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Song from Prince's father being released on his 101st b'day

A new song from Prince's late father, produced at Paisley Park, is being released Thursday to celebrate what would have been his 101st birthday.

Prince's half-sister, Sharon Nelson, produced the jazzy "Heart of Mine" by John L. Nelson and said it is the first single from the album, "Don't Play With Love, The John L. Nelson Project," to be released Oct. 27.

The new song will be available for streaming and for sale at digital retailers on Thursday.

John Nelson, a jazz pianist who performed with the Prince Rogers Trio, died in 2001 at age 85. He co-wrote some songs with Prince, including "Computer Blue" from "Purple Rain."

"We are making his music available for the world to hear," Sharon Nelson said in a statement Wednesday. "Contrary to what has been written about our dad, he was a loving, caring, hardworking father, and a prolific jazz musician most notably known as the father of the musical genius, our brother Prince."

Sharon Nelson produced the album in January at Paisley Park from her father's sheet music. Prince, who died last year, had no creative role in the new music.

"Our dad wrote and composed many songs, but they were never recorded until now. He was Prince's musical inspiration, and this project is very special because it was recorded in Paisley Park," Sharon Nelson said. "This music was destined to come out and we are sure you will enjoy the masterful works of John L. Nelson."

The album will be released on Sharon Nelson's company, Maken It Music. Earlier this year a judge confirmed Prince's six siblings to be his rightful heirs, including his sister Tyka Nelson and five half-siblings — Sharon Nelson, Norrine Nelson, John R. Nelson, Omarr Baker and Alfred Jackson.

Sharon Nelson released an album in 2009 called "57th Street Sound" and co-produced an EP featuring her father in 1994.

Film academy invites Leslie Jones, Dwayne Johnson, Riz Ahmed

The film academy is inviting 774 new members to join its ranks, including actors Leslie Jones, Dwayne Johnson, Riz Ahmed, Chris Pratt and Anna Faris.

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences revealed its latest invitees on Wednesday.

Other actors invited to join the group include Priyanka Chopra, Janelle Monae, Elle Fanning, Donald Glover, Chris Hemsworth, Jon Hamm, Betty White, Terry Crews, John Cho, Zoe Kravitz and "Wonder Woman" herself, Gal Gadot. Several "Saturday Night Live" alumnae also received invites: Amy Poehler, Molly Shannon, Maya Rudolph and current star Kate McKinnon.

"Moonlight" writer-director Barry Jenkins was invited to join both branches, as was "Get Out" writer-director Jordan Peele. "Hidden Figures" director Theodore Melfi and documentarian Ezra Edelman, who won an Oscar for "O.J.: Made in America," also received invitations.

Lin-Manuel Miranda, Justin Timberlake, Nick Cave, Terry Lewis, Jimmy Jam and "La La Land" composers Benj Pasek, Justin Paul and Justin Hurwitz were invited to the music branch.

The film academy reports the new class of potential members is 39 percent female and 30 percent non-white. The organization has been diversifying its ranks after two years of #OscarsSoWhite and criticism of its overwhelmingly white and male voting body.

‘Big Bang Theory’ star Johnny Galecki loses ranch in California wildfire

Actor Johnny Galecki, star of the TV series “Big Bang Theory,” has lost his large ranch home to a California wildfire burning in San Luis Obispo, about halfway between Los Angeles and San Francisco.

>> Read more trending news

The actor was not at the home at the time of the fire Monday night and is fine, Variety reported.

“My heart goes out to all in the area who are also experiencing loss from this vicious fire, the threat of which we live with constantly, which may seem crazy to some but we do so because living in our beautiful, rural area makes it worthwhile,” Galecki said in a statement to TMZ

>> Related: ‘John Wick’ villain Michael Nyqvist loses battle with lung cancer

The fire, which is about 60 percent contained, has burned more than 1,600 acres and forced dozens of evacuations.

 

La La Anthony says she and Carmelo Anthony are not divorcing ‘right now’

There could be a reconciliation in the future for Carmelo and La La Anthony.

E! News reported that the actress appeared on “The Wendy Williams Show” on Tuesday and dished about the status of her relationship with estranged NBA player husband Carmelo Anthony.

>> Read more trending news

When asked if they were divorcing, Anthony, 38, responded, “Not right now,” and added, “You know, marriages are tough, and you know that. We all know that. It’s filled with ups and downs. We are just going through a time right now.

“Him and I are the best of friends, and our No. 1 commitment is to our son, Kiyan, and we have to set an example for Kiyan, and that’s what’s most important to me.”

She also said that even though things are tough between them, she will never have a bad thing to say about Carmelo Anthony, 33.

Related: Report: NY Knicks Carmelo Anthony, TV personality La La Anthony separated

“That’s my son’s father, and he is an amazing dad,” she said. “I could not ask for a better dad.”

Host Wendy Williams couldn’t sit through the mystery of their relationship and decided to get to the thought on everyone’s minds.

“He seems to want you back,” Williams said.

Anthony responded, “Why wouldn’t he?” 

Despite knowing that they aren’t divorcing just yet, Anthony is still uncertain about the future.

Related: This celebrity’s baby is the taking over Instagram with all of these adorable posts and we can’t get enough

“Listen, if I could predict the future, we would all be multimillionaires,” she said. “I don’t know what the future holds. I just know that we are doing an incredible job again being parents to our son. We are the best of friends. I’ve been with Melo since he was 19 years old. You’re not with somebody that long, and it just goes out the window. I love him with all my heart, and we are the best of friends.”

When Williams asked if she’s dating, Anthony said, “Yeah, I’m dating. I’m dating myself.”

“I’m trying to get myself in order,” she said. “I'm in the gym every day. I'm eating right. I’m taking out all the bad stuff in my life and just really dating and focusing on myself, which is something women need to do more often, put ourselves first.”

La La Anthony and Carmelo Anthony were married in 2010 after dating since 2003.

Watch the interview on “Wendy” below.

Bentley previously owned by George Strait up for sale

A Bentley convertible previously owned by country music legend George Strait is for sale.

According to the AutoTrader ad, the 2012 Bentley Continental GTC has less than 13,000 miles and is in excellent condition.

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The asking price of $159,000 includes the vehicle and a car manual signed by Strait.

Though it’s a nice car, there's no guarantee that it will get you to "Amarillo by Morning." 

Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Jason Statham welcome a baby boy

It's a boy for model-actress Rosie Huntington-Whiteley and her fiancé, Jason Statham.

Huntington-Whiteley wrote in an Instagram post Wednesday that son Jack Oscar Statham was born on Saturday weighing 8.8 pounds.

She included a photo of a tiny hand holding her finger.

A publicist for the former Victoria's Secret model did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Huntington-Whiteley also used Instagram to reveal her pregnancy in February. She and Statham announced their engagement in January of 2016. This is their first child.

Huntington-Whiteley appeared in "Mad Max: Fury Road" and "Transformers: Dark of the Moon." Statham's recent film credits include "The Fate of the Furious" and "Spy."

Trump attacks Washington Post, Amazon over 'internet taxes'

President Donald Trump attacked The Washington Post and Amazon on Twitter Wednesday, arguing that the online retailer was not paying "internet taxes."

Trump stated on Twitter Wednesday: "The #AmazonWashingtonPost, sometimes referred to as the guardian of Amazon not paying internet taxes (which they should) is FAKE NEWS!"

It was not immediately clear what Trump meant by "internet taxes." The White House declined to answer questions about the president's statement.

Amazon.com collects state sales taxes in all 45 states with a sales tax and the District of Columbia, according to their website. State governments have sought to capture sales taxes lost to internet retailers, though they have struggled with a 1992 Supreme Court ruling that retailers must have a physical presence in a state before officials can make them collect sales tax.

Amazon did not immediately respond to requests for comment. Washington Post spokeswoman Shani George declined comment.

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos bought the Washington Post in 2013. He made the purchase as an individual and Amazon.com Inc. was not involved.

Bezos was one of a number of technology executives who visited the White House recently for a strategy session on modernizing government.

Trump has taken shots at Bezos and Amazon on Twitter before.

In 2015, he wrote that Bezos bought the Post "for purposes of keeping taxes down at his no profit company, @amazon." He added that "If @amazon ever had to pay fair taxes, its stock would crash and it would crumble like a paper bag. The @washingtonpost scam is saving it!"

In a break from presidential tradition, Trump has so far refused to release his federal tax returns.

White House reporter says he's tired of being bullied

The reporter who accused White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders of inflaming the public against the media at a press briefing says he did it because he's tired of being bullied by the administration.

Brian Karem, an editor at the Washington-area Sentinel newspapers, became an instant symbol in the tense relationship between the president and journalists when he interrupted Sanders on Tuesday. Given the nation's wide political divide, it took little searching to find depictions of him as either a hero or crying baby on social media.

"There's a time and a place for everything and the time has come to stand up and be counted," Karem told The Associated Press on Wednesday. "I'm tired of taking it. I want friendly relationships, but those who want respect, show respect. We have shown that man and shown the administration respect for six months, and all we're getting in return is a lack of respect, derision and bullying."

Karem, 56, is not a representative of the large national media organizations repeatedly described as "fake news" by the president. Besides his editing, he writes for Playboy, where his first-person account of the confrontation was posted late Tuesday. He was jailed as a Texas television reporter in 1990 for refusing to identify sources in a crime story.

The administration's own anger with the media is close to the surface, with the president tweeting Tuesday about a CNN story on Russian connections that was retracted last week, and on Wednesday about The New York Times' coverage of the stalled health bill. Sanders opened Tuesday's briefing by calling on a reporter from the conservative Breitbart News, who asked about the CNN story, and she expressed frustration with media coverage.

"If we make the slightest mistake, the slightest word is off, it is just an absolute tirade from a lot of people in this room," Sanders said. "But news outlets get to go on, day after day, and cite unnamed sources, use stories without sources."

That's where Karem broke in.

"Come on!" he said. "You're inflaming everybody right here, right now with those words." He said that Sanders is there to answer questions "and what you did is inflammatory to people all over the country who look at it and say, 'See, once again, the president's right and everybody else out here is fake media.' And everybody in this room is only trying to do their job."

Sanders said that "if anything has been inflamed, it's the dishonesty that often takes place by the news media and I think it is outrageous for you to accuse me of inflaming a story when I was simply trying to respond to his question."

The White House has been holding fewer on-camera briefings lately, and the press has been pushing for more. With that backdrop, it felt like the chief purpose of Tuesday's on-camera session was to browbeat the press, Karem said.

Karem, who was not at the White House on Wednesday, said he hasn't heard from the administration about the exchange and doesn't know if there will be repercussions. Sanders did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

While Karem said he'd received expressions of support from some fellow reporters, not all sympathetic observers like to see frustration boil over. Liberal former talk show host Phil Donahue, on MSNBC Wednesday, said reporters should stay above the fray.

"I don't think the press should get in the mosh pit," he said. "I think they have to be big boys and girls and take the hits.

"The best way to handle this is to just keep working," Donahue said. "Don't be so sensitive. Don't look like you have a glass jaw ... I think the press has to be above that."

Karem said he always taught his children that the best way to handle bullies is to try and make friends with them and, failing that, punch back so they know you won't take their guff. Since it's a potent issue for Trump's supporters, he doesn't expect the administration's attitude toward the media will change.

"You think it's going to go away?" he said. "It's not. But I'm not going gently into the good night. I'm not going to sit there and be told that I'm the enemy of the people and that I'm fake news."

Sons to attend birthday service at Princess Diana's grave

Prince William, his wife, Kate, and Prince Harry will attend a private service at the late Princess Diana's grave on what would have been her 56th birthday.

In a brief statement, Kensington Palace said Wednesday that the July 1 service will be conducted by the Archbishop of Canterbury and attended by Diana's family.

The service comes several weeks before the 20th anniversary of her in August 1997 death in a Paris car crash.

Diana is buried on the grounds of Althorp estate, her family's ancestral home in the countryside near Northampton in central England.

William and Harry, who were 15 and 12 years old when their mother died, are marking the anniversary by commissioning a statue of Diana that will stand in the public gardens of Kensington Palace in London.

Chaffetz, leaving Congress this week, heading to Fox News

A Republican who is quitting Congress at the end of the week is heading to Fox News.

Fox News Channel announced on Wednesday that five-term Rep. Jason Chaffetz of Utah will be a contributor effective July 1, offering political analysis on various Fox programs.

Chaffetz said earlier this year that he would not seek another term, then announced he would leave the House on June 30. Chaffetz has served as chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee and doggedly investigated Hillary Clinton before the 2016 presidential election.

Chaffetz has been mentioned as a possible candidate for governor in Utah.

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