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The Last Word: Thanksgiving Edition

amywinehouse

Happy Turkey Day, folks. With everybody thinking about Thanksgiving leftovers, football, and the challenge of getting through the busiest shopping day of the year in one piece, I figured I’d switch up and try a different Word for this week. Trust me, it was a busy week, but I’m saving the best of the best for next week.  Condolences go out to Diana Ross and her family regarding the singer’s father, who died at his home on Tuesday (Nov. 20). And with that said…. here is the Thankful Edition of the Last Word for the week ending Nov. 23, 2007. Jackson Family Considers ’08 Reunion TourFirst and foremost, I am thankful for my family. And since Thanksgiving is all about family, what better way to start things off than to mention a possible reunion tour of one of the most famous clans in music, the Jacksons.  Access Atlanta reports that Leonard Rowe, a concert promoter who says he promoted Michael Jackson’s Off The Wall tour during the late ’70s/early ’80s, claims to have met with Joe’s kids, including Janet, to discuss the probability of hitting the road. “His brothers are ready. Janet is ready. But the motor of that car that makes the car run, isn’t just yet,” Rowe reportedly told Access Atlanta. “In April of this year, I flew out to Las Vegas and met with them all and he told me, ‘Let’s look at ’08.’ We wanted to go this year, but [Michael] said it would take a lot of preparation. He didn’t say no.” Let’s hope Michael gets involved. Having all the Jacksons on one stage would be the event of the year. I would definitely borrow, steal or sell whatever I needed to get good seats. And with all the legal drama Michael has, it wouldn’t hurt to get the family conditioned for another recording breaking trek.  Now that would be something to give thanks for. Erykah Badu’s Gangster Approach to the Message BoardsI’m thankful for Erykah Badu’s gangsta, since this past week she flipped out on the Okayplayer message boards. The singer got intimate with fans as she reminisced over being drunk on Everclear, the story behind the term neo-soul and the probability of a collaboration with rapper Nas.  In addition to commenting on whether or not she watches courtroom shows like the People’s Court and Judge Mathis, Badu was sarcastic and deep on other topics, in addition to giving her take on who would she would rather fight, Alicia Keys, Lauryn Hill or Jill Scott. “Well let’s see….Alicia seem like she a ‘face scratcher’ so imma pass,” Badu advised. “Jill will beat the s**t out a ni**a so I’m straight. I’ll go [a] round with L-Boogie though. We in the same weight class and if I train for a few months, I just might knock the Zion out that ass….” Sounds like it would be an interesting bout. But considering the mindstate L-Boogie has been in lately, she may pull off the upset. What do you think? Who should Badu go toe to toe with? Would she be able to hold her own against any of these women? And would anybody be willing to put money on the outcome of whichever fight she gets into? Just another scenario to think on.  Alicia Keys and Beyonce Make the AMAs MemorableI’m thankful for Alicia Keys, who brought reggae back at the American Music Awards. Hands down Miss Keys had the best performance of the night, with all-star cameos from Junior Reid, Chaka Demus & The Pliers and Beenie Man. Add to that, a few dance moves from the piano woman as well as her latest album As I Am becoming her forth consecutive release to debut at number one on the Billboard charts, and Keys has as much to be thankful for as me. And while we’ve got the AMAs on the brain, I gotta express my thankfulness to Beyonce’s open-mindedness in letting country music group Sugarland take a stab at her hit song “Irreplaceable.” I like Bey as much as anybody, but I couldn’t quite get with the country remix. So who’s bright idea was it to green light the mash-up? Apparently, Sugarland’s publicist got the urge to hook it up since the group performed the song in their act.  “[A rep] at the label, Universal, found out we play this song live,” said Sugarland lead singer Jennifer Nettles told Access Hollywood. “Just for fun we said, ‘What if we took this song and made it bluegrass? Could it work?’ We play it live in our show every night and [the rep] knew that we did that and obviously called the right folks. [Beyonce] heard it, she got to see a video of our performance of it and loved it, and said, ‘Yes! Let’s do it!” “We were face to face, and there were a couple times when she was looking at me and I was blushing because I thought I was going to turn to stone in her beauty,” continued Nettles, who admitted to being nervous around R&B head turner. “She is so talented and so grounded.” Looks like we got another victim of the country music bug. If Beyonce can fall victim, it’s only a matter of time before we get countrified with everyone from Maxwell to Jagged Edge to Mary J. Blige. Is no one in R&B safe?  R.Kelly’s New Career Talent I know I may get some heat for this, but I’m thankful for R.Kelly’s newfound skill, diverting the public’s attention to his pending court trial by throwing up various smokescreens. For someone who has 14 counts of alleged child pornography to deal with, Kelly should be making legal news in a local courtroom. Instead, the singer dropped a hit album, collaborated with the cream of the R&B and rap crop and to top it off, managed to steal away to earn more money for his legal defense fund by going out on tour.  And if you’re still able to remember that little case, don’t worry. Kells has some tour drama with Ne-Yo to distract you. According to reports, Ne-Yo got dropped from the outing this week after two performances. Whether you side with Kelly’s people, who claim the split was due to a contract dispute, or Ne-Yo’s reps, who believe that he was let go because of concerns he would outshine Kelly, the choice is yours.  And just for good measure, Kelly got an unexpected helping hand when his longtime publicist Regina Daniels formally resigned. According to a news release, Daniels stated that “some lines that should never be crossed professionally or personally,” as she revealed that “Mr. Kelly crossed a line that forever altered the scope of our relationship” as the reason behind her resignation, which was “effective as of August 28, 2007.” My suggestion to Kells would be to take full advantage of the drama and ditch the Trapped In the Closet soap opera. The things that are going on in reality could be just as entertaining to take in with the right beat. Just add in the trial (whenever this century it finally happens) and you could have an endless stream of material to keep fans hooked. C-mon R. Be a go-getter. Winehouse’s Love Knows No Limit Last but not least, I’m thankful for the love of Amy Winehouse. No matter what obstacle is thrown her way (alleged drug use, missed shows, funny performances), the embattled songbird remains committed to be the Bonnie to her husband Blake Fielder-Civil’s Clyde. So much so that she never misses a chance to express her love for him in interviews or use him to cool down fans who are less than thrilled about her live performances. Winehouse even goes so far as to weep and hold on to Blake as he is taken away by authorities weeks ago for allegedly attempting to pay off a witness at his trial for assault charges. And as we all know, anytime we have die hard love, there’s always die hard opposition. In this case it’s Winehouse’s mother, Janis, who believes Fielder-Civil’s time behind bars is just what her daughter needs to overcome her drug habit. “Thank God he’s gone inside,” Janis, Winehouse told Britain’s First magazine. “Everyone else can see it. But Amy chooses not to.” Despite her concern about Amy’s current taste in men, Janis sees a light at the end of the tunnel as she remains optimistic about her famous daughter’s future. “She has always lived her life on the edge,” Janis said. “I’ve seen her recover from heartbreak before – and her rare talent is that she puts that pain into music.” Love. Ain’t it a beautiful thing?

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