Stories on Keb' Mo', Big Pun, and Suge Knight.
Contemporary blues artist Keb' Mo' has been personally invited to appear as a special guest at Garth Brooks' Nov. 14 concert special, which will be broadcast live on CBS. The one-hour event at the Forum in Los Angeles is set to air at 10 p.m. ET/PT. As previously reported, the show is one of a handful of high profile performances Brooks has scheduled in support of his new MCA album, "Scarecrow."
Keb' Mo' will also appear with Jackson Browne at a Nov. 17 benefit at L.A.'s Orpheum Theater. That event will benefit Friends of the Washington Prep Foundation, which supports the Washington High School Music Program.
In addition, The Okeh/Epic recording artist will be the featured guest speaker Nov. 12 at the Santa Monica Museum of Art's "Monday Meetings with Masters" lecture series. Aimed at music students, the free Sony Music-sponsored series begins each week at 5 p.m. and is open to the pubic.
-- Barry A. Jeckell, N.Y.
A documentary on late rapper Christopher "Big Punisher" Rios is in the works. Titled "Still Not a Player," the Marcos Antonio Miranda-directed project will feature interviews with Fat Joe, Nas, Tony Touch, DJ Premier, Cuban Link, and others. Big Pun's widow, Liza Rios, will also provide personal commentary. "Still Not a Player" is scheduled to hit stores on VHS and DVD-Video early next year.
In May, a New York City Council committee decided not to approve a measure that would have named a Bronx intersection after the rapper because of its discomfort over some of his lyrics. The Latino artist, who weighed nearly 700 pounds, died of a heart attack on Feb. 7, 2000.
-- Rashaun Hall, N.Y.
Rap music mogul Marion "Suge" Knight has abandoned plans to expand his mansion atop a hill in California's San Fernando Valley because of neighborhood opposition, officials said. Knight was planning to build a movie theater, pool and other amenities at the 9,000-square-foot structure. He has since withdrawn his request and wants to complete construction of the unfinished home, said Ana Vidal, an assistant city planner.
Neighbors were worried Knight, who founded Death Row Records, would throw loud parties at the house. Knight never planned to move into the mansion, according to his company, but wants to use it as a "positive" environment for children.
The construction still needs approval from a design review board. The matter will be discussed on Thursday (Nov. 15). Construction began several years ago but stopped after Knight, 36, went to prison in 1996.
Knight was released in August after serving five years for violating probation by getting into a fight in a Las Vegas hotel. The altercation occurred hours before rap star Tupac Shakur was killed in a drive-by shooting as he rode in Knight's car. Shakur was on the Death Row label.
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