Her records are filled with intense moments of pain and joy, but when she is just sitting there without a microphone or spotlight in front of her, Mary J. Blige is cool and a lot of fun, the New York Daily News says.
Put aside the glam and the sassy delivery and what emerges is a woman who enjoys a good chat and comes across as a deeply spiritual person. Call her the high priestess of hip-hop.
Eleven days ago, Blige embarked on a 17-concert fall trek that she dramatically labels her "Music Saved My Life Tour."
"Music makes us want to live," says Blige. "You don't know how many times people have told me that they'd been down and depressed and just wanted to die. But then a special song caught their ear and that helped give them renewed strength. That's the power music has."
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Bruno's the judge
Bruno Tonioli is garnering some unexpected support from a gal he once described as "beige" —Kelly Osbourne.
"I thought that Bruno was really harsh on Michael Bolton," the "Dancing With the Stars" alum says of the judge's tough critique of the crooner's jive, "but when you watch it you can understand why he was really harsh."
Apparently, having your mother in the audience isn't going to buy you any sympathy votes as far as Osbourne is concerned.
" (Bruno's) a judge, and that's what he gets paid to do." Osbourne, 25, noted Friday while attending Teen Vogue's Young Hollywood Party in Los Angeles. "He's the shock jock of the judging panel. Yes, he was hard, but don't go on a show where you have to judge if you don't want to be judged!"
It was only a week ago that Kelly pledged a soft spot for Bristol Palin, but loyalties change as rapidly as a quick step on the DWTS parquet, and Osbourne has surprised even herself in her support for the dancing dark horse, Margaret Cho.
"I have to say that I'm now voting for Margaret, and it's not just because she's Louis' partner," Osbourne says with a laugh. "I think that she is what the show is all about, she's there because she wants to learn how to dance."
Another year older
Today's birthdays: Author Jackie Collins, 73... author Roy Blount Jr., 69... author Anne Rice, 69... actress Lori Saunders ("Petticoat Junction"), 69... actor Clifton Davis, 65... actress Susan Sarandon, 64... actor Armand Assante, 61... producer Russell Simmons, 53... singer Jon Secada, 49... actor Liev Schreiber, 43... actress Alicia Silverstone, 34... rhythm-and-blues singer Jessica Benson (3lw), 23... actor Michael Charles Roman, 23