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Entertainment News

    Mina Lioness’ longstanding battle to finally receive writing credit on Lizzo’s megahit song “Truth Hurts” is paying off in more ways than one: it could win her a potential Grammy Award. Lizzo's breakthrough tune features the signature line — 'I just took a DNA test, turns out I'm 100% that bitch” — a lyric that originated from a 2017 tweet by Lioness and was turned into a popular meme. And now Lioness, a singer based in London who Lizzo agreed to give writing credit to, has a chance at earning her first Grammy nomination if “Truth Hurts” scores a nomination for song of the year — a category reserved for the writers of a song. “I haven't really been able to kind of just sit and ponder what the ramifications is of this happening. I mean, it's just surreal to me,” Lioness said in a phone interview from London with The Associated Press this week. “I didn't actually realize that the Grammy nominations were being announced next week, but I knew that this would be a possibility for me when it’s all said and done. But for it to come through so soon as well, it's just another one of those moments when you’re like, ‘Wow.’” The Recording Academy will announce its nominees on Nov. 20. When Grammy submissions were due earlier this year, Lioness had not been a listed writer of “Truth Hurts,” but Atlantic Records, Lizzo’s label home, told the AP they are in the process of submitting Lioness’ name as a co-writer of “Truth Hurts” to the Grammys. “Truth Hurts,” which topped the Billboard Hot 100 chart for seven weeks, is a likely contender in categories like song of the year, in which Lioness would share the nomination with co-writers Lizzo, Ricky Reed, Tele and Jesse Saint John. The song could also land a nomination for record of the year, a category that awards the song’s performers, producers and engineers/mixers, or best pop solo performance, an award that would only be given to Lizzo. Lioness said next week will be one of the biggest in her life — not only does she find out if she’ll become a Grammy nominee, she will “find out the results of my master's degree, pretty much on the same day (as the Grammy nominations).” “I still got work tomorrow,” added Lioness, who studied social policy at the London School of Economics. “I’m still a regular person.” Lioness created the tweet that’s changed her life “from zero to 100” — as she put it — around 4 o’clock in the morning in 2017. She said she was responding to a tweet from singer-actress Demi Lovato, who had posted about her ancestry background results. “She was saying all these different places she’s from and in one tweet she was like, ‘And I’m 1% African.’ And I was just so besides myself. I was just laughing so hard,” Lioness said. So she replied with: “I just did a DNA test and found out I’m 100% that bitch.” She went to bed. Woke up. And she had gone viral. Her bold sentence has become so popular that even Hillary Clinton tweeted some of the line, sans the vulgar word in August around the time “Truth Hurts” became a worldwide hit. The song was originally released in 2017 but got a boost this year after it was featured in the Netflix film 'Someone Great,' and as Lizzo’s label saw the public’s interest in the song, they decided to push it. Lioness learned her words were featured in “Truth Hurts” when she and some friends were Googling some of their most popular tweets. “I was just like, ‘What?’ From then on I started to try to get in contact with Lizzo,” she said. Eventually things blew up for Lizzo last month when the songwriting brothers Justin and Jeremiah Raisen said they felt they deserved writing credit on 'Truth Hurts.” A week later, Lizzo announced she was giving credit to Lioness and later filed a lawsuit to establish that the Raisens, as well as Justin 'Yves' Rothman, are not entitled to any credit for the song. Lioness said, at first, she wasn’t sure what to do when she discovered her words were in a pop song. “I had a lot of resentment at first, I will be completely honest. It did hurt me in the beginning to know that no one actually believed that you’re the one who brought this to the internet,” she said. “It’s so easy to erase credit online, but I just wasn’t going down without a fight.” She said watching Peaches Monroee — the young girl who went viral after praising her eyebrows for being “on fleek” — not be properly credited for starting the trendy word inspired her to fight hard for her own credit. “I saw that she was pleading and it hurt to watch another black girl have to beg for something that she put on the internet just out of a sheer joke. People told me to do the same, people told me to do a GoFundMe, but I just didn't want to do any of that because I'm not begging for something that belongs to me. Absolutely not,” she said. Things worked out for Lioness, and she and Lizzo are on good terms. They met in person this month after Lizzo’s concert in London. “She’s just really kind. She spoke to my heart. She looked me in my eyes and we had a really heartfelt conversation and we hugged,” Lioness said. And now Lioness is using her newfound fame to help boost her own music career. She said she’s been singing since she was 3 and counts Jill Scott, Mary J. Blige and Erykah Badu as inspirations. She and her musical partner, Jam, have released music together, and they are busy working on more songs as well as writing for others. “It's still tough because I would like to be known for what I said, but I don't want to be defined by one moment,” said Lioness. “I’m a very multidimensional artist. And so I don't want to be known for just one thing, and I don't want this to be the peak of my career.”
  • Exceptionally high tidal waters surged through Venice again on Friday, prompting the mayor to close St. Mark’s Square and call for more donations for repairs just three days after the Italian lagoon city suffered its worst flooding in 50 years. The high tide peaked at 1.54 meters (5 feet) above sea level just before noon Friday, flooding most of the historic World Heritage city’s center. Venice Mayor Luigi Brugnaro said the damage is estimated at hundreds of millions of euros and blamed climate change for the “dramatic situation.” He also called for the speedy completion of the city’s long-delayed Moses flood defense project. Brugnaro told reporters that he was forced to ask police to block off St. Mark’s Square on Friday, which was covered in knee-high water. Workers in high boots removed the platforms used by the public to cross the iconic square without getting wet. Venice saw its second-worst flooding on record late Tuesday when water levels reached 1.87 meters (6 feet, 1 inch) above sea level, the highest flooding in 50 years. That prompted the Italian government to declare a state of emergency on Thursday, approving 20 million euros ($22.1 million) to help Venice repair the most urgent damage. “Venice is the pride of all of Italy,” Brugnaro said Friday. “Venice is everyone’s heritage, unique in the world. Thanks to your help, Venice will shine again.” Venice, a lagoon city built amid a system of canals, is particularly vulnerable to a combination of rising sea levels due to climate change coupled with the city’s well-documented sinking into the mud. The sea level in Venice is 10 centimeters (4 inches) higher than it was 50 years ago, according to the city’s tide office. More than 50 churches have reported damage from the tides, Culture Minister Dario Franceschini said as he inspected the city. Carabinieri officers from the corps’ world-renowned and highly-trained squad of art experts were being deployed to map damage to art treasures, a job that is expected to take some time. “While the water is still there, it’s difficult to know what the (full) damage is,” Franceschini said. He said tax breaks for those who donate to help restore state monuments and artworks will be applied to church art repairs as well. The Italian Space Agency said it was studying radar data from satellites to detect any signs that Venice bell towers may have shifted or that their foundations might have weakened as they were buffeted by the fast-rising waters. Many people were rising to the challenge of saving Venice’s many treasures. University students in Venice rushed to libraries and other institutions filled with books and manuscripts to help shift the material to higher stories. The Italian Society of Authors and Editors, which said Venice’s book stores and libraries were “gravely damaged” by the high water, launched a fundraising campaign. Pitching for donations from Italy and abroad, the group said it was important to “take the side of those who every day are on the front lines for the defense of Italian culture.” It said one Venice bookstore, poignantly named “Acqua Alta” (High Water), had been completely submerged by the rushing water. The leader of the right-wing opposition League party, Matteo Salvini, visited Venice on Friday and also called for renewed efforts to complete the Moses flood defense project, which the Italian government now expects to be completed by 2021. 'We can't waste time, this city is crying for help,' Salvini said. Tuesday's devastating floods have reignited a yearslong debate over Moses, a multibillion-euro project that has been under construction since 2003. The project has not yet been activated, delayed repeatedly by corruption scandals, cost overruns and opposition from environmentalists who were worried about its effects on Venice’s delicate lagoon ecosystem. __ Zampano reported from Rome. Frances D’Emilio in Rome contributed. ___ Follow AP's full coverage of climate issues at https://www.apnews.com/Climate
  • The gloves – and at least one helmet – came off in the final seconds of Thursday night’s Pittsburgh Steelers-Cleveland Browns game, resulting in three player ejections and severe social media backlash. >> Read more trending news  Despite Cleveland’s commanding 21-7 lead as the final seconds ticked down, Browns defensive end Myles Garrett leveled Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph, before ripping off his Pittsburgh helmet and striking him in the head with it, Sports Illustrated reported. Within seconds, the dead play devolved into an all-out brawl involving players from both teams, three of whom were ejected for their roles in the melee, ESPN reported. Social media reaction to the on-field fight was swift and unkind. A few voices tried to take the high road. While others, including Steelers coach Mike Tomlin, opted to say nothing at all. Meanwhile, all players involved in the incident are going to be under review by the NFL for possible suspensions, according to the NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. Read more here and here.
  • The paperback edition of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s “The Long Game” includes a foreword from a well-placed political ally: President Donald Trump. In the foreword, shared Friday by the publisher Sentinel with The Associated Press, Trump praises the Kentucky Republican as an ideal partner in confirming conservative judges, notably Supreme Court Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh. More than 150 federal judges have been nominated by Trump and confirmed by the Senate. About one-quarter of federal appeals court judges were nominated by Trump. “The effort to transform the courts is one that will benefit the American people far into the future. It is a legacy of which I am immensely proud and one for which Mitch McConnell deserves great credit,” Trump writes. “Transforming the federal judiciary is the ultimate long game!” The paperback comes out December 3, more than three years after the hardcover. The gap is unusually long but the new edition is well-timed for McConnell’s re-election campaign next year. “The Long Game” was first published in May 2016, soon after the death of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia. McConnell famously refused to let then-President Barack Obama fill the seat, now held by Gorsuch, whom Trump nominated in 2017. In an afterword for the paperback, McConnell writes of his long friendship with Scalia, defends his decision to keep the seat open and describes close coordination between himself and Trump for the Gorsuch and Kavanaugh nominations. Trump nominated Kavanaugh in the summer of 2018 and McConnell confirms reports from the time that he was concerned Kavanaugh’s many years in government, including more than a decade as a federal judge, would result in a “paper trail” that could extend the process past the midterm elections. He then recounts the testimony of Christine Blasey Ford, who had alleged that Kavanaugh attempted to sexually assault her while both were in high school. “Immediately after Dr. Ford had completed her testimony that morning, the phone rang. It was a familiar voice: the president,” McConnell writes. “He and I both agreed that Dr. Ford had been a compelling witness. I expressed to the president that it was only ‘halftime,’ however, and that he should wait until completion of the second half before making any decisions. Again, the president needed no persuading. I then watched Kavanaugh’s afternoon appearance before the committee. Immediately after the hearing had concluded, the phone rang again. Once more, it was the president. We both thought that Kavanaugh had done well.” Kavanaugh was confirmed 50-48. McConnell recalls a lunch soon before the vote with a key Republican Senator, Susan Collins of Maine, who, like McConnell, is up for re-election in 2020. “During our meal, she seemed relaxed and fully at ease. As we ate, I did not ask her for her vote, and she did not volunteer it. But, given her demeanor, I intuited that she was going to vote for Kavanaugh,” he writes. “This was not an easy position for her: she hails from a liberal state, and she and her staff were subjected to numerous intimidation tactics by the left. Coming on the heels of her speech, Brett Kavanaugh was confirmed the next day.”
  • UPDATE: The National Football League has doled out suspensions and fines for those involved in the brawl that took place in Thursday's matchup between the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Cleveland Browns. Browns defensive end Myles Garrett has been suspended indefinitely by the NFL. The suspension will last at least through the rest of this season and the playoffs. Garrett ripped off the helmet of Steelers' quarterback Mason Rudolph and struck him on the head with it during the waning seconds of the game. At least two other players involved in the scuffle received suspensions ranging from one to three games. Stiff team fines were also issued by the league. Read the original report below. The gloves – and at least one helmet – came off in the final seconds of Thursday night’s Pittsburgh Steelers-Cleveland Browns game, resulting in three player ejections and severe social media backlash. >> Read more trending news  Despite Cleveland’s commanding 21-7 lead as the final seconds ticked down, Browns defensive end Myles Garrett leveled Steelers quarterback Mason Rudolph, before ripping off his Pittsburgh helmet and striking him in the head with it, Sports Illustrated reported. Within seconds, the dead play devolved into an all-out brawl involving players from both teams, three of whom were ejected for their roles in the melee, ESPN reported. Social media reaction to the on-field fight was swift and unkind. A few voices tried to take the high road. While others, including Steelers coach Mike Tomlin, opted to say nothing at all. Meanwhile, all players involved in the incident are going to be under review by the NFL for possible suspensions, according to the NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. Read more here and here.
  • Kiowa writer N. Scott Momaday, who won a Pulitzer Prize in 1969 for his groundbreaking novel “House Made of Dawn,” said he’s not done writing and vows to finish his long-anticipated memoir. In a rare interview at his Santa Fe home, the 85-year-old author told The Associated Press he’s excited about a new PBS documentary about his work, and it’s allowing him to reflect on his life growing up in Oklahoma and New Mexico. The former University of California-Berkeley professor also has two other books in the works. “I’m staying active, and I still have a lot to accomplish,” Momaday said during a break from writing. “The memoir has been shelved for now, but I will get to it.” Momaday said the memoir will delve into his childhood with his teacher parents and explain why he sees himself as a reincarnation of a bear. He also plans to write about the surprise he felt becoming the first Native American writer to win the Pulitzer, and about studying American poet Emily Dickinson’s manuscripts, getting followed by Soviet Union agents while teaching in Moscow, and meeting artist Georgia O'Keeffe late in her life. “That story appeared in Reader’s Digest,” Momaday said. As he tells it, O'Keeffe disappeared for a long time during one of their meetings, and dismantled a locked door to a pantry that held the alcohol. “Her maid had took the key,” he said. The American Masters documentary series is set to air “N. Scott Momaday: Words from a Bear” on most PBS stations Monday. Director Jeffrey Palmer dove into Momaday’s career but also talked to Muscogee Nation member and poet Joy Harjo about Momaday’s impact on American Literature. Palmer also interviewed actors including Jeff Bridges and James Earl Jones, who said Momaday’s work touched them. “I thought his voice was one of a storyteller. But because he had this poet ring to it, it took on a whole different tone,” actor Robert Redford said in the film. “I think that’s why I got hooked on Scott.” Momaday’s “House Made of Dawn” has been credited with starting the modern Native American literary movement and influencing the likes of Chickasaw novelist Linda Hogan, Spokane and Coeur d’Alene writer Sherman Alexie and Laguna Pueblo novelist Leslie Marmon Silko. “House Made of Dawn” follows Abel, a Jemez Pueblo man who is struggling with post-traumatic stress disorder after returning from his service in World War II. Abel seeks to find himself, first on his reservation and later in the city. Momaday said the novel is based on his knowledge of growing up on Jemez Pueblo in New Mexico, where his parents taught school. After more than a half-century, Momaday said he is humbled by the fact that writers continue to say his work has influenced them. “I’m greatly appreciative of that, but it comes a little bit of a surprise every time I hear it,” Momaday said. “I think I have been an influence. It’s not something I take a lot of credit for.” As a tribute to Momaday’s influence, the American Masters produced a special podcast with Harjo, the first Native American U.S. poet laureate, who talked about how Momaday inspired her. “Momaday was the one we all looked up to,” Harjo said. “His works were transcendent. There was always a point where despite the challenges and losses ... there was some moment that imparted beauty.”
  • Spanish singer Rosalía, the breakthrough performer known for blending flamenco music with sounds like reggaeton and Latin trap, won album of the year at the 2019 Latin Grammys, becoming the first solo female performer to win the top honor since Shakira’s triumph 13 years ago. Rosalía won three awards Thursday, tying top nominee Alejandro Sanz and besting the veteran singer-songwriter in categories like album of the year and best contemporary pop vocal album with her project, “El Mal Querer.” “Thanks to the academy for giving me one of my first opportunities a few years ago. I want to share that, as a musician, nothing gives more pride than winning a Grammy. It is the biggest thing that can happen, so thank you very much,” Rosalía said in Spanish at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. “Especially to my fans, I love you with all my heart. Thanks for embracing my music.” Shakira’s “Fijación Oral Vol. 1” won album of the year at the Latin Grammys in 2006. The only other female performers to win album of the year honors were parts of groups, including the female members of Juan Luis Guerra 4.40 and Ileana Cabra Joglar (iLe), who won the top prize as a member of the alternative hip-hop band Calle 13 alongside Residente and Visitante. Sanz walked into Thursday’s show as the most-nominated act with eight, eventually taking home record of the year and best pop song for “Mi Persona Favorita,” shared with pop singer Camila Cabello. He helped the former Fifth Harmony member, who didn’t attend the show, win her first pair of Latin Grammys before she’s even won a Grammy Award. “Eight years ago more or less, my mother left us and today precisely is her birthday, so this is a gift for her,” said Sanz, who also won best long form music video. Rosalía’s third win was for best urban song for “Con Altura,” her collaboration with J Balvin, who skipped the Latin Grammys this year and was part of the group of uber-popular Latin trap and reggaeton artists who were dissed in top categories like album, song and record of the year. Instead, they were restricted to nominations in the urban categories. During the live show, Bad Bunny — also a part of the overlooked group of performers alongside Daddy Yankee, Maluma and Nicky Jam — praised the reggaeton genre as one of the key sounds of Latin music. “To all the musicians, to all the people that belong to the academy, with all due respect, reggaeton is part of the Latin culture and is representing the same way as other genres,” Bad Bunny said in Spanish after winning best urban music album for his debut album, “X 100Pre.” “Anyway, I tell my colleagues let’s work hard, let’s keep bringing creativity and community,” he continued. Like Bad Bunny, Daddy Yankee earned a nomination in one of the urban categories: best urban fusion/performance. But his song lost to “Calma (Remix)” by Pedro Capó, who celebrated his 39th birthday at the show. The original version of “Calma” won Capó one of the show’s biggest awards — song of the year. Capó joined Alicia Keys — who is featured on another version of “Calma” — onstage to sing the song alongside Farruko and Miguel. One of the night’s best performances was Vicente Fernández, who retired from performing in 2016. The audience stood on its feet as the iconic performer passionately sang onstage. He performed alongside his son Alejandro Fernández and grandson Alex Fernández. Both Vicente and Alex were nominated for best ranchero/mariachi album, but lost to Christian Nodal. After performing a medley of his hits, Juanes was shocked to see Metallica’s Lars Ulrich, who was there to present the Colombian musician with the Latin Recording Academy's 2019 Person of the Year award. “I proclaim myself a Juanes fan,” Ulrich yelled, also calling Juanes “my brother in rock.” “You guys changed my life,” Juanes said of Metallica. “Thank you so much.” The Latin Grammys kicked off its 20th anniversary show with a festive performance highlighting various sounds from the genre as 20 artists united onstage to honor Latin music. Prince Royce, Anitta, Fito Páez, Reik, Natalia Jiménez, Beto Cuevas and Calibre 50 were among the acts who performed popular songs from Latin greats like Celia Cruz, Juan Gabriel, Joan Sebastian and Soda Stereo. Ricky Martin, who hosted the show with Roselyn Sánchez and Paz Vega, helped close the performance by singing a few notes. Other performers included Luis Fonsi, Ozuna and Residente, who extended his record as the most decorated artist in the history of the Latin Grammys to 25 wins. He won best short form music video for “Banana Papaya.” Rosalía, who is predicted to earn a nomination when the Grammys announce its 2020 nominees next week, also saw “El Mal Querer” win best engineered album and best recording package — honors not awarded to her, but to the engineers, mixers and art directors who worked on the project. Several acts won two awards each Thursday, including Juan Luis Guerra, Tony Succar, Andrés Calamaro, Kany García, Capó and Nodal. ___ Associated Press Writers Sigal Ratner-Arias and Berenice Bautista contributed to this report.
  • Pierce Brosnan’s sons have been chosen as the Golden Globe ambassadors to assist with the glitzy awards ceremony. The Hollywood Foreign Press Association announced Thursday evening that 22-year-old Dylan and 18-year-old Paris Brosnan will assume the ambassador roles for the 77th annual Golden Globes Awards in January. An ambassador is traditionally the child of a celebrity who assists with award presentations, handing out trophies to winners and escorting them off stage. The Brosnan brothers said they are more excited than nervous to appear on stage at the awards. “We watched the Globes growing up ... and I’ve gone with him a few times. So it’s truly an honor to be here in this capacity and pay homage to our father’s legacy,” said Dylan Brosnan about his father, a two-time Golden Globe nominee. Dylan and Paris are the first male ambassadors after the HFPA rechristened the role, formerly known as Miss Golden Globe, in 2017. The association wanted to expand the role to help recognize the HFPA's philanthropic efforts throughout the year. The brothers will be partnering with the organization named FEED to deliver nutritious meals to school-aged children throughout the world. “Our effort is to end child hunger and for parents to help keep their kids in school,” Paris Brosnan said. Previous ambassadors include Idris Elba’s daughter Isan Elba and Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson's daughter, Simone Garcia. The Golden Globes ceremony will be held at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, California, on Jan. 5. Nominations for the show, which honors achievements in film and television, will be announced on Dec. 9.
  • The Latest on the Latin Grammys, which are being presented Thursday at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. (all times local): 8:10 p.m. Rosalía has won album of the year at the Latin Grammys for her breakout album “El Mal Querer.” Thursday’s ceremony was a big night for the Spanish singer, who also took home the honors for best pop contemporary album and best urban song for “Con Altura,” her collaboration with J Balvin. Rosalia put her hand on her forehead when host Ricky Martin called her name for the evening’s top honor. She initially seemed overwhelmed with emotion during her acceptance speech, but went on to thank those who supported her music and calling her win incredible. The ceremony honored 20 years of Latin Grammys history, kicking off with a massive performance honoring multiple genres of Latin music. Highlights included Colombian singer Juanes performing a set of his hits and then being honored by one of his idols, Lars Ulrich of Metallica. ___ 5:25 p.m. The Latin Grammys have opened with a vibrant tribute to Latin music led by a performance of the late Celia Cruz’s “La Vida Es Un Carnaval” as part of the show’s 20th anniversary celebration. The opening number featured a panoply of artists including Prince Royce, Anitta, Natalia Jimenez, Olga Tañon and Fito Paez performing songs from icons like Cruz, Juan Gabriel, Joan Sebastian and the rock band Soda Stereo. Host Ricky Martin cited Cruz’s importance to the show in his opening remarks, playing a clip of him performing with Cruz and Gloria Estefan at the 2000 show. Martin is hosting the show along with Roselyn Sánchez and Paz Vega. Early winners on the telecast, which is being aired by Univision, included Juan Luis Guerra for best contemporary/tropical fusion album for “Literal” and Bad Bunny for best urban album. ___ 7 a.m. The Latin Grammys will celebrate its 20th anniversary with a 20-artist performance in a tribute to the legacy of Latin music. Thursday night’s show, airing live on Univision from Las Vegas, will open with a performance featuring Prince Royce, Anitta, Fito Páez, Natalia Jiménez and more highlighting four genres in Latin music. Ricky Martin, Roselyn Sánchez and Paz Vega will host the show, which will also include performances by Residente, Bad Bunny, Luis Fonsi, Farruko, Ozuna, Alicia Keys, Miguel and Juanes. Alejandro Sanz and Rosalía, the leading nominees, will also perform. None of the uber-popular Latin trap and reggaeton acts, including J Balvin, Bad Bunny, Ozuna and Daddy Yankee, received nominations in the show’s top four categories, and the Latin Grammys received backlash as a result.
  • Taylor Swift said Thursday that she may not perform at the American Music Awards and may have to put other projects including a forthcoming Netflix documentary on hold because the men who own her old recordings won’t allow her to play her songs. “Right now my performance at the AMAs, the Netflix documentary and any other recorded events I am planning to play until November 2020 are a question mark,” Swift said on Twitter and Instagram. Swift said she had planned to play a medley of her hits when she’s named Artist of the Decade at the American Music Awards on Nov. 24, but the men who own the music, Scooter Braun and Scott Borchetta, are calling the television performance an illegal re-recording. “I just want to be able to perform MY OWN music. That’s it,” Swift said. “I’ve tried to work out this out privately through my team but have not been able to resolve anything.” The Big Machine Label Group said in a statement Friday that “at no point did we say Taylor could not perform on the AMAs or block her Netflix special. In fact, we do not have the right to keep her from performing live anywhere.’’ The 29-year-old singer-songwriter has loudly spoken out against her old master recordings falling into the hands of the music manager Braun, who bought them by acquiring Borchetta’s Big Machine Label Group in June. Swift has used the sale and its aftermath to publicly advocate for the rights of artists and to further a feud with the two men. Swift said in the posts that Borchetta has told her he will allow the projects to go forward if she drops plans to record copycat versions of her older songs next year, which Swift says she plans to do and has the legal right to, and if she stops her public trashing of the two men. “The message being sent to me is very clear,” Swift said. Basically, be a good little girl and shut up. Or you’ll be punished.” A message seeking comment from the AMAs was not returned. Swift called on her legion of fans to put pressure on Braun and Borchetta to allow her performance and other projects to go forward. That ignited social media, with the hashtags 'IStandWithTaylor' and 'FreeTaylor' trending worldwide on Twitter. The Big Machine Label Group countered that Swift owes millions of dollars to it and has created a narrative that “does not exist.” Big Machine also criticized Swift for enlisting her fans and asked her to engage in “direct and honest conversation” with it. Tree Paine, Swift’s publicist, responded to Big Machine’s statement on Friday morning saying in a Twitter post that the label had not agreed to issue licenses of her recordings for the Netflix documentary and Borchetta denied the request for the AMAs. “Lastly, Big Machine is trying to deflect and make this about money by saying she owes them but an independent, professional auditor has determined that Big Machine owes Taylor $7.9 million dollars of unpaid royalties over several years,” Paine wrote. Taylor also urged her fellow artists, some of whom include Ariana Grande and Justin Bieber managed by Braun, to speak out and speak to him. Swift said she’s especially asking for help from the Carlyle Group, the private equity firm that financed the sale. The Netflix documentary, which has chronicled the last few years of her life, was previously unannounced. “This isn’t the way I planned on telling you this news,” Swift said. ___ Follow AP Entertainment Writer Andrew Dalton on Twitter https://twitter.com/andyjamesdalton.

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  • A jury found Roger Stone guilty Friday of obstruction, giving false statements to Congress and tampering with witnesses in special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election. >> Read more trending news  The verdict came on the second day of jury deliberations. Stone had denied any wrongdoing and framed the charges as politically motivated. Update 12:20 p.m. EST Nov. 15: Jurors found Stone guilty Friday of all seven counts against him, including one charge of obstruction, one charge of witness tampering and five charges of making false statements connected to his pursuit stolen emails damaging to Hillary Clinton's 2016 presidential bid. U.S. District Judge Amy Berman set a February 6 sentencing date for Stone, Fox News reported. Until then, Berman allowed Stone to be released on his own recognizance. Stone, who did not take the stand during his trial, is the sixth Trump aide or adviser to be convicted of charges brought as part of special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation. The president slammed the jury's verdict Friday, questioning in a tweet whether Stone fell victim to 'a double standard like never seen before in the history of our Country.' Original report: Jury deliberations in the case against Roger Stone, a political consultant and confidant of President Donald Trump, extended into a second day Friday after jurors failed to reach a verdict on whether he lied to Congress about his attempts to contact WikiLeaks during the 2016 presidential election. Jurors asked U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson two questions Thursday during their six hours of deliberations, Reuters reported. The questions were about what was considered testimony in the case and a request for a clarification of the charges, according to the Courthouse News Service. Authorities arrested Stone in January on charges brought by then-special counsel Robert Mueller, who headed the Justice Department's investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election. Stone was charged with obstruction, giving false statements and witness tampering. Assistant U.S. Attorney Jonathan Kravis said Stone lied to protect the Trump campaign from embarrassment and scrutiny in its quest for emails hacked by Russian officials and disseminated by WikiLeaks, according to The Washington Post. Attorneys for Stone claimed he never intentionally deceived Congress and that he was simply wrong in his testimony after committee members unexpectedly peppered him with WikiLeaks-related questions. 'There was nothing illegal about the campaign being interested in information that WikiLeaks was going to be putting out,' defense attorney Bruce S. Rogow said, according to the Post. 'This is what happens in a campaign. … It happens in every campaign.' In testimony, several witnesses highlighted how Trump campaign associates were eager to gather information about the more than 19,000 emails the U.S. says were hacked by Russia and then provided to WikiLeaks. Former campaign CEO Steve Bannon reluctantly testified last week and told jurors Trump's campaign saw Stone as an 'access point' to WikiLeaks. He said Stone boasted about his ties to the anti-secrecy group and its founder, Julian Assange. Bannon said campaign officials tried to use Stone to get advanced word about hacked emails damaging to Trump's rival in the 2016 presidential election, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Rick Gates, who served as a campaign aide for Trump, told jurors Stone asked him in June 2016 for the contact information of Trump's son-in-law and then-senior campaign adviser, Jared Kushner. Stone wanted to 'debrief' him on developments about the hacked emails, Gates said. Stone has proclaimed his innocence and accused Mueller's team of targeting him because of his politics. He could face up to 20 years in prison if he's convicted. The Associated Press contributed to this report.
  • A newborn’s body was found on a pile of rocks on the side of the road Tuesday night, authorities said. >> Read more trending news  The infant was found lying in the fetal position with the umbilical cord still attached in freezing temperatures, News12 reported. Investigators are interviewing the child’s mother. Charges have not been filed and there have been no arrests, WPVI reported. Her identity has not been released. 
  • Roger Stone was one of the key figures of special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into alleged Russian election meddling, accused fo trying to contact WikiLeaks during the 2016 presidential race, NBC News reported. Stone was found guilty of all charges he faced including making false statements to Congress and obstruction of justice. Stone's lawyers said that any misstatements their client made to lawmakers were unintentional, the Washington Post reported shortly after his arrest. Who is Roger Stone? Stone was born in 1952 and was raised in Lewisboro, New York. His mother was a newspaper writer and his father was a well digger. Stone started his conservative leanings when a neighbor gave him a book, “The Conscience of a Conservative,” written by Barry Goldwater. It was given to him before he turned 13. Shortly after, he started working on the mayoral campaign for William F. Buckley Jr. in New York on weekends in 1965, The New Yorker uncovered in an article published in 2008.  He attended George Washington University but didn’t graduate because he got into politics, working with Republican candidates for more than 40 years, according to The New Yorker. >> Read more trending news  He was only 19 when Watergate happened, and he, under the name Jason Rainier, made contributions to Pete McCloskey, who was challenging President Richard Nixon for the Republican nomination. Stone, as Rainier, made the contributions through the Young Socialist Alliance and then released the receipt to a newspaper to show that McCloskey was a left-wing candidate, according to The New Yorker. Stone also hired another person to work in  George McGovern’s Democratic presidential campaign. Both events were uncovered during the Watergate hearings in 1973. He lost a job on the staff of Republican Bob Dole because of the hearings and started the National Conservative Political Action Committee, which backed Republicans Chuck Grassley in Iowa and Dan Quayle in Indiana. Stone also worked twice on the Republican presidential campaigns of Ronald Reagan -- once in 1976, when Reagan didn’t win, and again in 1980, when he did -- then as political director for New York, New Jersey and Connecticut, The New Yorker reported. After Reagan took office, Stone stayed in the private sector, creating a political consulting and lobbying firm that went under different names, including Black, Manafort, Stone & Atwater.  The firm worked for corporations like Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. to lobby former co-workers in the Reagan campaign who held jobs in the administration. It also served clients like Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos, The New Yorker found. Focusing more on political campaigns as a solo entity instead of lobbying as part of a group, Stone worked as a senior consultant for the successful campaign of George H.W. Bush and worked three campaigns for Republican Pennsylvania Sen. Arlen Specter. He also ran unsuccessful campaigns for Dole’s 1996 quest for president. He was brought in when the 2000 presidential recount started in Florida. He played the political game on radio stations in southern Florida, saying that the recount was Al Gore’s left-wing power grab, The New Yorker reported. His efforts, along with other Republican assets, empowered George W. Bush’s Republican supporters to protest the second recount. Stone wanted, and got, the recount in Miami shut down in what became the “Brooks Brothers riot,” The Washington Post and The New Yorker reported. Stone also worked on  the younger Bush’s re-election campaign. It is believed documents obtained by CBS News that showed that Bush got out of military service for Vietnam were actually fake and that Stone was the person who created the documents, The New Yorker reported. Stone was one of President Donald Trump’s panel of long-time advisors, The Washington Post reported. He was connected to Trump when the now-president floated the idea of running in 2000.  Then, Trump said, “Roger is a stone-cold loser,” who “always takes credit for things he never did,” according to The New Yorker. Despite the harsh words then-private sector member Trump had for Stone, he used Stone for his campaign not once, but twice, teaming up in 2011 when Trump toyed with, but eventually decided against a presidential run. They went their different ways in August 2015, the Times reported.  But who pulled the plug on Stone’s tenure on the Trump campaign? Stone said he resigned and Trump’s campaign officials said he had been fired, The New York Times reported. Trump said of the firing, “I hardly ever spoke to the guy; he was just there. He played no role of any kind,” the Times reported in 2015. But Stone was listed on Federal Election Commission filings as being on the campaign payroll and he used Twitter to defend Trump during the campaign, according to the Times. What is his connection to Trump? Stone has been scrutinized for having ties to WikiLeaks by using an associate as an intermediary between himself and people associated with WikiLeaks, CNN reported. Stone spoke about having “back channel communications” with Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks, during the campaign. Stone later said the “back channel” was really a New York radio host, Randy Credico, who allegedly shared only information gleaned from interviews with Assange, CNN reported. Stone also predicted releases of information by WikiLeaks in the final days of the campaign between Trump and his Democratic challenger, Hillary Clinton, CNN reported.  Stone said in a column for Breitbart, the website run by former Trump campaign adviser Steve Bannon, that it wasn’t the Russians who hacked the servers containing the emails leaked by WikiLeaks, but it was actually a hacker who went by the name Guccifer 2.0.  >>Read: Russian hackers indicted: Who is Guccifer 2.0? Here are 15 things to know Despite Stone’s assertions in the column, some have linked Guccifer 2.0 to Russian web services, Foreign Policy reported.  In July 2016, the Times reported that intelligence agencies had “high confidence” that the Russian government was behind the email leaks and that Guccifer 2.0 was in reality an agent of the Russian military intelligence service, or GRU. Mueller’s team is investigating whether there were other connections between Stone and WikiLeaks. That connection could come in the form of Jerome Corsi, another associate of Stone’s who said this week that he expects to be indicted by Mueller for “giving false information to the special counsel or to one of the other grand jury,” CNN reported. If Corsi’s prediction comes true, he could face charges from perjury to making false claims and even obstruction of justice, all related to false statements he made about his alleged connection between WikiLeaks and Stone, CNN reported. Stone, however, said he was truthful in previous testimony before a congressional panel. >>Read: 12 Russians indicted: Here’s what the DOJ says happened “My attorneys have fully reviewed all my written communications with Dr. Corsi,” Stone wrote in a statement to CNN. “When those aren’t viewed out of context they prove everything I have said under oath regarding my interaction with Dr. Corsi is true.” Stone went on to write, “I stand by my statement to the House Intelligence Committee and can prove it is truthful if need be. I have passed two polygraph tests administered and analyzed by two of the nation's leading experts to prove I have (been) truthful.” >>Read: 12 Russians indicted: Military officials accused of hacking DNC, stealing voter info Corsi said Stone warned that there would be trouble for Clinton campaign Chairman John Podesta after Corsi published an article for InfoWars. After Stone’s statement, WikiLeaks released thousands of hacked emails from Podesta, CNN reported.  >>Read: WikiLeaks emails: FBI investigates, Podesta claims he was targeted by Russian hackers Stone tweeted “it will soon the Podesta’s time in the barrel” six weeks before WikiLeaks published the emails, The Washington Post reported. >>Read: Julian Assange: WikiLeaks source was 'not the Russian government' Stone said he did not tell Trump that WikiLeaks was going to release the hacked emails and denied working with Russia, CNN reported. But Stone did say in a recent opinion piece for The Daily Caller, that he emailed Bannon during the campaign, CNN reported. Stone, in the column, clarified that the information he shared with Bannon was publicly available. Stone said the statements he made during the campaign were exaggerations or tips only and that he didn’t know details of WikiLeaks’ plans before the document drops, the Post reported.
  • The former U.S. ambassador to Ukraine is testifying Friday in the second public hearing in the impeachment investigation of President Donald Trump. >> Read more trending news  Marie Yovanovitch will appear before the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence to answers questions about her time as ambassador in Ukraine and how she believed she was driven out of that position by Rudy Giuliani, Trump's personal lawyer. The hearing, which begins at 9 a.m. ET, will be broadcast live on CSPAN, CNN, Fox News and other cable news channels. Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, (D-California), and the top Republican on the Intelligence Committee, Devin Nunes, (R-California), will question Yovanovitch in 45-minute segments each then committee members will have five minutes each to question Yovanovitch. Watch the live stream of Friday’s hearing here Live updates ‘Ukrainian establishment’ wanted her out 12:42 p.m. ET Nov. 15, 2019: Under questioning by Castor, Yovanovitch said the 'Ukrainian establishment” had hoped her removal as ambassador would pave the way for them to do things that would be against US interests. 'I think that, in addition, there were Americans, these two individuals who were working with mayor Giuliani, Mr. Parnas and Mr. Fruman, who have recently been indicted by the Southern District of New York, who indicated that they wanted to change out the ambassador, and I think they must have had some reason for that.' Republicans begin asking questions 12:32 p.m. ET Nov. 15, 2019: Nunes asks Yovanovitch if she was present for the July 26 call between Trump and Zelensky, she answers no. He asks if she was present or had talked to other White House officials concerning Ukraine. She says she had not. Nunes then recognizes Rep. Elise Stefanik to ask questions. Stefanik attempts to ask a question but Schiff cuts her off, saying she has not been recognized. Nunes and Schiff argue about who can yield time to a committee member. Schiff says she cannot ask questions at this time and Nunes then yields to Steve Castor, the counsel for the Republicans. The hearing has resumed 12:22 p.m. ET Nov. 15, 2019: The hearing has resumed and Republicans are asking questions. In a break 10:45 a.m. ET Nov. 15, 2019: The hearing has been suspended for a short recess for House members to vote.  Trump tweets, Yovanovitch defends herself  10:30 a.m. Nov. 15, 2019: Schiff read a tweet from Trump this morning disparaging Yovanovitch’s service. Trump said that “everywhere Marie Yovanovitch went turned bad.” Schiff asks if she wants to address the tweet. Yovanovitch answered, “I don’t think I have such powers,” but went on to say that her work “demonstrably made things better, both for the US and for the countries I’ve served in.” Fearing a tweet 10:24 a.m. ET Nov. 15, 2019: Goldman asks Yovanovitch if she was given a vote of support from Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. She said she was not. He asked if she knew why not. She said the department feared that the president would post a tweet contradicting any support. ‘Devastated' by Trump's Ukraine call 10:15 a.m. Nov. 15, 2019: Yovanovitch said she was “shocked” and “devastated” by the White House memo on Trump’s call with Zelensky. The transcript included the phrase that Yovanovitch is “bad news.” “A person who saw me actually reading the transcript said the color drained from my face,” Yovanovitch told Daniel Goldman, a former federal prosecutor with the Southern District of New York who is the counsel for the Democrats. She said Trump’s comment that she was “going to go through some things,” in his call with Zelensky, “felt like a vague threat.” ‘Big hit for morale’ 10 a.m. Nov. 15, 2019: Schiff asked Yovanovitch how her recall was received by colleagues in the State Department. Yovanovitch said, 'Well, it's been a big hit for morale, both at the U.S. Embassy in Kyiv and also more broadly in the State Department.' She also that it’s fair to say that her firing affected morale of other ambassadors. Yovanovitch's opening statement 9:33 a.m. ET Nov. 15, 2019: Yovanovitch is giving her opening statement, talking about the sometime dangers of foreign service. She opened her statement by recounting her family’s history. They fled the Soviet Union. She says she has served in several “hardship” posts as a diplomat.  She talked about her work in Ukraine. 'Not all Ukrainians embraced our anti-corruption work. Thus, perhaps, it was not surprising, that when our anti-corruption efforts got in the way of a desire for profit or power, Ukrainians who preferred to play by the old, corrupt rules sought to remove me. What continues to amaze me is that they found Americans willing to partner with them and, working together, they apparently succeeded in orchestrating the removal of a U.S. Ambassador. How could our system fail like this? How is it that foreign corrupt interests could manipulate our government?' She says she never tried to work against Trump or for Clinton. She said she has never met Hunter Biden but did know former Vice President Joe Biden. Nunes’ turn 9:20 a.m. ET Nov. 15, 2019: Rep. Nunes is speaking now. He says five of the members of the Intelligence Committee voted to impeach Trump before he ever made the July 26 phone call. He complains that the Democrats met secretly with the whistleblower and that Republicans have been threatened if they try to find out the person’s name and release it. He also said Democrats went after nude photos of Trump. He is reading the just-released transcript into the record. The hearing has begun 9:10 a.m. ET Nov. 15, 2019: Schiff is giving his opening statement. He is praising Yovanovitch’s qualifications and her anti-corruption work in Ukraine. He's asking why Trump wanted to recall Yovanovitch from her post. Phone call transcript released 9:05 a.m. ET Nov. 15, 2019: The White House has released the transcript of the first phone call between Trump and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. That phone call took place in April. This is not the phone call the whistleblower reported on. People are getting to their seats 9 a.m. ET Nov. 15, 2019: House Intelligence Committee members, the press and spectators are coming into the room for the start of the hearing. $3 million in donations 8:55 a.m. ET Nov. 15, 2019: Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale announced on Thursday that the Trump campaign raised more than $3 million on Wednesday during the first public impeachment hearings. A case of bribery? 8:47 a.m. ET Nov. 15, 2019: On Thursday, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-California, accused Trump of bribery. Pelosi pointed out at her weekly press conference that bribery is “in the Constitution” as a reason for impeaching a president. Yovanovitch has arrived 8:38 a.m. ET Nov. 15, 2019: Yovanovitch has arrived at Capitol Hill with her attorneys and is entering the building. One public hearing and two in private8:35 a.m. ET Nov. 15, 2019: While Yovanovitch will testify in public Friday, David Holmes will appear before the committee afterward in a closed-door session. Holmes is a State Department employee who claims to have overheard a phone conversation about Ukraine between Gordon Sondland, the ambassador to the European Union, and Trump. On Saturday, Mark Sandy, an office of Management and Budget official, will testify before the committee in private. Sandy will be the first OMB official to agree to testify before the committee. How the hearing will go 8:15 a.m. ET Nov. 15, 2019: The hearing will be conducted in the same way as Wednesday’s hearing with William Taylor and George Kent was conducted. Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, D-California, and the top Republican on the Intelligence Committee, Devin Nunes, R-California, will question Taylor and Kent in 45-minute segments each. Those 45 minutes can be delegated to the staff lawyers or other committee members. After the extended 45-minute periods, the committee will go back to its usual format of five-minute rounds of questions for committee members. Let’s get started 8 a.m. ET Nov. 15, 2019: Good morning and welcome to live updates from the second public hearing of the impeachment inquiry. The hearing begins in an hour, at 9 a.m. ET. Live updates coming 6 a.m. ET Nov. 15, 2019: Live updates of Marie Yovanovitch's testimony will begin at 8 a.m. ET. The hearing begins at 9 a.m. ET [Summary]
  • A brake fluid leak on certain Nissan cars and SUVs could lead to risk of fire prompting the automaker to recall about 394,000 vehicles in the United States. >> Read more trending news  An antilock brake actuator pump can leak onto a circuit board, causing electrical shorts and fires. Because of the risk, Nissan recommends owners park the vehicles outside and away from buildings if the antilock brake light is on for more than 10 seconds.  The recall covers 2015 to 2018 Nissan Murano SUVs, 2016 to 2018 Maxima sedans and 2017 to 2019 Infiniti QX60 and Nissan Pathfinder SUVs, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. This is the second recall for some of the same vehicles. In 2018, Nissan dealers inspected parts but did not replace the pumps if fluid wasn’t leaking. Dealers will now replace pumps on all of the vehicles. The Associated Press contributed to this report. 
  • An Arkansas paramedic is charged with felony theft after authorities allege she cut a 1.7-carat diamond ring off a dead patient’s finger last month and pawned it for $45. Lisa Darlene Glaze, 50, of Hot Springs Village, is charged with theft by receiving and misdemeanor transfer of stolen property to a pawn shop, according to Garland County court records. Arrested Monday, she has since been released on $4,500 bond. >> Read more trending news  The Sentinel-Record in Hot Springs reported that Glaze, a paramedic at CHI St. Vincent Hot Springs, was one of the paramedics who attended to Gloria Farrar Robinson on Oct. 16 when the 72-year-old Whie Hall woman suffered a medical emergency. A probable cause affidavit obtained by the newspaper stated Robinson was taken to CHI St. Vincent, where she later died. After Robinson died, her personal effects were given to her husband, identified in her obituary as Leonard Robinson, and her sister, Alesia Massey. Massey asked Glaze about three of Robinson’s rings that were missing. Glaze “did not answer her and walked away,” according to the affidavit. Robinson’s husband and sister went to Fuller Hale South Funeral Home in Pine Bluff two days later to make funeral arrangements, at which time they were given a bag with two of the missing rings, the Sentinel-Record reported. A 1.7-carat diamond, gold solitaire ring was still missing. The ring, which was adorned with a marquise-cut diamond, had been cut off Robinson’s finger, according to the affidavit. On Oct. 24, eight days after Robinson died, Glaze went to Hot Springs Classic Guns and Loan with a marquise-cut, solitaire diamond ring with a gold band. She sold the ring, which the pawnshop worker noted had a cut in the band, for $45, the court documents allege. Glaze used her driver’s license for identification during the transaction, the Sentinel-Record reported. Five days after the sale, a Montgomery County investigator went to the pawnshop and took photos of the ring, sending the images to Robinson’s husband and sister. Both identified the ring as belonging to the deceased woman, the affidavit said. The pawnshop employee who bought the ring identified Glaze in a photo as the woman who sold the piece of jewelry, the Sentinel-Record reported. Massey, Robinson’s sister, retrieved the ring from the pawnshop and had it appraised. The ring was determined to be worth nearly $8,000. Robinson’s son, Ben Ellis, castigated Glaze in a Facebook post Wednesday, calling her an expletive before questioning her care of his dying mother. “You stole my mother’s rings off her hands after she died?” Ellis wrote. “Did you let my mother die so you could steal her jewelry?” A woman named Diane McAlister offered Ellis her condolences. “Gloria was a wonderful, hardworking person. She respected everyone,” McAlister wrote. “I hope this person is prosecuted to the highest degree.” According to her obituary, Robinson worked as a payroll officer at Southeast Arkansas College for more than 20 years. Glaze has been placed on administrative leave with pay by the hospital, which issued a statement to the Sentinel-Record about the case. “CHI St. Vincent Hot Springs places a priority on the safety and well-being of our patients and our healing ministry is committed to their security while in our care,” the statement read. The hospital is continuing to cooperate with the investigation, officials said. If convicted, Glaze faces up to 10 years in prison on the felony theft charge and up to a year in county jail for the charge of selling stolen property to the pawnshop, the newspaper said.