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Interviewing celebrities, breaking national stories, blogging daily, and offering candid commentary on pop culture is just a small sample of what he does. Ralphie Aversa is the relentless, tireless, non-stop-always-go host and executive producer of “The Ralphie Radio Show.” Check out his links above, and his blog below - and thanks for swinging through!


EXCLUSIVE: Fall Out Boy's Pete Wentz To Make Big Announcement Before Year's End

You know when Pete Wentz starts paraphrasing Jay-Z, he means business. Actually, I wasn’t sure what the Fall Out Boy bassist meant when he dropped this during our conversation – but I think we’re all about to find out soon.

“People are gonna be really sick about the next deal I make,” said Wentz, who is also the head of Decaydance Records. “If people felt weird about the last one, people are gonna feel real weird about the next one.”

I asked Wentz to elaborate on his “On To The Next One” reference, and well… he at least continued.

“It’s got nothing to do with Fall Out Boy or Island Def Jam,” Wentz admitted. “It’s gonna be different, and it’s gonna make people feel sick, or happy.”

The only timeline Wentz gave to the big announcement is that it will not happen on Thanksgiving or Christmas, but will happen before the end of the year. He said that everyone is a little lost on what’s happening, but that he’s going through with it – whatever it is – anyways.

Interestingly enough, shortly after our conversation, he posted this Twitter update, "I kinda lost my mind for real. Not really looking for it either".

Wentz called in to The Ralphie Radio Show to promote Believers Never Die: Greatest Hits. The FOB compilation hit stores and iTunes on Tuesday, and features two new tracks.

“Ahh man… funny question, yunno?” Wentz responded when I asked why the band released a “best of” album at this particular moment in time. “Fourth quarter. Labels like to put out greatest hits in the fourth quarter, don’t they? And ‘why now?’ because it’s like, the band doesn’t have enough hits to have a greatest hits. And ‘why now?’ because maybe it’s like, you have a contract you want to get out of. We asked ourselves all those questions, and then decided to put it out as something for the fans.”

Part 1: Believers Never Die: Greatest Hits, "Alpha Dog"

Part 2: Hair Cut, Future Plans, Angels & Kings (Wentz's NYC Bar)

The timing is also curious given that Fall Out Boy as a band is currently on a hiatus, or as Wentz told MTV News the night before – a “decompressing.” So, while supporters may not have new material in the immediate future, they will have two new songs from the release, including the first single, “Alpha Dog.”

“We felt like (“Alpha Dog”) didn’t fit in,” Wentz reasoned as to why the track didn’t appear on Folie A Deux. The song did pop up on a mixtape the label head released prior to Fall Out Boy’s last LP. “It felt too electronic. At the time it felt futuristic, now it feels it is the right time for it.”

And oh how the times have changed. Wentz is 30, with a child and a wife, and will be living in New York for at least the next 13 weeks. His spouse, Ashlee Simpson-Wentz, makes her Broadway debut on November 30 in the musical, “Chicago.” For Wentz, this will translate to more time with his son. Bronx Mowgli Wentz turns 1 on Friday. This will probably also find the entrepreneur with more opportunities to manage and appear at his New York bar, Angels and Kings. The drinking establishment might be to blame for the slow, sometimes rambling responses I received from Wentz throughout our chat.

“I was there, in my head, last night,” Wentz said. “But I don’t think I was there, in reality.”

EXCLUSIVE: Allison Iraheta To Make GMA Appearance

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American Idol finalist Allison Iraheta stopped by The RRS to play her new track and talk about her new LP, hitting stores on December 1.

EXCLUSIVE: Chris Daughtry On Kris Allen, New Single, Lady GaGa

No pun intended, but it is no surprise to the band Daughtry that the first two singles off of Leave This Town were co-written by Nickelback front man Chad Kroeger.

“Soon as we made the decision to put those on the record, we looked at it and goes, ‘That’ll probably be the first two singles,’” said lead singer Chris Daughtry, who sat down with me before performing at Wachovia Arena. “They’re great songs and we agree that they fit the bill.”

The group led off the sophomore LP with the single, “No Surprise”, followed by the latest, “Life After You.” Daughtry played the new track at both the American Music Awards and the halftime show of the Cowboys/Raiders game on Thanksgiving.
Download the mp3

Speaking of tracks co-written by the Idol alum – Daughtry also wrote a track for American Idol champ Kris Allen. Although previously reported that it would not make Allen’s final LP, Chris confirmed that the song will be included on the Wal-Mart exclusive version of self-titled album.

“It’s called ‘Send Me All Your Angels’ and it’s a great song,” remarked Daughtry. “At the end of the day, there’s songs on our record that didn’t make it either that we were bummed out about. We had 70 songs to weed through.”

EXCLUSIVE: Creed's Scott Stapp On New Lifestyle, New LP

The reunion or comeback is a common storyline in music these days. The reunion or comeback that people actually care about is not.

For Scott Stapp, the lead singer of Creed, it almost didn’t come to fruition. Alleged alcohol and drug abuse drove everyone around him away – from family to band mates. Suddenly Stapp’s controversies were overshadowing his chops – and those vocals aren’t easily upstaged. But just before 2008, the front man began reaching out to his cohorts. By April of this year, the reunion was announced. Now, Creed is back, with a top selling album in Full Circle and comeback tour already under its belt.

“Thanks to all the fans out there, who stuck by us,” remarked Stapp, who called in to The Ralphie Radio Show. The lead singer sounded nothing like the guy who belted out powerhouses like, “My Sacrifice” and “Higher”, and everything like the guy that was just granted a new lease on life. Stapp took his time answering every question, not afraid to pause seconds between words, finding the right phrases to describe this new phase of his personal and professional life. He didn’t shy away from one query, and offered candid, honest responses throughout our 15 minute conversation.
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“I can’t mislead ya,” Stapp began, in answering a question regarding life on the road since he curbed his substance abuse. “I-uh… I still had, at the time (of the tour) a glass of wine or so with my wife here and there, but, as far as being like it was back in the day… guess it made it a lot easier to have my wife and my family there.”

Returning to the old Creed meant breaking some old habits. Bringing the family on tour and calming down the partying certainly played a role. Stapp also revealed that the band needed to remove some of the people that hung around the band. He attributed the misinterpretation of a quote in his 2006 Rolling Stone interview to this. In the article, Mark Binelli wrote that Stapp believed anyone involved with Creed wanted the lead singer to die, so he’d become a “Kurt Cobain martyr-type” and boost record sales.

“I communicated that, in that there were some people around all of us, that had some really negative intentions,” said Stapp. “That was the context of that – (the band members) don’t have the heart… that’s not guys in this band… we were surrounded by a lot of people that, now we’re not.”

Stapp told me he’s looking forward to spending the holidays at home, with his kids and wife. Full Circle debuted at number two on the Billboard charts.

EXCLUSIVE: Down With Webster In Studio!

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Universal Motown's Down With Webster swung through The RRS to perform an acoustic version of "Rich Girl$" & chat about the track.

(Click above download link for interview audio)


EXCLUSIVE: Shontelle Preps New LP, Thought Rihanna Did "Great" on 20/20

In the days of Web 2.0 – you know you’ve made it when someone attempts to imitate you on Twitter. Bajan singer Shontelle fell a brief victim to an identity thief – or should I say, twief – on Wednesday evening. Coincidently enough, Ms. Layne stopped by The Ralphie Radio Show on the following day.

“This was not the first time,” revealed Shontelle. “We literally had to call the Twitter people and freak out, ‘cause we’ve like, submitted for verification so long ago. I guess it takes a minute, ‘cause there’s so many people they have to verify.”

The impersonator used the Twitter username “ShontelleLayne_”, simply moving the underscore from the real Shontelle’s handle of “Shontelle_Layne.” When Layne looked at the fake account’s timeline, she was shocked to find that this person began “tweeting” at Solange Knowles (singer, Beyoncé’s sister) and Rorrey Fenty (Rihanna’s brother) amongst other people.

As of late Sunday evening, Twitter had yet to verify Shontelle’s account. By “verifying” an account, Twitter places a notification in the upper right corner of the page, so that visitors know the account belongs to the person who they claim to be.

Of course, Layne didn’t need the Twitter incident as a sign that she’s making it in the entertainment industry. Surely opening up for Beyoncé overseas could help that argument. Layne opened for Jay-Z’s husband for about a month on the “I Am…” tour overseas. Shontelle entered the trek with the expectation that she wouldn’t even meet Beyoncé face-to-face, however the headliner proved the opener wrong on that thought.

“I just get this message, ‘Shontelle, go to Beyoncé’s room’” she recalled, noting that immediately she believed that something was wrong. “When I got in there (Beyoncé) was like, ‘No, I just wanted to like, hang out for a bit, because you know, you’ve been on this tour with me, and I haven’t really gotten the chance to tell you thank you for being on the tour, I haven’t really gotten the chance to tell you how talented I think you are.’”

Shontelle's feelings immediately switched from scared to shocked – one of the biggest pop stars in the world went out of her way to pay Layne high compliments on her singing, stage performance… even videos. From the sound of Layne’s recollection, “stunned” may be an understatement.

Part 1:
Twitter, Beyonce, Thanksgiving Day

Part 2: "Licky", Rihanna, New CD

“I’m like, ‘You’re Beyoncé, why are you telling me this?’” said Shontelle. “Like, is this real? They couldn’t even get me in the room at first… because I was shaking,” she admitted, although Layne insists she wasn’t star struck as much as she was nervous about the meeting’s purpose.

Shontelle also admitted on The Ralphie Radio Show that she’s nervous about an upcoming event – the “T-Shirt” singer will take part in the halftime show in Detroit at the Lions/Packers game on Thanksgiving Sunday. Layne, along with other Universal Motown artists, will perform classic Motown hits in Motown. Shontelle would not divulge which song she is covering.

“If you watched Sister Act 2… you can take a hint from that,” she teased.

In addition to the performance, which will air to a national and international audience on FOX, Shontelle is preparing a new LP. The album is slated for a 2010 release, and Layne will only confirm collaborations with Mr. Hudson and Akon. The first single is a dance infused record called “Licky” – which Layne insists is inspired by desserts.

“Licky” isn’t the only new track from a Bajan artist – as Shontelle’s friend, the aforementioned Rihanna, is back with “Russian Roulette” and “Hard.” A week and a half ago, Rihanna appeared on 20/20 with Diane Sawyer to tell her side of the story. Layne told me that the interview was tough to watch.

“Honestly, it was like watching your little sister do a piano recital for the first time,” she said. “I was nervous. I was a wreck.”

The singer thought her former Cadet partner handled the situation on camera well.

“I thought she did great, actually,” remarked Shontelle. “And she said a lot more than I even thought she was gonna say. I’m really proud of her… I just want, them both really, to grow from this.”