duke Fakir.

Awards:

* Jennifer Hudson wins Best R&B album of the year. That was teary-eyed moment for me. She deserved it!

* Song of the year went to Coldplay for their song “Viva La Vida”.
* Best Pop collaboration went to Robert Plant and Alison Krauss. WTF!!
* Blink 182 members come out together to announce they’re coming back to do work as well as presenting the Best Rock album, which went to Coldplay.
* Best New Artist award went to Adele.
* In another “WTF?” moment, Record of the year went to Robert Plant and Alison Krauss. On the real, it beat out some deep competition.
* Best Rap Album went to Lil Wayne for Tha Carter III. Good for him, competition was a bit tough, I’m a fan of all the artists that were nominated under that category.

See a complete list of winners on www.grammy.com.

“One of my favorite moments was seeing M.I.A. perform on stage with T.I., Kanye West, Lil’ Wayne, and Jay-Z. I have to tell you that performance gave me the chills. I was waiting to see if M.I.A was going to stop her performance in the middle of it all and say she was in labor. As a mother myself, that performance was the best. She told E! news in an interview on the red carpet, that she was yet to know what the sex of her baby will be. I think it’s going to be a boy. What are your thoughts?”

Video Below: M I A, T I , Lil Wayne, Jay Z, & Kanye West Perform “Swagga Like Us” At The 51st Annual Grammy Awards

Source: YouTube, grammy.com