Saturday, September 27, 2003

Brit's balloons batter illusionist

London -- Police arrested a man Friday who used a catapult to launch paint-filled balloons at the plastic box that holds street illusionist David Blaine dangling near the River Thames.

A 28-year-old London man was charged with criminal damage after he fired several balloons filled with pink paint at Blaine's box from a nearby upper floor window, hitting his target at least once, police said.

The alleged assault was the latest in string of attacks; the New York magician has been pelted with eggs, golf balls and insults as he attempts to live for 44 days in a glass box suspended by a crane near Tower Bridge, above.

Jay-Z done with going solo

New York -- Jay-Z says he'll launch his last nationwide promotional tour with a Nov. 25 performance at Madison Square Garden.

The concert, produced by Clear Channel Entertainment, will benefit the Hip-Hop Summit Action Network and the Shawn Carter Scholarship Fund. Jay-Z's new album, "The Black Album," will be in stores Nov. 28.

"'The Black Album' is my last solo album because I want to go out while I'm hot and strong," the 33-year-old rapper said Wednesday. "The success of my recording career has opened up other opportunities for me which I want to now focus on."

Lewis party won't be family affair

Nesbit, Miss. -- The birthday celebration is off, but the party will go on.

The Jerry Lee Lewis fan club had announced a celebration today at the singer's farm in Nesbit for his 68th birthday. But a message Thursday on said:

"Mr. Lewis has canceled his appearance and does not wish for the event to be held at The Lewis Ranch. We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this may cause. The Fan Club will be providing a gathering for the ticket holders, who are devoted Jerry Lee Lewis fans, with live music, fun and food."

Kerrie Lewis has been advertising the "5th Annual Jerry Lee Lewis World Fan Club Convention" to correspond with her estranged husband's birthday. Fan club members paid $200 a ticket to attend.

Kerrie Lewis is president of Lewis' JKL Enterprises Inc. fan club.

Phoebe Lewis said her father had been concerned about the cost of the tickets and "that she's taking all those people's money. Jerry Lee told her back in February that he was not participating in the party this year. So she's known since then."

Jerry Lee Lewis will be 68 Monday.