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MUSIC NEWS TO BRING UP IN COCKTAIL CONVERSATION

Have You Ever Seen Nelly, Queen, Rick Springfield And Melissa Etheridge In The Same Room At The Same Time?

WHAT? NO YES? NO GENTLE GIANT? NO ELP?
Michael Jackson
and Paul Simon, both seeking solo enshrinement after already being elected into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as group members, lead the latest list of inductee nominees. Simon was inducted in 1990 as a member of Simon & Garfunkel, while Jackson made it in 1997 as part of the Jackson 5. The list of 16 nominees for the hall, released Monday, includes first-timers AC/DC, Patti Smith, Bob Seger, New York Dolls, Lynyrd Skynyrd and Brenda Lee. Eight others reappear on the ballot, including Aerosmith, Queen, Black Sabbath, Lou Reed, Steely Dan, The Flamingoes, Solomon Burke and Ritchie Valens. Isn't Britney Spears eligible yet?

TALK ABOUT THE HUMAN TOUCH…
Singer/actor Rick Springfield has been arrested for alleged spousal assault. According to the L.A. County Sheriff's Department, Springfield was arrested Monday (9/18) at his Malibu home and released Tuesday (9/19) on $50,000 bail. There are no details about the alleged victim or the case. Springfield has recently been whipping crowds of middle-aged women into a frenzy by taking off his shirt onstage at state fairs. There was no confirmation at presstime on whether that act by itself constituted some form of mental abuse.

THE NAKED TRUTH
Canadian rockers Barenaked Ladies are playing a little trick on their Napster-using fans. People who download the band's new music are instead greeted with a message from singer Steven Page: "Although you thought you were downloading our new single, what you actually were downloading is an advertisement for our new album." Page and drummer Tyler Stewart trade barbs throughout the download, which ends with Stewart commenting: "We fooled you, huh? We're sneaky like that. You can never trust a Canadian. Next thing, we'll be supplying your natural resources." Meanwhile, Glass Tiger is giving away its music unaltered in hopesthat someone, anyone will care.

NOT THE STORY OF WESLEY SNIPES
Top-selling rapper Nelly has signed to make his motion picture debut in "Snipes," a film slated to start shooting Oct. 2 in Philadelphia. Video director Rich Murray will helm "Snipes," which is being produced by rap impresario Chris Schwartz through his RuffNation Films. Nelly will play a rising rap star named Prolifik who is kidnapped as part of a business dispute involving his label, Ill Wax Records. "Judging by the lyrics to ‘Country Grammar,' we are glad this role is not much of a departure for Nelly," a source said. "However, his next role in the hip-hop version of ‘Ghandi' has us concerned."

AN OBVIOUS MISCARRIAGE OF JUSTICE
The not-pregnant Mariah Carey was hit by a copyright infringement lawsuit Friday (9/15) over her hit "Thank God I Found You." The suit, filed in U.S. District Court of the Central District of California by songwriters Seth Swirsky and Warryn Campbell, claims "Thank God I Found You," from "Rainbow," borrows heavily from a 1998 song by Xscape. Swirsky and Campbell sold "One of Those Love Songs," from the album "Traces of My Lipstick," to SoSo Def Recordings in 1998. Carey is named with Columbia Records, producer Terry Lewis and others in the suit. Hitsdailydouble.com could not confirm that its own master of the ultrasound David Simutis offered the song to Carey in an attempt to correct his past indiscretions.

TAKE ME TO THE BRIDGE
The Red Hot Chili Peppers
, Foo Fighters, Dave Matthews Band and Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers will play the 14th annual Bridge School Benefit concerts, scheduled for Oct. 28-29 at the Shoreline Amphitheater in Mountain View, CA. The show will also feature Beck, Tegan & Sara and Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young. "The only way I'd donate money would be if these bands decided to actually jump off a bridge," a Wu-Tang fan offered.

JUST MAKING A QUICK CALL TO LOU DIAMOND PHILLIPS
Another lesbian couple has called it quits. Melissa Etheridge and director Julie Cypher have ended their 12-year relationship. They released a statement through Etheridge's label, Island Records: "With the utmost of love and respect for one another, we have decided to separate. As committed parents, our top priority continues to be what is in the best interest of our children. Though elements of our life will change, our family will always remain intact." Etheridge and Cypher have two children, who were fathered by sperm collected from David Crosby's clothes hamper. As a precaution, police in and around Fresno, CA, have been given a physical description of both women.

DUO TO RULE ISLAND
Two heads are better than one. (6/18a)
GUETTA GOES GLOBAL WITH WARNER MUSIC
Bugs is dancing in the street. (6/18a)
REVENUE CHART:
LIL BIG BUCKS
Pull up the Brinks truck. (6/18a)
TOP 20: POLO MATCH
Looks like we have a horse race. (6/17a)
MUSIC’S HOTTEST FIRMS: GREENBERG TRAURIG
Myriad lawyers, no waiting. (6/18a)
RHYTHM, BLUES AND THE FUTURE
The musical tapestry we know as R&B.
WHO'S NEXT?
Predicting the next big catalog deal.
JUST THE VAX, MA'AM
Once we all get vaccinated, how long before we can party?
WORLDWIDE GROOVE
How is globalization bringing far-flung territories into the musical mainstream?
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