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Lifestyle FRIDAY, MARCH 21, 2014

New album for British WWII forces’ sweetheart Vera Lynn, 97

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Members of the Rolling Stones board their plane at Perth Airport yesterday, after the suicide of Mick Jagger’s girlfriend LíWren Scott in New York on March 17. — AFP

ritish singer Vera Lynn, the “forces sweetheart” who helped keep up morale during World War II, celebrated her 97th birthday yesterday with the announcement of a new album of re-mastered songs. The album will include more than 40 songs from 1940-45, including her wartime anthem “We’ll Meet Again”, and some unreleased tracks uncovered by her daughter Virginia. It will be released on June 2 to coincide with the 70th anniversary of the D-Day landings four days later. A previous compilation in 2009, timed for the anniversary of the outbreak of World War II, reached number one, making Lynn, then 92, the oldest living singer to top the British album charts.”I think it’s wonderful that my songs are still enjoyed, especially if it encourages people to commemorate what happened 70 years ago,” Lynn said in a statement yesterday. “It’s moving for me to relive those days, and humbling to know that people still think of meafter all, it was simply my duty to keep singing.” — AFP

Stones leave Perth after Scott suicide

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he Rolling Stones jetted out of Perth yesterday after the suicide of Mick Jagger’s girlfriend L’Wren Scott, with Keith Richards consoling his “soul brother” and vowing they will be back on stage soon. The band’s private plane, emblazoned with their trademark red tongue, took off around 0710 GMT. Charlie Watts and Ronnie Wood were seen leaving their hotel while Richards was spotted walking up the jet’s steps. In their first comments since the former model, 49, was found hanged at her luxury New York apartment on Monday, the band said they were shocked and pulling together to help the lead singer, 70. “No-one saw this coming... Mick’s always been my soul brother and we love him. We’re thick as thieves and we’re all feeling for the man,” Richards, his songwriting partner for more than 50 years, said in a statement. “We really hate to disappoint our fans but we’ll see everyone really soon.” The Stones on Tuesday postponed their 14 On Fire tour of Australia and New Zealand. They were due to play a first gig in Perth on Wednesday and vowed to reschedule concerts in the city as well as Adelaide, Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Auckland. The flight plan for the band’s tour 767 lodged at Perth airport, listed Abu Dhabi as the final destination, according to media reports. Watts told Britain’s Daily Mail of Jagger: “He’s holding up, he’s okay. He’s not really well, he’s not really here. It was such a shock.” Wood said the entire band would be back on stage as soon as possible. “This is such terrible news and right now the important thing is that we are all pulling together to offer Mick our support and help him through this sad time,” he said. “Without a doubt we intend to be back out on that stage as soon as we can.” Watts added that it was an “awful time”, but also vowed to be back. “Needless to say we are all completely shocked but our first

thought is to support Mick at this awful time,” he said in the statement. “We intend to come back to Australia and New Zealand as soon as it proves possible.” In the original statement, none of the three mentioned Scott by name, but in a subsequent comment on their Facebook page Wood paid his respects to the designer’s family.

Struggling to understand On Wednesday, a coroner in New York confirmed that Scott had committed suicide by hanging. Jagger has not been seen in public since hearing the tragic news, but in a blog post on his website a day after Scott was found dead he described her as not only his lover but his best friend. “I will never forget her,” he wrote under a post entitled “L’Wren”, featuring a black and white photo of Scott. “I am still struggling to understand how my lover and best friend could end her life in this tragic way.” British media said Jagger was so distraught at the loss that he has barely slept and was being monitored by his entourage, including medical professionals and his daughters Elizabeth and Georgia May. It emerged that Scott’s fashion business had large debts at the time of her suicide, according to accounts filed in Britain. LS Fashion Ltd ran a loss of $5.9 million as of December 31, 2012, said the accounts, lodged with Britain’s Companies House last October and obtained by AFP. Scott’s body-hugging and figure-flattering dresses were loved by celebrities from Hollywood stars to US First Lady Michelle Obama. — AFP

In a file picture on October 22, 2009 taken Dame Vera Lynn poses for photographs in central London. —AP

FX network orders comedy starring Billy Crystal

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illy Crystal has agreed to star in a new television series in which he’s paired with Josh Gad in a story about two comics in a generational clash. The series is called “The Comedians.” It’s set to air on the FX network next year. FX said Wednesday it has ordered 13 episodes. “The Comedians” is based on a format popular in Sweden and will look at a late-night television show on which egos and generations collide. The pilot episode was directed by Larry Charles, who worked on “Seinfeld” and “Curb Your Enthusiasm.” Crystal has been well known for movie roles, a “Saturday Night Live” stint and repeated turns as Academy Awards host. But his last role in a regular TV series was on the 1970s ABC sitcom “Soap.”— AP

Album of discarded Johnny Cash songs comes out of vault

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Johnny Cash

ohnny Cash helped define American country music with hits such as “I Walk the Line” and “A Boy Named Sue”, but in the early 1980s he recorded an album of songs his record label refused to release and is only now seeing the light of day. “Out Among The Stars”, which Cash, who died in 2003, recorded with legendary Nashville producer Billy Sherrill, will be released by Sony next week and includes duets with Cash’s late wife, June Carter Cash, and Waylon Jennings. The songs were never released in any form by Cash’s label, Columbia, now owned by Sony, and were only rediscovered in 2012 when Cash’s son, John Carter Cash, who has written extensively about his late parents, was cataloguing their archives. “Originally produced by Billy Sherrill in 1984 and a couple of songs in ‘81, they exhibited my father and showed his creativity in a period of his life when not as many people knew about this music,” Cash told Reuters on a recent trip to London. At the time “Out Among The Stars” was recorded, country music was moving away from the sound that made Cash popular towards the ‘countrypoli-

tan’ style championed by Garth Brooks. Cash also endured a difficult personal struggle with drug addiction and being dropped by Columbia in 1986. After he was let go by the label, “Out Among The Stars” remained in the vaults and was subsequently forgotten. “Something that specifically worked for Johnny Cash was not what Columbia was interested in at the time, sadly. I believe they made a bad mistake and they didn’t have the vision. However, you can look at it in different ways,” Cash said. “There was a string of Johnny Cash records that came out through that time period that weren’t getting attention. Perhaps if it had been released it wouldn’t have the same songs and it would have been just another record,” he added. “I don’t think he was jealous of the other artists who were succeeding at the time period. It was not time for Johnny Cash to stand out in the light because the world around just wasn’t as cool as he was.” ‘Figure of mystery’ The last decade has seen a resurgence in for-

tunes for the ‘Man in Black’, more than 10 years after his death. Much of this is due to the release of a series of “American” albums produced by Rick Rubin, the success of Cash’s cover of the Nine Inch Nails track “Hurt” and the global success of the biopic “Walk the Line” starring Joaquin Phoenix and Reese Witherspoon. Cash’s son also believes part of his father’s enduring popularity can be put down to his enigmatic personality. “He endures because he’s also a figure of mystery,” he said. Releasing the album was a not a simple decision for Cash, who said that he has to consider whether the album is individual and distinct enough to add to the Johnny Cash canon. “It’s a matter of integrity and spirit. You know, it’s something beautiful and it’s a personal connection with the family ... I think I would make a lot more people angry by not releasing this beautiful work than by putting it out,” he said.—Reuters

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