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Today in music history - Aug. 15

In 1996, country singer Shania Twain was honoured at a homecoming in the northern Ontario town of Timmins. The former Timmins resident was presented with the key to the city, pressed her hands into cement and was shown a plaque renaming the city's Algonquin Boulevard to Shania Twain Way. Twain became an international star after her 1995 album ``The Woman in Me'' sold more than eight- (m) million copies.

http://www.tmcnet.com/usubmit/2009/08/15/4324816.htm

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Despite 66 flu deaths, no panic in Canada

August 17th, 2009 by IANS -
By Gurmukh Singh

Toronto, Aug 17 (IANS) Despite 66 deaths from the H1N1 flu till date, the Canadian public has shown no palpable signs of panic as being witnessed in India.

No Celine Dion or Shania Twain has gone on streets wearing a mask to warn people about the flu.

After introducing screening for those returning from Mexico and issuing guidelines to health workers and public, Canadians have gone quietly about their job of combating the flu.

There have been no signs of masks on city streets here. People are taking the epidemic in their stride as even a normal summer flu season in this country claims more than 4,000 lives each year.

The swine flu came to Canada reportedly through a farm worker who returned after holidaying in Mexico in April.

Since then, the government machinery has been on top of the situation, with International Trade Minister Stockwell Day and Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz assuring at the time of outbreak that “all levels of government are working together to protect the health of families in Canada and around the world”.

Most of the flu deaths occurred between May and July, with Ontario and Quebec provinces accounting for 21 each.

Heath Minister Leona Aglukkaq now says “there is no evidence to suggest that the virus has become stronger”.

Last week she placed orders for 50.4 million doses of vaccine to be available for the winter flu season.

Canadian Medical Association president Ann Doig, however, has a little warning about a possible resurgence of the virus this winter.

Clearly, the Canadians have learnt their lessons from the SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) outbreak in 2003 which caught them off-guard and claimed 44 lives in the Toronto area.

http://www.thaindian.com/newsportal/...100233419.html


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I think this swine flu thing is bio terror IMHO.

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Indigenous star on way to the top

Iain Shedden, Music writer

LAST time Jessica Mauboy performed at the annual Indigenous Music Awards in Darwin she was 11 years old and sang Shania Twain's hit Any Man of Mine to a backing track.

Last night was a little different. Not only did the 21-year-old pop star play a full set with a real band to a crowd of more than 2000 at the awards, but the local-girl-made-good also picked up trophies for album and song of the year.

"I've always been the one sitting in the crowd watching the other artists getting awards so this is a great night for me," said Mauboy, who got her first music business break in the 2006 series of Australian Idol, finishing second to Damien Leith.

Since then she has had chart success with the albums The Journey and Been Waiting and hit singles such as Running Back and Burn. She will record her next album in Los Angeles this year.

Mauboy hasn't been carried away by her rising career, however. "I come back and do workshops with kids in the communities in Arnhem Land and in Darwin schools," she said. "These projects involve helping the children with literacy as well as musical skills.

"They are so full of spirit and energy. And they see me more as family than as a pop star. It's just sitting in the backyard having a jam."

The young singer and songwriter's success highlights what has been a phenomenal year for her and for the man she says is like an uncle to her, Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupingu. They were the two big winners at Darwin's Botanic Gardens last night, with Gurrumul pipping his "niece" for the top honour, act of the year.

Gurrumul's debut solo album is now in the top 50 in many parts of Europe, including Britain. He played to a sell-out crowd of 2000 in Perth on Thursday and closed the awards last night with a moving performance under the stars.

Other indigenous artists at the awards and beyond will be hoping they can emulate the achievements of the blind singer-songwriter from Elcho Island in East Arnhem Land.

However, Mark Grose, managing director of Gurrumul's recording label, Skinnyfish Music, said yesterday the singer's unparalleled success as an indigenous folk artist was unlikely to happen for other Aboriginal acts. "Gurrumul's success is fantastic and we all love it but we're not trying to find the next one," he said.


http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/story/0,25197,25964130-5016490,00.html



-- Edited by twain2country on Friday 21st of August 2009 12:50:18 PM

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Whitney Houston is looking at anybody

Here's the article excerpt that mentions Shania's sales:


It was released in the fall alongside Faith Hill’s Cry, Mariah’s Charmbracelet and Shania Twain's Up!. That fall it was all about divas fighting, and the competition to see who was selling more became a huge deal. The media hyped up the sales with Whitney debuting at #9 and selling a career high for first week with 205,000 copies (although it became her lowest selling album), giving her the short end of the stick in comparison to the rest; Mariah debuted at #3 with 241,000 copies sold the first week; another career best for Hill debuting at #1 selling over 472,000 copies; and the obvious winner in sales was Shania debuting at #1 (staying there for five weeks) with 874,000 copies sold and in those first five weeks selling 2,646,000 copies.

http://www.examiner.com/x-13907-DC-GLBT-Arts-Examiner~y2009m8d22-Whitney-Houston-is-looking-at-anybody

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Taylor Swift gets fearless in concert

Last The time Taylor Swift was at Mohegan Sun Arena, it was the fall of 2008, and she was the opening act for Rascal Flatts.

Well, since then, the teen singer/songwriter/Jonas-disser has become only more of a phenom. She has turned into the biggest crossover star since, boy, probably Shania Twain.

The 19-year-old moved from country darling to pop powerhouse thanks to the radio-dominating singles “Love Story” and “You Belong With Me,” and there's simply no one in the music biz who's been on more of a roll than she has.

Between her self-titled CD and the follow-up “Fearless,” Swift was the best-selling artist last year, with upwards of four million CDs sold.

Swift's current concert is apparently, and understandably, a much bigger production than her last Sun gig, with costumes and the whole shebang. (She dons a sparkly band uniform for “You Belong With Me.”) Her rather thin voice can get a bit lost in an arena, but her strengths - super-catchy songwriting and shining personality - carry her a long way, so expect a fun, fun, fun concert.

- Kristina Dorsey

 

Taylor Swift, 7:30 p.m. Friday, Mohegan Sun Arena; also, Kellie Pickler and Gloriana; $49.50, $59.50; mohegansun.com.ico_endstory.gif

http://www.theday.com/re.aspx?re=8c1398dd-5c76-47c2-8364-cd451d747f01



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Country Music Firsts

by Kevin J. Coyne
August 24, 2009

Our readers have clearly responded well to our Back to the Nineties features this month. (Fret not, there are more on the way.) Part of the reason is that so many of you, like myself and Leeann, first discovered country music in that decade.

This isn’t too surprising, as the nineties helped establish country music as a genre with widespread appeal. The suburbanization of once-rural America reached its apex, and at the same time, CMT deeply penetrated the cable market. For you newbies, the channel was 24-hour videos back then, with remarkably democratic video rotation.

A clip in heavy rotation would only be seen two more times a day than one in light rotation. This is the reason both Mutt Lange and Sean Penn discovered Shania Twain through her “What Made You Say That” clip, which was played extensively on the channel despite the song stalling at #55 at radio.

The New York country radio station back then would do a “Country Convert” feature every morning. A radio listener would call in and say what song converted them to country music. Newbies to country music back then had a religious zeal to them, and would work very hard trying to convince others to fall in love with the music.

In the spirit of that “Country Convert” feature, I’d like to ask all of you about your country music firsts. I imagine many of us will have answers concentrated in the nineties, but if yours are from another decade, share them anyway!

Here are the questions:

What was the first country song that you remember loving?
What was the first country album that you bought with your own money?
What was your first country concert?
My Answers:

What was the first country song that you remember loving?

I liked a lot of the older stuff that my parents listened to, like Johnny Horton and Conway Twitty, but it was always my parents’ music. One night, we were watching a TV variety show called Hot Country Nights. I think we had it on because my mom’s favorite, Ricky Van Shelton, was performing that night. Out came Pam Tillis, singing “Maybe It Was Memphis.” I just had never heard anything like it before, and I was instantly smitten.

What was the first country album that you bought with your own money?

I remember buying Pam Tillis’ Put Yourself in My Place and Lorrie Morgan’s Something in Red on the same day. I bought both on cassette. If I recall correctly, I listened only to Side 1 of each tape for a very long time.

What was your first country concert?

Somewhere in New Jersey in 1992: Clint Black, Billy Dean and Aaron Tippin. It was Black’s tour to support The Hard Way. I remember that there was a complicated set for Black’s performance, something with falling rocks.

http://www.countryuniverse.net/2009/08/24/country-music-firsts/

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Today in History  

By The Associated Press
The Associated Press
Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Shania Twain won best entertainer while the Dixie Chicks picked up three trophies, including best vocal group, at the CMA Awards.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/09/22/AR2009092200002.htm


-- Edited by Tommy on Tuesday 22nd of September 2009 05:21:14 PM

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Thanks.

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Stop and Smell the Roses at Nashville Music Garden
Posted: September 30th, 2009 | By: Whitney Self

My father once bought a Dolly Parton rose that he planted in his backyard flower garden. Each time the rose blooms, he takes a picture of it and sends it to me. Yes, Dolly Parton has her own rose. But she's not the only one. So does LeAnn Rimes, Minnie Pearl, Patsy Cline, Shania Twain, Brenda Lee and many others. In fact, some roses and daylilies are even named for songs like "Rocky Top," "Love Me Tender," "Mountain Music" and "Happy Trails" to name a few. A few of us from CMT.com headed over to the beautiful Hall of Fame Park on Tuesday (Sept. 29) for the dedication of the Nashville Music Garden, where all of these specially named flowers now harmoniously live together.

Barbara Mandrell, Jimmy Dickens, Jeffrey Steele, Donna Fargo, Alabama's Jeff Cook, and of course, Ms. "Rose-Garden" herself, Lynn Anderson, even came out for the dedication. I heard Anderson tell the crowd, "Truly, three minutes of music about a rose changed my life." So the next time you're in Nashville, please don't forget to stop and smell the roses at the Nashville Music Garden, across from the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum. And if you find the one that has the biggest blooms, is the color of lipstick, likes hot weather and smells of lots of perfume, you've found my favorite one

http://blog.cmt.com/2009-09-30/stop-...-music-garden/


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Good to see some dedication to shania.

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Keith Urban also supports the museum because he appreciates county music history. What he finds most interesting, he says, is the pendulum of country music that swings from traditional to pop to country-rock. The music remains popular, he says, because it finds ways of taking on current styles that make it relevant to the time.

“I’ve had people say, ‘That’s not really country what you do,’” Urban says. “Hindsight is what’s needed before you can say something’s not country enough, because I guarantee that in 20 years when Shania Twain is being played on classic country stations, it’ll make a lot of sense.”

So where does Urban’s music fall on that pendulum?

“I’ll let you know in 20 years,” he says.

http://blog.timesunion.com/localarts/an-interview-with-keith-urban/3233/



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Hotel bans socialite for acting like 'country bumpkin'

One of Auckland's poshest hotels has turfed out a high-profile socialite, saying her erratic behaviour has scared guests and staff and claiming she has left her $600-a-night suite uninhabitable.

Mollies boutique hotel - which has hosted the likes of Sean Connery, Shania Twain, Billy Crystal and Rachel Hunter - says it has changed its locks to ensure Lynne Carter stays away.

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=10601130



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Tommy wrote:

Keith Urban also supports the museum because he appreciates county music history. What he finds most interesting, he says, is the pendulum of country music that swings from traditional to pop to country-rock. The music remains popular, he says, because it finds ways of taking on current styles that make it relevant to the time.

“I’ve had people say, ‘That’s not really country what you do,’” Urban says. “Hindsight is what’s needed before you can say something’s not country enough, because I guarantee that in 20 years when Shania Twain is being played on classic country stations, it’ll make a lot of sense.”

So where does Urban’s music fall on that pendulum?

“I’ll let you know in 20 years,” he says.

http://blog.timesunion.com/localarts/an-interview-with-keith-urban/3233/



How many years after it was first recorded is a song considered a classic?

 



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EveryBodyLovesKevy wrote:

How many years after it was first recorded is a song considered a classic?

 



From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The word classic has several meanings. In general, these meanings refer to some past time.

A work of popular culture that inspires devotion or respect is often called a classic.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Classic#Works_with_the_word_classic_in_the_title



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..... Mr. Keith says he waited a spell before recording "American Ride" (written by Joe West and Dave Pahanish), and the shelf time shows. For one, when's the last time you heard about the ozone layer? For another, plasma TVs are on the ashbin of consumer-electronic history. At this point, too, I have to strain to gin up much indignation about the lady who sued McDonald's because her coffee was too hot.

Incidentally, it sounds a heck of a lot like Shania Twain's hit "Any Man of Mine." So never say Mr. Keith is lax about recycling. (Exhibit No. 2: the track "Woke Up on My Own." You can sing the Beatles' "Something" on top of it. I urge you, professional and amateur alike, to try it at home.)

http://washingtontimes.com/news/2009/oct/06/toby-keith-watches-us-on-album/



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Eskimos launch 2010 Grey Cup media blitz
By Mario Annicchiarico, Edmonton Journal

EDMONTON — It’s virtually guaranteed to be somewhat cold on Nov. 28, 2010, when Edmonton plays host to the Canadian Football League’s championship game, but the Grey Cup committee plans to be “Hot to Huddle.”


That was the new theme trotted out by Grey Cup executive director Duane Vienneau and co-chairmen Rick LeLacheur and Doug Goss at a media launch on Monday to promote the CFL showcase game.


However, if fans are not among the Eskimos season-seat holders — who have the first crack at securing the tickets — they may be left out in the cold as remaining ducats will not be available until March of 2010. Season-ticket holders for the upcoming Green and Gold campaign will receive their packages in the mail this week.


Tickets prices start at $98 and go up to $250. Each account holder may purchase their own seats plus the same number of additional seats for the 98th Grey Cup.


“We’re very enthused and excited about our pricing level. We worked very hard to make sure it’s very affordable for a great Canadian event and ensure that we have 60,000-people strong in November of 2010,” LeLacheur said of the fourth CFL championship game to be held in the Alberta capital, but first since 2002.


“One of the first things we’ve always done is make sure when we set our pricing for the 2010 Grey Cup that it’s affordable. We believe with the Grey Cup game clearly being a marquee tourism event for Canada, we have priced them very affordable,” he added.


As for the theme itself, Vienneau said the identity describes the energy and enthusiasm sports fans show for the game and the week of events surrounding the finale. The four-day festival will include a parade and Grey Cup dinner during the Nov. 24-28 celebration.



“The huddle definition in sport is when a team gathers together to strategize, motivate and celebrate. So we thought it was very fitting that we created the theme for this year,” said Vienneau. “The theme is tailor-made for use by retailers, hoteliers and others eager to support and be part of the effort.


“It’s also a reminder that while it’s cold outside, there is nothing like a warm welcome and a fun time to take away the chill of cold November days.”


Edmonton’s three Grey Cups rank fifth, sixth and seventh on the all-time attendance list with 60,081 in 1984, 60,431 in 1997, and 62,531 in 2002, when that game featured the hometown Eskimos losing 25-16 to the Montreal Alouettes.



The game was affected by slick field conditions after temperatures dipped to —14 C on the weekend and a light snowfall, combined with a fog that rolled in late Saturday night, affected the surface. By game time, the temperature did reach zero.


Canadian singing star Shania Twain took the stage at halftime and Edmonton native Adam Gregory sang the national anthem for the game, which attracted nearly five million television viewers. Entertainers are yet to be booked for the 2010 event.


With Calgary hosting the 2009 Grey Cup on Nov. 29, this will mark the first time the championship game will be held in Alberta in consecutive years.



The last team to win a Grey Cup at home was the 1994 B.C. Lions. The 2011 game is set for Vancouver, a third straight year it will be held in the west.


Edmonton Journal

mannicchiarico@thejournal.canwest.com


http://www.canada.com/sports/Eskimos+launch+2010+Grey+media+blitz/2069247/story.html


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http://wonderwall.msn.com/music/Celebs-Gone-Viral-for-Oct-7-4510.gallery

Gone Viral for Oct. 7

By Saryn Chorney

LOL. WTF. OMG. Check out which celebrity memes are burning up the Interwebs like an e-wildfire this week.

Speaking of fire, have you seen Carrie Underwood's hot new "Cowboy Casanova" video yet? The country cutie is sporting a sexy new image, complete with scandalous costumes and writhing dances moves, to

compete with the Britneys (top hat), Lady GaGas (no pants) and Gwen Stefanis (um, who wrote this song?) of the pop world. Oh, and we're pretty sure the backdrop is a bordello. Stay classy, Carrie.

Where have you gone Shania Twain? A nation turns its lonely eyes to you...



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..... The City of London (Ontario) owns a John Labatt Centre box and local non-profits can put their name in draws to get use of it for different events.

In the past, for example, the London Abused Women's Centre won the private box for a Shania Twain concert, raffling it off and pocketing $10,000, Walker said.

http://jam.canoe.ca/Music/Artists/J/Jay_Z/2009/10/08/11338486-sun.html



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Kathryn Jean Lopez: Has fidelity in marriage suddenly become uncool?

Kathryn Jean Lopez

 

Reality-show star Jon Gosselin did it. Country singer Shania Twain, whose "You're Still the One" has become a wedding standard, wound up a victim of it. An endless parade of politicians has done it, and those are the ones we wind up knowing about.

Adultery does happen. It always has, and it always will. But I think we may have crossed a threshold.

While watching the president of the United States declare that we can legislate away hardship, during his joint session of Congress health care address, I was lured away from my hyper-blogging, tweeting, Facebooking analysis by a commercial for ashleymadison.com.

To the soundtrack of a snoring woman in bed with a man, the announcer says: "Most of us can recover from a one-night stand with the wrong woman," then adds, "But not when it's every night. For the rest of our lives."

The husband gets out of bed and heads, presumably, to the computer. We see a cartoonish wedding picture. We are made aware of what this restless spouse must be craving: an online dating site for those who are married but itching for something more, with someone else.

"Life is short. Have an affair." is the motto for this no-frills facilitator.

There's no need for confession or guilt. It's all straightforward and out in the open, at least to those in the know. And that's it: enticement, information and get your credit card ready.

The ad's commercial presence during the presidential address post-game commentary on MSNBC was jarring. Have 24 hours of Viagra and Cialis and KY ads made audiences of the talking-heads shows immune to noticing? Maybe this is a crowd that enjoys politics as sport ("Hardball"!) and views sex in the same terms — a biologically gratifying release without a greater context or purpose.

And in this fallen TV world, it's not that he's just not into his wife. It's equality, baby.

Another ad on the same night featured an exaggerated boorish bore of a man and his wife in a restaurant on their anniversary. He takes a phone call. She is pleased to make eye contact with a leering rake at the bar.

"When divorce isn't an option" is how Ashley Madison seeks to make this sale.

In both scenarios, any sense of shame was noticeably absent.

I asked the same question while reading the weddings section of The New York Times over Labor Day weekend. That week's story on a couple's road to wedded bliss was not one you'd expect to be on display: "There was a moment of connection, but it was so intense that we couldn't be friends," the featured bride told her husband.

She and the man she married met on Broadway, playing the lovers Mimi and Rodolfo in "La Boheme," who would eventually be torn apart — clearly unlike the couple showcased in the article.

And so they dated. They would spend two weeks together in France. And then, upon her return from the continent, she left her husband for her newfound love. The "little church girl" recalls: "From the moment our eyes met through those two weeks of being in Paris and the pain of going through a divorce, I knew that I loved him."

I know nothing about this couple other than what the Times told us. I wish them well. But what about us? What does it say about us when such a prominent fixture of American life and mores would choose to feature such a story? And it's not just the old Gray Lady that's moved by adulterous connections.

Just days after the wedding feature, a story on ABCnews.com began with: "Don't let your spouse see this story." It was titled: "Shh! The Top 5 Hotels for Having an Affair," and explained, "These are hotels with thick walls, a discreet staff, a bit of romance and maybe even a heart-shaped Jacuzzi."

In her book "The Abolition of Marriage," Maggie Gallagher, one of the most committed marriage-protection activists in the country, wrote: "Marriage, like a corporation or private property, is an institution that must be supported by law and culture if it is to exist at all... (T)o have the choice as individuals to marry we must first choose as a society to create marriage."

I attended a wedding at St. Patrick's Cathedral that same Labor Day weekend, one that didn't make any features sections. During the sermon, the rector implored those in attendance to be a support for the couple, because the newlyweds will have hardship ahead, as all couples do. (You actually can't legislate it away.) Marriage is hard. And so family and friends, who so often can help make or break a marriage, must be supportive.

But what about the culture? Will the culture make a positive contribution to the institution of marriage? Or will we forever hold our peace in the face of blatant offenses to all that we should hold dear?

There will be rude cell habits, and snoring or something equally or more annoying. There will be temptations, and sometimes a relationship won't be sustainable. But many times it will be — with some help.

Marriage, born and nurtured by true love and responsibility can be the source of joy, life and a future generation that understands and honors the institution. We need to commit to it — and to be ashamed by blatant violations of it — for all our sakes, till death do us part.

Kathryn Lopez is the editor of National Review Online (www .nationalreview.com). She can be contacted at klopez@nationalreview.com.


http://www.salemnews.com/puopinion/local_story_282230639.html?keyword=secondarystory



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Today in Music History - Nov. 2

In 2004, singer Shania Twain visited her hometown of Timmins, Ont., for a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the Shania Twain Centre, a museum dedicated to her career that opened three years earlier.

http://www.therapeuticsdaily.com/news/article.cfm?contentValue=1942044&contentType=sentryarticle&channelID=28



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Vegetable Soup

Smita Jain Kothari, Contributing Writer

Issue date: 11/2/09 Section: Viewpoints

A commercial broiler
A commercial broiler

FOR THE BODY

The American Dietetic Association states that vegetarian diets offer nutritional benefits, including lower levels of saturated fat and cholesterol and higher levels of carbohydrates, fiber, magnesium, potassium, folte, and antioxidants such as vitamins C and E. 

Myth: Vegetarian diets do not have sufficient sources of proteins, calcium and vitamin B12. Studies at Harvard University have confirmed that vegetarian diets provide sufficient protein and calcium intake when various plant sources are consumed. Dried fruits and nuts are rich in vitamin B12.

Not only is the vegetarian diet healthier, it also provides protection against around 159 types of diseases caused by consumption of non-vegetarian food, according to the World Health Organization. There have been incidences of foot-and-mouth disease in sheep, mercury in fish and artificial growth hormones injected into cattle. A 2005 report by Environmental Defense estimated that 70 percent of all antibiotics used in the U.S. go to chickens, hogs and beef cattle.

In addition, one-third to one-half of all chicken meat marketed in the U.S. is contaminated with salmonella, a group of bacteria that can lead to gastrointestinal infection in the short-term and chronic arthritis gradually. The rate of disease among chickens is so high that the Department of Labor has ranked the poultry industry as one of the most hazardous occupations for those who raise, slaughter and process them. Also, studies indicate that risk for breast cancer increases in proportion to red meat a woman eats, regardless of her age.

On the other hand, it is proved that vegetarians tend to have lower blood pressure, and fewer chances of heart disease, hypertension, diabetes, renal disease, osteoporosis and dementias such as Alzheimer's Disease. 

FOR THE MIND

Jainism, a scientific religion, propagates lacto-vegetarianism (following a vegetarian diet which includes milk and its products, but excludes eggs). It believes that when an animal is slaughtered, all the feelings produced at that time like anger, pain and negative radiations are inside it and get transferred to the consumer. Studies have now proven that a red-meat eater is comparatively more violent and hot-tempered. You are what you eat!

Big picture: the major difference between animals and humans is that they can think about the consequences of their actions. We understand the significance of living in a clean environment and leaving a green environment as legacy to our future generation. According to the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization, "meat production accounts for nearly a fifth of global greenhouse emissions" accelerating global warming. It produces 37 percent of human-induced methane (23 times warmer than carbon-dioxide) and 65 percent of nitrous oxide (296 times warmer than carbon-dioxide.) Also, it is a major driver of deforestation as new pastures are created by clearing forests in order to feed animals mass-produced using artificial sperms and raised for slaughtering. Moreover, the livestock business is polluting scarce water resources by animal wastes, chemicals from tanneries, fertilizers and the pesticides used to spray feed crops.

FOR THE SOUL

Every year in the U.S., more than 27 billion animals are slaughtered for food!

Before you eat non-vegetarian food next time, just close your eyes and visualize the following description by PETA: Factory farms are treated like meat, milk and egg machines. Chickens have their sensitive beaks seared off with a hot blade, and male cattle and pigs are castrated without any painkillers. All farmed chickens, turkeys and pigs spend their brief lives in dark and crowded warehouses; many of them so cramped that they can't even turn around or spread a single wing. They are mired in their own waste, and the stench of ammonia fills the air. Animals raised for food are bred and drugged to grow as large as possible as quickly as possible-many are so heavy that they become crippled under their own weight and die within inches of their water supply.

Animals on factory farms do not see the sun or get a breath of fresh air until they are prodded and crammed onto trucks for a nightmarish ride to the slaughterhouse, often through weather extremes and always without food or water. Many die during transport, and others are too sick or weak to walk off the truck after they reach the slaughterhouse. The animals who survive this hellish ordeal are hung upside-down and their throats are slit, often while they're completely conscious. Many are still alive while they are skinned, hacked into pieces or scalded in the de-feathering tanks.

Thus, if you make decisions from either your mind or your heart (assuming that you have at least one of the two), you will not be able to eat non-vegetarian food again.

On the lighter side, go veggie because it is cool. Shania Twain, Richard Gere, Pamela Anderson and Penelope Cruz are all vegetarians! On adopting vegetarianism, Alicia Silverstone says, "Nothing's changed my life more. I feel better about myself as a person, being conscious and responsible for my actions, and I lost weight and my skin cleared up and I got bright eyes and I just became stronger and healthier and happier."

AUTHOR'S BIOGRAPHY
Smita Jain Kothari is an RC partner. She is taking courses towards the Masters in Journalism at the Harvard Extension School. She aspires to be an editor and feature writer for magazines. Smita loves traveling to non-commercial destinations; Antarctica and French Polynesia top her dream-list!

http://media.www.harbus.org/media/storage/paper343/news/2009/11/02/Viewpoints/Vegetable.Soup-3819923.shtml


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....Carrie Underwood is most appealing when she isn't trying so hard to please everyone. (At best, she come off like a kinder, gentler Dixie Chick.) First single Cowboy Casanova is the country-rocking-est anthem Mutt Lange never wrote for Shania Twain.

http://blogs.chron.com/peep/2009/11/play_on_puts_the_pause_on_unde.html

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From Chet Flippo's weekly column on CMT.com

There was no Hank Williams successor, there was no Patsy Cline successor, no Elvis Presley successor, no Johnny Cash successor, no Garth Brooks successor, no Shania Twain successor. No successor to any of country music's blockbusters. nd there will be no Taylor Swift successor, no one just like her. Such phenomena cannot be credibly replicated in popular music.

http://www.cmt.com/news/nashville-sk...swift-ii.jhtml


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Reba McEntire was born near Kiowa, Oklahoma in southern Pittsburg County. Dubbed "The Queen of Country", she has recorded 25 studio albums which have sold more than 41-million copies in the U.S. and 50-million worldwide, making her the seventh best selling female artist in all genres and second best only to Shania Twain in country music.

http://www.ktul.com/news/stories/1109/674661.html

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The American Idol winner’s third disc boasts a stunning array of songwriters and producers with all the attention going to Mike Elizondo on opening tracks Cowboy Casanova and Max Martin on Quitter. These are the brain-trust hits designed to further elevate Carrie Underwood to the kind of cross-over pop stardom not seen in Nashville since Shania Twain. The strength of this album is found in songs that pull at the heartstrings. Kara DioGuardi’s Mama’s Song, is a track that should leave Underwood’s boy — Ottawa Senator Mike Fisher — melting into a puddle by the side of the rink. But the track here that shows why she is deserving of the ‘most successful Idol ever’ title is one that has the unmistakable stamp of Gordie Sampson, the Canadian songsmith who wrote her first hit Jesus Take the Wheel. Someday When I Stop Loving You puts aside all the techno gimmicks, and serves up a magnificent vocal performance set to a melody and lyrics that cannot fail.

http://www.metronews.ca/vancouver/entertainment/article/360516--play-on-by-carrie-underwood

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Think you know everything about your favorite country music star? "Pop Quiz: Country Music" will put you to the test. This trivia and quiz book is dedicated to country music artists new and old and includes fun questions related to such superstars as LeAnn Rimes, Garth Brooks, Bryan White, Trisha Yearwood, and Shania Twain.

http://www.themorningsun.com/articles/2009/11/06/life/srv0000006766363.txt



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.......Starting early: Miley Cyrus became interested in acting when she was nine, and took classes at the Armstrong Acting Studio. Her first appearance was in her father’s television series Doc. In 2003, she bagged the role of Young Ruthie in Tim Burton’s Big Fish and also appeared in the music video for If Heartaches Have Wings.
At 12, she auditioned for Disney Channel’s show about a secret pop star Hannah Montana. After her first audition executives at Disney Channel judged her to be too young, however Cyrus’ persistence resulted in her being called back for further auditions, Finally she got the role.
According to the Channel’s President Gary Marsh, Cyrus was seen as a person who “loves every minute of life,” with the “everyday relatability of Hilary Duff and the stage presence of Shania Twain.”

http://www.thehimalayantimes.com/fullNews.php?headline=The+rising+star&NewsID=45323


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Carrie Underwood will have many reasons to be happy come this week. Firstly, her third and new studio album Play On is expected to debut at #1 on the Billboard 200, making her do it for the second time, with a nice chunk of sales. But the other achievement the country star should be super excited about is that her current single "Cowboy Casanova” hit #1 on the country charts! This becomes her 8th #1 single on the chart! That is one more than Shania Twain has had on the US Country charts!

http://www.examiner.com/x-13907-DC-GLBT-Arts-Examiner~y2009m11d9-Carrie-Underwood-and-Taylor-Swift-hit-it-big-on-the-charts



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"Would You Like Success with That?"
Restaurant jobs offer entrees into many rewarding careers
Published:  November 8, 2009
By Julia Hollister

What do Madonna, Brad Pitt, Jay Leno, Sharon Stone, Shania Twain, Jennifer Hudson, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and Olympic medalist Carl Lewis have in common? They all worked in the fast-food industry before becoming famous.

Madonna worked as a waitress for Dunkin Donuts, and Pitt dressed as a crazy chicken while employed by El Pollo Loco. Carl Lewis credits the work ethic he learned at McDonald’s for helping lay a foundation for his career, and Shania Twain says she "learned tons about the meaning of service there." Burger King rewarded its former employee, Jennifer Hudson, with free food for life when she mentioned the chain after her Oscar win for ‘Dreamgirls’ in 2007.

According to the California Restaurant Association, 32 percent of adults received their first job experience in a restaurant. In fact, the restaurant industry is the nation’s second-largest employer, after government.

"California’s restaurants employ 1.4 million people," states Kearsten Shepherd, spokeswoman for the CRA. "And one of the things that attract potential employees to the fast-food segment is the flexibility of the job. It’s not your basic 9-to-5 workplace."

http://www.jobjournal.com/thisweek.asp?artid=2808



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The CMA Awards: They're important -- really

Wednesday night's Country Music Assn. Awards are a model of consistency. A look at the nominees for male and female vocalist of the year reveals that eight of the 10 in the running are holdovers from last year. As for the show's top prize in the entertainer of the year field, four of the last five years the trophy has gone to Kenny Chesney.

Change to the Nashville music community does not happen overnight. But sales certainly do, and the CMAs pack a mighty wallop. 

The CMAs had a massive effect on last year's pop chart, according to figures released earlier this year by Nielsen SoundScan. In the week following the awards show, genre sales were up more than 80% in three of the last seven years.

Last year, country sales were up 89%, thanks, of course, to the sensation known as Taylor Swift. Her "Fearless" was released during the week of the CMA Awards, and it went on to sell 592,000 copies in its opening frame. With a little boost from Swift, overall album sales -- country and non-country -- were up 27%.

The lowest post-CMA sales bump occurred in 2007. That year, the Eagles' "Long Road Out of Eden" was released the week prior to the CMAs, and had already sold 710,000 copies by the time the sales from the CMAs were tallied. More typical was 2006, when country sales were up about 45%, driven by new releases from Keith Urban and Sugarland.

The 89% sales burst driven by Swift last year was the second-highest post-CMA sales bump. Only one artist helped drive a greater increase, and that was the singer who helped open the crossover doors for Swift: Shania Twain.

Twain's "Greatest Hits" package, released in 2004, inspired, in part, a 92% post-CMA jump for country music when it sold 530,000 copies in its debut week. Country superstar Toby Keith also had a greatest hits album that week in 2004, which sold more than 400,000 copies in its own right.

Don't necessarily expect such high numbers this year. There wasn't a blockbuster country release today;  the biggest new country album was released last week with Carrie Underwood's "Play On." She'll be hosting and performing on the CMAs, and the album will debut on Wednesday's chart with somewhere around 300,000 copies sold, acccording to Billboard.

-- Todd Martens

http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/music_blog/2009/11/the-cma-awards-how-important-to-the-music-biz-are-they.html



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Review: 'Jessie James,' Jessie James

(Mercury Records)

OK, I admit it. New country-music sex kitten Jessie James' audacious Hot For Teacher-style video for My Cowboy got me interested in this record. But I was intrigued, too, by the clever, brazen lift of Bon Jovi's Dead or Alive, which matched the moxie of the steamy image.

James' debut is a rocking, modern effort that instantly recalls Katy Perry, Alanis Morissette and Shania Twain on the opening track, Wanted. It's a song that doesn't have any time for Taylor Swift-like sweetness, indecision or sexual discovery. The production is dance-floor slick: Bullet thrills with the same irresistible groove as Romeo Void's Never Say Never with a dash of Republica's Ready to Go, as well as Fergie and Gwen Stefani.

Country music's been going in this direction for a long time, but it's still a shock to hear hip-hop loops, samplers and triggers on these pop numbers, or to hear so little twang in James' Avril Lavigne impression on I Look So Good (Without You). It's no surprise to see that Perry and Kara DioGuardi have hands in the songwriting.

James shines equally well on quieter material such as Burnin' Bridges, which brings it all back home -- if only briefly. That might as well be a Poe homage on Psycho Girlfriend and Guilty.

A hip, sassy record that country traditionalists will hate.

Hector Saldaña

http://www.mysanantonio.com/entertainment/69720362.html



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Nashville musicians join Rock Band competition Nov. 17

Four top Nashville session musicians will be competing and performing at the Rock Band™ Vandy competition this Tuesday, Nov. 17.

The Rock Band™ competition will take place at 8 p.m. in the Student Life Center Ballroom. The competition will benefit the W.O. Smith Nashville Community Music School, which provides music lessons to children from low-income families.   The competition was organized to follow a visit to campus from Eran Egozy, co-founder and chief technical officer of Harmonix Music Systems.  Egozy who developed Rock Band™, and its predecessor, Guitar Hero, will speak at 4:30 in the Student Life Center at Vanderbilt, 310 25th Ave. S. The talk will address creativity, the business of video games and the cultural influence of interactive music-inspired games. It is free and open to the public.
 
The session musicians playing on Tuesday night will include Dennis Holt on drums, Chris Rodriguez and Jeff King on guitar, and Duncan Mullins on bass. Between them, these four musicians have played with such well-known artists as Taylor Swift, Hank Williams Jr., Amy Grant, Kenny Rogers, Brooks and Dunn, Shania Twain, and Reba McEntire.
 
The Nashville musicians will kick off the competition, setting a bar for other competitors. The musicians will also bring their own instruments, giving those in attendance a chance to compare their Rock Band™ performance with the real thing.
 
The competition winner receives a Rock Band™ game (software and gear); door prizes include a Rock Band™ game and a guitar.

Contact: Paula Cleggett, (202) 216-4368

http://sitemason.vanderbilt.edu/news/campusnews/2009/11/16/nashville-musicians-join-rock-band-competition-nov-17.99741

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There is a place on Google where you can find a list of famous people who have been homeless for a time.

People like Daniel Craig of James Bond fame, who slept on a park bench as a struggling actor; Shania Twain, who, at 13, spent time in a Toronto shelter with her family, and... well, hello.

Here's someone you might have actually met. "Tom Jackson... singer-actor (streets of Winnipeg, Canada)."

http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/opinion/columnists/how-a-homeless-man-saved-tom-jackson-70262477.html

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Eat green

By Kathryn Holm
For Pacific Daily News

What do Abraham Lincoln, Alicia Silverstone, Albert Schweitzer, Albert Einstein, Aristotle, Billy Idol, Brooke Shields, Brad Pitt, Buddha, John Lennon, Michael Jackson, Mr. Rogers, Shania Twain, Susan B. Anthony, Clark Kent, Plato, Vanna White, Voltaire, Mr. Spock, Mark Twain, John Feldmann, Hayley Mills, Brandy, and Oliver Stone have in common? If you guessed they were or are all vegetarian, you are correct.

Vegetarianism appears to be a growing movement. According to one statistic, approximately 3.2 percent of the U.S. population is vegetarian, 0.5 percent is vegan, but 10 percent say they largely follow a vegetarian diet. That is close to 23 million Americans, more people than have diabetes. In many countries around the world, eating a plant-based diet is even more common than it is in the United States.

So what does it mean to be a vegetarian? There are a number of types of vegetarians, but typically it is defined as the practice of not eating meat, poultry, fish, or seafood, or their by-products, with or without the use of dairy products or eggs. A lacto-ovo-vegetarian diet is the most common and excludes all meat, poultry, and fish or seafood -- but includes milk and eggs. A pesco-vegetarian also includes fish, a pollo vegetarian includes chicken, and a vegan excludes all animal products -- including milk, eggs, and honey. Reasons for choosing a vegetarian diet include animal rights, environmental, religious and various health reasons.

Ruthe Paeste, owner of the vegan restaurant Dharma Café, says she was motivated to become a vegetarian three years ago out of a desire to live a healthier lifestyle free of chemicals.

"Nowadays, the chemicals that they put in the food, it's kind of scary," says Paeste.

"People are dying at an early age. ... Eating more vegetables and fruit (allows you to) live longer, better and stronger."

Many people today believe eating meat is important for good health or is necessary to meet nutrient needs. However, in July of this year the American Dietetic Association stated in its position statement that appropriately planned vegetarian diets "are healthful, nutritionally adequate, and may provide health benefits in the prevention and treatment of certain diseases."

A vegetarian diet is one way to make your heart happier and healthier, some studies indicate. A combination of five prospective studies of 76,172 men and women compared death rates of vegetarians with non-vegetarians. Of this group 27,808 did not eat any meat or fish. There was on average a 10.6-year follow-up.

The study showed that mortality from ischemic heart disease was 24 percent lower in vegetarians than in non-vegetarians. The lower mortality, or death rate, from this was greater at the younger age groups. In comparison with regular meat-eaters, the study showed mortality from ischemic heart disease was 20 percent lower in occasional meat eaters, 34 percent lower in people who ate fish but not meat, 34 percent lower in lacto-ovo-vegetarians and 26 percent lower in vegans.

A vegetarian diet also may reduce the risk of many cancers. In a study of Seventh-day Adventist men and women, a largely vegetarian population group, compared to their neighbors, author Gary Fraser reports, "Overall, the rate of invasive colon cancer was lower by 33 percent, that of stomach cancer by 59 percent, invasive bladder cancer by 61 percent, kidney cancer by 69 percent, lung cancer by 80 percent, and pancreatic cancer by 34 percent." There is also evidence that both red and white meats significantly increase the risk of colon cancer, and probably also prostate, bladder, and ovarian cancers.

Whether you are vegetarian or not, you might consider learning more about how a vegetarian diet can benefit you personally and try some meatless options available at local restaurants. You could also try eating meat-free for one meal each day, for an entire day, or throughout the month.

Kathryn Holm, RD, LD, CLC, is a registered dietician at Guam Memorial Hospital and community partner with the Get Healthy Guam Coalition. For more on the coalition, visit www.gethealthyguam.org

Additional Facts
To find out how to set up your own Model U.N. at your school, visit the official Model U.N Web site at http://cyberschoolbus.un.org/modelun/index.asp; or
Contact Sophie Brindejonc at www.facebook.com/home.php#/pages/AOLG-Model-UN/135724674701?ref=ts

http://www.guampdn.com/article/20091118/LIFESTYLE/911180321
911180321%3Ftemplate%3Dprintart&c25=Hagatna%3Aguampdn&c28=1&c29=1&c37=20091117&c48=no%20segments&c50=Newspaper&pid=Eat%20green%28200911180300%29&pidt=1&oid=javascript%3Avoid%28null%29%3B&ot=A&oi=266&s=1024x768&c=32&j=1.3&v=Y&k=Y&bw=804&bh=604&ct=lan&hp=N&[AQE]

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Apple may face copyright abuse action over liyric-serving Apps

For all the talk of app store disapprovals for no good reason, sometimes Apps make it into the store that perhaps shouldn’t be there - take, for example, some of the lyrics-serving Apps, which face friction from the copyright police.

A case in point from Music Ally this morning - a new series of 99-cent ‘Sing Along With’ Apps from developer, Apptia.

These Apps don’t mention the names of the artists whose song lyrics are included within the applications, and nor has the developer paid for use of the copyrighted music, the report explains.

Artists include Shania Twain, Phil Collins, Lady Gaga and Nickelback.

“The app blurbs make it clear that they’re not officially connected (and thus presumably not officially licensed) with the artists,” Music Ally informs, also observing that Apple may face some complaint from its music label partners for offering these Apps up for sale, should copyright deals not have been reached between the developer and the relevant song publishers for use within the applications.

http://www.9to5mac.com/lyric_copyright_apps_30124

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Rihanna: 'I listened to all the divas'

Rihanna has opened up about her admiration for her idols as a young girl.

In an interview with Rolling Stone, the popstar mentioned music icons Mariah Carey, Whitney Houston, Celine Dion and Shania Twain as her sources of inspiration.

The 21-year-old said: "I used to listen to all the divas. 'Vision Of Love' is my favorite Mariah Carey song, but they just all seemed so powerful. I remember just watching the videos, and that’s what really sold me."

http://www.digitalspy.com/music/news/a189026/rihanna-i-listened-to-all-the-divas.html



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Some Palin fans waited 26 hours to see her in Tempe

The late Johnny Horton's voice sang "North to Alaska" through loudspeakers at Costco in Tempe while a least a thousand people waited in line for the arrival of former Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin.

Then her fans heard "Barracuda" by the rock band Heart, and Shania Twain's "She's Not Just a Pretty Face."

Suddenly Palin walked in, carrying her baby, Trig, and the crowd waved and cheered, "Hi, Sarah!"

Finally she was shaking hands, smiling and autographing copies of her book, "Going Rogue."

The first man in line waited more than 26 hours to spend a few seconds with Palin. Drew Sweatte of Palm Springs, Calif., arrived at 8 a.m. Monday and later spent the entire night outside.

"It's my birthday present to myself," said Sweatte, who turned 23 on Tuesday.

"I've got a cooler here full of food and had to buy some lawn chairs and warmer socks, and I've got my kangaroo-skinned coat," Sweatte said. "I'd sit far longer and in far cooler temperatures to wait for Sarah Palin."

He likes Palin, he said, "for being consistent and standing up for her values. I continue to pray for her and her family, if I don't break down in tears."

Palin kicked off her book tour Nov. 19 in Michigan. Palin is scheduled for 15 more signings across the country in the next 10 days.

A spokesman for Palin's book tour says the crowd won't be allowed to take photos of Palin, but can pose with her and buy copies later from a Web site. Maurice and Judy Mallette of Scottsdale, who wore sweat suits and lounged in camping chairs, said they started waiting in line around 11:30 a.m. Monday.

"She's our future, our savior," Judy Mallette said. "We're here to encourage her to run for president."

Palin has said the 2012 presidential election isn't on her radar.

Number 25 in line was Ellie Brewer, a retired college teacher from Apache Junction.

"She's my hero," said Brewer, who added that her last hero was John F. Kennedy.

"She's honest, she's strong, she's real, she doesn't lie," said Brewer, who hopes Palin becomes the first woman president.

Carmen Regan and Diane Regan, sisters from Mesa, both had books signed.

"I was walking away and she asked if I was going to school," said Diane, who told Palin she was working toward a master's in social work at Arizona State University.

"She said, 'We need more people like you in the world,' "" Diane said. "It made my day."

http://www.azcentral.com/news/articles/2009/12/01/20091201tr-Palin01-ON.html



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Court seizes more than $12,000 from concert promoter

A Houston promoter — accused of swindling nearly $56,000 from the city of Brownsville and a local developer for bogus concerts — has not been able to access about $12,500 in a bank account following his arrest in July.

Cameron County District Attorney Armando Villalobos intends to hold on to the seized funds in the bank account of 33-year-old Hiro Jamal Hariram pending resolution of two felony theft charges against Hariram.

The funds would then be applied toward restitution to the city for the $9,562 that Hariram is accused of stealing in booking fees for a Boyz II Men concert. The funds would not be sufficient to make restitution for the $46,000 that he is accused of stealing from Brownsville developer Richard Hope of Hope Properties, for concerts promoted to feature Garth Brooks, Shania Twain and the Jonas Brothers.

"The complication in this particular case is that the money seized does not compensate the other alleged victim in this case, Mr. Hope, and the DA’s office will not agree to any leniency without full restitution to all victims," the DA’s office said in a written statement.

The DA’s office has not presented the case to a grand jury for possible indictment, but state prosecutors and Hariram’s attorney, Michael L. Young, have been attempting to reach an agreement on the resolution of the criminal charges.

"We have been in contact with the district attorney, but we haven’t been able to come to any agreement," Young said.

However, Young noted, "None of the funds (in the bank accounts) involved represent any of the monies paid by the city or by Mr. Hope."

"The funds (in the back accounts) were predominantly from my client’s wife’s business, which I believe is medical sales. We’ve not been informed about the legal process that the city or DA’s office has followed to deny my client access to this money, but it doesn’t appear that the proper procedures have been followed by anyone involved," Young maintained.

The Brownsville Police Department secured a warrant on July 23 from Judge Menton Murray to search Hariram’s JPMorgan Chase & Co. bank account. And police secured a seizure warrant on July 29 from District Judge Elia Cornejo-Lopez to secure the funds, according to the police department.

"We had the accounts frozen," police Chief Carlos Garcia said in a written statement. "We will wait for the court to resolve this matter as part of the criminal case. The case is in the hands of the DA’s office," Garcia added.

Villalobos’ office noted in its statement that in order for the money to be used as restitution "an agreement must be reached between the parties, in this case, the city of Brownsville, the DA’s office, and the defendant."

"The case is still active and we hope to have an idea of which direction this case will go before the end of the year," according to the DA’s office.

The city hopes that it will get its hands on the money.

"We’re hoping that the money is returned to the city," City Attorney Mark E. Sossi said.

Sossi filed a civil lawsuit against Hariram in July in state district court alleging breach of contract and seeking to recover the money that the city paid Hariram. The civil lawsuit is still pending and a trial date has not been set, yet. The case is in the 357th District Court before Judge Leonel Alejandro.

Hariram, out of jail on bonds totaling $30,000, maintained in July that the city’s concert had to be cancelled because the city didn’t make payments in time and that the Hope concerts were not scheduled to take place until September and later. Hariram also said that the issues with the city had affected his ability to secure acts.

http://www.brownsvilleherald.com/news/concert-105869-court-promoter.html



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Whole lotta collectin' going on
Gretchen Wilson star of collection of autographed items
By Scott Bandle
Tuesday, December 8, 2009 9:25 AM CST

J. Pete Racher proudly shows off a special room in his North County house. He has dedicated it to his favorite country music singer - Gretchen Wilson, the self-proclaimed "Redneck Woman."

Dozens of her autographed photographs and several autographed guitars fill the room. One memento is a self-portrait that she created for an interview with Blender Magazine. A prized photograph shows Racher and Wilson standing together after a concert. He even has her signature on a can of Kraft Easy Cheese.

"A friend of mine got that for me," Racher, 83, said. "It's all kind of crazy, I guess. I really like her music, though."

Racher's fascination with Wilson started when he thought she was born in Pocahontas, Mo. instead of Pocahontas, Ill.

"My wife and I had 22 acres of land in Pocahontas, Mo.," Racher said with a laugh. "We heard that she was from Pocahontas and we were so excited. We thought we had a country star living near us."

Then, they found out that Wilson was born in the Illinois version of Pocohontas, 40 miles east of St. Louis.

"We were disappointed, but from then I started to listen to her music and I really liked it," he said. "I've seen her in concert twice and I've met her. She's very nice."
The Gretchen Wilson memorabilia is just part of his vast collection of autographed items from dozens of country music stars.

"I've lost count of the pictures," Racher said. "I own about 100 guitars. Sometimes I've looked at it all and I think, 'Dang! What am I going to do with all of this?' It's worth it. I've had a tremendous amount of fun with this collection. I've made friends with other collectors."

Racher owns autographed photos from Shania Twain, Miranda Lambert, Kenny Chesney, Taylor Swift, members of Sugarland, and Carrie Underwood, to name a few. Miley Cyrus, Martina McBride, Toby Keith, and Alan Jackson are among some of the signatures on his guitars. He also has one guitar signed by the Rolling Stones and another by the Eagles.

Country music always has been part of his life. He used to play the guitar before arthritis made it too difficult.

"I love it," he said, "but I also love other kinds of music. On one of our first dates, I took my wife to see the opera La Boheme."

He and his wife, Mary Ann, were married for 56 years when she died on Aug. 19.

"She liked the collection," he said. "She just didn't want me to put it on display through the whole house."

His children are used to his hobbies. Racher also has a large collection of beer steins.

The country music collection is relatively new, Joe Racher Jr. said.

"That's something my Dad got into during the past few years," he said. "It's fine with us. It makes him happy."

Joe Jr. and the rest of the family will inherit his father's collection. Racher has three children, 10 grandchildren and 18 great-grandchildren with four on the way.

"I'm going to give most of it to them, but I also give away a lot of my things," he said. "My granddaughter goes to Incarnate Word Academy. Last year, I donated two of my guitars for a school auction. One of them raised about $1,400. I've had fun with them, but it's nice when they can make money to help people."

http://suburbanjournals.stltoday.com/articles/2009/12/08/south/news/1209sc-racher0.txt



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Taylor Is the New Shania
Even though no amount of pitch correction could have saved her opening performance at the CMAs, and despite her uncomfortable attempts at sultriness during that same performance, the country music establishment is betting all its chips on this Taylor Swift person. And for good reason—we hear she's probably the most successful country music artist of the decade, a feat made even more remarkable by her not sounding remotely country. She's cashing in on the trail blazed 10 years ago by Shania Twain one that completes the goal set by the advent of the Nashville Sound half a century ago. Developed as a reaction to country music's shrinking influence alongside rock and pop, the Music Row machinery has measured success ever since in terms of crossover potential. With Swift, they finally got that amorphous nothing we thought we heard in Shania Twain, and this time on every station in every format. Feels good to see a plan through. MATT SULLIVAN

http://www.nashvillescene.com/2009-12-10/news/the-year-in-music-ear-to-the-ground/



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Check out the tattoo of Shania.

Rock fan's tattoo record attempt
http://news.bbc.co.uk/local/nottingham/hi/people_and_places/arts_and_culture/newsid_8404000/8404413.stm

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Best Of 2009: Part 1

February
Taylor Swift notches the first country crossover No. 1 in the Pop Songs chart's 16-year history, as former Country Songs No. 1 "Love Story" rises 3-1 (Feb. 28). Among country hits, "Story" had been tied for highest Pop Songs peak with Shania Twain's "You're Still the One" (No. 3, 1998) ...

http://www.billboard.com/column/chartbeat/best-of-2009-part-1-1004053763.story#/column/chartbeat/best-of-2009-part-1-1004053763.story

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The Decades Show ready to spread holiday cheer


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The 201 Greatest Singles of the Decade, Part 3: #160-#141

by Dan Milliken
December 16, 2009

159 Shania Up

#159
“She’s Not Just a Pretty Face”
Shania Twain
2003
Peak: #9

Her motivation for her music has always been escapism, but I love the personal touch she slips into this one. Her late mother is the one who she’s referring to when she sings “at night, she pumps gasoline.” – Kevin Coyne

http://www.countryuniverse.net/2009/12/16/the-201-greatest-singles-of-the-decade-part-3-160-141/



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“Miss Julia Renews Her Vows”

by Ben Steelman

Just got the advance copy of “Miss Julia Renews Her Vows” by Ann B. Ross, due out April 6 from Viking. Lots of Miss Julia fans will find it hard to wait.

The 11th novel in the popular North Carolina humor series finds the doyenne of Abbotsville preparing the wedding for Hazel Marie — just in time, because she’s about to have twins. (Fans will recall that Hazel Marie showed up at Miss Julia’s door in Novel No. 1, “Miss Julia Speaks Her Mind” with her child by Miss Julia’s scapegrace late husband, Lloyd. To her credit, Miss Julia took the poor girl in and all but adopted Little Lloyd as her own — but only after some rather tart comments to herself.)

Anyway, on top of this, out of the blue, Miss Julia’s husband Sam decides that they ought to attend “marriage enrichment” sessions. Now, Miss Julia and Sam — her longtime, doggedly loyal family lawyer, only tied the knot a few books ago in “Miss Julia Meets Her Match.” She doesn’t think they need enriching — and she does NOT care for the therapist who’s leading the sessions.

But, as always, there are other distractions. Francie Pitts is back in town at that fancy retirement center — and now she claims she’s been attacked by Etta Mae Wiggins. (She identified her attacker by her perfume: Shania Twain by Stetson. Miss Julia likes Etta Mae (even though she suspects Etta Mae had her eyes on Sam at one point)  and KNOWS she couldn’t have done it, so she bails her out of jail and sets out to “clear the air.” (A very good publicist’s pun.)

If you haven’t encountered Miss Julia before, her adventures are astoundingly popular, especially with women readers. Her creator, Ann B. Ross,  is a native of Hendersonville, N.C. (a town very much like Abbotsville) and she’s taught literature at the University of North Carolina at Asheville. You should check out her Web site at www.missjulia.com.

http://books.blogs.starnewsonline.com/11032/miss-julia-renews-her-vows/



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The 201 Greatest Singles of the Decade, Part 5: #120-#101
by Dan Milliken
December 18, 2009

159 Shania Up

#105
“Up!”
Shania Twain
2003
Peak: #12

Twain’s incessantly peppy poppy positivity fully concentrated. – KC

http://www.countryuniverse.net/2009/12/18/the-201-greatest-singles-of-the-decade-part-5-120-101/



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The 201 Greatest Singles of the Decade, Part 6: #100-81
by Dan Milliken
December 19, 2009

99 Shania Come On Over

#99
I’m Holdin’ On to Love (To Save My Life)
Shania Twain
2000
Peak: #4

A terribly catchy slice of country-pop that, true to Twain, doesn’t sacrifice authenticity for appeal – Twain simply embodies the snappy energy that pulses through the song. – Tara Seetharam

http://www.countryuniverse.net/2009/12/19/the-201-greatest-singles-of-the-decade-part-6-100-81/



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......A glance back at the UK albums chart on January 1, 2000 shows the top slot occupied by Shania Twain's crossover smash Come On Over which became the biggest set in history for a female artist with 35m sales worldwide. No other artist has come anywhere close to that number since.

http://www.californiachronicle.com/articles/yb/139162665

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What does Susan Boyle have in common with Taylor Swift, Josh Groban, Shania Twain and the Beatles?

The unlikely British talent show runner-up-turned-pop megastar has delivered the perfect storm of a year-end album with her debut, I Dreamed a Dream, one that is showing signs of turning into 2009's biggest seller.

In doing so, she's following the lead of other acts this decade in releasing fourth-quarter albums that became runaway hits by providing consumers with music that has cross-generational appeal - making it ideal for gift-giving - and that draws music fans who still favor CDs over downloads.

"In the last six weeks of the year, if you can find the right kind of artist who appeals to the consumer who still purchases albums in great quantities, then you can hit that sort of sweet spot," said Keith Caulfield, director of charts for Billboard. "You've found something that's the perfect Christmas gift for mums, grandmas, aunts and so forth."

Last year, that was Taylor Swift's then-new Fearless, which is still the top seller of 2009. Swift's album has sold 2.7 million copies this year, while Boyle's has piled up a three-week total of 1.8 million, according to Nielsen SoundScan. In the sales race, Boyle also trails Michael Jackson's six-year-old Number Ones hits collection, which has sold 2.2 million copies this year.

Boyle's success this season surprised some people in the music business, with first-week sales of more than 700,000 copies spurred by tens of millions of YouTube hits for her appearances on Britain's Got Talent, the U.K. version of American Idol.

Sales of her CD have remained, topping 500,000 in each of the two succeeding weeks.

There's no question that I Dreamed a Dream has become the defining pop moment of the 2009 holiday season. The big question is how long Boyle's appeal will extend after all the gifts have been unwrapped.

The Associated Press

http://www.concordmonitor.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20091222/ENTERTAINMENT/912220351

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