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Kelly Cutrone found out that she was pregnant on September 10, 2001. The next day, the most horrific attack against civilians on American soil took place. On May 9, 2002 – Cutrone gave birth to her daughter. Yesterday, Ava celebrated her ninth birthday, on the day that President Barack Obama announced that Osama bin Laden, the man who orchestrated 9/11, was killed by U.S. troops.
Of course, Cutrone found out the news last night in dramatic fashion: she was in a New York cab, driving with a Muslim driver through Manhattan with her daughter, when the news was announced over the radio.
“(The driver) starts crying, and we start cheering,” Cutrone said on “The Ralphie Radio Show.” “Martin (Bell), Ava’s godfather, was filming the whole thing. It was so bizarre just to have that split screen kind of reality for everyone, but at the same time, you know we all had to be sensitive about each other’s feelings because, I mean we were in a cab together going 60 blocks.”
Its stories similar to that one which give Cutrone’s new book, Normal Gets You Nowhere, an appropriate title. The publicist’s life has strayed about as far from “normal” as one can – and she documents a lot of it while throwing in various anecdotes about everything from having sex with married men to ending traditional, commercialized holidays. Continuing from her first book, If You Have to Cry, Go Outside: And Other Things Your Mother Never Told You, Cutrone offers a perspective in to her company, People’s Revolution, the fashion PR firm she created. On the theme of normal, Cutrone writes that she’s dreaded every normal person who has walked through the doors at her firm. But, she didn’t dread MTV star Whitney Port.
“Whitney’s not so normal!” Cutrone insisted. “She’s funny, she’s quirky. She has a subversive side to her that you wouldn’t (expect). How can you be on ‘The City’ and ‘The Hills’ and design a clothing line and be normal?”
Brandyn Bordeaux moved to Hollywood from Denver, adpoted the stage name, “H*Wood”, and landed a deal with super-producer Rodney “Darkchild” Jerkins. Now he’s gaining momentum across the blogosphere with his single, “Could It Be You (Punk Rock Chick)” and living out his dream.
H*Wood made some time for “The RRS” to talk about the track and his music that will be featured in upcoming episodes of “The Hills” and “Jersey Shore.”
In an exclusive interview on “The Ralphie Radio Show” after his performance Sunday evening at Marywood University, Ryan Cabrera revealed that he is still dating “The Hills” cast member Audrina Patridge.
“You know how the media is, they’ll take whatever they want and have a hay-day with it,” replied Cabrera after I brought up stories that emerged from the couple’s trip to Las Vegas over the past week. Various sources cited the two headed to “Splitsville” after both were seen in public without the other. “I think people use that stuff as entertainment, but they should also know that it’s just a bunch of crap.”
Cabrera chuckled when I mentioned that watching this upcoming season of the MTV reality show would have been awkward if the two were in fact broken up. The singer is featured in the trailer for the final run of episodes, set to premiere Tuesday, April 27. After mentioning that he likes to keep his personal life just that, I asked him if he was not single, to which he answered, “Me? No, I’m not.” — Listen to the full interview below:
— The couple created quite a stir on the campus of Marywood, a small Catholic school in Scranton, Pa. with an enrollment just over 3,000. Cabrera is in the midst of about 15 hand-selected dates, as he prepares for his return to a major record label. After selling over two million copies of Take It All Away, and about a half million with You Stand Watching, Cabrera left his trademark spiky hair and deal with Atlantic Records behind. In 2008 he released The Moon Under Water, an independent project that only moved 15,000 units. Now after a couple years of touring and writing, the singer seems poised to jump back on the radio airwaves and sales charts. He even brought back the spikes, ditching his long hair and mustache.
“The last record was just kind of like a darker period, where I was just trying to rebel against my record label,” admitted Cabrera. “I think (the new release) will be a lot more like the Take It All Away record.”
Don’t worry, if you’re wondering what Cabrera’s latest project will sound like, you won’t have to wait too long: Ryan revealed that the first single from his forthcoming LP could hit radio as soon as this summer, with a 2011 release planned for the entire album.
Cabrera did say this album would not be released independently, although declined to say which record label he would land with, only noting that he is still in talks “different labels.”
You know the premise by now – budding, raw talent builds following through social networking site, catches the eye of someone important, lands a record deal. Sean Kingston reached out to J.R. Rotem on MySpace, and then found the Island singer I-Yaz. MySpace is the same site that helped the career of Colbie Caillat. Priscilla Renea and Esmee Denters were both YouTube sensations before catching the eyes and ears of Capitol Records and Justin Timberlake, respectively.
Thing is, the story is becoming more and more common. While all the aforementioned artists have or are receiving airplay on mainstream radio – there are still others, waiting in the wings, with much more than a webcam to promote their talent.
The 23 year-old wrote, played, and sang for six years. She eventually decided YouTube might be the best outlet to perform, connect, and network until she could get discovered. Then in March of 2008, Kaprelian won an online contest for her cover of OneRepublic’s “Apologize.” Soon after, the band’s record label, Interscope, signed Tamar to a deal. —
— Almost two years later, Kaprelian will release her first LP, slated for February 2010. Tamar has split her time in the past 18 months between touring, writing, and charity work: the singer is just finishing a 30-day, 30-city tour for Feeding America. Kaprelian joined forces with the likes of David Arquette and The Cheesecake Factory for “Drive Out Hunger”, raising soup donations for the needy. After performing Saturday night in New York City, Kaprelian woke up at her usual 4 a.m. for the next stop – Edison, NJ. This is where I met up with her – to chat about the soup drive and the music projects – amidst the Menlo Park Mall – which echoed with the chants and cheers of caffeine-fueled workers accepting donations.
“I worked for Cheesecake Factory before I signed with Interscope,” revealed Kaprelian. “They’ve been so supportive of my music, and of my career, and so they asked me to get involved with this charity, and I said of course.” —
Part 1: Feeding America/Cheesecake Factory, OneRepublic Contest, YouTube
Part 2: “The Hills”, Armenian Heritage, Forthcoming LP
— The tour provides Kaprelian with quite the change of perspective. As we sat in an almost empty restaurant, people who worked a job she once held scurried about around us, setting tables and preparing for open.
“It is very surreal, but I feel very blessed,” Kaprelian said. At two different points during the interview, a server mistook us for two customers. Each time, Kaprelian stopped and thanked the person for attempting to wait on us, before informing them that we were just in the restaurant to take refuge from the noisy chambers of the mall.
Kaprelian wraps up the food drive on October 1, and then heads back to Los Angeles. She’s already worked on two tracks for the LP with OneRepublic front man Ryan Tedder – one of which Tamar reveals is a duet with label mate and All-American Rejects lead singer Tyson Ritter.
“It’s gonna be a cool record… he’s so talented,” Kaprelian said of her time working with Ritter. The collaboration wasn’t her first encounter with AAR – she sang backup for the group on “Ellen”, “Jimmy Kimmel Live”, and “The Tonight Show.”
Butch Walker also contributes to the project, which is yet to be titled. Kaprelian seems to be mulling over three options – Delicate Soul, It Is What It Is, or Sinner Or Saint.
The title may not be chosen, but the first single is: Kaprelian confirmed that “New Day” will be the lead song from the album. The track gained notoriety when MTV featured it in the last scene of Season 5 on “The Hills” – the track served as Lauren Conrad’s swan song. Kaprelian told me that she knew it’d be in the finale, but had no clue as to how and when it would be heard.
“You hope (the song is) at the end,” said Kaprelian. “I was over the moon. We were in the sitting room, and my entire family and I were watching it, and it was just such a great moment.”
Tamar was born in Arizona and also raised in Georgia. Like me, she is proudly of Armenian descent. I even learned something during the interview: apparently Gwen Stefani is also Armenian.
“Family is important to us,” Kaprelian said. “(My family has been) beyond supportive. They’re really happy for me. I think they’re just proud that I get to do what I love to do every day.”
With the recent addition of a third song to iTunes, a radio promo tour set for January, and an LP to follow – the Kaprelian’s will have much to be supportive for, as Tamar will be doing what she loves on a daily basis for the foreseeable future.
After playing 97 BHT’s “High School Hookup 2009″ at Riverside – The White Tie Affair met up with Ralphie at T.G.I. Friday’s, and you could tell that they weren’t speaking in front of a high school anymore.
Check out photos from “High School Hookup 2009″ here.
It felt like a bunch of my old friends I grew up with comprised The White Tie Affair, a pop-rock band from Chicago. Sitting at a table at T.G.I. Friday’s in Wilkes-Barre, the fellas and I chatted candidly about porn videos, gossip, and (alleged) sexual escapades with or by friends and tour mates.
Then, I turned on the microphone and began the interview. If you think the band tamed the lingo – well, you thought incorrectly. In between dishing on the group’s next MTV cameo (in a couple weeks on The Hills) and Lady GaGa (they opened for GaGa on “The Fame Ball”), TWTA jumped at every spare moment to change the subject. The guys constantly mentioned premature ejaculation (or as guitarist Sean P. commonly referred to it: premature evacuation) and Daryl Strawberry.
“A lot of times what happens, there’s like premature evacuation going on and you don’t want to be embarrassed by the way you evacuate due to weather,” the guitarist all-but-blurted out. I didn’t care to inquire as to the origin of the inside joke, but the constant references to the former baseball player Strawberry peaked my curiosity.
“Was Daryl Strawberry there?” keyboardist Ryan McClain asked after a question about the group keeping up with the storylines of The Hills. “Candle (Sick and Tired)” first gained notoriety after the show featured the track and TWTA.
After a few more mentions of the former Yankees and Mets outfielder, lead singer Chris Wallace attempted to shed some light on the joke.
“We did this event in New York at CitiField, the Mets new stadium, and we heard Daryl Strawberry was gonna be there,” said Wallace.
“I’m a huge fan,” continued McClain. “Apparently, he had some problems back in the day.”
Those problems were alluded to early in the interview, when Wallace abruptly speculated that he heard Strawberry, “could no longer smell.”
Perhaps a lack of sleep could be attributed to the meandering of the interview. Wallace wrote the next day on the band’s MySpace blog that TWTA pulled an all-nighter – driving from Rochester, N.Y. to Wilkes-Barre. The next stop: Riverside High School, where Wallace and his crew performed for 97 BHT’s High School Hookup 2009, complete with a few of the group’s own tracks and covers of GaGa and Kanye West.
Anyways, the interview moved on, or at least I attempted to move it on – asking the guys about touring with the aforementioned GaGa.
“Let’s just say, she’s very polite and very generous with her ‘givings’,” Sean P noted. He couldn’t elaborate any further without inciting an FCC fine, however the guitarist did revert to a familiar topic in the conversation.
“If you were to run a city and there was a hurricane to come, you don’t want to be caught up premature evacuating even though it’s safer, and you get what you get done, I would never want to say that I premature evacuated a city when a tornado was coming.”
And on that note, I did not find anything premature about exiting the interview – after all, I knew the “tornado” of an editing task that awaited me before I could air the conversation.
Love or loathe him, Spencer Pratt is a marketing genius. The villain of MTV’s “The Hills” created a marketing scheme for pure celebrity that rakes in the cash without having to release a sex tape.
Of course, that isn’t to say that Spencer – along with girlfriend Heidi Montag, doesn’t make the rounds… the media rounds, that is.
Enter The Ralphie Radio Show. Last week, capitalizing off of the premiere of “The Hills” fifth season and the release of two new Heidi singles on iTunes, the couple affectionately known as “Speidi” kicked off a three hour radio tour with 97 BHT’s Kidd Kraddick In The Morning. Towards the end of the phoner-fest, Spencer and Heidi called up The RRS. The possibly-engaged duo wanted to talk about Montag’s music and their supremacy on “The Hills”. Of course, there were a few other topics I wanted to touch on – namely the type of money we’re talkin’ here with these “reality” shows and staged photo-ops.
“Ralphie, to be honest, with this recession we’re so broke and we need money,” Spencer spewed before I cut him off by citing a leaked report to In Touch Weekly last August that the couple made $65,000 – each – per episode.
“…Yeah… and I heard Santa Claus was real,” retorted Pratt, clearly annoyed that I wasn’t offering up your typical softball questions. Game on.
Not letting up, I attempted to reference that same article, which stated that according to Lauren Conrad’s contract, no one on the show could make more money than her. Pratt then tried to spin that statement – claiming L.C. would be foolish to give up such money. Finally, I cut to the chase: doesn’t the couple stand to make a considerable amount of money directly by Conrad exiting the show (L.C. insists that this is her last season)?
“(2 seconds of silence) If you’re our agent, I’d think you were right,” Pratt finally admitted.
While we were discussing money, I decided to bring up the couple’s relationship with blogger Perez Hilton. The self-proclaimed “Queen of All Media” holds nothing back when it comes to “The Hills” – stories of staged events, criticism of the cast’s side projects, and rumored revelations of behind-the-scene deals. Yet despite this, Spencer and Heidi tweet back and forth with Perez, and attend his parties. In one recent post, Hilton wrote that “Speidi” stood to make $200,000 with an undisclosed tabloid for the exclusive rights to report on a staged breakup/reunion of the couple.
“Like I said, where is this money?” asked Spencer. “I wanna see it. Because if it was true, I’d be taking you out to dinner right now Ralphie in Pennsylvania.”
Pratt stumbled over words and changed the subject when I brought up the fact that everyone else sees this money on “The Hills” during shots of Spencer driving his BMW.
“Perez is very honest,” chimed in Montag.
That was all I needed to hear. Montag used the term “honest” to describe the man who falsely accused rapper Flo-Rida of killing a rabbit and claimed Cuba Dictator Fidel Castro was dead, without citing a source.
Whether it’s the TV show, Heidi’s body, or Spencer’s paparazzi deals – there’s something fake about The Hills, and it doesn’t get much more honest than that. — Listen to Ralphie Aversa weekdays from 5-10p on 97 BHT.
The Ralphie Report runs everyweek in The Weekender, a weekly publication in NEPA with a circulation of 175,000.
— Chris Brown pleaded not guilty on Monday to the charges of felony assault and criminal threats – both claims which stem from his alleged altercation with Robyn “Rihanna” Fenty the night before The Grammy’s.
The R&B crooner appeared in court wearing all black with a matching steadfast facial expression, from the time he walked in to the time he left. According to The Los Angeles Times, Brown spoke in a voice so low that at times people in the court wondered if he even spoke. The hearing lasted about 2 minutes, with both parties expected back in court later this month. Judge Patricia Schnegg informed attorney Mark Geragos that his client, Brown, need not be present.
The latest developments do not come as a surprise – as the plea served as simply a formality to extend the period of time for a deal to be reached. The only consistent report to emerge from both the defendant’s and Rihanna’s camp is that a trial is not desired.
Meanwhile RiRi continues to recover with a little rest and relaxation. Many gossip sites reported that the Bajan beauty spent a couple days in Hawaii, and then flew to New York City to enjoy a movie and dinner with friends.
As for the future of Brown and Rihanna – it seems that every day a new rumor emerges, which only contradicts the previous story. It would be unrealistic to think that such buzz will cease before the legal proceedings take their course.
EVERYONE HAS A WARPED TOUR HAIL STORM STORY
Nathaniel Motte, better known as Nat from the crunk-rock group 3OH!3, called in to The Ralphie Radio Show last week. The band’s new single, “Don’t Trust Me” is gaining traction on radio stations across the country. The Hills also featured the song on two separate episodes.
The boys from Denver will headline this year’s Vans Warped Tour, slated to hit Toyota Pavilion at Montage Mountain on Wednesday, July 15. Of course, like many other bands that I’ve spoken with since last year’s festival, Nat had a, “I was there when…” story regarding last year’s hail storm on the mountain.
“It was insane, man,” Nat recalls. “I remember looking out of the amphitheater and there’s like 3,000 kids running down this hill. And then all at once, they slide down this mudslide thing. It was pretty nuts.”
But when you play festivals, you grow to appreciate the uncertainty that each show brings.
“That’s kinda what’s fun about Warped Tour. Nothing ever works out as planned.”
The White Tie Affair and NOFX join 3OH!3 on this year’s tour stop at Montage.
Next week in The Ralphie Report: my exclusive interview with Spencer Pratt and Heidi Montag of The Hills. Season 5, allegedly Lauren Conrad’s final run with the show, premiered Monday on MTV. — Listen to Ralphie Aversa weekdays from 5-10p on 97 BHT.