Kanye West. Photo by Tyler Collins.

Kanye West. Photo by Tyler Collins.

Dear Kanye: Didn’t You Say???…

Guess who’ll be closing this year’s MTV Video Music Awards? If you guessed Kanye West, you are absolutely correct. One year after West vowed never to perform on or for the video network again, he will happily eat his words and prance across the stage when the show airs on Sunday night. While I’m certainly not shocked by Kanye seemingly putting his foot in his mouth, and might watch the show specifically for his performance (and the rumors of Michael and Janet Jackson appearing together on the broadcast), you have to figure that one day ‘Ye will learn to keep his trap shut just a little bit, eh?? (MTV.com)

Slipknot Edges Game Out in Photo Finish!!

We’ll discuss this more in Chart Chat on Sunday, but it’s certainly worth mentioning now. When this week’s Billboard chart was originally published on Wednesday morning, The Game’s “L.A.X” sat on top by a margin of a miniscule SEVEN units, which would have made it by far the closest margin between a #1 and #2 album in the 17 years since Soundscan started providing the data for the charts. However, by mid-day, the numbers were reversed and the masked metal band wound up scoring the first chart-topper of their career. Final numbers reveal Slipknot edging the game by just over 1,000 units. No word on how many pieces of furniture the famously volatile rapper ruined after having his third #1 album being denied him. (Billboard.com)

Britney Sez “Thanks, Mom”

A new book scheduled for release contends that the on-the-road-to-recovery Britney Spears, who has resembled a normal woman these past few months, was a hellion long before the general public found out about it. She allegedly started drinking at 13, lost her virginity at 14, and was doing coke and smoking pot by 15. The author of this sordid tell-all? Lynne Spears, Britney’s mom. Keep this in mind next time you talk shit about how much YOUR mom (or mother-in-law) sucks ass. (Popeater)

A Jackson With A Sense of Humor? Who Knew?

The Jacksons were honored with the Icon Award by music publishing company BMI. 7 of the 9 Jackson kids and both parents were in attendance for this presentation? Missing? Jermaine (what? he had other commitments??) and, to the surprise of absolutely no one, Michael. However, J5 brother Marlon provided the ceremony’s best zinger when asked by a reporter where Michael was. His response? “I don’t know. I think he’s in Egypt riding a camel or something”. I knew there was a reason I liked Marlon. In other Jackson news, Janet is still bitching about the anemic sales performance of her “Discipline” album (which has sold about 415,000 copies so far) and is hinting that this may be her last album for Island Records. Um…how do we break this to you, Janet? Wasn’t it your decision to make a mediocre album which was your first in 22 years to feature no production input from Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis and no songwriting input from yourself? And wasn’t it your decision to expose your titty at the Super Bowl four years ago and torpedo your own career? Looking at the pics from the BMI ceremony, it looks like Janet may have started to hit the snack tray again (Tito and Randy certainly did). Might be time to have another rib removed before her tour starts. (Associated Press)

Viva La Vida All Over Again

Mere months after releasing “Viva La Vida Or Death And All His Friends” (I think I got that right), Chris Martin and Coldplay have detailed their plans for the rest of the decade (now THAT’s thinking ahead!!). The British rockers are scheduled to release and EP of “Vida” leftovers towards the end of this year, while a new studio album is already on tap for late 2009. Apparently, Gwyneth Paltrow threw some Red Bull into the rock band’s tea. (vh1.com)

Hootie & The Blowfish Announce Hiatus…To The Sound of Crickets

Despite not having had anything resembling a hit since the very start of the decade, Darius Rucker has decided to tell the world that the band that made him famous, 90s rockers Hootie & the Blowfish are going on hiatus, at least for six or seven years. While this news probably results in a resounding chorus of “Hootie & the Blowfish are still together?”, it’s also worth noting that Rucker has a hit on his hands with “Don’t Think I Don’t Think About It”, which is not only a huge country hit, but has crawled inside the Top 40 of the pop singles chart, making it the first hit for Darius or his band in eight years. I got a chuckle out of Darius’s quote about losing weight and “not being a fat hippie anymore”. At least now I can be proud when someone says I resemble the guy. (Popeater)