ALICIA KEYS, CHRISTINA AGUILERA, BEYONCÉ PERFORM AT KOBE & GIANNA BRYANT’S CELEBRATION OF LIFE – (02/25/2020)
A public memorial to honor Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant, his daughter Gianna Bryant and the seven other people who died in a helicopter crash last month took place at the Staples Center on Monday.
Many celebrities, athletes and artists were invited to participate in the event and pay their respects.
Beyoncé got things started, performing moving renditions of her hit songs “XO” and “Halo.” One of Kobe’s favorite songs was “XO” and Beyoncé asked the room to join her in singing. She started her performance with a message for the crowd:
“I’m here, because I love Kobe and this was one of his favorite songs. So I want to start that over, but I want us to do it all together and I want you to sing it so loud they hear your love. Are y’all ready? Love you.”
Alicia Keys took the stage for a performance during the Celebration of Life. Seated at a purple piano, Keys was joined by a string quartet to perform Beethoven’s “Moonlight Sonata.” Before Alicia took the stage, Kobe’s longtime friend and current General Manager for the Lakers Rob Pelinka shared a story about how Kobe taught himself “Moonlight Sonata” on the piano just so that he could perform it for wife Vanessa.
Christina Aguilera was the final performer to take the stage. She was joined by an orchestra to perform “Ave Maria.” The solemn performance concluded with the singer blowing a kiss to Bryant’s family.
The public memorial also included words from Jimmy Kimmel, Michael Jordan, Sabrina Ionescu and an emotional speech from Vanessa Bryant.
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Full Story: Deadline
BEYONCE BANNED PHOTOS OF HER PERFORMANCE DURING KOBE BRYANT MEMORIAL – (02/25/2020)
Reports say that photographers were banned from taking photos of Beyonce during her performance at Kobe Bryant‘s memorial at the Staples Center yesterday (February 24th). According to Page Six, editors at the AP and Getty Images told the Post that organizers the live-streamed Staples Center event prohibited them from taking photos of the singer or Bryant’s children.
One insider at the event said, “It is so offensive to Kobe’s family and the fans, Beyonce is so controlling of her image — she usually only allows approved selected images of her to be released — so no photographers at the Kobe memorial were allowed to take her picture. Really, at a memorial? Not even the family of Michael Jackson did that.”
The insider continued, “A Staples Center staffer was dispatched to make sure not a single camera was focused on the stage. The photographers couldn’t believe it. This doesn’t help Beyonce’s image at all, it hurts her. It makes her look like a diva. The memorial wasn’t about her. The only shots of Bey that did emerge were screen grabs from TV. None of the other artists at the memorial asked for this, not Christina Aguilera, not Alicia Keys.”
VANESSA BRYANT FILES WRONGFUL DEATH SUIT AGAINST HELICOPTER COMPANY – (02/25/2020)
Vanessa Bryant has taken action against the company involved in the fatal helicopter crash that claimed that lives of Kobe and Gianna Bryant. According to TMZ, Vanessa has filed a wrongful death suit against Island Express Helicopters and Island Express Holding Corp, she also filed suit against the pilot Ara Zobayan, who also perished in the crash. In the suit, Bryant claimed that the pilot was careless and negligent by flying in foggy conditions on January 26th and should have aborted the flight.
The complaint also specifically called out Island Express for not purchasing and equipping its helicopters with a terrain avoidance warning system, a safety measure the National Transportation Safety Board has recommended in the past but the FAA has not adopted. She is seeking unspecified compensatory and punitive damages.
JUSTIN BIEBER ‘SUPER GRATEFUL’ ABOUT SUCCESS OF NEW ALBUM ‘CHANGES’ – (02/25/2020)
Justin Bieber is “super grateful” for the No. 1 debut of his new album Changes.
“Super grateful for this past week with #changes,” he tweeted. He also posted several news stories about the album’s No. 1 debut, and wrote “Thank you” on each one.
Bieber released Changes on Valentine’s Day, his first album since 2015’s Purpose. It’s his fifth studio album to hit No. 1, along with two remix albums.
“Changes” entered the Billboard chart at No. 1, making him, at age 25, the youngest artist to score seven No. 1 albums. Elvis Presley held the record previously.
Justin, who turns 26 on March 1st, also teased a “visual album.” “This week is the big finale of #JustinBieberSeasons and another music video from Changes on @AppleMusic,” he wrote on Twitter. “And I think I might give you a visual album.”
Before finding out about Changes’ big debut, Bieber stopped by Kanye West’s Sunday Service to deliver a powerful rendition of Marvin Sapp’s song “Never Would Have Made It.”
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Full Story: Billboard
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