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Jay-Z honored, stars celebrate at Clive Davis' Pre-Grammy Gala

For decades, Clive Davis’ annual Pre-Grammy Gala has been one of the toughest tickets to score during the run-up to the awards show.

>> PHOTOS: 2018 Grammy nominees

At Saturday night’s bash at the Sheraton Times Square, fans clamored in the lobby of the hotel, craning to catch a glimpse of familiar New York faces including Jerry Seinfeld, Tina Fey and Paul Shaffer.

A few floors up, Davis, the 85-year-old music impresario and founder of Arista Records, presided over the event that kicked off with a performance from longtime friend (and, incidentally, the artist who gave Davis the idea to host a party before the Grammys all those years ago) Barry Manilow, who honored his Brooklyn roots with “This Is My Town,” from his current album of New York-themed songs, and the iconic “New York, New York.”

Others on the performance lineup included Atlanta rap trio Migos (nominated for two Grammys), the thrice-nominated Luis Fonsi (of “Despacito” fame), Logic and Gladys Knight.

>> Kendrick Lamar, Jay-Z, SZA among 2018 Grammy nominees

The Davis shindig has also served as the backdrop to the presentation of the annual Grammy Salute to Industry Icons Award. On Saturday, the honor was bestowed on Jay-Z for his contributions to music and business.

The superstar rapper – who is nominated for a leading eight awards at Sunday’s Grammy ceremony – didn’t walk the red carpet, but slipped in to be seated with wife Beyoncé.

>> Grammys give R&B and hip hop some shine with 2018 nominations

Before the ceremony, Neil Portnow, president of the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences, said that typically, the Industry Icons awarded are those on the executive side of the business.

But, he said, “When I thought of this year, being in New York, being an anniversary (of the Grammys) ... Jay is left brain, right brain, a brilliant genius. Not only has he influenced music through his music, but he’s influenced the music business through his vision.”

Here are some other tidbits from attendees on the red carpet:

Charles Kelley

Lady Antebellum’s Charles Kelley said he will always be a diehard Georgia Bulldogs fan, but the team’s National Championship loss was “a bit of a gut punch.”

“I drove down with Jason (Aldean) on his bus and Thomas Rhett was in another bus behind us and we were all excited. It happened so fast. We were literally turning around high fiving when we sacked (Alabama’s) quarterback and we turned around and the ball was in the air, caught, and (the loss) happened so fast.”

>> Grammy Awards 2018: What time, what channel, who is nominated, who will perform

Kelley will be at the Grammys on Sunday with bandmate Dave Haywood, but not Hillary Scott, who is due to give birth to twins “any minute.”

Kelley is excited about Lady Antebellum’s two nominations, and even though the band is competing with fellow Georgians the Zac Brown Band in one category, Kelly isn’t too nervous.

“I love Zac Brown. Honestly, he’s so talented. But I’m just gonna sit back and watch Chris Stapleton win everything.”

Diane Warren

Songwriting maven Diane Warren is nominated for a Grammy AND an Oscar for “Stand Up for Something,” which she co-wrote with Common (who performs on the song with Andra Day).

>> Alicia Keys hints at new music at Grammy event

“The song’s really connected,” she said, noting its use with the NAACP, CNN’s “Heroes Tribute” and the “Time’s Up” and #MeToo movements. “There’s nothing like the power of music…It’s so timely with what’s going on with this administration and our rights – and it’s all kinds of rights. I’m also a big animal rights person.”

Shelly Peiken

Another top songwriter, Shelly Peiken (Christina Aguilera, Miley Cyrus, Celine Dion, Demi Lovato), is nominated for best spoken word album for “Confessions Of A Serial Songwriter” and said while rap isn’t one of her genres, it’s an “unbelievable art form.”

>> Inside the 2018 Grammys and their return to New York

“It’s loosened up the conversational nature of pop songwriting and it’s loosened up tight rhymes and given us so much more territory to explore. I think rap has been very liberating.” What’s changed in pop music, she thinks, is, “it’s very fast-paced, and we just move from song to song.”

Luis Fonsi

Luis Fonsi was inescapable last year with his Justin Bieber-guesting hit, “Despacito.” But he’s hardly the overnight sensation some might think, having toiled in the music business for two decades.

>> 2018 Grammys: Mastodon, the ‘weirdo heavy rock band,’ up for two awards

“It’s been a wild ride. I’m trying to take it all in and enjoy every second of it,” he said. “I talk about this every day – I’ve done 10 albums, tours, I’ve been through the ups the downs. You get to appreciate how hard it is to be at the top and how grateful you have to be to be given this opportunity. I’m very happy that it came at this point in my career, that I have a family that I can celebrate it with. My kids, even though they’re very young, I hope that one day when they grow up they’ll be proud of their Pops.”

Tony Danza

Tony Danza is starring in a new Netflix series, “The Good Cop,” in which he stars with Josh Groban.

>> Zac Brown Band is ready for its Grammy close-up

“Josh is terrific,” he said. “I just wrote him an email the other day that I was so impressed with not only his work, but his work ethic. He’s gonna surprise a lot of people because he’s funny and touching and smart and he does it all without singing.”

Andrew Lloyd Webber

Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber is excited to see a smidgen of Broadway make it to the Grammy stage, when Patti LuPone – with whom he famously feuded in the mid-‘90s – reprises her 1981 Grammy performance of “Don’t Cry for Me Argentina” from “Evita.”

“I saw a run-through a couple of days ago. They’re taking an awful lot of trouble over it and I’m deeply grateful.”

>> Read more trending news 

Webber confirmed that his relationship with LuPone has been mended.

“I had to congratulate Patti that not only is she singing (the song) in the original key – which is something some of the Evitas of her time would not get anywhere near – but I think just based on the short time that we worked together, I think her voice is in the best shape I ever saw it. It’s lovely to have worked with her again.”

50 Cent 'forgot' about his bitcoin collection that's now worth millions

Rapper 50 Cent just realized he had more cash stashed away than he thought. He “forgot” about a bitcoin collection that’s now worth millions, according to reports.

>> Read more trending news

The artist is the first rapper to accept the cryptocurrency as payment for his 2014 “Animal Ambition” album, according to TMZ. At the time, each bitcoin was worth $662, leaving 50 Cent with 700 bitcoins valued at approximately $463,000 in sales.

He left the money in his account for years, and the current value of each coin is now $11,000. That brings the musician’s new total to $7 million. And apparently, he didn’t notice until recently.

In a now-deleted Instagram post of TMZ’s article, he wrote "Not Bad for a kid from South Side, I'm so proud of me." He also added a comment below the upload that read “I’m a keep it real. I forgot I did that.”

>> How 50 Cent spends his Sundays

Coincidentally, “Animal Ambition” was actually his lowest-selling LP, and he filed for bankruptcy a few years ago. He’s been in the clear since 2017 and has invested in several new business ventures, including Effen Vodka and the hit Starz TV show “Power.” His newfound stash is his latest. 

Police plan to ramp up security at Jackson Browne concert in Florida after threat

There will be increased security during singer-songwriter Jackson Browne’s concert Tuesday evening at the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts after a threat was made at a northwest Indiana church known for its progressive stands on racial and social justice issues, the Orlando Police Department said.

>> Read more trending news

Police said banners with racist and anti-gay messages were discovered Sunday attached to a fence outside the Unitarian Universalist Church in West Lafayette, Indiana, which is about 70 miles northwest of Indianapolis.

The banners were discovered the morning after the church hosted a “Resistance Fair,” which included left-leaning groups that oppose President Donald Trump's agenda.

One banner included a slur against gays and lesbians; the second had slurs against racial minorities, gays and lesbians.

The second one also referenced Browne, while the other included the date Jan. 23 and the message "die Orlando just like Los (sic) Vegas,” referencing Browne’s appearance in Orlando.

The other wording appears to refer to the sniper who opened fire in October from a high-rise hotel in Las Vegas, killing 58 people and injuring more than 800 others.

West Lafayette police said they are investigating the incident and have notified the FBI.

Orlando police officials said they are in communication with police in Indiana.

“The safety and security of our guests, colleagues and artists is our highest priority,” Lorri Shaban, spokeswoman for the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts, said in an emailed statement. “We were made aware of the situation Sunday night and have been working closely with law enforcement to ensure a safe, secure environment for the concert.”

Those who purchased tickets for the concert but don't feel safe may call the venue's box office for a refund, Shaban said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Migos producer arrested, accused of driving 125 mph on Georgia freeway

A record label co-owner and producer credited with the speedy success of Atlanta-based Migos is facing charges after his alleged speed behind the wheel caught the attention of Alpharetta, Georgia, police.

>> Watch the news report here

Dashcam video obtained by WSB-TV’s Mike Petchenik shows officers pulling over Pierre “Pee” Thomas last Sunday. Thomas, the chief executive of record label Quality Control, has produced records for rappers such as Migos, Lil Yachty, Lil Baby and Rich the Kid.

The officer "observed a red SUV traveling at a high rate of speed,” said Officer Jason Muenzer. “He noticed the vehicle was going about 100 mph.”

Muenzer said the officer got on Ga. 400 near Old Milton Parkway and began following Thomas north.

“That officer tried to catch up to the vehicle, but he himself got up to about 120, 125 (mph) and even then, the officer noticed the vehicle was pulling away from him.”

Eventually, video shows Thomas pull over off McFarland Parkway in Forsyth County.

He told officers he was heading home from the studio.

>> Read more trending news 

“When the officer approached the vehicle, the driver acted as though he didn’t see the officer,” Muenzer said. “The only excuse he had was he didn’t see the officer and he wanted to get home.”

On the dashcam video, the officer questioned Thomas and his speed.

“What were you doing going that fast, man?” he can be heard asking. “You were pulling away from me. I was doing 120 (mph) just trying to catch up to you. You were pulling away from me.”

Officers would later handcuff Thomas and take him to the North Fulton Jail annex on reckless driving charges.

Police told Petchenik this arrest was just one of a series recently on the busy highway.

“It’s getting old,” Muenzer said. “Those speeds, the slightest crack, the slightest item in the roadway, road debris, you can lose control of your vehicle.”

Thomas’ attorney, Drew Findling, told Petchenik that his client was not impaired and complied with officers.

“We will go to court in the city of Alpharetta and look forward to putting this matter behind him,” Findling said. “We will resolve it in court.”

– The Atlanta Journal-Constitution contributed to this report.

Hall and Oates, Train to kick off summer arena tour together

First it was Journey and Def Leppard, now Hall and Oates and Train have announced the bands will be doing a tour together this summer.

According to Rolling Stone, both groups will play full sets before they both take the stage for the finale. 

Tickets go on sale for most of the North American tour dates on Jan. 29 at 10 a.m. on Live Nation.

>> Read more trending news 

Philadelphia’s May 26 date will also be the resurrection of “HoagieNation Festival,” a festival held by Daryl Hall and John Oates that is, according to Rolling Stone, a “celebration of food, music and culture.”

Related: Journey, Def Leppard joining up for North American tour

Train will be promoting “A Girl, a Bottle, a Boat,” the band’s 10th album and first top 10 album since “Bulletproof Picasso” in 2014.

Hall and Oates haven’t made an album since 2006’s “Home for Christmas,” but both have produced solo work. They toured North America with Tears for Fears last year, Spin reported.

Tour dates:

5/1 - Sacramento, Calif., Golden 1 - Center5/4 - San Jose, Calif.,  SAP Center5/6 - Anaheim, Calif., Honda Center5/8 - Salt Lake City, Vivint Smart Home Arena5/10 - Denver, Pepsi Center5/12 - St. Louis, Scottrade Center5/16 - St. Paul, Minn.,  Xcel Energy Center5/18 - Chicago, United Center5/20 - Detroit, Little Caesars Arena5/22 - Cleveland, Quicken Loans Arena5/24 - Columbus, Ohio, Nationwide Arena5/26 - Philadelphia, HoagieNation Festival6/5 - Toronto, Air Canada Centre6/7 - Boston, Xfinity Center6/9 - Pittsburgh, PPG Paints Arena6/11 - Washington, DC,Capital One Arena6/14 - New York, Madison Square Garden6/18 - Charlotte, N.C., Spectrum Center6/20 - Atlanta, Infinite Energy Center 6/22 - Tampa, Fla., Amalie Arena6/24 - Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., BB&T Center6/26 - Orlando, Fla., Amway Center6/28 - New Orleans, Smoothie King Center6/30 - Nashville, Tenn., Bridgestone Arena7/13 - Montreal, Bell Centre7/15 - Grand Rapids, Mich., Van Andel Arena7/18 - Omaha, Neb., CenturyLink Center7/20 - Kansas City, Mo., Sprint Center7/22 - Oklahoma City, Chesapeake Energy Arena7/24 - Dallas, American Airlines Center7/26 - Houston, Toyota Center7/28 - Austin, Texas, Frank Erwin Center7/31 - Los Angeles, The Forum8/4 - San Diego, Viejas Arena8/7 - Oakland, Calif., Oracle Arena8/9 - Portland, Ore., Moda Center8/11 - Seattle, KeyArena

 

Ed Sheeran announces engagement to Cherry Seaborn

Musician Ed Sheeran is engaged to childhood friend Cherry Seaborn.

>> Read more trending news 

Sheeran announced the news of his engagement Saturday on Instagram. The engagement took place just before the new year. The couple have lived together for over a year, The Telegraph reported.

The pair have been longtime friends and attended school together, but were not childhood sweethearts.

Chicago rapper Fredo Santana dead at 27

Chicago rapper Fredo Santana has died, according to several of his friends, The Chicago Sun-Times reported. He was 27.

Canadian rapper Drake, record producer Maxo Cream and California rapper Lil B expressed their condolences on social media.

Santana, whose birth name was Derrick Coleman, wrote on Instagram in October that he was suffering from liver failure, the Sun-Times reported.

No official cause of death has been listed, MTV reported, although TMZ, citing unnamed family members, reported that Santana died from a seizure at his Los Angeles home late Friday night.

Santana was a force in Chicago’s drill music scene when it began in 2012 He released his 2013 debut album, “Trappin’ Ain’t Dead” on Savage Squad, the record label he founded, MTV reported.

His last album, “Fredo Kruger 2,” was released last year.

In addition to liver troubles, Santana also had kidney failure and seizures, MTV reported.

Rapper Kodak Black arrested in South Florida

Rapper Kodak Black was arrested Thursday in South Florida, accused of grand theft of a firearm, possession of marijuana and child neglect, the Broward County Sheriff’s Office said.

>> Read more trending news

Black, 20, whose legal name is Dieuson Octave, also faces two counts of possession of a weapon by a felon and two counts of probation violation, the Sheriff’s Office said in its arrest report. Black was booked at the Broward County Main Jail in Fort Lauderdale.

The native of Pompano Beach, Florida, was arrested in May for breaking the terms of his probation after a court ruled the rapper broke the terms of his probation. He had been arrested for strong arm robbery, false imprisonment, possession of a firearm by a delinquent and fleeing or attempting to elude law enforcement.

On Thursday, a live video was published on Black’s Instagram account. In the brief clip, Black can be heard talking about his cellphone and whether he should turn the device over to authorities.

“Your phone’s part of this search warrant. You are not going to get your phone back,” a man can be heard saying in the video.

Black released a video for his “Roll In Peace” single with XXXTenaction, also known as Jahseh Onfroy, WPLG reported. In the video, Black is shown throwing cash on a courtroom floor.

Eagles guitarist Glenn Frey's widow files wrongful death lawsuit against New York hospital

The widow of late Eagles guitarist Glenn Frey is suing the New York City hospital that treated her husband before his death in 2016.

According to Reuters, Cindy Frey filed a lawsuit Tuesday accusing Mount Sinai Hospital and gastroenterologist Steven Itzkowitz of negligence while treating the musician, who had ulcerative colitis, in late 2015.

>> Read more trending news 

The wrongful death lawsuit alleges that "Frey was rendered sick, sore, lame and disabled" because Itzkowitz and the hospital did not properly diagnose, treat or disclose the risks of treatment to him, Reuters reported.

Frey died Jan. 18, 2016, after suffering "complications from rheumatoid arthritis, acute ulcerative colitis and pneumonia," the band said in a statement at the time. He was 67.

Eagles manager Irving Azoff previously told The Wrap that rheumatoid arthritis medications were partly to blame for Frey's death.

“The colitis and pneumonia were side effects from all the meds,” Azoff said

Cindy Frey is seeking "unspecified damages," Reuters reported.

Read more here.

Watch: Pistons’ Boban Marjanovic gets down with ‘Chicken Noodle Soup’

Detroit Pistons center Boban Marjanovic showed off some of his dance moves with teammate Tobias Harris in an Instagram post, grooving to Webstar’s “Chicken Noodle Soup.”

>> Read more trending news

At 7-foot-3 and 290 pounds, Marjanovic knows how to clear it out when guarding the basket. The native of Serbia also displayed some nimble footwork and flexibility as he danced to the rap song.

Naturally, he finished off the dance with a soda on the side.

Watch the video:

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