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Author of "Life With My Father Glen Campbell"


NEW YORK (AP) -- A global index reflecting economic security, health and other factors - and not deducting for cold winters - ranks Norway and Sweden with the highest level of well-being for older people. Of the 96 nations in the index, Afghanistan ranked last.

The Global AgeWatch Index, released on Tuesday, was compiled by HelpAge International, a London-based nonprofit with affiliates in 65 countries. Its mission is to help older people challenge discrimination, overcome poverty and lead secure, active lives.

The 13 indicators measured in the index include life expectancy, coverage by pension plans, access to public transit, and the poverty rate for people over 60. 

Scores of countries were not ranked due to lack of data for some of the criteria, but HelpAge said the countries included in the index are home to about 90 percent of the world's 60-plus population.

Switzerland, Canada and Germany joined Norway and Sweden in the top five. The United States was eighth, Japan ninth, China 48th, Russia 65th and India 69th.

According to HelpAge, there are now about 868 million people in the world over 60 - nearly 12 percent of the global population. By 2050, that's expected to rise to 2.02 billion, or 21 percent of the total, the group said. In dozens of countries 

- including most of eastern Europe - the over-60 segment will be more than 30 percent of the population.

HelpAge launched the index in 2013. Among the changes for 2014 were the inclusion of five more countries, and Norway replacing Sweden with the highest ranking.

The new report devotes special attention to the issue of pensions and their role in helping older people remain active and self-sufficient. It praised several Latin American nations, including Bolivia, Peru and Mexico, for steps to extend pension coverage even to older people who did not contribute to pension plans when they were younger. Peru's government established a means-tested pension program in 2011 that gives the equivalent of about $90 every two months to older people living in extreme poverty.

According to HelpAge, only half the world's population can expect to receive even a basic pension in old age. It urged governments to move faster to extend pension coverage as their elderly populations swell.

Release of the Index was timed to coincide with the United Nations International Day of Older Persons on Wednesday. Various events were planned in dozens of countries to call on governments and civic institutions to better address the needs of older people.
Follow David Crary on Twitter at http://twitter.com/CraryAP
© 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

Michael Phelps arrested on DUI charges

12:31 PM EDT
Sep 30, 2014

BALTIMORE —Maryland Transportation Authority police said Michael Phelps was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence in Maryland.

Police said Phelps was speeding excessively and crossing double lane lines within the Fort McHenry Tunnel on Interstate 95 in Baltimore around 1:40 a.m. Tuesday.
MdTA police said an officer was operating stationary radar on southbound I-395 leaving Baltimore City when a white 2014 Land Rover entered the radar's area of influence at excessive speed, traveling 84 mph in a 45 mph zone.
The officer followed the vehicle onto northbound I-95, through the tunnel and initiated an enforcement stop just beyond the tunnel's toll plaza, police said.
Police said Phelps was identified as the driver by his driver's license and appeared to be under the influence. He was unable to perform satisfactorily a series of standard field sobriety tests, police said.
Phelps was cooperative throughout the process and was later released, police said.
It is Phelps' second DUI arrest. He was arrested when he was 19 years old in 2004 incident in Maryland.
In that case, he struck a plea deal with prosecutors and pleaded guilty in exchange for 18-month probation.
Refresh WBALTV.com often for more on this developing story.
Michael Phelps smiling in pool

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Mike Segar/Reuters
Michael Phelps was arrested in Maryland for driving under the influence early Tuesday. Phelps made history at the 2012 London Olympics by becoming the most decorated Olympian ever. Take a look back at the swimmer's life and career.

Read more: http://www.wbaltv.com/news/mdta-police-michael-phelps-arrested-for-dui/28332664#ixzz3EonTLxD0

Amateur treasure hunter Laurence Egerton finds 22,000 Roman coins from 4th century

An amateur treasure hunter found the biggest ever haul of 4th century Roman coins and slept in his car for three nights to guard them.

Laurence Egerton, 51, uncovered the coins — dating from AD260 to AD348 — in East Devon, England, in November last year.
The semiretired builder took up metal detecting seven years ago, and was stunned at his luck.
“Between finding the hoard and the archaeologists excavating the site, I slept in my car alongside it for three nights to guard it,” Mr Egerton told English newspaper,The Telegraph.
He said he initially found two small coins the size of a thumbnail near the top of the soil in a field close to the previously excavated site of a Roman villa.
His continued to dig after his metal detector indicated there was more iron in the ground.
That’s when Mr Egerton found his treasure.
“The next shovel was full of coins — they just spilt out over the field,” he told The Telegraph.
“It’s by far the biggest find I’ve ever had. It really doesn’t get any better than this.
“I’m fascinated by history although I was never really interested at school. Over the years I have found lots of interesting items but never anything of this magnitude.”
Although the coins represented only a few months’ wages for a Roman soldier back in the day, historians say they are now worth tens of thousands of dollars.
The collection, now known as the Seaton Down Hoard, are on temporary display at the British Museum.
The Royal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery in Exeter hopes to raise money to buy the collection and has appealed for public donations, the Independentreported.
Mr Egerton will reportedly be eligible to split the money from the sale 50/50 with the landowner, but said he’d like to keep one coin as a memento.

22,000 Roman Coins unearthed

Happy Birthday Ray Charles!

photo by Ray Tharaldson / all rights reserved 2014
Ray Charles was a musical innovator whose bold, effortless fusions left an indelible mark on the rock, soul and country music of the last half-century.
Ray Charles was scheduled to play outdoors at The Fire Fly Festival until tornado warnings forced a last minute move of the crowd to The Joyce Center at Notre Dame, IN. Ray gave the crowd their moneys worth and then some!

Rosanne Cash Plots New Tour, Receives Performing Arts Award

Rick Diamond/Getty Images

By  | 

The Americana chanteuse returns to the road and talks upcoming Smithsonian honor.

Rosanne Cash once wrote her own Rules of Travel with a 2003 album, and now the eldest daughter of Johnny Cash and legend in her own right will stay on the road, expanding the nationwide tour behind her most recent release The River & The Thread. Fresh off an appearance performing her stirring, slow-grooving "A Feather's Not a Bird" in navy sparkles at the Americana Honors & Awards show last week, Cash will be performing well into 2015, playing Los Angeles' Royce Hall on October 2nd and New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art on February 14th. For the Valentine's Day show, it's safe to say she'll play the love letter "Etta's Tune," which premiered last year on the Hallmark holiday and is written as a posthumous tribute to her father's bass player, Marshall Grant, and his wife.

Cash will also make a special appearance in October at Smithsonian magazine's third annual American Ingenuity Awards. Presented her award by T Bone Burnett, she will be one of ten people honored and will receive the Performing Arts award. Last year's honorees included the likes of St. Vincent, David Byrne, author Dave Eggers and artist Jeff Koons.
"I'm greatly honored to receive the prestigious Ingenuity award," Cash tells Rolling Stone Country, "and the fact that it is being presented by my old friend T Bone Burnett is a tremendous thrill."

Rolling Stone Country recently selected Cash's The River & The Thread as one of The 26 Albums of 2014 You Probably Didn’t But Really Should Hear. The LP of original songs showcased stunning collaborations with the likes of Cory Chisel, ex-husband Rodney Crowell, Allison Moorer, John Paul White and more, and became her highest reaching release to date, topping theBillboard's Country Albums chart.

"Rosanne Cash is a national treasure," Chisel says. "Her ability to illuminate the human condition in song and story is breathtaking and she's done it for years. She is a deeply compassionate, people's poet."

Despite all the accolades and time on the road, Cash told Rolling Stone in January that she still finds solace in the simple things, like running errands with husband and producer John Leventhal.

"I grew up in a chaotic world," she said, "and things like going out with John to buy a refrigerator and knowing where the post office is, those things are really important to me. I know that some people think that to expand as an artist you have to get away from that. Those things make me feel safe."

Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/rosanne-cash-plots-new-tour-receives-performing-arts-award-20140925#ixzz3EM7tVmlN
Follow us: @rollingstone on Twitter | RollingStone on Facebook

The man who has no imagination has no wings. Muhammad Ali

Bette Midler Announces 'It's The Girls,' Her First Album Since 2006


Bette Midler's "It's The Girls" 2014 album cover.

For her first studio album in eight years, Bette Midler is revisiting some of the vocalists who shaped her the most -- girl groups -- on It’s The Girls, due Nov. 4 via Warner Bros. Records (Nov. 17 in the UK via East West Records/Warner Music UK.)
The album spans seven decades of famous girl groups, from ‘30s trios The Boswell Sisters (the title track) and The Andrews Sisters (“Bei Mir Bist Du Schön”) to ‘90s R&B legends TLC (wait til you hear Midler’s cabaret take on “Waterfalls.”)
Midler’s longtime collaborator Marc Shaiman (Hairspray) handles production.
“I have loved the sound of females harmonizing since I was a kid; I always sang along. Didn't we all?” Midler tells Billboard. “I think the idea that you could become part of the group was the thing that endeared me to the girl groups. You weren't just singing along, you were THERE!”
As fashions in music have changed, Midler says, some of the songs had to evolve -- hence the country-fied take on The Supremes’ “You Can’t Hurry Love” that appears on It’s The Girls. “Since this is a kind of overview of girl groups, I wanted to re-arrange some of the really popular songs and put a new spin on them; 'Can't Hurry Love" being the most extreme example,” Midler says.
“The Boswell Sisters was the first girl group record I ever owned,” she continues. “A friend of my parents gave it to them, and I played it to death. They killed. They are nearly forgotten today. The '60s were the height of girl-group frenzy, so there were a lot of songs to chose from, but from the '90s on, my favorites were TLC and Destiny's Child. ‘Waterfalls’ was a heartbreaker, especially if you were a mom, and it had a big effect on me. I never thought I would have the nerve to sing it, but we had an idea for it that works, and I am so glad I took the chance.”
Though she’s teased retirement from the road over the years, a new tour is in the works, too, a spokeswoman for Midler teases.
Adds Midler of revisiting the many eras of girl groups, “All in all, there is such a rich and emotional history to this music, it's a joy to dust it off and take another listen...So Bette Midler!”
It’s The Girls Track List: 
Originally performed by The Ronettes
Originally performed by The Chiffons
Originally performed by The Andrews Sisters
All Vocals by Bette Midler
Originally performed by The Shirelles
All Vocals by Bette Midler
Originally performed by The Exciters
6. HE'S SURE THE BOY I LOVE (duet with Darlene Love)
Originally performed by The Crystals
Originally performed by The Chordettes
Originally performed by Martha & The Vandellas
Originally performed by The Marvelettes
Originally performed by The DeCastro Sisters
Originally performed by TLC
Originally performed by The Supremes
Originally performed by The Shangri-Las
Originally performed by The Shirelles
Originally performed by The Boswell Sisters
All Vocals by Bette Midler

Record-breaking year for contemporary art

By Antoine Froidefond

Paris (AFP) - The contemporary art market, buoyed by high demand and massive growth in China, smashed through the $2-billion mark for the first time in a record-breaking 2013/14, according to new figures released on Tuesday.
In the year from July 2013, sales of contemporary art at public auctions reached $2.046 billion dollars, up 40 percent on the previous year, according to Artprice, a Paris-based organisation which keeps the world's biggest database on the contemporary art market.
This growth, despite a gloomy global economic climate, came as China pushed past America to top the world market by raking in 40 percent of auction earnings.
"As many pieces are being sold in China as in the United States, United Kingdom and France together," said Artprice in its annual report.
China now boasts sales worth $811 million compared to $752 million for the US.
Both nations held 33.7 percent of the market last year.
"Demand has increased significantly," said Artprice president and founder Thierry Ehrmann, adding that five times more works were being sold today than a decade ago.
"We have passed from 500,000 large-scale collectors after the war to 70 million art consumers, amateurs and collectors."
Thirteen pieces alone fetched more than 10 million euros ($12.8 million) each, compared with four in the previous year.
US artists Jean-Michel Basquiat, who died in 1988, Jeff Koons and Christopher Wool remain the market's biggest stars accounting for auction sales of 339 million euros.
Pop artist Koons, the subject of a major retrospective due to be held at Paris's Pompidou Centre at the end of November, currently holds the record for the most expensive work of art by a living artist ever sold at auction.
His "Balloon Dog" went under the hammer in November 2013 at Christie's in New York, for a record $58.4 million.
The rest of Artprice's top ten is made up -- in order -- of Zeng Fanzhi (China), Peter Doig (Britain), Richard Prince (US), Martin Kippenberger (Germany) who died in 1997, and three more Chinese artists -- Luo Zhongli, Chen Yifei and Zhang Xiaogang.
Zeng Fanzhi's 2001 painting "The Last Supper" was sold at auction in Hong Kong last year for $23 million.
Despite the presence of Basquiat and Kippenberger in Artprice's top rankings, the body's president and founder Thierry Ehrmann told AFP "the old adage that 'a good artist is a dead artist' was changing".
"For the first time, young artists voluntarily want to start on the second market," he said referring to auctions, as opposed to galleries, which are known in the art world as the first market.
"It's a real revolution. The two markets are in the process of merging."
Of the three top-selling contemporary artists, defined as artists born after 1945, Basquiat maintained his lead in 2013/14 with sales worth around 162 million euros while Koons and Wool clocked up 115 million euros and 61 million euros ($78 million) respectively.

Ryan Seacrest talks new season of 'American Idol'

By Nearly everything Ryan Seacrest touches turns to gold -- including the iHeart Radio Music Festival which he’s hosting this weekend for the 4th year in a row.

“Well I’d like to take credit for this but there are a lot of people,” Seacrest said.

FoxNews.com caught up with Seacrest backstage at this weekends’ star-studded iHeart festival, where acts like Taylor Swift, Nicki Minaj, Coldplay and Ariana Grande are performing.

“What I love is that every year this goes by it gets bigger and the artists are even more and more enthusiastic about it,” Seacrest said. “Now they can’t wait to get here and figure out what kind of signature move they’re going to leave.”

The iHeart show is only four years old but is already Vegas’ biggest music festival.
Dozens of the hottest names in radio and entertainment descend upon Sin City for the highly anticipated weekend. Forbes reported the average cost for a ticket this year is about $700.

“It’s all-star,” Seacrest said. “I mean when you watch the screen, every single person is a main headlining act.”

Of course you can’t talk to Seacrest without chatting about "American Idol." He said so far he’s seen the best talent come from this year’s auditions in the Big Apple.

“We’ve seen all walks of artistry but in New York believe it or not we’ve had one of the strongest turn-outs,” Seacrest said. “We’ve been there often and sometimes it’s hit-or-miss but we saw some really great talent in New York last week so I’m excited to see what they do.”

Seacrest also talked about "American Idol" alum Adam Lambert -- who made history this week as the first former-contestant to fill in on the judges’ panel during auditions in New York.

“He was brilliant. He sat in there. He had some great insight for the contestants. He was one so he had that perspective,” Seacrest said.

Matt Finn is part of the Junior Reporter program at Fox News. Get more information on the program here and follow them on Twitter: @FNCJrReporters

Another Sprint Car Death: What Racing Needs To Learn After Tony Stewart

On Saturday night at Beaver Dam, Wisconsin a Sprint car driver was killed during practice. It was later announced that the driver was Scott Semmelman. This sport has been under a microscope since all of the heartbreak with Tony Stewart hitting Kevin Ward Jr. and killing him. Yes, they have changed some of the rules in NASCAR where you are no longer allowed to leave your car but that has to trickle down to Sprint Car as well. NASCAR has evolved to be more safe, to the point where it is almost uncomfortable for the drivers, and it seems like some of its lower level series need follow suit before we see another driver leave the race too soon.