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Britney Spears

Born Dec. 2, 1981 in tiny Kentwood, La., Britney Spears emerged as one of the defining artists of the teen-pop/bubblegum music craze of the 1990s. Before her explosion as a solo artist, Spears gained notoriety as a contestant on Star Search and cast member of The New Mickey Mouse Club, the kid-friendly variety show produced at Disney-MGM Studios in Orlando.

Although early solo hits such as "Baby One More Time" and "Oops I Did It Again" exuded a playful innocence, the singer's image would become more sexual as her career progressed. Speculation about her virginity and relationship with boyfriend Justin Timberlake began to eclipse her music by the time of her 2001 album, Britney. Stea...
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Born Dec. 2, 1981 in tiny Kentwood, La., Britney Spears emerged as one of the defining artists of the teen-pop/bubblegum music craze of the 1990s. Before her explosion as a solo artist, Spears gained notoriety as a contestant on Star Search and cast member of The New Mickey Mouse Club, the kid-friendly variety show produced at Disney-MGM Studios in Orlando.

Although early solo hits such as "Baby One More Time" and "Oops I Did It Again" exuded a playful innocence, the singer's image would become more sexual as her career progressed. Speculation about her virginity and relationship with boyfriend Justin Timberlake began to eclipse her music by the time of her 2001 album, Britney. Steamy songs such as "I'm a Slave 4 U," which she performed in a skimpy outfit with a snake wrapped around her neck on the MTV Video Music Awards, fueled such talk.

As an adult, Spears continued to be a magnet for the tabloids, embarking on a bizarre two-day marriage to childhood sweetheart Jason Alexander and later marrying backup dancer Kevin Federline. That relationship was chronicled in a reality show, Chaotic. She had two children with Federline, but divorced him in 2007.

Spears then descended into more unbalanced behavior, having her head shaved at a salon in Tarzana, Calif., enduring ugly custody battles and involuntary psychological treatment. She emerged, however, to make two albums, Blackout (2007) and Circus (2008).
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  • New Orleans native Luke James makes Jazz Fest debut

    R&B heartthrob Luke James gets a rare opportunity to shine before his home crowd Saturday when he performs — for the first time — at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival.
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    Taryn Manning remembers calling her mother to say she was being cast as the star of a new TV movie, a big step for the actress. Her mother was not pleased. "Taryn," she said. "It's an awful story." Indeed it is, in many respects. The movie is "Cleveland...

    Véronic DiCaire, the vocal impressionist behind 50 voices, returns to Las Vegas

    Véronic DiCaire, the vocal impressionist behind 50 voices, returns to Las Vegas
    Want to hear Britney Spears, Dolly Parton, Norah Jones and Celine Dion all at once? Singing sensation Véronic DiCaire can make that happen. The singing impersonator has a catalog of 50 female singers in her repertoire. The French-Canadian singer...

    Beyonce celebrates Giuseppe Zanotti's Beverly Hills store expansion

    Beyonce celebrates Giuseppe Zanotti's Beverly Hills store expansion
    Giuseppe Zanotti's bejeweled, sky-high heels are favorites of the Hollywood and music video crowds. So it was only a little surprising when reigning pop queen Beyonce Knowles made a quick but crowd-pleasing cameo during a cocktail party Tuesday night...

    Stepping Stone Players returns to the stage

    Stepping Stone Players returns to the stage
    The curtain has not fallen on the Stepping Stone Players. After months of financial instability, the community theater group is plotting its return to the stage, but in the meantime, it plans to spend the rest of 2015 bulking up its bank account....