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Exclusive: From country singer to global star: Olivia Newton John's incredible rise to fame –



#country #singer #global #star #Olivia #Newton #John039s #incredible #rise #fame

Olivia Newton-John came to the world’s attention playing Sandy Olsson in the 1978 hit Grease.

In 1964, at the age of 15, she won a singing contest – the prize a trip to London where she built a respectable career with hits that blended country music and pop.

The Australian performer’s first album, released in 1971, was called If Not For You. It was a departure from her country music roots and entered the Top 25 in the United States.

She won the Academy of Country Music honour for New Female Vocalist in 1973 and from there, her star continued to rise.

READ MORE: Tributes flow for Olivia Newton-John as she loses battle with breast cancer

Olivia Newton John
Olivia Newton-John’s first album, released in 1971, was called If Not For You. (Fairfax News)

Her music career went from strength to strength, with hit singles and album success culminating in her appearance at the Eurovision Song Contest in 1974, where she represented Britain, performing ‘Long Live Love’.

Newton-John came in fourth place, while ABBA took out the top prize on behalf of Sweden, performing ‘Waterloo’.

That same year, the songstress released her single ‘I Honestly Love You’, which became her first pop number one.


READ MORE: John Travolta’s touching tribute to Olivia

Newton John took out fourth place at the Eurovision Song Contest in 1974.
Newton-John took out fourth place at the Eurovision Song Contest in 1974. (Eurovision Song Contest)

She was reportedly encouraged by fellow singer/songwriter Helen Reddy to make the move from the UK to the US to pursue her career, and although she had some success, it wasn’t until she was cast as Sandy in Grease in 1978 that she hit the big time.

Before she found Hollywood fame, however, Newton-John became embroiled in a lawsuit that would change recording contracts for future artists.

Her efforts to be released from an unsatisfactory deal with MCA meant future contracts were based on number of albums produced by the artist as opposed to a number of years

Grease began as a Broadway musical before plans for a movie were unveiled and John Travolta cast as Danny Zuko.

READ MORE: Olivia Newton-John’s daughter Chloe Lattanzi shares tribute after her death

Olivia Newton John on the set of 1978 hit movie Grease.
Olivia Newton-John on the set of 1978 hit movie Grease. (AP)

It was Newton-John’s insistence on a screen test with Travolta that nabbed her the role, owing to their incredible chemistry.

The role of Sandy was rewritten to reflect her Australian background and became the biggest box office hit of 1978. The movie’s success served to transform her singing career, with Newton-John achieving two number one singles that year – ‘Summer Nights’ and ‘Hopelessly Devoted to You’.

Owing to their obvious chemistry, rumours Newton-John and Travolta dated both during and after the filming of Grease circulated but were never confirmed.

She later explained they were both with other people during their time filming the movie and their bond was one of friendship.

Newton John insisted on a screentest with Travolta, eventually nabbing the role of Sandy.
Newton-John insisted on a screentest with Travolta, eventually nabbing the role of Sandy. (AP)

At the time, Newton-John was in an on-again-off-again relationship with British businessman Lee Kramer, who also served as her manager until the couple called it quits in 1979.

Following the success of the movie and the music it produced, Newton-John was once again compelled to file legal action against a record label – this time against Universal Music Group for unpaid royalties from the Grease soundtrack, which resulted in an undisclosed settlement.

Newton-John was a fighter who knew her value. That spirit would see her through a devastating health battle that would ultimately claim her life at 73.

Newton John sold  over 100 million albums worldwide throughout her incredible career.
Newton-John sold over 100 million albums worldwide throughout her incredible career. (AP)

Following the success of Grease, both the movie and the soundtrack, Newton-John had a string of hits.

In 1980 she starred in cult classic Xanadu alongside Gene Kelly. The soundtrack featured a duet with Cliff Richard called ‘Suddenly’, which performed well alongside ‘Magic’ and title song ‘Xanadu’.


It was during filming of Xanadu that Newton John met her future husband Matt Lattanzi, the father of her daughter Chloe, 36.

The couple married in 1984. Newton-John took a three-year hiatus from her career following Chloe’s birth before she and Lattanzi divorced in 1995.

Newton John with Xanadu co-star Michael Beck.
Newton-John with Xanadu co-star Michael Beck. (Universal Pictures)

Following the success of Grease and Xanadu, Newton-John decided to pivot, moving away from heartfelt ballads with the release of the album Physical, through which she shed her schoolgirl image forever; its lyrics were so risque, some radio stations refused to play it.

To counter this, Newton-John filmed a music video that turned the song into an exercise anthem, showing her in an exercise class wearing a headband.

An international tour followed, and the release of her first greatest hits album.

Newton-John and Travolta starred in another movie together called Two of a Kind, released in 1983, though it achieved mediocre success.

Matt Lattanzi, Chloe Lattanzi and Olivia Newton John following Chloe's performance in the musical Hair.
Matt Lattanzi, Chloe Lattanzi and Olivia Newton-John following Chloe’s performance in the musical Hair. (Fairfax Media)

That same year she entered the business world, launching the brand Koala Blue with friend Pat Farrar. The fashion line ran until 1992 when it was forced to file for bankruptcy.

That same year, Newton-John was diagnosed with and overcame breast cancer for the first time.

She became a fierce advocate for breast cancer research, establishing the Olivia Newton-John Cancer Research Institute.

In 1983 Newton John entered the business world, launching the brand Koala Blue.
In 1983 Newton-John entered the business world, launching the brand Koala Blue. (AP)

A year after her divorce from Lattanzi, Newton-John began dating cameraman Patrick McDermott.

The couple’s relationship was on again and off again until McDermott disappeared in mysterious circumstances in 2005 following a fishing trip.

The couple had reportedly split at the time of his disappearance. There were claims McDermott had faked his disappearance, however this has never been confirmed.

Newton-John eventually found true and lasting love with John Easterling, founder and president of the Amazon Herb Company. They were married in a spiritual ceremony in 2008 and he was reportedly by her side at the time of her death.

Newton John with second husband John Easterling.
Newton-John with second husband John Easterling. (Andrew Meares)

Newton-John continued to tour internationally, alongside Cliff Richard and John Farnham, until her health declined in recent years. She also appeared in the hit US TV show Glee, in which she performed ‘Physical’ with series regular Jane Lynch.

In 2014, she was an artist in residence Las Vegas, and was a guest judge on an episode RuPaul’s Drag Race the following year.


Also in 2015, Newton-John scored her first number-one single on the Billboard Dance Club Songs chart with ‘You Have to Believe’ alongside daughter Chloe.

Olivia Newton-John’s movie and music legacy will live on, along with, most importantly, her work to help advance breast cancer research and treatment.

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Olivia Newton-John: Her extraordinary life remembered


Exclusive: The Best 5-Star Amazon Products That Will Solve Your Fashion Problems –




The Best 5-Star Amazon Products That Will Solve Your Fashion Problems

#5Star #Amazon #Products #Solve #Fashion #Problems

We independently selected these deals and products because we love them, and we think you might like them at these prices. E! has affiliate relationships, so we may get a commission if you purchase something through our links. Items are sold by the retailer, not E!. Prices are accurate as of publish time.

Who doesn’t appreciate a good fashion hack? If you’re on the hunt for products that will solve all your wardrobe problems, you’ve come to the right place. Whether you’re struggling with jeans that fit too loose, shoes that are too big, shirts that wrinkle easily, and more, this roundup of the best problem-solving fashion products will be a gamechanger.

All of these ingenious products are available on Amazon for affordable prices, and they have thousands of positive reviews, so you know you won’t be disappointed!

Keep scrolling to stock up on some life-changing fashion problem-solving products, from button pins for jeans to invisible clothing tape, and so much more.

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Exclusive: Suspect in fatal shooting of Migos rapper Takeoff arrested on murder charge –




Suspect in fatal shooting of Migos rapper Takeoff arrested on murder charge

#Suspect #fatal #shooting #Migos #rapper #Takeoff #arrested #murder #charge

A 33-year-old man was arrested on a murder charge in the shooting of rapper Takeoff, who police on Friday said was an “innocent bystander” when he was struck by gunfire outside a Houston bowling alley.

Patrick Xavier Clark was taken into custody peacefully Thursday night, Houston Police Chief Troy Finner said. Clark’s arrest came one day after another man was charged in connection with the Nov. 1 shooting, which authorities said followed a dispute over a dice game and wounded two other people.

Clark was being held in jail Friday awaiting a bond hearing. Court records do not list an attorney who could speak for him, but indicate he was arrested as he was preparing to leave the country for Mexico.

This image provided by the Houston Police Dept., shows Patrick Xavier Clark, 33, who has been arrested in the fatal shooting of rapper Takeoff. (Houston Police Dept. via AP).

Born Kirsnick Khari Ball, Takeoff was the youngest member of Migos, the Grammy-nominated rap trio from suburban Atlanta that also featured his uncle Quavo and cousin Offset.

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The 28-year-old musician was shot outside the downtown bowling alley at around 2:30 a.m., when police said a dispute erupted as more than 30 people were leaving a private party there. Police previously said another man and a woman suffered non-life-threatening gunshot injuries and that at least two people opened fired.


Read more:

Migos rapper Takeoff, 28, shot dead in Houston bowling alley

Police Sgt. Michael Burrow said during a Friday news conference that the gunfire followed a disagreement over a “lucrative” game of dice, but that Takeoff was not involved and was “an innocent bystander.” Finner said police do not know whether Clark was invited to the party or if he knew Takeoff.

Every person on the scene left without talking to police, Burrow said. Some of those people have since been located by the authorities, who have also worked to piece together events with ballistics, video and audio recordings, according to Burrow. He said investigators are still trying to track down witnesses.

“We will be looking to find you,” he said. “It will be easier if you come find us.”

On Wednesday, authorities announced the arrest of Cameron Joshua in connection to the shooting. Joshua was charged with illegally having a gun at the time Takeoff was shot, but prosecutors said the 22-year-old is not believed to have fired the weapon. Christopher Downey, Joshua’s attorney, told reporters that he has not seen anything to suggest that his client was involved in Takeoff’s killing.

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Burrow said that investigators believe it was Clark’s gunfire that killed the rapper.

Click to play video: 'Police say Takeoff was ‘innocent bystander’ and ‘not involved’ in argument that led to fatal shooting'

Police say Takeoff was ‘innocent bystander’ and ‘not involved’ in argument that led to fatal shooting

Prosecutors on Friday asked a court to set Clark’s bond at $1 million, arguing he is a flight risk. After Takeoff’s shooting, Clark applied for an expedited passport by submitting the itinerary for an “imminent” flight to Mexico, according to court records. They say he was arrested the day he received the passport and was in possession of a “large amount” of cash.

Fans and other performers, including Drake and Justin Bieber, celebrated Takeoff’s musical legacy in a memorial service last month in Atlanta.


Migos’ record label, Quality Control, mourned Takeoff’s death in a statement posted on Instagram that attributed it to “senseless violence.”

Migos first broke through with the massive hit “Versace” in 2013. They had four Top 10 hits on the Billboard Hot 100, though Takeoff was not on their multi-week No. 1 hit “Bad and Boujee,” featuring Lil Uzi Vert. They put out a trilogy of albums called “Culture,” “Culture II” and “Culture III,” with the first two hitting No. 1 on the Billboard 200 album chart.

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Takeoff and Quavo released a joint album “Only Built for Infinity Links” just weeks before his death.

Bleiberg reported from Dallas.

&copy 2022 The Canadian Press

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Exclusive: ‘Proud’! Jana Kramer Says She’s ‘Started to Love’ Herself for 1st Time ‘Ever’ –




‘Proud’! Jana Kramer Says She’s ‘Started to Love’ Herself for 1st Time ‘Ever’

#Proud #Jana #Kramer #Shes #Started #Love #1st #Time

Wising up! Jana Kramer took to social media to celebrate her birthday — and share what she’s learned after 39 trips around the sun. 

“For the first time probably ever I’ve started to love who I am. What I am, and who I continue to become,” Kramer, 39, wrote via Instagram on Friday, December 2. “38 was a year of an immense amount of growth and healing through some very hard things.” 

The One Tree Hill alum revealed that as she turns another year older, it feels “really good” to be “proud” of herself after searching for “validation” from others for so long. “I have found it from within and that’s the greatest birthday gift I could receive,” she explained. 

Sharing that she “had therapy the other day,” the Michigan native said that she “started to cry” after opening up to her therapist. 

“She asked me what the tears were. I couldn’t answer because I started to cry more and she said, ‘It’s because you’re proud of yourself isn’t it.’ And I shook my head yes and cried even harder but not out of sadness. HAPPY TEARS… cause I never thought I would be here,” she gushed. 

The “Whine Down” podcast host concluded her tribute to self-love by thanking her fans for “all the lessons” and “making me dig in,” noting how “excited” she was to “continue to grow, learn, heal and connect with others” on this “journey with all of you.” 

Kramer has undoubtedly had a few difficult years. The country crooner split from Ian Schinelli in April after six months of dating. In July 2021, she finalized her divorce from ex-husband Mike Caussin, with whom she shares daughter Jolie, 6, and son Jace, 4. 

The pair were known for being transparent about their relationship ups and downs, including when the former NFL player, 35, revealed he was in treatment for sex addiction. 


“I acknowledge that certain actions and behaviors have caused issues in my marriage and I am deeply sorry for the pain I have caused Jana,” he said in a statement in September 2016. “I have and will continue to take the steps needed to change who I am as a person in order to be a better husband and father.”

After reconciling and renewing their vows in 2017, the pair got candid about his “relapses” through their podcast and in their 2020 book, The Good Fight, before calling it quits for good. At the time of their split, a source exclusively told Us Weekly that the “Whiskey” singer would continue to be open with her fans through her divorce. 

“Time will heal her wounds, and when she’s ready, she’s going to open up more about the marriage ending,” the insider shared. “She doesn’t hide her emotions … She’s really leaned on the support of her fans. She’ll get DMs and comments from people saying they’ve gone through similar situations and that really helps her.”

During a Red Table Talk appearance in October, Kramer told host Jada Pinkett Smith that Caussin had cheated on her with “more” than 13 women. “I know we’re both in better situations. But I think about this year … my kids won’t wake up at my house on Christmas day. That one’s gonna hurt,” she said while holding back tears. 

Despite their struggles, the former couple reunited earlier this week to celebrate Jace’s 4th birthday. 

“Happy almost 4th birthday my little spidey,” the actress captioned a sweet snap via her Instagram Stories of the exes crouched down with their toddler, who was dressed as Spider-Man. 

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