Melissa Etheridge speaks out after son Beckett's overdose death at 21
On May 13, Grammy winner Melissa Etheridge announced heartbreaking news: Her 21-year-old son with ex Julie Cypher, Beckett, was dead from an opioid overdose. "Today I joined the hundreds of thousands of families who have lost loved ones to opioid addiction. My son Beckett, who was just 21, struggled to overcome his addiction and finally succumbed to it today. He will be missed by those who loved him, his family and friends," Melissa — who also shares daughter Bailey, 23, with Julie, and has 13-year-old twins, Johnnie Rose and Miller Steven with ex Tammy Lynn Michaels — told People magazine in a statement. The music star added, "My heart is broken. I am grateful for those who have reached out with condolences and I feel their love and sincere grief. We struggle with what else we could have done to save him, and in the end we know he is out of the pain now. I will sing again, soon. It has always healed me." Music legend David Crosby is Beckett's biological father.
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"Love & Hip Hop: Atlanta" star charged with fraud after obtaining PPP pandemic loan
Maurice Fayne, otherwise known as Arkansas Mo from the reality show "Love & Hip Hop: Atlanta," was charged with federal bank fraud on May 13. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, Maurice took out a Paycheck Protection Program loan for more than $2 million in the name of a trucking company but spent the funds on himself — allegedly up to $1.5 million on a Rolex Presidential watch, a diamond ring and a diamond bracelet. He's also accused of using the funds to pay $40,000 in child support. The purpose of the PPP program is to assist employees and small businesses battered by the coronavirus pandemic. While he's denied the allegations, a search of his Georgia home uncovered $80,000 in cash, the jewelry and a 2019 Rolls-Royce Wraith, which still had a temporary dealer tag on it. Authorities also found $503,000 in PPP funds in three bank accounts.
Kurt Cobain's famed guitar from Nirvana "MTV Unplugged" performance to sell for at least $1 million
There is a lucky Nirvana fan out there somewhere, waiting for this moment. It was announced on May 12 that the guitar that Kurt Cobain played during NIrvana's "MTV Unplugged" performance in 1993 will be hitting the auction block and is expected to sell for at least $1 million. The 1959 D-18E guitar, one of only 302 made by Martin Guitar, will be available during Julien's Auctions' upcoming "Music Icons" event in June. The guitar is important to Cobain fans because it was used during of his last performances before his April 1994 suicide. "This important guitar has earned its rightful place in rock & roll history as the instrument played by one of rock's most influential musicians and icons in one of the greatest and most memorable live performances of all time," explained the auction house's CEO. The guitar last made headlines in 2018 when Kurt's daughter, Frances Bean Cobain, lost it to Isaiah Silva in their divorce after he successfully argued that she'd given it to him as a gift during their relationship.
Rihanna jokes she "lost" her new album
The Rihanna Navy is getting antsy for a new album, and of course Rihanna had to joke with them. It's been four years since she last dropped a studio album, 2016's "Anti," so fans have been begging the Bajan pop star to release her ninth studio effort, which they've dubbed "R9." Rihanna, however, has been busy building her wildly successful FENTY fashion and beauty empire in the meantime. On May 13, while RiRi was promoting her new sunglasses line in Instagram, a fan wrote "WHERES THE ALBUM," to which the star cheekily replied, "I lost it." Fans are especially riled up right now because Rihanna admitted in a March interview with British Vogue that there is indeed new music on the horizon. "I can't say when I'm going to drop, but, I am very aggressively working on music," she confirmed.
Queen's Brian May hospitalized after ripping glutes
Is there anything more rock 'n' roll that getting hurt while… gardening? Well, according to Queen's Brian May, no, there isn't. The rock legend revealed on Instagram on May 6 that he was hospitalized after ripping the muscles in his glutes "to shreds" while working in his garden. The rock star said, "As well as getting over-stretched and harassed by too many demands, I managed to rip my gluteus maximus to shreds in a moment of over-enthusiastic gardening. Suddenly I find myself in a hospital getting scanned to find out exactly how much I've actually damaged myself. Turns out I did a thorough job — this is a couple of days ago — and I won't be able to walk for a while or sleep, without a lot of assistance, because the pain is relentless." Ouch!
Michael Jackson Broadway musical pushed back due to COVID-19
A musical about the life of Michael Jackson that was set to open this year has been pushed back to 2021 because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Preview performances of "MJ" are now set to begin in March 2021. The musical was originally slated to start performances in New York City on July 6. The musical is inspired by the King of Pop's life and music and will feature the deceased singer's catalog of songs. Actor Ephraim Sykes will star as Michael and Christopher Wheeldon is directing. Other big Broadway shows, like Sarah Jessica Parker and Matthew Broderick's "Plaza Suite," have also been forced to push their productions till next year. Meanwhile, Disney announced on May 14 that it was permanently shuttering it Broadway musical production of "Frozen."
Instagram battle: Jill Scott and Erykah Badu delight fans during coronavirus pandemic
On May 9, R&B stars Jill Scott and Erykah Badu battled it out on Instagram Live. These musical battles have become prime entertainment since the COVID-19 pandemic took effect. In fact, some of the biggest stars in the world including Spike Lee, Michelle Obama and Janet Jackson tuned in to watch the female heavyweights' sing-off. Erykah Badu was grateful for the support saying, "We sooooo appreciate it. We been in this game a long time. Many a baby was created up out of our music."
Andre Harrell dead at 59: Mariah Carey and more honor music executive
Music executive Andre Harrell passed away at his West Hollywood home on May 7 from heart failure, ex-wife Wendy Credle confirmed to The New York Times. He was 59. The former member of rap duo Dr. Jeckyll & Mr. Hyde was best known as the founder of Uptown Records and for discovering a young Sean "Puffy" Combs, who was an intern at his label before becoming a music star and mogul. "Andre's impact on Hip Hop, the culture and on all of us personally has been immeasurable and profound. May he Rest In Peace," Roma Khanna, CEO of REVOLT Media & TV, which is owned by Diddy, said in a statement. Andre also dabbled in movies — he famously produced Mariah Carey's misfire "Honey." Upon learning of his death, Mariah tweeted, "Why Andre 😢😢😢 My heart is breaking and I can't stop crying. He was an amazing friend and I will miss him forever. 😢."