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Jefferson Airplane co-founder: Botched surgery ruined career

A co-founder of Jefferson Airplane is accusing a New York City hospital of destroying his musical career with a botched tracheotomy.

A lawsuit filed by Marty Balin against Mount Sinai Beth Israel hospital says the singer and guitarist lost part of his tongue and has a paralyzed vocal cord because of the procedure done after he was hospitalized for emergency heart surgery in 2016.

The 77-year-old Balin helped form Jefferson Airplane in San Francisco in the mid-1960s. The band's signature hits include "Somebody to Love" and "White Rabbit."

Lawyers for Balin sued Thursday in federal court in Manhattan. The suit seeks unspecified damages.

There was no immediate response on Friday to a message seeking comment from hospital officials.

Stormy Daniels drops out of UK reality show at last minute

Stormy Daniels, the adult film actress and nemesis of U.S. President Donald Trump, has pulled out of a British reality-TV show at the last minute after a dispute with producers.

Daniels was due to take part in "Celebrity Big Brother," which locks contestants in a house under constant surveillance. But she failed to join housemates including actress Kirstie Alley and psychic Sally Morgan for Thursday's first episode.

Lawyer Michael Avenatti said Friday that Daniels argued with producers who attempted to "control her and produce a certain result."

Broadcaster Channel 5 said Daniels told producers hours before airtime that she no longer wanted to participate.

Daniels alleges she had a sexual encounter with Trump in 2006, and was later paid $130,000 to stay silent about it. The president denies the encounter.

Miss America: Leadership bullied, manipulated, silenced me

The reigning Miss America says she has been bullied, manipulated and silenced by the pageant's current leadership, including Gretchen Carlson.

In a letter sent Friday to former Miss Americas, Cara Mund says she decided to speak out despite the risk of punishment.

Her letter is reminiscent of the movie "Mean Girls," in which characters Gretchen and Regina bully the heroine and make her life miserable. That's what happened to her in real life, Mund wrote. Gretchen Carlson is chairwoman of the Miss America Organization; Regina Hopper is its CEO.

Her letter exponentially increased the turmoil surrounding the pageant three weeks before the next Miss America is to be crowned in Atlantic City.

"Let me be blunt: I strongly believe that my voice is not heard nor wanted by our current leadership; nor do they have any interest in knowing who I am and how my experiences relate to positioning the organization for the future," Mund wrote. "Our chair and CEO have systematically silenced me, reduced me, marginalized me, and essentially erased me in my role as Miss America in subtle and not-so-subtle ways on a daily basis. After a while, the patterns have clearly emerged, and the sheer accumulation of the disrespect, passive-aggressive behavior, belittlement, and outright exclusion has taken a serious toll."

Mund said she's been left out of interviews, not invited to meetings and called the wrong name. When she obliquely hinted at trouble with pageant leadership in an interview earlier this month with The Press of Atlantic City, Mund said she was swiftly punished by having her televised farewell speech cut to 30 seconds, and was told a dress she had been approved to wear in the traditional "show us your shoes" parade cannot be worn.

This year's competition will not include swimsuits, and pageant officials from at least 19 states have called for the current leadership to resign.

There was no immediate response from The Miss America Organization or from Carlson and CEO Regina Hopper, who were singled out in Mund's letter.

Mund said she was given three talking points to be made in every appearance: "Miss America is relevant. The #MeToo movement started with a Miss America, Gretchen Carlson. Gretchen Carlson went to Stanford." (Mund said she was allowed to mention that she went to Brown to show that both women were highly educated.)

"Right away, the new leadership delivered an important message: There will be only one Miss America at a time, and she isn't me," Mund wrote.

Mund, who was Miss North Dakota and won the crown on a platform of increasing the number of women elected to political office, said she was treated better by the previous Miss America leadership that was forced from power after sending emails ridiculing the appearance, intellect and sex lives of former Miss Americas.

She cites examples of mistreatment including being excluded from the nationally televised announcement that swimsuits were being eliminated — even though she was with Carlson at the TV studio where it was made. She says pageant handlers ridiculed her clothing choices and chided her for wearing the same outfits too often. When she reached out to former Miss Americas to see if they had been treated similarly, "I was reprimanded by Regina who told me that problems and concerns had to be kept 'in the family.' "


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Bob Mackie's designs for Cher, Carol Burnett up for auction

Bob Mackie-designed outfits worn by Cher, Carol Burnett, Diana Ross and other celebrities are going up for auction.

Nine-time Emmy Award winner Mackie designed the wardrobe for "The Carol Burnett Show" and has been creating outrageous outfits for Cher for decades.

The sale includes a marigold jumpsuit worn by Cher on "The Sonny and Cher Comedy Hour" and a scarlet satin gown from the "Cher" show. There are also dresses won by Lauren Bacall, Raquel Welch and other celebrities.

Mackie says, when designing for stars, "I always try to enhance the image that they already have."

"You don't try to change anybody, you just try to make them look better than ever," he told The Associated Press on Thursday.

Mackie still works with Cher, 51 years after they first met. He says that "even at her most naked, she never looked vulgar."

The 79-year-old American designer says he doesn't mind getting rid of some of his creations.

"They can't throw them in the casket when I go down," he said. "What am I going to do with all this stuff? So why not let people enjoy them?"

Mackie and the collection are sailing from Britain to New York aboard the Queen Mary 2 starting Sunday. Julien's Auctions will hold the sale Nov. 17 in Los Angeles and online.

Watch Ariana Grande sing 'Natural Woman' in tribute to Aretha Franklin

As fans across the world continue to mourn the loss of the Queen of Soul Aretha Franklin, Jimmy Fallon skipped his usual opening monologue on “The Tonight Show,” instead opening with guest Ariana Grande.

Billboard reported that Grande, whose album “Sweetner” was released Friday, opened Thursday night’s show with The Roots to do a cover of Franklin’s 1967 hit, “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman.”

>> Read more trending news 

Grande reportedly broke down in tears backstage after the performance. She met Franklin in 2014, when the two were among the performers at former first lady Michelle Obama’s Women of Soul event at the White House.

After the tribute, Grande sat down with Fallon for an interview, which included talk of her new album and what it was like meeting Franklin.

“We sang at the White House and she was so sweet and she was like so cute and I was like, ‘How are you a real person?’” she said. “It's an honor to have met her and we are going to celebrate her.”

Related: ‘Thank you, Aretha’: Fans, friends remember the ‘Queen of Soul’ 

Grande also said she got a phone call from Franklin in which she was asked to listen to her grandson’s song.

“I was like, ‘Oh my God, I’d be honored to listen! Thank you for thinking of me. Just text me the MP3,’” she said.

Always old school, Franklin sent a package to Grande in the mail several months later.

Watch Grande’s Franklin tribute below.

Rapper Young Thug booked on weapons charge in Los Angeles

Police say rapper Young Thug was arrested in Los Angeles after officers found a concealed firearm inside his car.

Officer Drake Madison says Friday the rapper, whose real name is Jeffery Lamar Williams, was booked on a weapons possession charge. He was being held on $35,000 bail.

Madison says several hundred people had gathered outside a Dave & Buster's sports bar in the Hollywood area, where the rapper was hosting an event for a new album.

He says officers detained several in the crowd, including Williams, and officers found a firearm inside his car.

Williams was arrested in September 2017 on drug and gun charges after a traffic stop near Atlanta.

Brian Steel, an attorney who represented him in that case, didn't immediately respond to an email seeking comment Friday.


This story has been corrected to show the suspect's first name is spelled Jeffery, not Jeffrey.

Luke Combs Releases New Music Video

Music videos have just gotten more and more unique here in the last year or so. People like Dan and Shay, Jason Aldean, and Chris Janson have made videos that are almost long enough to be a TV show episode. Luke Combs has shared the video for “She Got the Best of Me,” giving fans a glimpse at his musical journey to Nashville:

He says, “Yeah, there was a lot of Easter eggs in the video I guess from other songs. And it was really cool to kind of watch some of that old footage from when I was in college and you know it definitely makes you appreciate where you are now and gives you a little bit of nostalgia I guess for where you came from too.”

Watch the video here:

What is the Epipen

What is the Epipen

Serena Williams learned sister's killer was paroled before worst loss of career

Serena Williams said she learned 10 minutes before the worst defeat of her professional tennis career that the man who killed her older sister had been paroled, Time reported.

>> Read more trending news 

Williams, who owns an Open-era 23 Grand Slam singles titles, lost 6-1, 6-0 in 52 minutes to Johanna Konta on July 31 at the Mubadala Silicon Valley Classic. 

Time published an interview Thursday that detailed Williams’ comeback after her pregnancy and the challenges of balancing motherhood and her professional career.

Williams told the magazine that she learned that Robert E. Maxfield, who was convicted in 2003 of killing 31-year-old Yetunde Price, was paroled three years short of his full sentence, ESPN reported.

"I couldn't shake it out of my mind," Williams told Time.

"I have so many things on my mind; I don't have time to be shocked about a loss that clearly wasn't at my best right now," Williams said after her loss to Konta. "When I was out there, was fighting. That's the only thing I can say."

Williams said she found out about Maxfield’s parole while checking her Instagram account, ESPN reported.

"It was hard because all I think about is her kids and what they meant to me,” Williams told Time. “And how much I love them."

"No matter what, my sister is not coming back for good behavior. It's unfair that she'll never have an opportunity to hug me."

Williams was asked if she could forgive Maxfield but told Time she was “not there yet.”

“I would like to practice what I preach, and teach (daughter) Olympia that as well.” Williams told the magazine. “I want to forgive. I have to get there. I'll be there."

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