ImHipHop News Blitz 12*19*07

Jim Jones & Cassidy’s Entourages Clash, Prevent Perfect Grandopening

Members of Dipset’s Jim Jone’s entourage and Full Surface’s Cassidy’s entourage prevented the grand opening of the HipHopSodaShop yesterday, December 18th in Tampa, Florida from going off without a hitch.

According to reports, a brief altercation broke out early in the night as Jim Jones and Juelz Santana exited a VIP area of the club–crossing paths with Cassidy and members of his entourage who were entering the area.

When three members of Jone’s crew tried to return to the VIP area, they were stopped by one of Cassidy’s security guards igniting a verbal altercation.

According to published reports, the men returned 10 minutes later along with the Harlem rapper (Jones) who had his own exchange of words with the security guard.

The guard was then struck in the head with a full bottle of champagne, knocking him out cold and causing a cut on his face.

Def Jam recording artist Sterling Simms, who was featured on Jay Z’s Dig A Hole , is also rumored to have been injured in the melee.

The HipHopSodaShop is a hip hop driven restaurant and night club created by H3 Enterprises Inc., the first publicly traded Hip-Hop company.

R. Kelly Issued Arrest Warrant

A judge has issued a warrant for R. Kelly’s arrest after the pied piper failed to show up in court today (Dec. 19) for his child pornography case.

According to the Chicago Sun-Times, Judge Vincent Gaughan entered a warrant for the R&B star’s arrest, but won’t put it into effect until tomorrow (Dec. 20), when Kells is ordered to appear in court at 9 a.m.

One of R. Kelly’s defense lawyers, Ed Genson, said the singer had performed in Sacramento and was “detained because of some snow.”

Then, according to Genson, state police pulled over Kelly’s tour bus in Utah to check the bus log and ordered the bus to stop for eight hours because the log was not properly filled out.

Genson said the bus went to the nearest motel, and with the help of a lawyer, was able to resume traveling after about three to four hours.

Prosecutors said Judge Gaughan has already been lenient with Kelly, letting him travel outside Illinois and continue with his tour while the trial proceeds, though Kelly has to get permission for every trip.”This is just an abuse of the process,” said AssistantState’s Attorney Shauna Bolicker. “It’s disrespectful of your honor.”

Kelly is facing 14 counts of child pornography stemming from a video tape that allegedly features the R&B crooner engaged in sexual acts with a teenage girl. He was charged in 2002 and has pleaded not guilty.


Judge Dismisses Notorious B.I.G. Wrongful Death Suit, Trial Postponed

The family of slain MC The Notorious B.I.G. were dealt a blow in their ongoing legal battle with the city of Los Angeles on Tuesday (December 18).

According to LA’s Fox 11, a judge today dismissed a secondary wrongful death lawsuit filed by the family in April. U.S. District Judge Florence-Marie Cooper ruled that the family had not filed a claim within the required timeframe. She then granted a request made by the city and imprisoned former cop Rafael Perez to dismiss the case. Perez, a corrupt former cop, has been accused of conspiring with his former partner David Mack to murder the rapper.

In 2005 Judge Cooper declared a mistrial in the trial that arose from the original suit filed by Biggie’s family. Fox 11 also reports that the parties involved in the still pending primary suit agreed last week to enter into mediation. As a result, the trial, scheduled for February, will be postponed indefinitely.

ALICIA KEYS TO STAR IN LENA HORNE BIOPIC

PageSix.com is reporting that Oprah Winfrey has taken control of the long-gestating Lena Horne biopic and has cast Alicia Keys in the title role.

“We’re going to start filming next year, and we’ve got Alicia,” Oprah reportedly told the New York Post column during an interview for her film “The Great Debaters.”

The announcement comes as a final blow for Janet Jackson, who for years has expressed interest in playing the legendary entertainer on screen, and was actually in serious consideration when the project was set up as a TV movie at ABC.

But her dream role was all but snatched away in 2004, when Mrs. Horne herself famously asked Jackson to step away from the role following her Super Bowl “wardrobe malfunction.”

Atlanta Woman Claims Damon Dash Made Her Schizophrenic

Hip-hop mogul, Damon Dash, is driving the ladies crazy — literally.

According to the New York Post, an Atlanta woman has filed a lawsuit against Dash, claiming that a meeting with him in 2004 resulted in her being diagnosed with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.

In the bizarre suit, filed in Manhattan Supreme Court recently, 24-year-old Jamie Roberts accuses Dash of exposing himself to her during their time spent together in Miami in 2004.

She claims that she met Dash at a Miami club in March of that year, in which he told her his name was “Jeremy McIntyre,” before they left to go to a nearby marina. Once there, he showed her “his genital area” in an “offensive manner” and tried to force her into performing oral sex, the suit claims.

Nine months after the incident, Roberts said she “began to hear defendant’s voice in her ear, giving her certain directions to follow.”

Although at the time she was unaware of whom the man was, she came to realize later that it was Dash when she saw him in early 2005 during an episode of “The Chapelle Show.”

The woman is seeking $30,000 and punitive damages, according to the paper.

Despite the accusations, Dash responded to the paper by claiming he was not aware of the suit, but dismissed the claims all together.

“We know nothing about it,” he said in a statement to The Post. “It’s quite obvious this is a false allegation.”

DMX Signs to Bodog Music

Veteran MC DMX has inked a new recording deal with the music division of online gaming and entertainment powerhouse Bodog.

Through the agreement, X will release his next LP, called Walk With Me Now and You’ll Fly With Me Later, through the label in 2008. “I’m thankful for the fact that Bodog believes in me, that we share the same vision and the fact that they see in me the same thing I see,” the Yonkers born rapper said in a statement. “I’ll show you [Bodog Music] how it’s supposed to be done, and we’ll get to where we’re supposed to be. You got a dog for life.”

Bodog made headlines earlier this year when they inked a deal with the Wu-Tang Clan for the European distribution of their latest project, 8 Diagrams. The company, which made it’s name in the online poker and sportsbook arenas, also sponsors the Battle of the Bands competition, in which artists compete for a $1 million recording contract with Bodog Music.

“Bodog Music is rapidly becoming a big dog in the music biz,” said Bodog Entertainment founder Calvin Ayre. “Between the successes of Bodog Battle, great artist developments and now some major signings, look for Bodog Music to be an even larger presence on the music scene in 2008.”

Irv Gotti & Wife Talk Marriage In First Joint Interview

The Inc. CEO Irv Gotti is set to address his unique relationship with his wife on “The Gayle King Show” later today (Dec. 19) for the first time since the series finale of his VH1 reality show, “Gotti’s Way.”

In “Gotti’s Way,” VH1 detailed the music moguls battle between both his family and professional life and his struggle to find a balance. Oprah Winfrey associate Gayle King will be talking to Gotti and his wife, Deb Lorenzo, on King’s XM radio program, for the couple’s first ever media interview together.

The couple became popular for their numerous on-camera disputes concerning marriage, family and raising their three children. Gotti particularly made waves on the show when he admitted, “I love my wife to death, but not enough to stop f**king!” The two are expected to discuss the inner workings of their non-traditional marriage.

“The Gayle King Show” featuring Irv Gotti and Deb will premiere today at 8 a.m. EST, with encore broadcasts at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. exclusively on XM Radio’s “Oprah and Friends” channel.

Amy Winehouse Follows In Hubby’s Shoes, Arrested For “Perverting The Course Of Justice”

The woes just keep on coming for British soul singer Amy Winehouse, who was arrested yesterday (December 18) in connection with her husband’s assault case.

According to a press release issued by the London Metropolitan Police, the 24 year-old crooner voluntarily turned her self in to an East London police station, where she was arrested in connection with an investigation of her husband, who is being charged with “perverting the course of justice.”

“She has not been charged with anything and arrests are commonplace for British law,” Winehouse’s rep explained in a press release. “Unlike the States, Brits are arrested before they’re questioned.” Winehouse was released on bail and ordered to return to a London police station in early March, police said.

Winehouse’s hubby, Blake Civil-Fielder is currently incarcerated, awaiting trial for allegedly attempting to manipulate a witness connected to his 2006 assault charge.

The couple has had various public meltdowns and run-ins with the law. Many speculate that the singer and her husband’s troubles are at least partly due to their reported abuse of drugs, for which the singer’s mother has issued a public outcry.

Despite the singer’s tumultuous year, there is a bright spot for Winehouse, having been nominated for six Grammy awards at February’s upcoming ceremony, including record of the year and album of the year for her breakout disc, Back To Black.

Lupe Fiasco Hosts Skateboard Deck Design Contest

Lupe Fiasco is teaming up with the music social networking website imeem.com, Element Skateboards and Vapors magazine to host a skateboard deck design contest based on his sophomore concept album The Cool. Winners will receive copies of the deck as well as what Lupe calls “other top secret things” if their design is chosen.

“It’s gonna be a duel…a battle to the death,” says Lupe. “It’ll be some elements and different things from the album. You can put those together or [use] your own ideas starting from a blank canvas, centered around my album and everything within.”

The contest capitalizes off of the skateboarding themed song “Kick Push,” from Lupe’s Food & Liquor album, while also incorporating concepts from The Cool and the logos of the contests sponsors. Further details, entry information and a .zip file containing available graphics, for those in need of a creative boost, are all available at Lupe’s imeem profile or at http://lupesboard.imeem.com/.

J Records Drops Ruben Studdard

After a promising start as winner of the second season of “American Idol,” Studdard seems to have fallen short of expectations and has been dropped from J. A rep from his label has confirmed the artist’s departure.

Studdard’s first J Record release Soulful, released in 2003, went RIAA certified platinum. His 2004 gospel follow up, I Need An Angel also fared well – reaching gold status, however sales of his 2006 project The Return have been unable to match his previous success, moving barely 235,000 copies.

Studdard has been putting in work to strengthen other aspects of his career. In November, he spent time touring alongside Robin Givens in a play called “Heaven I Need a Hug” and according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, he is currently preparing to play jazz great Fats Waller in a national theatre tour of “Ain’t Misbehavin’.”

Theater has proven to be a popular career move for many “American Idol” standouts, most notably Fantasia, who has starred as Celie in the Broadway version of “The Color Purple.” Diana DeGarmo has appeared in “Hairspray,” Frenchie Davis was featured in “Rent” and Tamyra Gray won roles in both “Rent” and “Bombay Dreams.”

Studdard is also scheduled to make a holiday appearance in his hometown Birmingham, Alabama this weekend, performing with his old band Just a Few Cats at the WorkPlay soundstage.

Bow Wow & Omarion Debut Strong; Wu-Tang Falters


Bow Wow & Omarion’s new album “Face Off” debuted strong on the charts this week while Wu-Tang’s reunion album “8 Diagrams” disappoints in its first week.

According to Billboard, “Face Off” sold 107,000 copies this week to debut at No. 11.

Wu-Tang’s reunion album “8 Diagrams” sold a disappointing 68,000 copies to debut at No. 25. Also debuting low were The Dream with his debut album selling 59,000 (No. 30) and Beanie Sigel’s latest release “The Solution” moving only 49,000 copies during its first week in stores to debut at No. 37.

Cash Money’s Birdman AKA Baby made a strong showing on the charts with his new album “5*Stunna” selling 86,000 to come in at No. 18. Mario saw his latest release “Go” sell 77,000 copies during its first week in stores to debut at No. 21.

Holding strong this week was Alicia Keys whose latest album “As I Am” came in at No. 2 for a second week selling 292,000 copies (a 24% sales increase).

The week’s #1 album was once again Josh Groban. His Christmas album “Noel” has now sold 2.77 million making it the year’s best selling release.

According to Billboard, sales this week (17.98 million units) are down 23.1% compared to the same week last year (23.39 million). This week’s sum is up 24.4% from last week’s.

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