Review: Duke offers heartfelt tribute to late wife

George Duke, “DreamWeaver” (Heads Up International) George Duke was left devastated by the death of his wife, Corine, from cancer a year ago and unable to make music for months, but the keyboardist and composer eventually overcame his…

Review: ‘Tap on the Window’ is worth answering

“A Tap on the Window” (New American Library), by Linwood Barclay Private detective Cal Weaver makes a simple mistake and destroys everything he holds dear in Linwood Barclay’s new thriller, “A Tap on the Window.” Weaver and his…

50 Cent pleads not guilty to domestic violence

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Rapper and actor 50 Cent has pleaded not guilty to domestic violence and vandalism charges involving an ex-girlfriend who is the mother of his child. His attorney entered the plea on Monday in Los…

Sharon Stone: Happily unrecognizable in new role

NEW YORK (AP) — Actors make physical transformations for roles all the time; it’s what they do. Still, many have found it truly stunning to see Sharon Stone — who at 55 still looks unnervingly like the sleek,…

Book explores the lives of the world’s paramedics

“Paramedico: Around the World by Ambulance” (The Friday Project, an imprint of HarperCollins), by Benjamin Gilmour Benjamin Gilmour’s book “Paramedico” explores the lives of emergency responders in a variety of countries, an intriguing, blood-soaked concept with plenty of…

Dylan portraits to go on display at London gallery

LONDON (AP) — Portraits by Bob Dylan are going on display at the National Portrait Gallery in London. The 72-year-old singer-songwriter has been exhibiting his artworks for the past six years, but these 12 new pastel sketches have…

‘The Simpsons’ to get a Lego series

COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) — Want to build a new home for Homer or try out a new hairstyle for Marge? Danish toy company Lego on Monday confirmed it will launch a special series themed on “The Simpsons” family…

Celeb birthdays for the week of Aug. 11-17

Aug. 11: Songwriter Kenny Gamble of Gamble and Huff is 70. Bassist Jim Kale of the Guess Who is 70. Country singer John Conlee is 67. Singer Eric Carmen is 64. Wrestler-actor Hulk Hogan is 60. Singer Joe…

Ryan Seacrest to host new NBC game show

NEW YORK (AP) — NBC says Ryan Seacrest will host “The Million Second Quiz,” a new live game show the network hopes will become event programming for two weeks in September. The network said Monday it is constructing…

Review: A last go-round for The Civil Wars?

The Civil Wars, “The Civil Wars” (Columbia) It’s hard to listen to Joy Williams and John Paul White sing lyrics like “don’t say it’s over” on The Civil Wars’ new disc and not think of the big picture.…

Review: Tunstall eloquently contemplates mortality

K.T. Tunstall, “Invisible Empire/Crescent Moon” (Blue Note) “We are fighters in our prime,” K.T. Tunstall sings to her father on her new album, and the words resonate with poignancy now that he’s gone. “Invisible Empire/Crescent Moon” focuses on…

New book focuses on Civil War photographer Brady

“Mathew Brady: Portraits of a Nation” (Bloomsbury), by Robert Wilson Civil War photographer Mathew Brady largely taught himself the finer points of the two pursuits that have linked his name to history: taking pictures and self-promotion. The son…

Review: Texas leads the way in wind energy

“The Great Texas Wind Rush: How George Bush, Ann Richards, and a Bunch of Tinkerers Helped the Oil and Gas State Win the Race to Wind Power” (University of Texas Press), by Kate Galbraith and Asher Price Millions…

Sinise and band rock out for Iowan who lost limbs

CEDAR FALLS, Iowa (AP) — The Lt. Dan Band formed by actor Gary Sinise rocked out loud and proud for an Iowan who lost limbs to a bomb blast while serving in Afghanistan. The band performed Saturday night…

Rapper due in court on domestic violence charge

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Rapper and actor 50-Cent faces arraignment on charges that he attacked his ex-girlfriend and trashed her condo. The hearing for the singer, whose real name is Curtis Jackson, was scheduled for Monday. If convicted,…

Whedon says he’s making ‘S.H.I.E.L.D.’ he wants

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (AP) — Joss Whedon says he’s been enjoying trust as much as freedom from his partners on the much-awaited ABC sci-fi drama, “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” The prolific Whedon said Sunday that both ABC and…

Ramos welcomes chance to go beyond bad-guy roles

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (AP) — Luis Antonio Ramos, starring in the new ABC series “Lucky 7,” became emotional talking about the chance to play something other than a stereotypical Latino character. “I was tired of playing bad guys…

‘Idol’ judge Keith Urban lines up for NFL duty

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Keith Urban will help the NFL kick off the 2013 season. Urban is scheduled to perform live during NBC’s pregame show before the Baltimore Ravens open the season at the Denver Broncos on Thursday,…

Emmy nominee from N. Indiana nearly passed on role

MISHAWAKA, Ind. (AP) — Adam Driver says he nearly passed up a chance for a role in the HBO series “Girls.” The actor from Mishawaka was in the middle of a play at the time wasn’t interested in…

Rebel Wilson ready to enjoy ‘Super Fun Night’

BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. (AP) — Rebel Wilson says “Super Fun Night” burst from her own social misadventures. The upcoming ABC sitcom focuses on her character and two gal pals who spend every Friday night together, avoiding contact with…