MTV News Round-Up 02/03/2004
*** George Michael has called Tony Blair a "dangerous man" who can't "face up to his own ego". A lifelong Labour voter, the star " whose comeback album 'Patience' is out this month - told The Big Issue magazine: "I wish to God that the Labour Party had the guts to get rid of Blair, because it could survive another election without him".
*** Westlife picked up the Best Irish Pop Act prize at last night's Meteor Ireland Music Awards, marking the fifth Meteor of their career. Winners also included The Thrills (Best Irish Album), The Frames (Best Irish Band), Beyonce (International Female), Justin Timberlake (International Male), The Darkness (International Band) and Red Hot Chili Peppers (Best Live Performance).
*** N.E.R.D, The Strokes and Franz Ferdinand have been added to the line-up for this year's T In The Park festival. Also on the new additions list are Snow Patrol and Dogs Die In Hot Cars. Previously announced acts for the July 10 and 11 festival in Balado (Scotland) include David Bowie, The Darkness, Chemical Brothers, Muse and The Pixies.
*** Kylie Minogue's album 'Body Language' has slipped to number 83 in the US album charts just two weeks after being released. The Australian singer had been confident about her chances of conquering the US with the album, but after it peaked in the first week at number 42 with sales of just 42,000, it has fallen another 41 places and sold a paltry 18,000. Her previous album, 'Fever', sold 1.1 million copies in the US.
*** Morrissey has been appointed Artistic Director of Meltdown 2004. The singer, who is set to release his first album in seven years on May 17, is the twelfth artist since 1993 to have accepted the invitation to organise Meltdown. Previous directors include David Bowie and John Peel. This years festival will take place between June 11-17 in the South Bank Centre in London.
*** Britney Spears says her parents are so controlling they make her feel like she's "trapped in a prison". The singer is said to have enraged her parents in January when she married Jason Alexander in Las Vegas - a marriage that was annulled just over two days later. The 22-year-old singer told Seventeen magazine: "A lot of the things I've done that seem absurd were out of wanting to break free".
*** Simon Cowell has claimed he "fixed" the Pop Idol result to ensure Michelle McManus won. Cowell has reportedly said that he secured McManus' win through his unflinching support, despite believing the Glaswegian is not a pop idol "in the old fashioned sense, though maybe times are changing". Or not; McManus' album 'The Meaning of The Love' has flopped compared to the previous Pop Idol winners, selling only one sixth of Will Young's debut.