- The Washington Times - Saturday, January 31, 2009

McCartney to headline festival

Paul McCartney has been confirmed to headline the April 17 opening night of the 2009 Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival. organizers said Friday.

The former Beatle’s set, his first ever at Coachella, will feature the live debut of material from “Electric Arguments,” the new album released under the Fireman alias he shares with producer/musician Youth.

Prior to Coachella, Mr. McCartney will be joined by special guest drummer Dave Grohl for a performance at the 51st Annual Grammy Awards, which will be broadcast live Feb. 8 from the Staples Center in Los Angeles on CBS (8 to 11:30 p.m.)

Mr. McCartney has two Grammy nominations this year: Best Male Pop Vocal Performance (“That Was Me”) and Best Solo Rock Vocal Performance (“I Saw Her Standing There”).

Springsteen calls Wal-Mart deal a mistake

The Boss is owning up to a mistake.

In an interview with Sunday’s New York Times, Bruce Springsteen says he shouldn’t have made a deal with Wal-Mart. This month, the store started exclusively selling a Mr. Springsteen greatest hits CD.

Some fans were critical because Mr. Springsteen has been a longtime supporter of worker’s rights, and Wal-Mart has faced criticism for its labor practices.

Mr. Springsteen told the Times that his team didn’t vet the issue as closely as he should have, and that he “dropped the ball on it.”

“It was a mistake.” he added. “Our batting average is usually very good, but we missed that one. Fans will call you on that stuff, as it should be.”

Mr. Springsteen released his new CD “Working on a Dream” this week and is performing the halftime show at Sunday’s Super Bowl.

Grisham book riles school

Officials at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh are upset that best-selling author John Grisham mentions the school in connection with a fictional gang rape in his latest novel, AP reports.

Mr. Grisham’s “The Associate” deals with a character who attended the private Catholic college and was involved in a drunken rape scene in an off-campus apartment in 2003.

Duquesne University spokeswoman Rose Ravasio says it’s unfortunate the author “chose to use our name and associate it with a fictional incident of this nature.”

Mr. Grisham, a resident of Charlottesville, Va., told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette that he chose the school because he saw it once, and has been to Pittsburgh for Steelers and Pirates games. The novel contains several other references to the Steel City.

Rapper sentenced

Rapper DMX has been sentenced to serve 90 days in jail.

The Baltimore-born artist, whose real name is Earl Simmons, also was placed on at least 18 months’ supervised probation by a Maricopa County court commissioner Friday.

According to Associated Press, Mr. Simmons pleaded guilty in December to one felony count of theft, one count each of felony possession of marijuana and a narcotic drug and a misdemeanor count of animal cruelty.

The 38-year-old rapper has been in the Maricopa County Jail since being arrested Dec. 9 in Miami on a warrant after failing to appear in court in Phoenix. He was not given credit for time served.

Compiled by Robyn-Denise Yourse from Web and wire reports.

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