- The Washington Times - Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Bacon mugged

Kevin Bacon, the actor who’s known for the game Six Degrees, has been separated from an all-important item - his BlackBerry.

According to TMZ.com, it all went down Thursday morning as Mr. Bacon was using his BlackBerry and a man reportedly snatched the device out of his hands at a crowded New York City subway station. Mr. Bacon, 50, reportedly tried to chase down the thief but lost him in the crowd, the New York Post reported.

The incident marks the second time in recent months that Mr. Bacon has suffered a loss because of a New Yorker. He and his wife, actress Kyra Sedgwick, are among the many investors who lost money in Bernie Madoff’s massive Ponzi scheme.

Ailing Amy bails

Troubled British pop singer Amy Winehouse has canceled a planned comeback show in London after a prolonged holiday in St. Lucia clouded by reports of ill health, Agence France-Presse reports.

The Grammy winner, 25, who has had a well-publicized struggle with drugs, was due to play with her band at the Shepherd’s Bush Empire on Sunday upon her return from the Caribbean. However, in a statement, her management said she “regretfully” had to cancel.

Earlier this month, a spokesman for the “Back to Black” and “Rehab” songstress said she had been taken to the hospital after fainting in St. Lucia. She remained there for a night for observation after tests found she was dehydrated.

Piano Man sued

Billy Joel hasn’t paid his bills for the longest time, claims the Piano Man’s former drummer and friend, who is suing the rock star for what could be hundreds of thousands of dollars in overdue royalties, the New York Post says.

While the famed Long Island singer rakes in the dough touring with Elton John this summer (including the duo’s July 11 appearance at Nationals Park), Liberty DeVitto, 58, of Brooklyn works as a studio musician and leads drum clinics to put food on the table.

Mr. DeVitto, a married father of three who lives in a basement apartment near Prospect Park, was Mr. Joel’s drummer from 1975 to 2005 and, he says, a creative force on Mr. Joel’s biggest albums. He says he was shocked when he was booted unceremoniously and abruptly from the band.

“People get fired, they get severance or insurance for a certain period of time. I didn’t even get a phone call. It was cold,” Mr. DeVitto says.

The two met in the 1970s when Mr. Joel was looking for a “New York-style” drummer who could rock the studio and the concert stage, Mr. DeVitto recalls. They became such good pals that Mr. DeVitto says he was in the bridal party at Mr. Joel’s 1985 wedding to “Uptown Girl” Christie Brinkley.

However, by the time Mr. Joel, now 60, wed the 30-years-younger Katie Lee in 2004, things were different. “I found out when I wasn’t invited to the wedding,” Mr. DeVitto says.

According to the newspaper, the rift may have opened when Mr. DeVitto tried to confront Mr. Joel about his alcohol abuse. The singer checked himself into rehab in 2005. “I thought I could say things to him as a friend,” Mr. DeVitto says.

Mr. DeVitto and his attorney - who filed the suit against Mr. Joel and Sony Music May 19 in Manhattan Supreme Court - claim they don’t know how much he is owed because it has been about 10 years since they have gotten an accounting of the singer-songwriter’s sales. Mr. Joel’s U.S sales alone exceed 110 million albums in his career.

Mr. Joel would not comment on the suit, and Sony Music did not respond to a message, the New York Post said.

State of the Union

Actress Gabrielle Union has taken legal action against a gossip Web site that printed an anonymous letter about her reported sexual exploits, Contactmusic.com reports.

The editors of Ezoox.com posted a letter about the “Ugly Betty” co-star from a “nameless pro athlete’s wife,” detailing her reputed affairs with a string of movie stars, musicians and sports players. Miss Union - who has been linked to rapper Ludacris, actor Hill Harper and basketball star Dwyane Wade since her divorce from NFL player Chris Howard - insists the letter is filled with lies.

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

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