- The Washington Times - Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Rapper has cancer

A cancerous tumor was discovered in Beastie Boys member Adam Yauch’s left salivary gland, the rapper’s record label, EMI, announced Monday.

While the musician is expected to make a full recovery, the band has been forced to cancel its upcoming tour and postpone the release of its latest album, “Hot Sauce Committee Part 1,” People.com reports.

“I just need to take a little time to get this in check, and then we’ll release the record and play some shows,” Mr. Yauch, 44, said in a video statement on his band’s Web site. “It’s a pain in the neck (sorry had to say it) because I was really looking forward to playing these shows, but the doctors have made it clear that this is not the kind of thing that can be put aside to deal with later.”

According to EMI, the cancer was caught early and is localized in one area, rendering it “very treatable.”

Holiday salute

A statue of Billie Holiday has returned to the former black entertainment district in Baltimore where the lady once sang the blues.

The statue, depicting a singing Lady Day in a flowing, floor-length strapless gown, a gardenia in her hair, first graced Billie Holiday Plaza in 1985. It was removed for 18 months for cleaning.

One panel shows a newborn baby — with the lyric “God Bless the Child” engraved below it. The other depicts a man — nude, castrated and with his eyes bulging — hanging from a tree. Below are the words “Strange Fruit,” the title of a ballad condemning lynching that Miss Holiday recorded in 1939.

While the images are graphic, Mayor Sheila Dixon said people should view the statue and the panels as a depiction of unadulterated history.

“You need to show what happens to people when life begins and where people struggle,” Mrs. Dixon said.

The statue was rededicated on the 50th anniversary of Miss Holiday’s death.

About 80 people attended Friday’s ceremony, Associated Press reports.

This just in…

The former Miss California who was stripped of her title last month has a book deal.

Carrie Prejean — who during the pageant stated her opposition to same-sex marriage — will publish a memoir called “Still Standing,” Associated Press reports.

Conservative book house Regnery Publishing said Monday that it will release the book.

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

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