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Brushbranch/Surfdog, EPC EnterprisesOne of this year's most unexpected Christmas albums has been Happy Xmas by Eric Clapton.  It includes one original tune, some obscure covers, and classics such as "Silent Night" and "White Christmas."  The rock legend explains that the project grew out of his love of Christmas songs...but the whole thing was his wife's idea.

"I do a Christmas playlist every year, different genres, either jazz or swing or modern rock," Clapton explains. "This last one, it was country, I think.  Which led my wife, Malia, to say, 'You should do a Christmas album.'"

That inspired Clapton to scour the internet, looking for offbeat holiday songs for the project, as well as for ideas on how to give legendary tunes like "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" and "Away in a Manger" a unique spin.  He's pleased with how the album came out, but admits it won't bother him if his fans don't like it.

"I do [my music] for me," he says. "And if I'm satisfied with what we've done...I mean, maybe this is not the right thing to say -- but I don't care if anybody else likes it.  If they do, that's icing on the cake, but for me, I've done something I'm really proud of."

While the legendary guitarist has certainly led a life filled with sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll, Clapton is the first to admit that he has a real sentimental appreciation for Christmas and its accompanying traditions.

"Christmas for me is snow, a roaring fire, a few chestnuts knocking about and a huge turkey," he admits. "My wife is an incredible cook, so she will lay on the best Christmas lunch.  And a perfect tree...I mean, all the classic things."

Visit for more details about Happy Xmas.

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ABC/Image Group LANote to haters: Pink and her husband Carey Hart do not need your unsolicited parenting advice.

After Hart was criticized for posting a photo of himself on a motorbike with the couple's one-year-old son Jameson sitting in front him, Pink hit back with a sarcastic Instagram post.

Sharing a photo of Jameson with chocolate on his face and hands, she wrote, “Chocolate is good for babies right? Help me Instagram, we can’t possibly parent without you.”

One Instagram follower commented on the post, continuing to question Hart’s judgment as a parent. The commenter wrote, “Sarcasm I love as I am [sarcastic] too but with your husband being in the spotlight so often with his complete lack of regard for proper care or concern at times with your kids, this comment isn't funny.”

The follower continued, "I love your music, your kids are beautiful but your husband, I'm sory [sic], lacks the responsibility your kids need in his care."

Pink fired back, asking the commenter what made them such an expert on the topic.

"Do you know my children? Are you aware of their development? Even better: what are your credentials in parenting expertise? Are you a perfect parent? S**t, are you even a parent?" Pink wrote.

“God bless your perfect path,” Pink concluded. “I have no interest in that myself. However, do check in from time to time to let us all know what other teachings you may have for us, oh perfect f****** stranger."

The singer also posted a blanket statement on Twitter, writing, "In the interest of saving internet space... this here is a Hart Family PSA. There is gonna be a s*** load of motorcycle riding, chocolate eating, fun having, and naked dance parties going on. Now we know."

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In March, Katy Perry will return to ABC as a judge on American Idol.  She's just posted a clip from the upcoming season, showing a crowd of contestants on stage during Hollywood Week, serenading her, Lionel Richie and Luke Bryan.  However, all their faces are blurred out, so you can't see who made it through in advance.

The most interesting part of the clip, though, is that the song the contestants are singing is Katy's brand-new holiday tune, "Cozy Little Christmas." 

"One of the BEST gifts of being an artist is when people joyfully sing back the lyrics that you wrote," she captioned the clip. "So excited to reveal the faces of these beautiful @AmericanIdol voices starting March 3rd on @abcnetwork."

As previously reported, American Idol will return to ABC Sunday night, March 3 with a two-hour episode starting at 8 p.m. ET.

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Getty Images For dcp via ABC/Emma McIntyre/AMA2018.jpgAttention, Taylor Swift stalkers: You'd better think twice about trying to get near her at one of her concerts. Rolling Stone reports that on Taylor's recently concluded Reputation stadium tour, she used facial-recognition software to I.D. possible stalkers in the audience. 

According to Rolling Stone, this took place at least once, at her May 18th show at the Rose Bowl.  Fans who stopped to watch rehearsal footage at a kiosk were unknowingly having their pictures taken.  According to concert security expert Mike Downing, those pictures were then transferred to a "command post" in Nashville, where they were cross-referenced with a database of Taylor's known stalkers, which number in the hundreds.

Dowing tells Rolling Stone, "Everybody who went by would stop and stare at [the kiosk], and the software would start working."

If you think this is overreaction, think again.  Taylor has so many stalkers that in October, a professor of psychology wrote an article about them for Psychology Today.

But even if there isn't a stalking problem, Rolling Stone reports the technology, in which Ticketmaster has invested, might be helpful by allowing certain fans to move through turnstiles quickly at events, without them having to stop and go through security.

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Mike ColucciBilly Joel doesn't turn 70 until 2019, but he's already planned his birthday party.

The Piano Man will usher in his seventh decade on May 9, 2019 by performing at New York's Madison Square Garden, the site of his monthly residency since 2014.  This performance will be Billy's 110th career performance at the legendary venue.

Citi cardmembers will get first crack at pre-sale tickets starting Monday, December 17 at 10 a.m. ET.   You can also get pre-sale tickets by registering for Ticketmaster's Verified Fan program; registration for that is now open, and the pre-sale starts on Wednesday, December 19.

Don't want to bother with all that?  Tickets go on sale to the general public December 21 at 10 a.m. ET via

In May of 2014, Billy celebrated his 65th birthday onstage at the Garden, where he welcomed guests like Jimmy Fallon and Howard Stern.  He told the crowd that night, "Welcome to my birthday party! I'm supposed to retire at this age... or at least not have the name 'Billy!'" 

Billy's frenemy Elton John has also done the Madison Square Garden birthday gig thing: He turned 60 onstage at the venue on March 25, 2007.

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Courtesy Rock and Roll Hall of FameStevie Nicks has just become the first woman ever to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame twice, and she's pretty happy about it.

In a tweet, the Fleetwood Mac frontwoman and rock goddess wrote, "I have a lot to say about this but I will save those words for later. For now I will just say, I have been in a band since 1968. To be recognized for my solo work makes me take a deep breath and smile. It's a glorious feeling."

A fellow female artist, Sheryl Crow, offered her congratulations on the good news, tweeting, "I can’t think of anyone more deserving to be in the #RRHF as a solo artist! I owe @StevieNicks everything! She has inspired me from the time I was a young girl and still does. Congratulations Belladonna!!"

Stevie's good friend, "A Thousand Miles" singer Vanessa Carlton, tweeted her regards both to Stevie and to the other woman who's being inducted this year, Janet Jackson.

"Stevie and Janet in one night? It’s too much," wrote Vanessa. "Congratulations Queens @JanetJackson @StevieNicks we bow down to thee in reverence and appreciation for your life’s work...which continues on and on well past this ceremony x."

Seems like the stars will be literally lining up to be the one to induct Stevie into the Hall during the March 29 ceremony in Brooklyn.

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ABC/Image Group LAOne lip-syncing Maryland mom may have embarrassed her son, but she impressed Kelly Clarkson.

Mandy Remmell and her 10-year-old son, Blake, were at a college basketball game Tuesday night when Remmell got caught on the “Fan Cam” jamming out to Kelly’s “Since U Been Gone.” She passionately lip synced the song into her cell phone as her son grew more and more mortified. He eventually pulled his hood over his face and slouched down in her seat but as long as the camera was on her, Remmell kept on singing.

After the Maryland Terrapins posted the video to their Twitter page, it went viral, eventually making its way to Kelly herself.  She retweeted the video Wednesday and wrote, “This is my kind of mama.”

In an interview with the Washington Post following her newfound internet fame, Remmell says she’s all about making laughs and memories with her son, even if he gets a little embarrassed sometimes.

“I think he’s recovered a little bit,” she says. “He’s also very excited, and he’s wondering now how viral it’s gone. He’s like, ‘How many likes do we have?’”

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Courtesy BillboardAs 2018 comes to a close, Camila Cabello is reflecting on her biggest moments this year.

The singer tells Billboard one of her most memorable moments was joining Taylor Swift for her Reputation tour.

“I've been a huge fan of Taylor Swift since I was like 13 years old,” she says. “And I know literally all of her songs. She was one of the people that really inspired me to start songwriting, and going on tour with her was a really full circle moment for me.”

She adds, “I also felt really at home because I kinda felt like a Swiftie, also. So I was just like, I belong here. I'm at a Taylor Swift concert, I'm so in my natural habitat.”

Another defining moment was releasing her debut self-titled album. She tells Billboard that in hindsight, she should’ve titled it Never Be the Same because of how life-changing it ended up being.

A third big moment for her in 2018 was getting to perform with her father during her first solo show in Mexico City. Though she sang all the time with her dad growing up, it was his first time singing in front of an audience.

“I felt so connected to my culture, and my roots, and my dad. It just meant a lot to me,” Camila says.

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Dick Clark ProductionsChristina Aguilera is set to ring in the new year live from New York’s Times Square.

The singer will be the headlining performer on Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest 2019, taking the stage in front of more than one million people just minutes before the ball drops. She first performed on the show in 2007.

Christina will be joined this year by Bastille, country duo Dan Shay and New Kids on the Block. Other artists performing during the West Coast celebration of the show include Camila Cabello, Halsey, Shawn Mendes, Bazzi, Dua Lipa, Charlie Puth, The Chainsmokers and more.

New Year’s Rockin’ Eve airs Monday, December 31, beginning at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.

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John Shearer/TAS18/Getty Images for TASRemember all those rumors earlier this year that Taylor Swift was filming her Reputation tour?  Not only was that true, we now know why.

Taylor kicked off her birthday -- she turns 29 today -- by revealing that Netflix will air a Reputation Stadium Tour concert special on New Year's Eve.  She also debuted the trailer for it.

"Today I finally get to show you something we’ve been working on for a while," Taylor wrote on her Instagram.  [T]he trailer for the Reputation Stadium Tour! The entire concert film will premiere on @netflix at 12:01AM PST December 31."

She goes on: "You made this tour so insanely fun for all of us on stage, and I’m really excited that we will have this memento of the memories we all made together this year. I also got to share the stage with such wildly talented people @camila_cabello, @charli_xcx, my band and dancers who shine so brightly in this film. You’re the best. Thank you for everything."

Taylor's recently wrapped Reputation stadium tour broke the record for the highest-grossing U.S. tour, according to Billboard, grossing more than any other U.S. trek since Billboard began tracking touring data in 1990.  That translates to just over $266 million in domestic earnings on sales of just over 2.07 million tickets, breaking the record set by The Rolling Stones in 2007, when they raked in $245 million from their A Bigger Bang tour.  But notably, the Stones took 70 shows to hit that dollar amount; Taylor did it in just 38.

Taylor also broke her own record for highest-grossing domestic tour by a woman: She'd previously set it in 2015 with her 1989 World Tour, which earned $181.5 million.

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Steve Granitz/Getty ImagesStevie Nicks has just made rock and roll history.

She's been named as one of the Rock Hall's Class of 2019 inductees, along with Janet Jackson, '80s new wave icons The Cure, British art-rockers Roxy Music, British alternative rockers Radiohead, '60s band The Zombies, and "Pour Some Sugar on Me" band Def Leppard.

So why is this historic?  Rock Hall President and CEO Greg Harris tells ABC Radio, "Stevie Nicks will be the first two-time female inductee into the Rock & Roll Hall of a member of Fleetwood Mac and now going in as a solo artist."

"There's a number of men that are in twice, but she is the first female to do that," he adds. "We're very excited and honored that this is the year."

Stevie, who's been eligible since 2006, and Def Leppard were also the top two vote-getters in the Hall's online fan poll.  As for Janet Jackson, she's been eligible since 2007 and has been nominated twice before.

"Janet was groundbreaking, and so many of today's artists owe a lot to Janet Jackson.  And it's appropriate that she's now in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame," says Harris.  He adds, "Her combination of, not just amazing vocals but visuals, in telling a story and taking a stand -- she's a strong personality and we're honored that she's in."

Stevie and Janet will receive their honors at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony, which will take place March 29 at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, and air on HBO later in the spring.

At this point, we don't know if Janet and Stevie will attend and/or perform, or who will induct them.  Stevie does have a break on that day, between her tour dates with Fleetwood Mac.

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Courrtesy Vevo/Big Hassle MediaAfter 25 years, The Backstreet Boys are still going strong with a new single, album and tour.  But in a new VEVO Originals piece, they admit they never could have lasted this long if they hadn't been able to find some balance in their lives.

During The Backstreet Boys: Their Bond, Breaking Points and Finding Balance, the guys recall the moments that made them realize there's more to life than just work.

"Brian's heart surgery kinda was like, 'Hello!,'" Kevin Richardson says of Brian Littrell's 1998 operation to correct a heart murmur. "That [was] a wake-up call." 

Kevin says it made him realize, "this group, this success -- that all can go away real quick if we don't find some kinda balance to reel this all in and make sure that everybody is O.K."

"I had, like, a 22% chance that I wouldn't wake up [from the operation]," Brian agrees. "I delayed my surgery twice so that we could have two different tours,  And I got managers screaming at me, going, 'Tickets are sold! You gotta keep it going!'"

"Talk about perspective, that's when I was like, 'OK, I have to start clawing my way out of this to develop something for me."

AJ McLean's wake-up; call? Going to rehab and having his daughter Ava.

"I could deal with my wife if I were to relapse. I could deal with you guys," AJ says. "But having a child who doesn't know [the difference] between being drunk Daddy and sober Daddy? That really messed with my head, a good way. Like, 'No! I wanna there and be a good father and be present.'"

But today, Kevin says, "As long as we're all healthy...and communicating and getting along...we know that we can be happy."

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Mike Marsland/WireImageThe Spice Girls have gotten fans worldwide excited about their upcoming reunion tour, even though so far, the only scheduled dates are in the U.K.  Victoria "Posh Spice" Beckham won't be joining the tour, which has led Mel B, aka Scary Spice, to say she'd be open to having a rotating group of stars -- like Katy Perry or Adele -- step in on some shows to take her place. But Emma "Baby Spice" Bunton isn't so sure about that.

"It would be lovely to see other artists maybe do something, but I don't know," Emma tells ABC Radio. "The thing is, the four of us we feel strong, we're ready, we're really looking forward to a Spice Girls show.  So I think that's gonna be enough for our fans."

Emma -- who you can watch tonight co-hosting ABC's Great American Baking Show: Holiday Edition -- says she and the rest of the group are thrilled that even though Victoria isn't involved, the tour dates are selling out and fans are even willing to travel across the pond to see them.

"Being here in America, I've met some fans and they're coming over to England to watch the show," she says. "And it's blown us away, and we can't thank everyone enough for their support."

And Emma wants to make it clear that, at least for her, this reunion isn't a cash grab.

"I'm doing this personally because I want my kids to see me onstage," she tells ABC Radio. "I want them to see the Spice Girls performing! Y'know, my eldest was literally four months when we performed last."

As for the possibility of U.S. shows, Emma says "I've got my fingers crossed...I'd love to tour all over." 

The Spice Girls tour dates get underway May 29 in Manchester, U.K. 

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Photo Courtesy of Elton JohnUnlike many of his peers, Elton John is famous for his love of current music and artists, and he's just teamed up with one of them to record a special track.

Elton has recorded a version of the song "Young Dumb and Broke" -- by 20-year-old Grammy-nominated R&B singer Khalid -- for Spotify Singles, which feature artists performing a new version of one of their big hits, and a cover version of a favorite track.  Khalid himself joined Elton for the track, which was recorded live at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace.

In a statement, Elton said, "I discovered Khalid's music a few years ago, and have been a fan ever since. We finally met when I played his home town of El Paso last year. It's a thrill to be a small part of any new artist's journey, and it's been wonderful to see his star continue to rise and rise."'

He adds, "'Young Dumb & Broke' is a fabulous song, one of my favorites and I'm really pleased that he liked my cover enough to contribute vocals."

Khalid posted a link to the track and tweeted, "this is so crazy Thank you so much @eltonofficial."

For his other Spotify Single, Elton recorded a new version of his classic tune "Bennie and the Jets."  Both are available for streaming and download now.

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Art Streiber/NBCKelly Clarkson, Andy Grammer and John Legend are among the stars who'll be ringing in 2019 on TV this December 31.

All three of them will be performing on NBC's New Year's Eve, which will be hosted live by Carson Daly, John's wife Chrissy Teigen and Leslie Jones. 

Also on the bill: the legendary Diana Ross, and Kelly's fellow Voice coach and good pal Blake Shelton.  In addition, Keith Urban will join the telecast live from Nashville, where he'll be performing at a special New Year's Eve event.

NBC's New Year's Eve airs December 31 from 10 p.m. ET/PT to 11pm ET/PT.  After a break for local news, the show returns from 11:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m.

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Rasmus Weng KarlsenLukas Graham wants to make sure you get home for the holidays.

The band has launched a new contest in celebration of their song “Love Someone,” which will send one lucky winner to visit a loved one this holiday season.

To enter, you just need to post a photo of you and/or your loved one on Instagram, tag the destination, name your current country of residence and explain why you should win. Top it off with the hashtag #whenyoulovesomeone and you’re all set.

The contest runs through December 17 and the winner will be chosen on or about December 19. Participants will be judged on the originality and emotiveness of their post. The winner will get a return flight to the destination tagged in their entry.

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ABC/Craig SjodinKaty Perry, Luke Bryan and Lionel Richie will once again be gracing your TV screens in 2019, as American Idol returns for its second season on ABC.

The show, once again hosted by Ryan Seacrest, will return Sunday, March 3, with a two-hour season premiere airing from 8 p.m. ET to 10 p.m. ET -- but we already know one contestant who made it to Hollywood.

During the CMA Awards last month, three contestants who auditioned but didn't get a golden ticket were given another chance to sing. Viewers voted for one of those three, Meghan Woods, to advance to the Hollywood Round.

Last year, just under 12 million viewers tuned into the March 11 premiere of the show's debut on ABC.   The finale, which saw Maddie Poppe crowned the winner of the competition, drew just under 10 million viewers.

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Jackson Lee/GC ImagesHe's ready for it.  According to Us Weekly, Taylor Swift's boyfriend Joe Alwyn is "very keen on proposing soon."

After dating the superstar for nearly two years, a source tells the magazine that the British actor -- who appears in the critically-acclaimed movie The Favourite -- wants to put a ring on it. 

"He wants to make it unforgettable and extremely special," dishes the source.  And there's no doubt that when the proposal arrives, Taylor will take the advice of her hit song "Love Story" and "just say yes."

“He’s her dream guy,” claims the insider, adding that if and when Joe pops the question, “Taylor’s going to be over the moon.”

Earlier this week, according to ELLE, Taylor attended the premiere and after-party for Joe's latest movie, Mary, Queen of Scots, but kept it low-key by not walking the red carpet or posing for pictures. 

The couple has been adamant about keeping their relationship under wraps, with Joe declining to talk about it in interviews he's been doing to promote his films.

In September, he told British Vogue, “I think we have been successfully very private and that has now sunk in for people…but I really prefer to talk about work.”

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ABC/Randy HolmesWhile it hasn't even been officially announced that Maroon 5 is performing at the Super Bowl halftime show in Atlanta on February 3, controversy is already brewing regarding the other artists who might appear onstage with Adam Levine and company.

In recent years, halftime headliners have welcomed guests as part of their shows: Katy Perry had Missy Elliott and Lenny Kravitz, for example.  Beyonce had Destiny's Child, Bruno Mars had the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Coldplay had Beyonce and Bruno.

But now, US Weekly is reporting that Maroon 5 is having "a lot of trouble finding guests" to perform with them during halftime.  The issue?  “No one wants to associate themselves with the NFL,” says a source, in light of its response to Colin Kaepernick and other players taking a knee to protest police brutality.

The source dishes that even Cardi B, who'll be in town and is featured on their smash single "Girls Like You," hasn't agreed to perform...yet. 

“She’s been going back and forth, but it’s a no right now,” says the source. 

In addition to Cardi, many of Maroon 5's other collaborators have also been big-name rappers, who are likely to sympathize with Kaepernick's cause.

Stay tuned.

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Peter LindberghAs awards season keeps rolling along, Lady Gaga is on a roll herself.

The singer has received a nod for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role in a Motion Picture for her role in A Star Is Born at the 25th Annual Screen Actors Guild Awards.  The movie itself leads the SAG Awards nominations with four, including Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture.

The SAG Awards are seen as a major indicator of the Oscar nominations, since its voting body has the most overlap with that of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

As IndieWire notes, earlier this year, 15 SAG nominees went on to be nominated for acting Oscars, and the four eventual SAG winners in the acting categories went on to win Oscars, too.  This bodes well for Gaga snagging an Oscar nomination in the coming weeks.

As previously reported, Gaga is also up for a Golden Globe for her role as struggling singer-turned-star Ally.

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