Jessica Simpson’s husband quit drinking to help her on journey to sobriety

Jessica Simpson’s husband Eric Johnson “gave up drinking” when the singer “hit rock bottom” amid her battle with alcohol and drugs.

The star has opened up on her struggle with addiction in her new memoir, Open Book, an excerpt of which appeared in People magazine, and when the 39-year-old embarked on her difficult journey to sobriety in 2017, Eric “gave up drinking the second (she) did” to support his wife.

“It was like no biggie (for him), and he hasn’t gone back or looked back,” Jessica wrote. “It’s just the way he is. He’s a very selfless and loving person who is the most incredible father on the planet.”

The With You singer married former football star Eric in 2014, and the couple shares daughters Maxwell, seven, and 10-month-old Birdie, and son Ace, six.

In previous snippets released via the publication, Jessica said she realised she’d hit rock bottom when she found herself drinking alcohol before Maxwell’s 7.30 am school assembly.

Revealing she’d “already had a drink” before heading to the ceremony, Jessica went on to recall how she “zoned out” later in the day when she was dressed up as Willie Nelson by her team for Halloween.

When asked if she wanted to get her children ready, the star realised she wasn’t able to.

“I was terrified of letting them see me in that shape,” Jessica wrote. “I am ashamed to say that I don’t know who got them into their costumes that night.”

Open Book hits shelves 4 February.

Original Article

Hayley Williams: “Simmer”

The possibility of a Hayley Williams solo album has been on the horizon since the very beginning. In 2003, the 14-year-old Williams was signed as a solo artist to Atlantic Records, which envisioned her as a Top 40 pop singer, à la Avril Lavigne. She insisted on being in an alternative rock band. She won. And so, alongside the rest of Paramore, she wrote empowering anthems for misanthropic teens to mosh and rip their tights to.

The first word of Williams’ new debut solo single, “Simmer,” is an enunciated “rage.” It hangs in the air like a provocation before she finishes: “… is a quiet thing.” There are flashes of anger here—a surprise use of the word “fucker”—but by its own admission, the song operates at low temperature. There is no distorted, thrashing guitar; instead, it’s accented by watery harp and ominous vocal harmonies. “Oh, how to draw the line between wrath and mercy?” Williams asks, before murmuring, “Wrap yourself in petals/Petals for armor.” The concept of shielding oneself with softness is a mature—and natural—progression from reactionary fury, but it’s not a very exciting one. Between the song’s misty ambiance and the music video of Williams bolting through the forest, I couldn’t shake the feeling that she’s been here before: In 2008, when Paramore recorded a song for the Twilight film series. Like a soundtrack song, “Simmer” sets a mood and asks some hazy rhetorical questions—but too often, this story feels as though it could be passed off to anybody.

[embedded content]

Reconsidering Individuals With Normal Hearing

Dementia, called the “greatest global challenge for health and social care in the 21st century,”1(p2673) occurs in 47 million persons globally. This number is projected to triple by 2050. With no cure and no treatments to alter its natural history, public health prevention efforts are paramount. Hearing loss (HL) is a novel yet treatable risk factor for dementia.1 In the article by Golub and colleagues2 in this issue of JAMA Otolaryngology–Head & Neck Surgery, the importance of understanding the association between hearing and cognitive performance for older adults is highlighted. Novel to this study is the focus on adults with hearing in the normal range.

Original Article

The 1975: “Me & You Together Song”

On earlier singles from their upcoming album Notes on a Conditional Form, the 1975 took stock of the human condition: The eponymous opener “The 1975” was a hopeful monologue by the young climate activist Greta Thunberg, while on “People,” Matt Healy offered a blistering condemnation of the behaviors that brought us to this sorry position—when the looming threat of climate crisis means even something so banal as a Monday morning is a limited resource. But with “Me & You Together Song,” the Manchester quartet makes space for smaller-scale obstacles and personal triumphs within the narrative of imminent and near-incomprehensible loss.

“Me & You Together Song” is the antithesis of those confrontational earlier songs, with sparkling production that feels like it could lock you inside, glassy-eyed, for hours. “I had a dream where we had kids/You would cook, I’d do the nappies,” Healy sings, trying to convince a girl of his love. The song itself is a dream, a story of romance that plays out in a snow-globe where the idea of having kids doesn’t require contemplation of the disaster-struck world they may inhabit in the future. “I’ve been in love with her for ages,” he sings, drawing out the last syllable into a maudlin croon. The song is wholly inoffensive, and maybe that’s the point. It offers a false peace, a lull that lasts as long as the synthetic snow falls inside the glass.

[embedded content]

Metallica mourning late bassist Cliff Burton’s father

Metallica has paid tribute to Ray Burton, the father of late bassist Cliff Burton, who has died at the age of 94.

Cliff, who performed on the band’s first three studio albums; Kill ‘Em All, Ride The Lightning, and Master Of Puppets, died at the age of 24 in a tour bus crash in Sweden while on the road with the band in 1986.

However, Ray continued to support the group, and joined them for their Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony in 2009.

On Sunday, Ray’s daughter Connie Burton announced that her father had passed away last Wednesday, and on Sunday, the rockers posted their own tribute online.

“It is with incredible sorrow that we said farewell to Cliff’s dad Ray Burton last week,” their post reads. “For 38 years, we were lucky enough to have the energy, wisdom and light of Ray in our lives. His eternal youth with his drive, positivity and relentless smile were both incredibly powerful and stirringly honest.”

Current members James Hetfield, Lars Ulrich, Kirk Hammett, and Robert Trujillo went on to explain how Ray had followed them on tour around the world.

“From coast to coast and overseas too, Ray’s beaming face would regularly greet us, offering warmth and anchor to our travels, and when it came to the entire Metallica family, band, crew and fans, he viewed us all as his own,” they added.

Stating that Ray wouldn’t want them to stay upset, they concluded: “So, in honour of him, and the kind of man he was, we also want to truly celebrate the 94 years of life Ray gave everyone, knowing in certainty that a glint of his light, wisdom, and energy will always be with us all wherever we go. We love you Ray, rest in peace.”

Original Article

U.S. Girls: “Overtime”

There are countless songs written about working late and drinking hard. Meg Remy tells another side of the story, about the horror of discovering—much too late—that a partner concealed cash and drank it away behind her back: “Every time I see your grave, I can’t help but think/How I didn’t know that you only drank/The overtime.” The original version of “Overtime,” from U.S. Girls’ 2013 EP Free Advice Column, felt a bit like a hangover, with seasick piano and a beat like a pounding headache. Made over with a sidewinding guitar riff and a twitchy funk rhythm, the new single from U.S. Girls’ upcoming album Heavy Light plays in the volatile emotional space where hurt becomes anger. “You forgot to tell me,” Remy insists, knowing that this forgetting was more like a lie of omission. Behind her, backing vocalists chant “overtime, overtime” until the word begins to split apart—“over time, over time”—the way trust is earned, and the way lies are built. E Street Band saxophonist Jake Clemons’ remarkable solo dramatizes the shock of deception, but the song is short, the story is already over, and Remy is the last to know.

[embedded content]

Association of Subclinical Hearing Loss With Cognitive Performance

Key Points

Question  Is the association between hearing and cognition present among individuals who have classically defined normal hearing levels?

Findings  In this cross-sectional study of 6451 individuals, there was an inverse association between decreasing hearing and decreasing cognition among those classically defined as having normal hearing, after adjusting for confounders.

Meaning  The findings suggest that the association between hearing loss and impaired cognition may be present at earlier levels of hearing loss than previously recognized; the current 25-dB threshold for defining adult hearing loss may be too high.

Importance  Age-related hearing loss (HL) is a common and treatable condition that has been associated with cognitive impairment. The level of hearing at which this association begins has not been studied to date.

Objective  To investigate whether the association between hearing and cognition is present among individuals traditionally classified as having normal hearing.

Design, Setting, and Participants  Cross-sectional study of 2 US epidemiologic studies (Hispanic Community Health Study [HCHS], 2008-2011, and National Health and Nutrition Examination Study [NHANES], 1999-2000, 2001-2002, and 2011-2012 cycles). The dates of analysis were November 2018 to August 2019. Multivariable generalized additive model (GAM) regression and linear regression were used to assess the association between HL (exposure) and cognition (outcome). Participants included 6451 individuals aged 50 years or older from the general Hispanic population (HCHS [n = 5190]) and the general civilian, noninstitutionalized US population (NHANES [n = 1261]).

Exposures  Audiometric HL (4-frequency pure-tone average).

Main Outcomes and Measures  Neurocognitive performance measured by the Digit Symbol Substitution Test (DSST) (score range, 0-113), Word Frequency Test (range, 0-49), Spanish-English Verbal Learning Test (SEVLT) 3 trials (range, 5-40), SEVLT recall (range, 0-15), and Six-Item Screener (range, 0-6); higher scores indicated better cognitive performance.

Results  Among 6451 individuals, the mean (SD) age was 59.4 (6.1) years, and 3841 (59.5%) were women. The GAM regression showed a significant inverse association between hearing and cognition across the entire spectrum of hearing after adjusting for demographics and cardiovascular disease. In separate multivariable linear regressions stratified by the classic binary definition of HL, decreased hearing was independently associated with decreased cognition in adults with normal hearing (pure-tone average ≤25 dB) across all cognitive tests in the HCHS. For example in this group, a 10-dB decrease in hearing was associated with a clinically meaningful 1.97-point (95% CI, 1.18-2.75) decrease in score on the DSST. When using a stricter HL cut point (15 dB), an association was also present in NHANES. The associations between hearing and cognition were stronger or equivalent in individuals with normal hearing than among those with HL. For example, there was a 2.28-point (95% CI, 1.56-3.00) combined cohort DSST score decrease per 10-dB decrease among individuals with normal hearing vs a 0.97-point (95% CI, 0.20-1.75) decrease among those with HL, with a significant interaction term between continuous and binary hearing.

Conclusions and Relevance  An independent association was observed between cognition and subclinical HL. The association between hearing and cognition may be present earlier in HL than previously understood. Studies investigating whether treating HL can prevent impaired cognition and dementia should consider a lower threshold for defining HL than the current 25-dB threshold.

Original Article

Morrissey is set to play two shows in the UK this March

The former Smiths frontman has announced concerts at Leeds First Direct Arena on March 6, and The SSE Arena, Wembley in London on March 14, in support of his upcoming 13th solo record, ‘I Am Not a Dog On a Chain’.

The European run also sees the musician perform at the Palladium Cologne on March 9, and the Salle Pleyel in Paris on March 11.

The new tour dates come after the Mancunian released new single ‘Bobby, Don’t You Think They Know’ from his upcoming follow-up to 2019’s ‘California Son’.

Morrissey recruited Grammy-winning Motown star Thelma Houston for the epic duet, who said: “One of the biggest joys for me in this business is getting the opportunity to collaborate with other top artists.

“I love the challenge to see if what I do can work with what they’re doing. Sometimes it works, and sometimes it doesn’t.

“I think the blend of what Morrissey is singing and what I’m singing really works on ‘Bobby’.

“And it was a lot of fun working with M in the studio too!”

The ‘Mute Witness’ singer’s long-time producer, Joe Chicarelli, teased that the upcoming album, which is released via BMG on March 20, is “the boldest and most adventurous” record ever recorded by Morrissey.

He added: “I have now produced four studio albums for Morrissey.

“This is his boldest and most adventurous album yet.

“He has pushed the boundaries yet again – both musically and lyrically.

“And once again proving that as a songwriter and singer, he is in his own category. In truth, no one can be Morrissey but … Morrissey!”

The 60-year-old musician previously described the collection of tracks, recorded in Saint-Rémy-de-Provence in France, as: “The very best of me … too good to be true … too true to be good.”

BMG are also re-issuing remasters of several Morrissey records.

The planned re-releases – ‘Southpaw Grammar’, ‘Maladjusted’, ‘You Are The Quarry’, ‘Ringleader of the Tormentors’, ‘Years of Refusal’ and ‘Live at the Hollywood Bowl’ – will all get updated artwork and sleeve notes.

Tickets for the UK gigs go on general sale on January 24 from 9am.

Original Article

Choi Woo-shik: “Soju One Glass”

If the Marvel Cinematic Universe has its post-credits scenes, the South Korean Best Picture nominee Parasite, written and directed by Bong Joon-ho, has its own “for the fans” treat once the screen goes black, though the film has far less clear distinctions between the good guys and the villains than the Avengers. As a denouement to this darkly comic capitalist hellhole thriller about a family of scammers infiltrating a rich household is a bittersweet, folk-ish tune sung by Choi Woo-shik, the 29-year-old actor who plays “Kevin,” the son of the impoverished Kim family. This end credits song (an if-you-know-you-know bonus for the Bong Hive) was composed by musician Jung Jae-il with lyrics written by the director himself, who wanted audiences to hear Kevin’s voice one last time while leaving the theater. The track, “Soju One Glass,” was shortlisted (but not nominated) by the Academy for Best Original Song, a surprise nod even for a film that’s received many accolades since its Palme d’Or win at Cannes last May.

Though it starts with a solemnly plucked electric guitar, the song builds up to a fast-strummed ditty, the lyrics playfully enunciated by the boyishly-toned Choi, whose voice seems to constantly be on the verge of a pubescent crack. The song plays unsubtitled, and if you don’t speak Korean it feels almost misplaced—too chipper, too inviting of foot-stomping, almost distasteful following a rather traumatic series of events in the film’s final act. But comprehension of the lyrics spotlights the strain in Choi’s voice as he sings about an exhausting life that feels realistic for his scrappy character: living in the haze of Korea’s poor air quality, hands and feet rough and nonexistent muscles burned from hard labor. The melody picks up with an extra bounce as Choi dives into the chorus: numbing it all at the end of the day with cold soju spilling over from his glass. Then the comedown hits. It’s rather fitting for a film built on faux optimism followed by a bluntly shattering reality check.

[embedded content]