Money Matters - Simplified


Autry widow involved in fatal collision

Palm Springs, Calif. -- Jackie Autry, the wife of late entertainer Gene Autry, struck and killed a homeless man while driving in Palm Springs, Calif., authorities said.

Jackie Autry, 69, has not been charged in connection with the Thanksgiving Day collision involving 50-year-old Jesus Cardova Diaz, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Diaz, who was not in a crosswalk when he was hit, was pronounced dead at Desert Regional Medical Center. Police told the Times Jackie Autry did not undergo a blood alcohol test because it was clear she was not under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

Gene Autry -- who was a longtime owner of the Major League Baseball franchise variously known as the California Angels or Los Angeles Angels -- died in 1998 at age 91.

New Michael Jackson song released

Los Angeles -- A third song from Michael Jackson's new U.S. album "Michael" is being streamed free for a week in iTunes Ping, Apple's music-focused social network.

The song "Much Too Soon" was written at time of his iconic 1982 album "Thriller."

"Michael always liked the song and would pull it back out of the vaults for each subsequent album project but never found the right home for it; on the new album it finds its place as the bittersweet closing to the stellar collection," a release announcing the song's debut on Ping said Tuesday.

The song was written by Jackson, and produced by Jackson and John McClain.
David Campbell is featured on the strings.

"Michael" is to be released Dec. 14.

Copyright 2010 United Press International, Inc. (UPI).

Kid Rock sells out -- his birthday concert

Detroit -- Kid Rock won't have to lament turning 40 in January as his birthday concert in Detroit sold out in 19 minutes.

More than 45,000 seats for the Jan. 15 show at Ford Field were gone Friday, including several thousand purchased in a private presale, the Detroit Free Press reported.

No second show will be added at Ford Field, the singer's spokesman said.

Michigan native Kid Rock, whose real name is Robert Ritchie, is going on tour to support his new album, "Born Free." Other dates include Jan. 21 in Saginaw, Mich.; Jan. 25 in Grand Rapids, Mich.; and Jan. 26 in Toledo, Ohio.

Copyright 2010 United Press International, Inc. (UPI).

Elton says he may perform at royal wedding

London -- British pop star Elton John, a friend of the late Princess Diana, says he will probably perform at Prince William and Kate Middleton's wedding next spring.

John memorably sang a tailor-made version of his song "Candle in the Wind" at the 1997 funeral of Diana, William's mother.

The prince and his bride-to-be recently announced they intend to wed April 29 at London's historic Westminster Abbey, the church where Diana's funeral was held. said John was asked Friday on BBC Radio what role he would play in the upcoming royal wedding.

He at first replied he would "probably" perform, but then added, "I'll probably be outside busking."

'Carol' is top-selling DVD in the U.S.

Los Angeles -- An animated version of the holiday classic "A Christmas Carol" is the top-selling DVD in the United States, Rentrak said Thursday.

Coming in at No. 2 on the DVD sales roster for the week ending Nov. 21 is "The Last Airbender," followed by "Toy Story 3" at No. 3, "Avatar: Extended Collector's Edition" at No. 4 and "Grown Ups" at No. 5.

Rounding out the top tier are "Cats & Dogs: Revenge of Kitty Galore" at No. 6, "How to Train Your Dragon" at No. 7, "Lottery Ticket" at No. 8, "The Pacific" at No. 9 and "The Karate Kid" at No. 10.

The No. 1 DVD rental for the week ending Nov. 20 is "Grown Ups."

"The Last Airbender" is No. 2, "Lottery Ticket" is No. 3, "Toy Story 3" is No. 4, "Charlie St. Cloud" is No. 5,

Only Men Aloud plans U.S. concert dates

Santa Monica, Calif. -- The Welsh pop choir Only Men Aloud has announced plans for a North American concert tour next March.

The series of 11 concerts will start March 4 in Somerville, Mass., and wrap up March 20 in Portland, Ore., Denon Records said Tuesday.

The ensemble of 20 male singers also will be featured in their first television special, "Men Aloud: Live From Wales," which has been chosen as the Public Television pledge-drive program to be aired in the United
States in November and December.

Filmed in the Wales Millennium Center, the program includes special guest performances by opera star Bryn Terfel, West End performer John Owen Jones and pop icon Bonnie Tyler.

James Taylor and son Ben to tour together

Los Angeles -- U.S. musician Ben Taylor is to tour for the first time with his father, singer James Taylor, it was announced Wednesday.

The younger Taylor, whose mother is recording star Carly Simon, is currently completing his new album, "Listening," for release in 2011 to coincide with a worldwide concert tour.

The tour is to begin Feb. 26 in Tulsa, Okla. It is expected to run through April.

In addition to the joint shows, Ben also has been booked to perform in 2011 at SXSW in Austin, Texas, his representatives said in a news release.

Copyright 2010 United Press International, Inc. (UPI).

Daniels salutes Michigan musicians

Chelsea, Mich. -- Actor and entertainer Jeff Daniels says he will once again serve as host and perform at a concert celebrating Michigan's homegrown musicians.

The Fifth annual Jeff Daniels & Friends event is to take place Saturday at Ann Arbor's historic Michigan Theater.

This year's lineup of Michigan-bred artists includes an eclectic blend of folk, blues, strings, American Roots and, for the first time, operatic musicians.

Artists include the Saline Fiddlers, Rev. Robert and Bernice Jones, Ben Daniels Band, Brad Phillips, Jed Fritzemeier and Charley Marcuse.

"This has become one of my favorite events of the year, during a time when people naturally come together," Daniels said in a statement this week.

Billy Joel has hip-replacement surgery

New York -- Billy Joel's publicist confirmed Wednesday the U.S. rock 'n' roll icon has undergone double hip replacement surgery. said the 61-year-old musician had the operation last week to correct a congenital ailment.

"Billy Joel is doing extremely well following bilateral hip replacement," Joel's spokeswoman Claire Mercuri told the Web site.

The report did not say when Joel is expected to take the stage again.

Copyright 2010 United Press International, Inc. (UPI).

'Gift' stays No. 1 on U.S. album chart

Los Angeles -- Susan Boyle's "The Gift" is No. 1 on the U.S. album chart for a second consecutive week, reported Wednesday.

Coming in at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 is Jackie Evancho's "O Holy Night," followed by Rihanna's "Loud" at No. 3, Josh Groban's "Illuminations" at No. 4 and Kid Rock's "Born Free" at No. 5.

Rounding out the top tier are Rascal Flatts's "Nothing Like This" at No. 6, Keith Urban's "Get Closer" at No. 7, the "Glee" cast's "Christmas Album" at No. 8, Taylor Swift's "Speak Now" at No. 9 and Nelly's "5.0" at No. 10.

Copyright 2010 United Press International, Inc. (UPI).