LAS VEGAS (AP) — Blues legend B.B. King is dead. His lawyer says King died in his sleep last night at his home in Las Vegas. King was 89. The former farmhand brought new fans to blues music during his career. He served as an influence to a generation of musicians with his vocals and guitar work on hits like “The Thrill Is Gone” — playing a Gibson model he called Lucille. King sold millions of records worldwide — won 15 Grammys — and was a member of both the Blues Foundation Hall of Fame and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
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The concert on Tuesday night was part of the Robin Hood Foundation’s annual benefit. Founded in 1988, the organization has raised more than $2 billion to combat poverty in New York’s five boroughs.
McCartney played for about two hours, with a set list that included “Jet” and “Maybe I’m Amazed” as well as a smattering of Beatles classics like “Can’t Buy Me Love.” Others in the crowd of hundreds included tennis great John McEnroe.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — “American Idol” is lining up all sorts of entertainment for this week’s finale. Former judge Steven Tyler returns to perform, along with Vance Joy, Nile Rodgers, Janelle Monae, Echosmith, Fall Out Boy, New Kids On The Block, Pitbull, Michael McDonald, Prince Royce, Ricky Martin, The Jacksons, Jamie Foxx and Chris Brown. They will perform on Wednesday’s finale. “Idol” finalists Jax, Clark Beckham and Nick Fradiani will sing on Tuesday.
CORAL GABLES, Fla. (AP) — It’s not every graduation that has a commencement speaker who shows up in flip-flops and talks about Santa Claus. The Miami Herald reports Jimmy Buffett told graduates at the University of Miami on Friday to see the world, do everything in moderation and “be Santa Claus when you can.” Buffett was given an honorary doctorate in music. He didn’t stick around after the ceremony. He said he had some fish to catch.
LAS VEGAS (AP) — The children of B.B. King are promising to keep fighting for the best care for him. A judge in Las Vegas threw out the family’s case claiming that his longtime manager, Laverne Toney, was neglecting his care and has stolen as much as a million dollars from him. The family also claimed Toney was keeping friends like Eric Clapton, Willie Nelson, Buddy Guy and Carlos Santana from visiting. A judge found no evidence that King is being abused or neglected. Toney says visits can be scheduled as they have always been. King’s physician and his attorney say they see no signs of neglect or abuse. King is 89 and in home hospice care.
UNDATED (AP) — Sam Smith will have surgery next week to fix his vocal cords. Smith writes on Instagram he’s really nervous about it but he hopes in eight weeks to be able to sing like never before. He says he will not be able to speak for three weeks after the operation. Smith said last week he has a hemorrhage on one of his vocal cords.
LONDON (AP) — Singer Errol Brown of Hot Chocolate has died. His manager, Phil Dale, says Brown died yesterday of liver cancer in the Bahamas at the age of 71. Dale says Brown had been in poor health over the past few months but never discussed it. Hot Chocolate’s biggest hit was “You Sexy Thing,” which hit number 3 in 1976. Hot Chocolate’s other hits include “Every 1’s A Winner” and “Emma.”
NEW YORK (AP) — John Mellencamp believes he doesn’t write songs so much as he channels them. However, he sometimes gets in his own way. Mellencamp says “Pink Houses” was an “inspiration song” but he messed with the last verse too much. He groans every time he hears the last verse. Mellencamp says he’s pretty good at melodies and arrangements but he feels he falls short on lyrics.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Joni Mitchell’s friend is now in charge of her medical decisions and Mitchell may be released from a hospital soon. Attorney Alan Watenmaker told a judge in Los Angeles yesterday that Mitchell’s longtime friend, Leslie Morris, needed emergency conservator powers because of Mitchell’s possible release. Mitchell has no family members who can care for her. An attorney appointed to represent Mitchell’s interests agreed that Mitchell should be placed under a temporary conservatorship. Morris does not have control of Mitchell’s finances. Mitchell has been in a hospital since March 31 for undisclosed reasons.
LAS VEGAS (AP) — B.B. King is still at home in Las Vegas and still in hospice care. King’s longtime business manager, Laverne Toney, says King is resting. King is 89 and had been hospitalized last week.