Ricky Martin wants to adopt. The Puerto Rican singer has two-year-old twins Mateo and Valentino ‘ who were born to a surrogate mother ‘ and would consider exploring different routes to give them a sibling. He said: ‘Adoption is beautiful ‘ give it a try. Even though I started with surrogacy, adoption is probably my next step.’ Ricky is looking forward to Christmas with his young sons but said although he will teach them his holiday traditions, they are still too young to really appreciate what it is all about. He told our source show ‘Extra’: ‘Now it’s not about me, it’s about my children. The holidays are for them. ‘ guess I’ll get up early in the morning ‘ they’re only two years old so I’m teaching them what the holidays are all about. This is really their first Christmas so let’s wait and see. Ricky will celebrate his 39th birthday on Christmas Eve (24.12.10) but he doesn’t mind having his special day so close to Christmas because he already has everything he wants. When asked if he would prefer his birthday not to be so close to Christmas he said: No I don’t think about that I’ve been very lucky. ‘ just want my children to be happy and to be healthy. And I guess that’s my wish.
Slipknot singer Corey Taylor releases charity Christmas single. Corey Taylor of Slipknot and Stone Sour fame has gone festive. Taylor has released a Christmas song. The track ‘X-Mas’ features the seasonal lyrics, ‘if I ain’t drunk, then it ain’t Christmas, you know where to stick those jingle bells, if I ain’t hammered it ain’t Hanukah, and all you Mother F*ckers can go to hell’. It is all for a good cause. Proceeds from the song will go to the Teenage Cancer Trust. It has been a rough year for Slipknot. Bass player Paul Gray was found dead in an Iowa hotel room in May. The official cause of death was revealed to be from an accidental overdose of morphine and fentanyl.
Taylor Swift is planning a Christmas-themed birthday party. The ‘Love Story’ singer ‘ who is rumoured to be dating actor Jake Gyllenhaal ‘ turns 21 on December 13 and loves celebrating during the festive season because it means there is less focus on her. She explained: ‘ love having a Christmas themed birthday party so people can give each other presents at my birthday party, so it’s not so much a spotlight birthday [thing] – especially with a 21st birthday where people are like, ‘Huh? Huh? What’s she gonna do?’ ‘ didn’t want it to be a crazy club thing, I just want it to be very me and the me thing to do would be to have a Christmas birthday party.’ Taylor certainly has a lot to celebrate this year, as her latest album ‘Speak Now’ broke sales records in its first week of release earlier this year and she admits it took a while for the news to sink in. She told our source; ”That was just a crazy phone call to get. To have the phone call with my mom and dad on the phone and my record label president says, ‘I guess you’re my million dollar baby!’ I was like, ‘Are you serious? Are you talking in code? Are you saying what I think you’re saying, because if you’re saying that, I’m gonna need a minute.’ ‘
Ultimate “Shrek” Collection Comes To DVD, Blu-Ray. “Shrek” has been released on DVD and Blu-ray Tuesday, December 7th. “Shrek the Whole Story” features all four films of the DreamWorks Animation megahit franchise and will include all-new extras plus a brand new, limited edition “Donkey’s Christmas Shrektacular” just in time for the holiday season. ”Shrek the Whole Story” has been re-graded for home viewing, and will include the first “Shrek” from 2001, “Shrek 2″ from 2004, “Shrek the Third” from 2007, and the latest and final installment “Shrek Forever After.” As for “Shrek Forever After”, both its Double DVD pack and DVD/Blu-ray combo will include bonus features, such as deleted scenes, secrets of “Shrek Forever After,” a look at “Shrek the Musical,” a 12 Days of Christmas pop-up book, interactive games, more holiday music, and more. The short feature “Donkey’s Christmas Shrektacular,” which features all the characters performing classic holiday songs with Shrek-ized lyrics, will also be available for a limited time only. “Shrek the Whole Story” can be purchased for as low as $34.99 and $49.99 for the DVD and Blu-ray box sets respectively for a limited time, while “Shrek Forever After” is available at $19.99 for the Double DVD pack and $24.99 for DVD/Blu-ray combo.
Mariah Carey, Selena Gomez To Perform On Disney Christmas Day Parade Special. Disney has unwrapped the list of performers appearing on the upcoming “Disney Parks Christmas Day Parade” special. Joining Mickey and friends this year are Mariah Carey, Selena Gomez, and Jackie Evancho, among others. Grammy Award-winner Mariah Carey makes her return to the special this year, performing her latest holiday hit “Oh Santa” as well as her modern Christmas classic “All I Want For Christmas Is You.” Husband Nick Cannon serves as host from the Disneyland Resort in California, while Ryan Seacrest and Maria Menounos check in from Walt Disney World in Florida. Selena Gomez will appear to perform “Winter Wonderland,” while fellow Disney Channel star Debby Ryan performs “Deck the Halls” on the parade route. “Glee” star Amber Riley, who plays Mercedes on the show, will also appear for a performance. Opera prodigy Jackie Evancho will perform “Pie Jesu” from her debut holiday set, while “American Idol” winner Lee DeWyze will appear performing his version of “Little Drummer Boy.” Darius Rucker, Sean Kingston, and Big Bad Voodoo Daddy will also all appear. The Disney princes and princesses will join in for a dance, as will “Dancing with the Stars” alums Tony Dovolani, Kym Johnson, Louis Van Amstel, and Chelsea Hightower for a jive. Travel Channel star Samantha Brown will appear from Disney’s new resort in Hawaii and as well as their new Disney Dream cruise ship. Also be on the lookout for a whole slew of Disney costumed characters, including Woody and Jesse from this year’s “Toy Story 3” and Phineas and Ferb from the hit Disney Channel show. This year’s “Disney Parks Christmas Day Parade” special airs Christmas Day on ABC. Check local listings or here for broadcast times.
Heston Blumenthal’s Hidden Orange Christmas pudding to sell out by next week. The Hidden Orange Christmas pudding, which is clearly one of the hits of the season and part of a wide array of unusual dishes created by Heston Blumenthal, is likely to sell out completely by the end of next week. The news about the impending sale out of the pudding – which contains a whole candied orange in its centre – is bound to disappoint tens and thousands of shoppers, particularly because the dish has virtually flown off the shelves since it went on sale slightly over a week back. Despite the fact that Waitrose – the supermarket which is selling the offbeat dish – has ordered the manufacturer to make more Hidden Orange Christmas puddings, merely a few more thousand will be possible to make. The reason why there may not be enough supply of the £13.99-priced dish is that Northern Foods, the supplier, has already bought up the entire supply of Valencian cured oranges, which is a crucial ingredient that goes in the preparation of the pudding. Since it takes around seven weeks to cure a Valencian candied orange, the limited availability of the ingredient, as of now, implies that after the manufacturer is through with the short production run, more puddings will be possible only after Christmas. However, unlike most of the other dishes created by Heston Blumenthal – the “food ambassador” for Waitrose -, the Hiddden Orange Christmas pudding is quite easy to prepare in the microwave.
American Express Goes Big on Small-Business Push. American Express, which is shunned by some small businesses looking to avoid high fees, has crafted an extensive program to promote those same businesses this holiday season. Kenneth Chenault, American Express chairman-CEO, speaks at a press conference in New York to announce Small Business Saturday as Mayor Bloomberg looks on. Typically, American Express charges higher fees for acceptance of its cards than rivals Visa or MasterCard. That not only makes it hard for some small businesses to accept, but has led at least one major retailer, H&M, to discontinue acceptance of the card. Still, that hasn’t stopped American Express, which has long promoted its cards to small business owners, from promoting Small Business Saturday this holiday season. Slated for the busy weekend after Thanksgiving, American Express is promoting Saturday, Nov. 27, as a day to support local businesses. That day is expected to be the sixth-biggest sales day for retailers this holiday season and the eighth-busiest day, in terms of traffic, according to the International Council of Shopping Centers. American Express did not respond to requests for comment, and it’s not clear exactly how many small businesses across the country accept the cards. Ed Gilligan, vice chairman at the company, said that small businesses use American Express cards more than any other card in the country, during an interview with CNBC earlier this month. He did not clarify whether those merchants using the cards also accepted the cards, however. To promote the program,American Express is running a national advertising campaign, as well as encouraging small business owners to register for free Facebook ads. The first 10,000 business owners to sign up will receive $100 of free Facebook advertising in the days leading up to Nov. 27. Those businesses do not necessarily have to accept American Express, Mr. Gilligan told CNBC. Facebook has also donated $500,000 in credits for those businesses to use in the future. The movement has taken off on Facebook, where nearly 875,000 people “like” the program. American Express had committed to donating $1 to the nonprofit Girls Inc. for each like, up to $500,000. American Express is also offering consumers a monetary incentive to shop at small businesses. The first 100,000 to register their American Express card will receive a $25 statement credit for spending more than $25 at a locally-owned, independent small business that accepts American Express on Nov. 27.”Small business is the engine of job creation in the U.S. economy,” Kenneth Chenault, American Express chairman-CEO, said in a statement. “It is also among the sectors hardest hit by the recession. By spreading the word about Small Business Saturday, we can help raise awareness about the critical role small businesses play in cities and towns across the country at a time when they need support the most.” According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, there were nearly 28 million small businesses in the U.S. last year. And, according to The 3/50 Project, a small-business advocacy group, for every $100 spent in locally-owned, independent stores, $68 returns to the community through taxes, payroll and other expenditures. Black Friday and Cyber Monday have become a part of the holiday shopping lexicon, but other themed days have fallen flat. Mobile Tuesday, promoted in 2008, never got off the ground. And Super Saturday, the last Saturday before Christmas, is most often referred to by industry insiders, not consumers.
Katy Perry and Russell Brand have put themselves on a diet. The pair ‘ who tied the knot at the luxury Aman-i-Khas resort in Rajasthan, India, last month ‘ are determined to get fit and feel healthier, and so have cut out all wheat and dairy until the end of this year. A friend of the couple said: ‘Katy and Russell are taking care of themselves and are on a mission to get fit. As well as cutting out wheat and diary, they’re on a diet of raw vegetables, tofu and pulses.As well as their special diet, the British comedian ‘ who is vegetarian – and his pop star wife also appear to have picked up some health tips during th r recent stay in India.The source explained to the Daily Star newspaper: ‘They’re both drinking loads of pineapple juice and are obsessed with Indian green tea which is full of anti-toxins and great for weight loss.’However Katy’s and Russell’s new health kick may not last until the New Year as the pair are said to be planning a fun filled family Christmas in London.The insider revealed: ‘Katy and Russell are trying to get their families together for their first Christmas as husband and wife. Katy thinks a white Christmas in London would be romantic.’They are hoping to have a proper knees-up with the whole of Russell’s family. Katy’s mum and dad are hoping to come to London as well.’
Gorillaz album recorded on iPad to be released. Damon Albarn has been working on the fourth Gorillaz album with the help of his trusty iPad. According to an interview with NME, Albarn said the follow up to the band’s hugely successful third record ‘Plastic Beach’ will hopefully be out before Christmas.
Speaking of the making of the record, he said ”ve made it on an iPad. I hope I’ll be making the first record on an iPad. I fell in love with my iPad as soon as I got it, so I’ve made a completely different kind of record.’
The fact that the word ‘iPad appears three times in that sentence suggests that he must really REALLY love it, despite his band announcing a partnership with Microsoft to help launch Internet Explorer 9.
B announces ‘Love Goes Down’ single. Having just scooped the award for Q’s Breakthrough Artist of the year and the MOBO for best RnB and Soul and rounding off his biggest sold out UK tour to date, Ben Drew is ready to release his next single ‘Love Goes Down’ as a pre Christmas treat. His show stopping soul album ‘The Defamation Of Strickland Banks’ has proven to be the biggest selling album from a UK artist in the UK and Europe so far this year, going gold in both France and Germany. On home ground it hit the number 1 spot twice, has been in and around the top 10 and has gone on to reach double platinum status since release. The acclaimed videos that accompany the album have also been highly praised receiving 4 VMA awards. A feat he could well top at next weeks MTV Europe awards where he is up for best video and best new act. But it won’t stop there, 2011 looks set to bring even bigger and better things for Ben Drew, with a massive arena tour around the country taking in his biggest ever show at London’s O2 arena in March. Continuing to be the busiest man in pop, Ben has also been working exceptionally hard on his directorial feature film debut, ‘Ill Manors’ which is due for release later 2010.
The 2011 dates:
Wed 2nd March ‘ Manchester Apollo
Thurs 3rd March ‘ Wolverhampton Civic Hall
Fri 4th March ‘ Blackpool Empress Ballroom
Sat 5th March ‘ Doncaster Dome
Mon 7th March ‘ Swindon Oasis
Tues 8th March ‘ Plymouth Pavilions
Wed 9th March ‘ Brighton Centre
Thurs 10th March ‘ London O2 Arena