Pop: Sleeve Notes

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The Independent Culture
AN EDITORIAL penned by an editor-in-chief of a hip hop magazine claims Fugees' rapper Wyclef Jean threatened the editor of a competitor with a gun. Allen Gordon, from Rap Pages magazine, says that Wyclef didn't admit to pulling a gun and argues his body language said the contrary. He says that, after asking the rapper three times if he threatened Blaze editor Jesse Washington over an LP review he planned to run, Wyclef Jean shrugged and nodded the fourth time. It wouldn't stand up to journalistic integrity never mind the law - but was evidence for the editor to declare: "I can't let Wyclef get away with something that actually did happen." A spokesperson for Wyclef said that his shrugged response was not an admittance but a reaction to having already answered the question repeatedly.

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GERI HALLIWELL, aka Ginger Spice - or is it the other way round - has appointed Brits executive producer Lisa Anderson as her manager. Anderson has never been involved in artist management before and it is thought Geri's music career will not be a priority.

Meanwhile, Virgin Records has got tough on the tabloid exposes on the Spice babies. Following an article in the Daily Mail which claimed the reported pregnancies had sparked fury among record label executives, it has served lawsuits on the Daily Mail and The Mirror. Virgin has accepted an apology from The Sun.

THE MUSIC festivals scrambled for a crowd-pulling slant this year and, some would say, they quite simply failed to come up smelling of roses. But a completely new festival might pull it off. The all-night "Location Apollo" concert will be staged on a specially constructed stage in the shadow of the Jodrell Bank Space Observatory on 17 October. The performance is being held to promote the new Apollo fragrance. Acts include old skool hip hoppers Run DMC, along with Space and Republica, and the likes of Carl Cox, Danny Rampling and Judge Jules behind the decks.

Meanwhile, a band who benefited from the summer festivals, New Order, have been confirmed to play a New Year's Eve gig at London' s Alexandra Palace in the wake of their reunion after five years at last weekend's Reading Festival. New Order have truly come full circle, as little has been heard from them since they stormed off stage at Reading Festival in 1993, claiming that they had succumbed to business quarrels and the usual artistic differences.

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THE CHART SHOW'S executive producer Gayle Screene has confirmed reports in Melody Maker that the show may continue. It's original Saturday morning slot has been given over to Ant and Dec's SMTV://Live. Gayle Screene said: "We are just finishing stuff off this week. We are talking to various people about the show and it's quite commercially sensitive. What is for certain is that it won't be on at that time of the day."

WHO COULD have predicted that Madonna would find a passion for town planning? Well, it would seem that she has, the former Material Girl having recently filed a law suit against the YMCA in an attempt to try and stop it from building a high-rise residential tower near the Lincoln Center in New York. Madonna claims that the building creates a "hazard for me and my child" and is using the recent fall of scaffolding at a Times Square high- rise renovation as grounds for her suit.

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FORMER EURYTHMIC and award-winning producer Dave Stewart is following on the heels of David Bowie with the launch of his own website (Davestewart.com). The site will be the first to offer Stewart's new album, aptly called Sly-fi, over a month before it's first official release dates. The site is also hosting a monthly Sly-Fi TV special, which will have a kooky collage of video and art, featuring guests ranging from Lou Reed and Bob Dylan to Demi Moore and late LSD guru, Timothy Leary.

Out in cyberspace, Geffen Records is also offering free downloads of the title track from Hole's forthcoming album "Celebrity Skin" (www.geffen.com/hole)

Jennifer Rodger

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