Janet Jackson has decided not to accept the CBS offer to appear on tonight's Grammy show. The network said it would allow her to present a tribute to Luther Vandross if Jackson apologized for her appearance on last Sunday's Super Bowl half-time show.
Jackson, after much thought, decided she'd said she was sorry enough already and declined to be on the show. Patti Labelle will appear in her place.
I am told Janet was advised by her brother Michael Jackson "to stop apologizing already."
This time, even I agree with Jackson. What do people want from this woman? Blood?
Justin Timberlake however has decided to go for it. The ‘NSync singer will read some kind of apology to the nation so he can make a cameo on the Grammy show.
A top CBS exec acknowledged to me last night at Clive Davis' spectacular pre-Grammy dinner and show that the whole apology compromise was because of CBS and not the Grammys.
"The Grammy people really wanted both of them on the show," he said.
Jackson and Timberlake were both no-shows at Davis' party at the Beverly Hills Hotel even though Jackson's boyfriend, Jermaine Dupri, and Timberlake's fellow boy band mate J.C. Chasez made the scene.
So did a dazzling array of stars from Sting and actor Jon Voight to infamous rocker Ike Turner and the beloved Johnny Mathis. Paris Hilton, trying to stick to her record of never saying anything that makes sense, told best-selling novelist Jackie Collins, "I don't read, but when I do read, I read you."
Collins was later seated next to fellow bestseller Danielle Steel and Robin Leach. Now, that was a table!
At various spots around the packed ballroom you could see Nancy Sinatra, director Jim Sheridan, Edgar Bronfman Jr., Jessica Simpson and Nick Lachey, Sharon Osbourne with kids Kelly and Jack, designer Roberto Cavalli, Engelbert Humperdinck, rocker Rob Thomas, Carlos Santana, Sidney Poitier, Bob Geldof, Little Steven van Zandt, Patti Labelle, Penny Marshall, Magic Johnson, Sean Lennon, Chris Tucker, Brett Ratner, P Diddy, Jay Z, 50 Cent, Missy Elliott, Kenny Babyface Edmunds, Angie Stone, Mary J. Blige, the Backstreet Boys, Heather Headley, both Tracee Ross and Tracey Ross, the Black Eyed Peas, Ahmet Ertegun, Arif Mardin, Dave Matthews, Dave Grohl and the Foo Fighters, Carole Bayer Sager with husband Bob Daly, producer David Foster with wife Linda, the group Maroon 5, current number one act Twista and so on and so forth.
Of course the big scene-stealer of the night was actor Jamie Foxx, hot off shooting "The Ray Charles Story" for director Taylor Hackford. It turns out Foxx has a degree in classical music and can sing like Marvin Gaye or Sam Cooke. After auditioning for Clive Davis on Friday he was allowed to join Alicia Keys and Angie Stone on stage. The result of course was that he blew the audience away and may be signing a contract with J Records before the weekend is over.
Keys proved that her stardom has still not reached its peak. She has matured so much since her debut three years ago that Keys was able to host the whole last segment of Davis' show, introducing the Stylistics singer Russell Thompkins Jr., Ray, Goodman and Brown, Labelle, and Earth, Wind & Fire. Keys sang along with them on their hits but also had the good sense to showcase her R&B forebears. She serenaded the audience with a boffo version of "You Don’t Know My Name" as well.
It was another glorious night in the history of Clive Davis dinners, far better than the Grammys itself, and certainly more memorable!
More tomorrow from Grammy land!
I guess former Michael Jackson manager Dieter Wiesner has given a TV interview airing Sunday night regarding the day Neverland was raided by the police.
Let me tell you what I know.
According to my sources, Jackson — who was in Las Vegas and clueless that the raid was imminent — cried when he was told about the search warrant.
“He was very down at first,” my source says, “but after four hours or so, with the helicopters circling and press calling, he toughened up. He said, let’s bring [the accuser] into a room to face me, with photographers present. Then he will have to tell the truth.”
My source also claims that two of the computers seized at Neverland were brand new and never used. They’d been purchased by Wiesner and had no information on them.
More to come, without a doubt, as Jackson is said to be considering some kind of weekend appearance at a Grammy festivity. I know which one, but why spoil the fun? In the meantime, Michael is said to have been traveling around the Los Angeles area with brother Randy Jackson, not to be confused with "American Idol" judge Randy Jackson.