Connect with us

Media & Culture

R. Kelly’s Manager Faces Trial Over Theater-Emptying Threat

Published

on

The trial of R. Kelly’s manager opened Tuesday (July 19) on charges that he forced the cancellation of a screening of a documentary about the singer’s sexual abuse of women and girls by calling in a threat to the crowded Manhattan theater.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Lara Pomerantz told jurors that Donnell Russell made a terrifying brief phone call in December 2018 from his Chicago home to the theater, claiming that someone with a gun was planning to fire on the crowd watching Lifetime’s “Surviving R. Kelly” series.

“He knew his words would sabotage the event,” she said.

The phone call prompted an emergency call to police, who ordered an evacuation that forced the cancellation of the premiere, including a live panel discussion that was to include several women featured in the documentary.

“The defendant wanted to keep the women quiet,” Pomerantz said in Manhattan federal court. She added that Russell was motivated by a desire to protect the lucrative career of the Grammy-winning, multiplatinum-selling songwriter.

Kelly, who was sentenced to 30 years in prison last month, was convicted last year of racketeering and sex trafficking.

Defense attorney Michael Freedman told jurors that they would exonerate Russell if they study the evidence.

Freedman said there were a lot of phone calls to the theater on the day of the screening and jurors will “have to decide what it all means and what, if anything, it proves about my client.”

He said there was no recording of the phone threat so jurors cannot hear the voice that made it. But he added that there was not enough evidence to prove Russell committed a crime.

Adrian Krasniqi, who worked at the 25th Street venue, testified that he received the threatening call less than an hour after a man claiming to be part of Kelly’s legal team called and said the documentary was violating Kelly’s copyright to his name and should not be shown. He said the caller had a low, professional-sounding voice.

Krasniqi said the later call consisted of a deep-voiced man with a “slang tone, like a thug,” saying in a very serious and very blunt manner that “someone had a gun and they were going to shoot up the place.”

On cross examination, Krasniqi said he believed the caller had a Brooklyn accent, which he was familiar with because he lived in Brooklyn. He said he also thought the caller was outdoors when he made the threat.

Pomerantz said Russell demonstrated his guilt in part through his communications with a female co-conspirator who was at the theater at the time.

She said Russell sent the woman a text to say the police may be coming to the theater shortly before they did. And he later asked her to delete the text, although she never did, the prosecutor said.

Pomerantz said phone records to be introduced as evidence will show that Russell called the theater nine times on the day of the screening.

In a separate Kelly-related case, a fan of the performer pleaded not guilty Wednesday in Brooklyn federal court to charges he made threats against prosecutors in Kelly’s sex abuse trial. Court papers cite a video of defendant Christopher Gunn saying, “If Kellz goes down, everybody’s going down.”

A message was left with Gunn’s lawyer seeking comment.

Kubidyza is a Global Celebrity Blogger, Music Promoter and a Social Media Influencer | Most Influential Blogger In Ghana For Bookings: Kubinho80@gmail.com

Media & Culture

Werner makes RB Leipzig return after frustrating Chelsea spell

Published

on

Timo Werner has rejoined RB Leipzig from Chelsea on a four-year contract.

The Germany forward failed to live up to expectations since moving from Leipzig to Stamford Bridge for a fee of £47.5million (€50m) two years ago.

Although reports suggested his return would initially be on loan with an option to buy, the Bundesliga club have instead secured him on a contract that expires in 2026.

The 26-year-old scored just 10 Premier League goals in 56 appearances for the Blues, having arrived at the club with 95 goals for Leipzig between 2016 and 2020 to his name – that remains a club record.

Werner was not included in Thomas Tuchel’s squad for Chelsea’s 1-0 win over Everton in their first game of the Premier League season, and he said farewell to the club in a social media post on Tuesday.

Werner wrote: “Dear Blues, today marks the end of my journey with Chelsea FC.

“I am incredibly grateful for the time I spent at this special club. At this point I would like to express my appreciation for my teammates, the coaches and staff, and especially for you, the special supporters of Chelsea Football Club.

“I felt so much love and support throughout the last two years and I will never forget how you guys stood behind me in good and in challenging times!

“We lifted trophies like the Champions League together and I will always remember the song you wrote and chanted for me. I’m already looking forward to hopefully playing at Stamford Bridge again one day! See you soon, Timo.”

Soon after, Leipzig confirmed the transfer had been completed.

Their statement read: “Timo is back – and is now snapping again for RB Leipzig!

“Our record goalscorer (95 goals) is returning to the Bundesliga after two years in the English Premier League with Chelsea and is again hunting for goals for the Red Bulls.

“The attacker has signed a four-year contract until 2026.”

Despite Werner’s failure to live up to the hype after his switch to Stamford Bridge two years ago, his tally of 23 goals in all competitions since he joined Chelsea is the joint-highest in the Blues’ squad, alongside Kai Havertz, who also arrived from the Bundesliga in 2020.

With 17 assists, Werner has directly contributed to 40 goals in his 89 appearances, putting him behind only Mason Mount (46 goal involvements in 108 games).

Only Mount has had more shots than Werner (191) in the last two seasons for Chelsea, though the former Stuttgart star converted just 12 per cent of those efforts while missing 32 big chances (defined by Opta as an opportunity from which a player would be reasonably expected to score), showing his profligacy in front of goal.

Werner scored 28 Bundesliga goals in his last season with Leipzig, outperforming his expected goals (xG) of 21.

Continue Reading

Media & Culture

Everything you must know about Kizz Daniel’s arrest in Tanzania

Published

on

The Tanzanian police have detained Nigerian artist Kizz Daniel for allegedly refusing to take the stage at his concert on August 7, 2022.

According to Gistreeel, the artist, who had only arrived in the nation earlier in the day, reportedly declined to perform since his clothing wasn’t available.

A video that was posted online captures the moment several concertgoers destroyed the stage as many others furiously departed.

On social media, angry fans complained that they had paid up to $5000 for tables simply to see the artist perform live.

This marks the third time that fans have criticised Kizz Daniel for postponing his gigs.

He was initially hauled on July 7 after keeping fans up for more than five hours at his show in the District of Columbia.

After unexpectedly cancelling his Denver gig on July 28, 2022, he was once again pursued by his fans.

Continue Reading

Media & Culture

John Legend Announces Double Album ‘Legend,’ Reveals Tracklist

Published

on

John Legend, R&B superstar has announced his eighth studio album, Legend, which will be released on Sept. 9.

Executive produced by Legend and Ryan Tedder, the double album marks the first time the 12-time Grammy winner has officially embraced his legendary name.

“Until this point, I’ve never used an aspect of my name as the title of an album,” Legend said. “I had to earn that, to live up to it by delivering in the performance and the music. And this is me saying, I’m proud of who I am, I’m confident in the work I’ve done, and I’m just going to declare it.”

The 24-track album is divided into two acts and includes appearances from Rick Ross, Jhene Aiko, Ty Dolla $ign, Jazmine Sullivan, Amber Mark, Jada Kingdom, Rapsody, Ledisi, and Saweetie, who joins Legend on his new single “All She Wanna Do.”

“It kinda reminds me of Michael Jackson Off the Wall energy, Whitney Houston ‘I Wanna Dance with Somebody,’ and it feels so good,” he said of the uplifting track, which was co-written and produced by Tedder, Monsters and Strangerz, Zach Sketon, Andrew DeRoberts, and Halatrax. “It’s about a woman that you see out at a club who is just living her best life, embracing the party life, and you want to be a part of it.”

The album has previously spawned singles including “Honey” with Muni Long and “Dope” featuring JID.

Earlier this week, Legend and his wife Chrissy Teigen announced that they are expecting another child, two years after the pregnancy loss of their third child, Jack.

Tonight, Legend will kick off the second leg of his residency, “Love in Las Vegas,” which runs through October.

Legend Tracklist

ACT I
1. “Rounds” feat. Rick Ross
2. “Waterslide”
3. “Dope” feat. JID
4. “Strawberry Blush”
5. “Guy Like Me”
6. “All She Wanna Do”
7. “Splash” feat. Jhene Aiko and Ty Dolla $ign
8. “You”
9. “Fate” feat. Amber Mark
10. “Love” feat. Jazmine Sullivan
11. “One Last Dance”
12. “All She Wanna Do” feat. Saweetie

ACT 2
1. “Memories”
2. “Nervous”
3. “Wonder Woman”
4. “Honey” feat. Muni Long
5. “I Want You to Know”
6. “Speak in Tongues” feat. Jada Kingdom
7. “The Other Ones” feat. Rapsody
8. “Stardust”
9. “Pieces”
10. “Good” feat. Ledisi
11. “I Don’t Love U Like I Used To”
12. “Home”

Continue Reading

Latest Stories

The Daily

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Follow Us

Trending