New developments in fight over Aretha Franklin's handwritten wills
As relatives continue to battle for control of Aretha Franklin's estate, a Michigan probate judge has decided that the court will now play a bigger role as it seeks to determine who gets what. On Aug. 6, a judge put the estate under "court supervision." It's now bringing in experts to analyze three handwritten wills discovered among the Queen of Soul's belongings following her 2018 death.
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R. Kelly now accused of sexual crimes in Minnesota
On Aug. 6, R. Kelly was hit with new charges: Authorities have accused him of sexual crimes against an underage girl in Minnesota stemming from incidents that occured in 2001. The disgraced musician was charged with two counts of engaging in prostitution with an individual under 18 and offering to hire for sexual purposes a person under 18, according to information provided during a news conference. The unnamed victim alleges she was paid $200 to have sexual relations with the musician at his Minneapolis hotel. These charges come on the heels of a string of almost 20 charges in both Chicago and New York that R. Kelly is already facing.
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Barbra Streisand performs a parody of "Send in the Clowns" to mock Donald Trump
On Aug. 3, Barbra Streisand took the stage at Madison Square Garden in New York City, and while there, she took the opportunity to perform a piece mocking President Donald Trump. Performed to the tune of "Send in the Clowns," Barbra took aim at the Commander in Chief over his tax returns, his deal-making skills and much more. She also told the audience, "Some people say I talk too much about politics. Well, I'm a New Yorker and we have big mouths."
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Beyonce's Vogue image acquired by National Portrait Gallery
She keeps making history! Beyonce's iconic American Vogue portrait will now forever be remembered in the Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery. The image, which is one of many taken by a then-23-year-old Tyler Mitchell, originally appeared in the magazine's famed September issue in 2018. It was a groundbreaking set of photos because Tyler was the first black photographer in Vogue's 126-year history to shoot the cover. He took to Twitter to express his joy at the news, saying, "A year ago today we broke the flood gates open. Now I'm glad to share this picture is being acquired into the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery's permanent collection."
Celebrity deaths: Silver Jews' David Berman and Village People co-creator Henri Belolo
Silver Jews singer-songwriter David Berman (pictured) passed away at 52 on Aug. 7 from unknown causes. The band's music label confirmed the news on Twitter, writing, "We couldn't be more sorry to tell you this. David Berman passed away earlier today. A great friend and one of the most inspiring individuals we've ever known is gone. Rest easy, David." Henri Belolo, disco visionary and co-founder of the legendary Village People music group, died at 82 on Aug. 3.
The Beatles' "Abbey Road" will get special treatment for 50th anniversary
When your album turns 50, you've gotta celebrate! Apple and Universal Music announced that to commemorate the 50th anniversary of The Beatles' "Abbey Road," they'll release a box set that includes a new Giles Martin mix of the album along with two discs' worth of outtakes from the 1969 recording sessions. It comes out on Sept. 27, one day after the 50th anniversary. The announcement came on Aug. 8, 50 years to the day that the band shot this iconic photo in the crosswalk on Abbey Road in London.
Judge rules Bobby Brown doesn't need to give permission for Whitney Houston documentary footage
Bobby Brown and his late daughter's estate brought a lawsuit against Showtime and BBC over their documentary about his late former wife, Whitney Houston, called "Whitney: Can I Be Me?" but a ruling has gone against him. One of Bobby's main grievances was that the networks were using real footage of the couple without his consent. A New York judge, however, ruled that "'Whitney: Can I Be Me?,' by virtue of being an expressive work, is protected under the First Amendment… no acquisition agreement is required where First Amendment concerns are implicated."
Metallica's James Hetfield called the woman who scared cougar away with Metallica song
How's this for a wild story? Metallica frontman James Hetfield reached out to a woman who used a Metallica song to scare away an animal she feared might attack her. Canadian Dee Gallant was walking her dog when a cougar approached her and would not back down. After trying a few things, Dee started playing "Don't Tread on Me" on her cell phone, which finally led to the animal walking away. James got wind of the tale and phoned Dee to chat about the situation. After the call ended, he sent a text with a selfie to her proving it was really him.