Friday Morning Rock Music Headlines

BOBBY BROWN GOES TO REHAB

NEW YORK (AP) -- Bobby Brown is getting clean. His representative says Brown checked into a "confidential rehabilitation center" last week as part of his plea agreement after he was arrested for drunk driving in March. Brown plans to keep his scheduled concert dates, both solo and with New Edition.

JORDIN SPARKS DIDN'T THINK SHE'D GET "SPARKLE" PART

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Jordin Sparks can sing in front of thousands of people, but act in front of a camera? That was her fear going into the audition for the movie "Sparkle." Sparks says she has no problem grabbing a microphone and singing, but she has no experience acting. She says she knew it was a very real possibility she wouldn't get the role, but she figured it was good for directors to see her. She got the part. "Sparkle" opens today.

ROMNEY CAMPAIGN AGREES TO DROP SILVERSUN PICKUPS SONG

UNDATED (AP) -- Silversun Pickups complained that Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney was using their song "Panic Switch" without permission, and the Romney campaign stopped. A band attorney sent a cease-and-desist letter to the Romney campaign on Wednesday. Romney spokeswoman Andrea Saul says the song was inadvertently played during the setup for an event before Romney arrived. She says it was covered under the campaign's regular blanket license but it will not play it again.

JESSICA AND ASHLEE SIMPSON'S DAD IN TROUBLE WITH THE LAW

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- The father of Jessica and Ashlee Simpson is facing two counts of drunk driving. Joe Simpson faces up to six months in jail and a $1,000 fine. He was arrested two weeks ago after authorities say his blood-alcohol level registered above the legal limit outside Los Angeles. Joe Simpson is due in court August 30. He is a former minister who acted as his daughters' manager.

DIANE WARREN WRITES FOR BEYONCE'

NEW YORK (AP) -- Songwriter Diane Warren is cranking out material for Beyonce's next album. Warren wrote "I Was Here" for Beyonce's "4" album and she says the songs she's got this time are just as good. Warren says writing a song for Beyonce' is like a screenwriter writing for Meryl Streep or Robert De Niro. She says some people come into her studio and she wonders how they got record deals, but she says working with Beyonce' is "so beautiful." Plus, Warren got a referral. She says she's writing for Kelly Rowland because Beyonce' recommended they get together.

RICK NIELSEN GUITARS ON EXHIBIT

ROCKFORD, Ill. (AP) -- Sure, maybe you know Cheap Trick's Rick Nielsen for his checkerboard guitar, or the one with five necks, or the double-neck one shaped like a guy. What about the dozens of other guitars he has? They're on display at the Burpee Museum of Natural History in his hometown of Rockford, Illinois, through April. Nielsen also owns guitars painted with pictures of The Beatles and his own face, a 1963 Guild Merle Travis he rebuilt because it's only one of three made, and a Fender B-Bender he gave to John Lennon and Yoko Ono wanted him to have after Lennon's death. The exhibit also includes stage clothes, original lyrics, contracts and Cheap Trick memorabilia.

GRACE POTTER STAYS AWAY FROM COUNTRY MUSIC

NEW YORK (AP) -- Lots of rock musicians look to make a quick buck by dabbling in country music, but Grace Potter wasn't going to do that. She saw some success with "You and Tequila," her duet with Kenny Chesney. Potter says when it came to make her latest record, "The Lion The Beast The Beat," she didn't want to do country music. She says the songs she was most in love with were rock songs, and you can tell from the first noise on the record it's not country. She says it may wander into "a little twang here and there, but that just can't be helped."

"GENE SIMMONS FAMILY JEWELS" COMES TO AN END

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Gene Simmons is packing up his "Family Jewels." A-and-E has announced Simmons' reality show with his wife and two kids will not be renewed for next year. It's been on for seven seasons.

BIG TIME RUSH WILL PERFORM AT KIDS STATE DINNER

WHITE HOUSE (AP) -- Big Time Rush have a big time gig: they're playing the White House. First lady Michelle Obama invited them to play at the first Kids State Dinner on Monday. Fifty-four kids between the ages of 8 and 12 were selected from all 50 states and the District of Columbia because they sent healthy recipes to Obama. The luncheon will feature their recipes.

TED NUGENT'S DRUMMER ENTERS PLEA IN JOYRIDE INCIDENT

BANGOR, Maine (AP) -- The drummer for Ted Nugent and formerly of Dokken has pleaded not guilty to taking a joyride in a golf cart after a concert in Bangor, Maine, last month. The Bangor Daily News reports Mick Brown is charged with operating under the influence of intoxicants, driving to endanger, theft and assault. Police say Brown sped away in a golf cart after several people tried to stop him, and later two women were in the cart with him. Police say a security officer tried to stop him but Brown shoved him. Other security personnel removed Brown from the cart. He's out on $4,000 bail. His next court date has not been scheduled.

ELTON JOHN MOURNS BASSIST BOB BIRCH

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Elton John says he is devastated and shocked at the death of his bass player, Bob Birch. Birch was found dead Wednesday in his home near Los Angeles of a gunshot wound to the head in an apparent suicide. John says Birch had been in his band for 20 years and was like a member of the family. He says in all their years on the road together, Birch "never played or sang a bad note." Birch is survived by his wife and a son.

PAUL McCARTNEY SPEAKS IN SUPPORT OF PUSSY RIOT

LONDON (AP) -- The jailed Russian punk band on trial for conducting a "punk prayer" now has the power of a Beatle behind them. Paul McCartney has released a letter telling Pussy Riot to "stay strong" and he supports their right to artistic freedom and free speech. The band have been in jail for more than five months because they sang a song against President Vladimir Putin in Moscow's main cathedral. Madonna, Bjork (BYORK), Pete Townshend and the Pet Shop Boys have also spoken in favor of freeing the band. A judge will rule on the case today.

MARIAH CAREY, NO DOUBT PERFORM AT NFL KICKOFF SHOW

NEW YORK (AP) -- Mariah Carey and No Doubt will kick off the NFL season. They will perform in New York's Rockefeller Plaza before the Giants-Cowboy game September 5. NBC will air it as part of its hourlong pregame show.

Copyright 2012. The Associated Press.


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