If it worked once, it'll work twice as well the second time such is the logic in entertainment circles. And, as the raging torrent of "unplugged" and duet albums attests. nobody spots a trend like a musician.
If the bandwagon had a frequent-rider program. Vanilla ("Ice Ice Baby") Ice might be mileage champ. Rappers like Dr. Dre and Cypress Hill have been high on the charts with odes to pot, so is it coincidence that Ice, viewed by many as a walking marketing strategy, has a new single, "Roll'Em Up," that's--drumroll, please--a paean to weed? "I ain't going with no fad," counters Ice. "I did that song about three years ago." Hmmmm... OK. But what about his makeover from tres-'80s MC Hammer clone to au courant dreadlocked homeboy? The old look was the bogus one, says Ice, forced on him by his former management. "I'd say: 'Man, I don't want to look like some f --- in' Evel Knievel; they'd be like, 'Ice, don't argue with us, we're selling a lot of records'." Those phonies.
You won't catch Kiss playing a pot tune, but the band is willing to mess around with something equally trendy and potentially as noxious a tribute album. The group that made seventh grade meaningful will issue the delicately titled "Kiss My Ass" this spring, featuring the likes of throwback rocker Lenny Kravitz and college rock darlings the Gin Blossoms and the Lemonheads interpreting the sacred Kiss canon. Hayseed headbangers will want to skip straight to rabid Kiss fan Garth Brooks's contribution. "When we first met Garth. we hugged each other like we'd known each other all our lives," says long-tongued bassist Gene Simmons. "He immediately went into his guitar stance. playing air guitar, and started mouthing the most obscure Kiss songs. It was fascinating."
Like many. Linda Perry of 4 Non Blondes dug Kiss until they doffed their trademark make-up. But she still loves the Who, so naturally she was "very stoked" when Roger Daltrey invited her to join him. the Spin Doctors, John Entwistle, Pearl Jam's Eddie Vedder, the Chieftains and the Juilliard Orchestra for "Daltrey Sings Townshend," the singer's live tribute to his former Who bandmate at Carnegie Hall later this month. The pair of gigs sold out in two hours. Let's just hope that doesn't mean we'll be seeing "Milli Lip-Syncs Vanilli" at the Hollywood Bowl.
White supremacist Byron De La Beckwith, 73, of the 1963 murder of civil-rights leader Medgar Evers; in Jackson, Miss., Feb. 5. Beckwith was sentenced to life in prison. His previous two trials had ended in hung juries.
Author Pierre Boulle, 81: in Paris, ,fan. 30. His experiences in a Japanese prison camp in Indochina during World War II inspired his novel "The Bridge Over the River Kwai" (1954). Boulle also wrote "Planet of the Apes" (1963).
Actress Annette Bening, 35, and husband Warren Beatty, 56. They're already the parents of Kathlyn, 2.