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I Think This Is My First Full-Page Spread…

So, in addition to my column, there’s a full page about me in the latest edition of The Weekender. I wish they would’ve published my response though to the question “(What is your) claim to fame?” I simply replied, “Nope.”

AUDIO: Weekender Columnist Names Michael Lohan ‘Father of the Year’

Meet Justin Adam Brown, a 24 year-old columnist for The Weekender who flew to Los Angeles to honor Michael Lohan with a “Father of the Year” award. Everyone from Radar Online to Perez Hilton picked up the story.

Naturally, I had my questions, so I asked them to Brown on “The Ralphie Radio Show.”

RALPHIE REPORT: Summer Jam This Saturday!

It’s been quite the 2009 for The Veronicas, and the year is only half complete.

The first six months have catapulted Jess and Lisa Origliasso, twin sisters from Australia, in to the American public eye. Surely no one in the mainstream media noticed the duo this much since Lisa dated Ryan Cabrera back in 2006. But now, The Veronicas are gaining attention in the States for all the right reasons – a hit single in “Untouched” – a cameo and performance in 90210 – and now a cross-country tour with opening acts Carney and The Pretty Reckless. Gossip Girl’s Taylor Momsen fronts the latter band.

This Saturday, that tour detours to the F.M. Kirby Center for 97 BHT’s Summer Jam 2009. Joining the three aforementioned acts will be Lesley Roy (“I’m Gone I’m Going”, “Unbeautiful”), Safetysuit (“Stay”), Jada, and Lovesick Radio, with Scranton’s own DJ Woogie in the mix all night long.

Jess Origliasso proved she could readily multi-task a few weeks ago, calling up “The Ralphie Radio Show” while shopping at a small boutique in Ohio.

“The audience is always very in to it, like everyone’s dancing along and sings along,” Jess explained of the live set – which will also include The Veronicas’ latest single, “Take Me On The Floor.” “It’s just a really, really good time.”

More than music is working in favor of the Origliasso twins. FHM recently placed the sisters at number two on their “Sexiest Women in the World” list, bested only by actress Megan Fox.

“We were six and seven last year, and we’re number two this year, so maybe we can kick Megan Fox off next year,” Jess hoped. “Although, (Fox is) pretty sexy, so it might be hard.”

Safetysuit missed out on any “sexiest lists”, but the band has cultivated diverse following through music that appeals to multiple radio formats. “Stay” is the break out mainstream song for the Oklahoma-based quartet.

”Nobody can figure it all out, but we can atleast try,” lead singer Doug Brown said of the song’s theme. “’Stay’ was an awesome song to write… it’s an emotion that everyone gets to go through.”

Brown also spoke on the band’s name, which started as, “The Crew.”

”Supposedly there’s some band called Motley Crew out there,” Brown joked, before explaining that Tommy Lee’s band successfully executed a cease and desist on “The Crew.” Another name, “The Safety”, also brought forth copyright issues, so finally the guys used a song called “Precious Suit” by Aqualung to finish out the new, legal name.

Tickets are still on sale for 97 BHT’s Summer Jam 2009, with ticket prices as low as $9.71 – yes, clever we are.

Listen to The Ralphie Radio Show weekdays from 5-10 pm on 97 BHT.

RALPHIE REPORT: Daughtry Talks Idol, New CD


Download the mp3

Chris Daughtry calls up The Ralphie Radio Show to chat about his new single/CD, a possible tour, and this season of American Idol – and he isn’t pleased with the favortism shown to Idol finalist Adam Lambert.


Read Ralphie’s exclusive report on Chris’s Idol criticism here.
Leave This Town drops July 14.

You might be able to count Chris Daughtry among those surprised that Kris Allen won American Idol last week. In a pre-taped interview on “The Ralphie Radio Show”, Daughtry seemed baffled at the amount of media attention and bias directed toward Idol contestant Adam Lambert.

“I thought it was pretty incredible that all of the sudden, Adam is on the cover of a magazine. That people are wearing his name… it seems a little weird to me, because I know how strict it was when I was on the show,” said Daughtry. He publicly supported Allen, although refrained from using the Idol performance stage as a venue to voice his opinion. “(Favortism) was definitely frowned upon, and now, I don’t know.”

A question regarding Katy Perry’s outright support of Lambert, with Adam’s name embroidered on her cape, elicited the comment. TMZ reported Idol producers edited out this detail when the performance posted to iTunes and the Internet.

The American Idol Season 5 alum concurred with my assessment that the media already anointed Lambert this year’s winner, albeit prematurely. Although I admitted to Chris that my coverage of “Idol” is limited, I feel as if the media covered Lambert as if it assumed he already won.

“It’s kind of like Adam has already been crowned the winner, and everybody’s just kind of going along with that,” I commented to Chris.

“That’s exactly the way it feels to me too,” Daughtry responded. “But yunno, it is what it is, and good luck to both of them.”

The North Carolina rocker’s band just released a song to radio, “No Surprise”, with a new LP, “Leave This Town”, out on July 14.

Daughtry, who performed the new track on Idol, noted that all the finalists seemed like great people, but he could relate to Allen on a number of different levels.

“I guess he reminds me a little bit of myself where, he’s on the show – this is all new to him – he’s married… When I hear his voice, I kind of see where that goes, on the radio.”

Allen didn’t ask Daughtry for any advice, but that doesn’t mean he didn’t receive any.

“I basically told him what to be prepared for, for the next two years of his life. Be strong, and stay with your wife.”

Words of wisdom from an Idol contestant who didn’t have the luxury of on stage endorsements or an Idol crown – yet went on to drop a debut LP that sold over six million copies. Daughtry assures fans that the band didn’t deviate from its trademark sound, but did test some new sounds on the one CD – likening one track to something that would draw out glow sticks if Timbaland got a hold of it.

“We tried to branch out a little bit on this record and experiment on some different things, without totally going far left field.”

Daughtry’s band is in the planning stages of a tour that would kick off this fall, in support of the new album.

Listen to Ralphie Aversa weekdays from 5-10p on 97 BHT.

RALPHIE REPORT: Anti-Chris Brown Song, Britney’s "Circus"


If a group by the name of Jump Smokers didn’t do it, you know someone else would have released an anti-Chris Brown song. But, the Chicago-based duo is gaining world-notoriety for the track, “My Flow So Tight (Anti-Breezy)”.

“My flow so tight and the beat so sick, Chris Brown should get his ass kicked,” raps Jump Smokers front man C.W. Grizz on the hook.

The lead emcee called in to The Ralphie Radio Show last week to discuss the origin of the song and the response it’s received.

“It started out kinda as a joke,” revealed Grizz. “We wanted to make a song that legitimately would be poppin’ here in Chicago at the clubs.”

Jump Smokers first received airplay from a DJ in the Windy City, who spun the song on a live-to-air broadcast from a nightclub. Immediately, the radio station request lines lit up with listeners inquiring about the source of the track. Suddenly, night clubs and radio stations from coast to coast began playing the record, and news outlets from MTV to The New York Times covered the story of the song.

“Once I saw the pictures of Rihanna on TMZ.com… for me, I had it,” explained Grizz. “I kinda got fed up with a lot of celebrities not speaking out against him.”

Kanye West can be counted among the artists who didn’t speak against Brown – matter of fact – he even spoke in support of him. At a TV taping shortly after the pre-Grammy night incident, West asked a crowd to give the young R&B crooner a break. Other public figures – such as Oprah, Tyra Banks, and Perez Hilton – spoke out against the alleged abuse.

In an attempt not to gain any direct monetary success from the situation, Grizz noted that the group is donating proceeds of the song sales to charities that benefit women. However, this road proved rocky when a couple of non-for-profits were reluctant to accept the funds. Some were afraid that the song sent the wrong message to people – answering domestic violence with more abuse.

“I think (the charities) are taking it a little too seriously,” Grizz said in defense of his track. “We’re not threatening Chris Brown in this song. Hopefully the song makes you dance, laugh, and then think.”

At least two of the three reactions occurred over the weekend, when I spun the track inside Reflex at The Wilkes-Barre Hardware Bar Entertainment Complex. A couple club goers stopped and shot a perplexed look toward the DJ booth, while others “oohed” and most continued to dance.

And for those wondering, yes, Rihanna did hear the track. A DJ at a birthday party for Los Angeles Clipper Baron Davis spun the song with the Bajan-beauty present. No word on her reaction.

BRITNEY TOUR LIVES UP TO “CIRCUS” TITLE

Poor Britney Spears. If it isn’t Kevin Federline showing up backstage, it’s the Pussycat Dolls verbally clawing at each other on stage. If it isn’t a smoke-filled venue, it’s a fan jumping from the venue’s seating on stage.

Orlando, Florida resident Kyle King, 20, faces a single breach of peace charge for walking on stage during Spears’ encore performance of “Womanizer” at Mohegan Sun in Connecticut. He could face jail time.

Listen to Ralphie Aversa weekdays from 5-10p on 97 BHT.

RALPHIE REPORT: Speidi v. Ralphie, Round 1.


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.

RALPHIE REPORT: Chris Breezy Pleads Not Guilty, Nat from 3OH!3


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.

STAY TUNED…

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.

RALPHIE REPORT: Shontelle


The following can be read in this Wednesday’s edition of The Weekender.

Surely while growing up in Barbados, neither Shontelle Layne nor Robyn “Rihanna” Fenty pictured how their careers would eventually shake out.

Rewind back to a time when both Bajan teenagers were enrolled as “Cadets”, a young Army program in the country. Rihanna may be the current pop music princess, but at the time the roles were reversed. Shontelle was in charge as a drill sergeant, even at one point ordering Fenty to drop and give her 10.

“It was a whole group, and they were late,” explained Shontelle, who is still friends with the “Umbrella” singer. “As drill sergeant, there are people above me who are expecting me to discipline people who are straggling.”

But Layne insists, the incident was isolated.

“Funny enough, Rihanna was a really good cadet. Real good. Super sharp. But that day was just not a good day for her.”

Certainly RiRi’s ups and downs have been well-chronicled since – the latest set of events related to the alleged abuse by R&B singer Chris Brown on the night before the Grammy’s. The Barbados natives have spoken since the incident.

“She is doing good,” says Layne. “She’s looking super-fly. I’m really happy.”

Meanwhile, the 23 year-old songstress isn’t doing too bad herself. Shontelle gained global notoriety with her smash hit, “T-Shirt” – which leads off her debut LP, Shontelligence.

Turns out there was a specific shirt to ignite the song, and the singer still owns it. But she would not reveal the shirt’s original purchaser.

“He doesn’t matter anymore. Music is my boyfriend.”And music treats Shontelle well – affording her black diamonds, a couple pairs of the now infamous Jimmy Choo’s, and a Louis Vuitton bag or three.

Layne told me this – but she’s also told countless others using Twitter. Many celebrities allow both fans and journalists unprecedented access in to their inner lives and thoughts with the micro-blogging service. But in a growing trend, reporters are now integrating a person’s tweets in to questions and stories. So of course, I asked Shontelle what inspired tears of joy a few nights ago.

“I cannot believe he has a list of my tweets!” she exclaimed before attempting to change the subject by pointing out that not all of her posts are personal – some are meant to inspire.

“Right now times are hard and I feel like yunno, if I’m in a position where I can make someone’s day or make them feel better or make them smile or give them some hope, I’m totally down for that.”

Her intentions are well placed within the Twitter-verse, but I continued to inquire as to the source of the crying.

“Well, you see… well, uh, I mean…”

So much for that 140 character limit.

Listen to Ralphie Aversa weekdays from 5-10p on 97 BHT.

RALPHIE REPORT: Flavor Flav, Vegas, DJ AM, Hinder


Flavor Flav celebrated his 50th birthday last week. No, that is not a typo.

The “Flavor Of Love” star kicked off the celebration on the East Coast – with a star-studded bash at BB King’s in New York City. The party brought a pleasant surprise to ongoers, as Ice-T and Chuck D joined Flav on stage to perform a number of hits from Public Enemy’s catalog.

Last Friday, Flav flew the festivities to Las Vegas, with a party inside Jet Nightclub at The Mirage. The highlight? The rapper held his trademark, “Yeah Boyee!” catchphrase for an uncanny 35 seconds.

SPEAKING OF LAST FRIDAY…

So I spent part of last week in Las Vegas, betting on March Madness (How ‘bout Syracuse?!), partaking in bottle/limo service, and enjoying the amenities of The Strip (as in the stretch of attractions, not a prefix for a club).

You would’ve thought that these activities, especially with Spring Break, would’ve yielded a many stories for this column, between celebrity sightings and encounters.

Well, you would’ve thought incorrectly. I saw DJ AM spin at LAX inside Luxor, and didn’t bother with Flav’s aforementioned party on Friday night. All in all, I did not meet, let alone knowingly encounter any type of celebrity.

And as far as stories? I accumulated quite a few for a 72 hour period, however what happens in Vegas…

BUT AGAIN, BACK TO LAST FRIDAY…

Big thanks to everyone who joined 97 BHT for the return of Funhouse Friday’s inside The Woodlands. While I was actin’-a-foo inside Prive at Planet Hollywood, A.J. In The Afternoon was throwing a big bash inside Evolution at The Woodlands. I can only imagine what Week 2 will be like inside The Woods, with Shontelle, Adam Barta, and DJ Woogie slated to perform on Friday.

There was also a group of celebrities in the house last week. However the band Hinder was “less than friendly” according to one patron. Another person at the event noted that the band would only sign five CDs for 97 BHT to give to listeners (Most artists usually will agree to how many CDs asked of them).
But then again, I suppose it shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise – we are talking about a “rock” group from Oklahoma that is notorious for playing by their own rules, whether that be shots of “Jager” prior to radio interviews or all-night benders on the tour bus before concerts.

It’s really quite a shame though. I remember hearing so many stories about an easy going Hinder – drinking at Tinks with fans, sleeping in their caravan outside of studios just to snag radio time and the attention of Program Directors.

I suppose it’s just an example of the affect that groupies, alcohol, cross-country tours, and a couple of Billboard “rock” hits can have on one’s ego.

BTW, if you weren’t one of the 5 to snag one of those highly-coveted autographed CDs, you might have a chance this summer, as the pompous partiers return to NEPA on July 14 to open for fellow “rockers” Nickelback at Toyota Pavilion at Montage Mountain.

RALPHIE REPORT: Chris Brown Speaks, Life Imitates Art, We The Kings


The following will appear in The Weekender, which hits newsstands this Wednesday.

Chris Brown waited a week to speak out regarding his alleged attack on Rihanna. The R&B crooner filled his two-paragraph statement with remorse, but left out the assumed victim’s name.

“Words cannot begin to express how sorry and saddened I am over what transpired. I am seeking the counseling of my pastor, my mother and other loved ones and I am committed, with God’s help, to emerging a better person,” said Brown, who also debunked reports that he commented on the incident to a Facebook page or any other blog.

No word from Rihanna, although her father, Ronald Fenty, did speak with the media – confirming that Brown hit his daughter and affirming that she’ll be okay, despite brusing.“At some point, she will speak out. I hope she will stand up for women all over the world,” Fenty told People Magazine.Meanwhile, the spectacle surrounding the incident continues to grow as Los Angeles authorities gather evidence and decide what exactly Brown will be prosecuted for. As of press time, only the original charge of suspicion of making felony criminal threats stood.

Another interesting twist of life possibly imitating art emerged this week, when a track sung by Mario Barrett and allegedly featuring Rihanna hit the net. “Emergency Room” details the actions that led to a woman finding out her man’s cheating ways, and her response.
“You gon’ be in the emergency room… I’m fighting with myself, I can’t hurt you even though you hurt me,” sings the woman on the hook – who sounds eerily similar to RiRi.

At least according to Mario and the author of the track, it is not Rihanna singing. Priscilla Renea wrote “Emergency Room”, with Rihanna and Akon in mind. Mario heard the song, snagged it and re-recorded the verses, leaving the part-to-be-sung-by-Rihanna on the hook. Both Barrett and Renea insist that the Barbatos-born singer hasn’t even been presented with the song, let alone graced it with her vocals.

“The record was far from done,” Barrett wrote in a statement to Vibe. “I’m still proud of the record but want to make sure that the truth is out there.”

IT’S NOT ALL SUNSHINE FOR WE THE KINGS

If you recall the last time I spoke with We The Kings, there was no sunshine – rather a hail storm on Montage Mountain during Warped Tour.

The conditions during our interview last week inside The Crocodile Rock Café in Allentown were a bit more favorable, sans the leaky ceiling. Nonetheless, the boys from Bradenton, Florida spilled about their not-so-rock star Super Bowl experience.“We were actually flying during the Super Bowl, it was kinda miserable,” bassist Hunter Thomsen told me. The conflict forced the group to forgo tickets to the big game, played an hour from their house. Plus, the guys missed their favorite show, The Office. I held off any, “Boom, Roasted,” lines – because it’s no fun being in the dark on those things.

That’s what she said.

Listen to Ralphie Aversa weekdays from 5-10p on 97 BHT.

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