Roxette singer Marie Fredriksson dies at 61
Singer Marie Fredriksson of Swedish duo Roxette has passed away at 61. The band's manager confirmed the news on Dec. 10: Marie died after a "17-year-long battle with cancer." According to her manager, Marie was diagnosed with a severe brain tumor in 2002 and received "aggressive treatment that took its toll but ultimately was successful." Doctors later advised her to stop touring and focus on her health. Roxette — best known in America for singles "The Look," "Listen to Your Heart" and "It Must Have Been Love" from the "Pretty Woman" soundtrack — was formed in 1986. Bandmate Per Gessle eulogized his friend on Twitter, writing, "It's not that long ago we spent days and nights in my tiny apartment in Halmstad, listening to music we loved, sharing impossible dreams. And what a dream we eventually got to share! Thank you, Marie, thanks for everything… Things will never be the same."
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Justin Timberlake wears wedding ring again after public apology amid cheating scandal
After a tumultuous few weeks following Justin Timberlake's drunken behavior with "Palmer" co-star Alisha Wainwright in November — they were filmed holding hands at a New Orleans bar, where he did not wear his wedding ring — the music star and actor has emerged in public again with his ring back on. On Dec. 5, Justin — who's been married to Jessica Biel since 2012 — was spotted wearing his wedding band while doing a CrossFit workout in New Orleans. Last week, the singer took to Instagram to publicly apologize to his wife and son for his behavior and for causing them embarrassment, writing in part, "I displayed a strong lapse in judgement." He also denied that anything more than hand-holding happened.
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Rapper Juice WRLD dead at 21
Chicago rapper Juice WRLD died on Dec. 8 after suffering a medical emergency at Chicago's Midway Airport after landing in a private plane. While a cause of death has yet to be confirmed as the coroner awaits test results, his family lent credence to reports that an overdose could be to blame. "As he often addressed in his music and to his fans, Jarad battled with prescription drug dependency," his mother told TMZ in a statement on Dec. 12, adding that "addiction knows no boundaries and its impact goes way beyond the person fighting it… We hope the conversations he started in his music and his legacy will help others win their battles as that is what he wanted more than anything." In the two years since Juice WRLD debuted, he made the Billboard Hot 100 chart 25 times and even had a No. 1 album with "Death Race for Love."
Luke Bryan's red stag shot was illegally killed on his Tennessee farm
Country music star Luke Bryan has an old-fashioned whodunit on his hands. Authorities in Maury County, Tennessee, announced on Dec. 10 that they were investigating the illegal killing of a red stag that was living on the singer's property. The animal was apparently shot from the road, according to the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency. A $5,000 reward has been offered for more information. Red stags are not native to the United States, which means Luke would have brought the expensive animal — which a local sheriff's office said is worth about $8,500 — to his farmland.
Chris Cornell's widow sues Soundgarden
Chris Cornell's widow, Vicky, claims in a new lawsuit that the surviving members of Soundgarden are, as TMZ wrote on Dec. 9, "withholding hundreds of thousands of dollars in royalties owed to her and Chris' minor children." Vicky's filing also accused the band of an "unlawful attempt to strong-arm Chris' Estate into turning over certain audio recordings created by Chris before he passed away" in 2017. In the documents, which were obtained by TMZ, Vicky said there's a dispute over numerous tracks that were allegedly "solely authored by Chris; contain Chris' own vocal tracks; and were bequeathed to Chris' Estate." The band reportedly has called most of the tracks a collaborative effort. Vicky further claimed that lead guitarist Kim Thayil has "put her family in harm's way by suggesting [Vicky is] the main obstacle to Soundgarden putting out another album." According to TMZ, Vicky "wants the judge to declare Chris' estate the sole owner of the unreleased tracks … and force the band to fork over the alleged unpaid royalties."
Why Blake Shelton and Gwen Stefani haven't married yet
Blake Shelton and Gwen Stefani have been together for more than four years but a new report claims fans shouldn't expect to see them married anytime in the near future. In a People magazine cover story released on Dec. 12, a source said, "Blake was very serious about Gwen right from the start, and early on he thought about proposing." The wedding delay, People reported, is because Gwen is a practicing Roman Catholic and wants to marry in the church. The implication is that her first marriage, to Bush rocker Gavin Rossdale, would need to be annulled in order for Gwen to have a Catholic wedding with Blake. Despite the roadblock, Gwen and Blake are "very serious" and are "definitely headed toward marriage," a friend told the magazine.
Lizzo wore a revealing outfit to a Lakers game and Twitter is arguing about it
Lizzo has been on everyone's mind lately — and only some of it is because of her music! The "Truth Hurts" singer attended a Los Angeles Lakers game on Dec. 8 and as the Laker Girls performed a routine to her single "Juice," Lizzo herself got up to dance. That sparked controversy because she was wearing a black T-shirt dress with a cut-out over her backside that revealed fishnets and a black thong. Twitter users took to the platform to share their feelings, with some complaining that her attire was offensive and others praising her boldness and claiming that those who had a problem with her outfit were just "fat-shaming" the artist. One user wrote, "Let's be honest with ourselves: Professional cheerleaders are typically half-dressed and performing dance routines at professional sporting events. It has never been cause for national panic. We see Lizzo's outfit and behavior as 'indecent' because of the body she exists in." The debate made Lizzo the No. 1 trending topic on Twitter, so she won either way!
Marvin Gaye's family accuses Pharrell Williams of perjuring himself
The drama continues for Pharrell Williams! On Dec. 6, Marvin Gaye's family accused the artist and Neptunes producer of perjuring himself during his copyright trial concerning Robin Thicke's song "Blurred Lines," which the Gaye family said ripped off the late performer's work. During an interview in the the November issue of GQ, Pharrell mentioned that during the music-making process, he likes to reverse engineer songs in order to find out what makes a hit record. The Gaye family claims that this statement contradicts what he said during the 2015 trial. According to court transcripts, Pharrell said, "I did not go in the studio with the intention of making anything to feel like or to sound like Marvin Gaye." The Gaye family has asked to be compensated for $3.5 million in lawyer fees on top of the $5.3 million judgement they originally received.