20 Cheap Halloween Treats

When Halloween approaches, it can be easy to get carried away with planning parties and purchasing items to give away when trick or treaters come knocking. Consider trying some of these cheap Halloween treats for this year’s goodie bags. (See also: Fun and Frugal Ways to Celebrate Halloween)

1. Pencils

Every Halloween season, patterned pencils in fun holiday colors become available in large bags for a nominal price. These are one of my favorite items to give out to children who come trick or treating to my home. They allow me to skip the sugar, provide something they can use as a school supply and keep from year to year if I don’t happen to give them all away. As an added bonus, these Halloween treats are popular with younger children and high school teens alike.

2. Erasers

As with the pencils, holiday themed erasers are the sort of cheap Halloween treats you can use from year to year. They are typically available in shapes such as bats, skulls, pumpkins and more, providing a decent variety of handouts on the big night.

3. Peppermint Balls

If you’re looking for an exceptionally cheap candy option for your Halloween treats, consider the individually-wrapped peppermint balls available in the candy aisle of your favorite bulk shopping store. They are inexpensive and come in their own container, making it a breeze to disperse your goodies when the children arrive.

4. Caramel Corn

 While many people are uncomfortable with hand-crafted treats being handed out from a home they don’t have a connection with, choosing to celebrate Halloween with house parties where all guests know each other is becoming increasingly popular. If this idea appeals to you, then homemade caramel corn may be a solution you want to consider. Easy distribution is possible by storing the finished product in bulk-purchased Chinese takeout boxes or decorated brown paper snack sacks.

5.  Stickers

Stickers are the sort of cheap Halloween treats that make a nice extension of the other items you are giving out. For example, purchasing a large number of sticker sheets makes it possible to provide one to each child to stick on their hand after you distribute candy. You could also purchase larger, more elaborate stickers as your main give away item.

6. Spider Rings

Throwing Halloween parties usually means including a fair number of activities and party favors. An inexpensive trinket to have on hand is spider rings. They are usually available by the bag at dollar stores and discount department retailers. Kids tend to enjoy them, and they are easily displayed in a basket or decorated bowl near your entryway.

7. Bulk Specialty Items 

Spider rings aren’t the only bulk specialty item you can use for cheap Halloween treats. Other fun things are available for ordering as well. For example, one year my husband and I ordered glow-in-the-dark bouncing balls with alien graphics imprinted on them from Amazon. The cost was nominal, and they were a huge hit on the big night.

8. Stuffed Hands

Using clear, plastic kitchen gloves and stuffing them with things like popcorn, candy corn and trail mix makes for an unexpected and whimsical snack offering. Simply tie off the wrist end after stuffing with black ribbon and perhaps add a spider ring on one of the fingers. If you are unsure how to get started, check out this article on how to make spooky popcorn hands. It will provide plenty of inspiration.

9. Clementines

Let’s face it, they’re certainly the right color. Additionally, they are available by the crate at most grocery stores and allow you to keep things healthy at a time when most households are suffering from sugar overload. While this is also one of those food items strangers might not feel comfortable receiving, it’s certainly workable for close family and friends.

10. Hershey’s Kisses

Whether you go with the variety in the traditional silver wrapping or select some holiday color and flavors to use as cheap Halloween treats, chocolate kisses keep it simple and allow you to dump a large number of treats into a single bowl for easy distribution.

11. Toothbrushes

Purchasing individually-wrapped toothbrushes in bulk gives the kids a new personal item they can get excited about using, and parents a temporary relief from calorie overload. It’s worth noting with this suggestion that its affordability may vary depending on the price point you are able to secure the toothbrushes at and how many trick or treaters you typically have on Halloween.

12. Lollypops

Also available in bulk and in a variety of colors, lollypops are a simple give away that won’t break the bank. If you don’t have a large candy bowl to use on Halloween night or don’t wish to purchase one, you can transfer the lollypops into a coffee mug since it’s relatively simple to stand a bunch of them up straight in one. Just refill when your supply runs low.

13. Saltwater Taffy

It comes in fun colors and is wrapped in a white, twisted paper that’s appropriate for a Halloween color scheme. Saltwater taffy is definitely a bit on the sticky side, but a fun nostalgic treat nonetheless. It’s also a good treat for mixing in with other small candies.

14. Pretzel Packs

If shopping in the candy aisle at your favorite bulk warehouse store doesn’t appeal to you, then perhaps strolling through the section that offers individual lunch treats might provide more inspiration.  Individual mini packs of pretzels available by the case provide a tasty treat that’s low in sugar and fat.

15. Cracker Packs 

Similarly, multi packs of crackers with flavored fillings are popular with tots to teens and can be purchased inexpensively in large boxes. With the prevalence of peanut allergies, you may want to avoid the nut butter flavors, but there are several other options available to help you on your quest for cheap Halloween treats.

16. Spooky Soaps

Another way to skip the sugar altogether is to purchase or make Halloween soaps as your give away of choice.  These spooky soaps from HGTV are a fun project to consider, but there are certainly plenty of other craft solutions online to research if you so choose.

17. Halloween Straws

Twisty straws are a hit with all groups, including those grownups who are still kids at heart. Search out fun colors with lots of twists and turns as well as a decorative item attached. Kids will enjoy having them to take with school lunches, and adults can use them to sip a Halloween cocktail or two.

18. Candy Sticks

Compact enough for easy storage, old-fashioned candy sticks come in a variety of colors and flavors. Kids typically enjoy the retro treats, and they are certainly easy enough to order and have shipped by the case. Consider orange, black and white candy sticks to maintain the traditional Halloween color scheme.

19. Lunch Pack Cookies

For a sweet treat that isn’t candy, you can also purchase individually-wrapped lunch box cookies from the warehouse store. I’ve seen a number of varieties suitable for Halloween treat giving, including chocolate and vanilla sandwich cookies as well as filled cake-style cookies.

20. Ghostly Pretzel Rods

More suited for handing out at a private party, these candy-coated ghost sticks are a fun project to do with children and use pretzel rods in a creative and unexpected way. They also store upright in a decorative mug or glass, and take up less room on the counter if you are entertaining in a small space.

Clearly, cheap Halloween treats don’t have to be chintzy or boring. Consider one of these twenty options for your holiday giving this year.

source: financialhighway.com

Jimmy Page remastering Led Zeppelin catalogue

Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page has nearly finished remastering the band’s entire back-catalogue.

His manager Peter Mench told the Sunday Times that Page is currently holed up in a west London recording studio creating 21st-century versions of Led Zep’s nine-album body of work.

No further details are available – but given the furore surrounding the band’s recent activities, a re-release campaign is likely to be extremely high profile.

More than 20 million people signed up for the lottery to grab the 18,000 tickets available for their 2007 reunion show. The band’s Facebook page has gained 6.8 million likes – up by nearly 75% since they announced and later released their Celebration Day movie.

It’s possible the Led Zeppelin remasters could be released in a format similar to Pink Floyd’s Immersion series, which coupled the official album with demos, unfinished material and alternative takes. Floyd aimed to underline just why they deserve their high status – and Led Zep are well capable of making the same claim.

It’s thought the re-release campaign will take place next year.

source: classicrockmagazine.com

US economy may avoid direct hit from 'Sandy'

WASHINGTON/NEW YORK - Hurricane Sandy is shaping up to be one of the biggest storms ever to hit the United States but even with the severe damage that is expected, the blow to the economy is seen as short-term.

Economists say some of the impact caused by businesses closing will be offset by reconstruction efforts, and point to catastrophic storms like Katrina, which devastated New Orleans but did not deal lasting damage to the national economy.

Still, Sandy's sheer breadth - 10 states have declared a state of emergency - means it could hurt this quarter's economic output, even if the long-term impact ultimately proves neutral.

Gross domestic product in the region between New York and Washington amounts to some $2.5 trillion, so every day the region's economy is halted amounts to about $10 billion in lost output, said Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody's Analytics.

Peter Morici at the University of Maryland estimates that Sandy will cause about $35 billion to $45 billion in losses and damages but then be followed by as much as $36 billion in recovery spending.

Damage caused by last year's Hurricane Irene totaled as much as $20 billion, he said.

Predicting the impact of Sandy is made all the harder by complexity of the rare, hybrid "super storm" involving other weather systems that could get trapped over the Northeastern United States and amplify inland flooding.

"The range of possible scenarios for Hurricane Sandy remains enormous. There are examples of natural disasters ultimately exacting only minimal toll - Irene - and others having an outsized impact, such as Hurricane Katrina when the (New Orleans) levees broke," said Eric Lascelles, chief economist RBC Global Asset Management Inc. "Really, it is a game of probabilities."

Disaster modeling company Eqecat forecast economic losses caused by Sandy at $10 billion to $20 billion.

The toll from Katrina in 2005 exceeded $100 billion by most accounts. U.S. economic growth slowed in the quarter after the devastation inflicted on New Orleans but bounced back quickly.

The U.S. economy grew 2 percent in the third quarter of 2012, picking up from earlier in the year but still a weak number, as consumer spending helped to offset a worrisome pullback in business investment. Many analysts were already concerned that retail sales could suffer later this year.

Retailers bear a significant brunt of any storm's economic impact as shoppers stay at home. But the last-minute scramble for supplies and emergency goods has a moderating effect on the overall sales declines.

Still, Evan Gold, a senior vice-president at Planalytics, a Philadelphia consulting firm that advises businesses on weather-related matters, was less optimistic about seeing any upside, particularly with Sandy hitting so close to the holiday season.

"If consumers in this part of the country are spending hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars to buy things like generators, or after the storm, to do clean-up, that is likely going to cut into budgets that people might have for their holiday shopping," said Gold.


One thing economists do agree on is that data releases in coming weeks will be even harder than usual to forecast. For instance, the impact of Sandy is likely to skew figures on weekly jobless benefit applications and chain store sales.

"The monthly economic data will become more volatile - October retail sales, vehicle sales, and industrial production will be hurt, but they will bounce back in November and December," Zandi said.

"Restaurants will be hurt, but grocery stores will benefit; general merchandise stores will lose business, but online retailing should get a boost, he added. "Of course, if the storm knocks out major infrastructure like refineries, cell towers, trains, sea and airports, then the economic damage will be more severe and difficult to recover from."

The hurricane has the potential to cause some of the largest losses the global insurance industry has faced this year, but nothing that would strain insurers financially aside from hurting earnings this quarter, according to analysts.

Sandy may also add to the financial headaches for already cash-strapped local governments which will probably have to spend millions of dollars to protect citizens and fix damage from high winds and floods.

But over the long run, they are likely to be able to cope with the extra burden which will be offset by federal aid and rainy-day funds, analysts said.

"Sometimes there are liquidity issues in the beginning but generally, these things have no long-term effects on finances," said Amy Laskey, managing director at Fitch Ratings. "Sometimes the added spending is a positive for local economies."

source: abs-cbnnews.com

Sandy leaves N.Y. construction crane dangling in storm winds

NEW YORK - New York City evacuated neighbors of a nearly completed, 90-story luxury apartment building on Monday after the top of a construction crane collapsed in high winds, prompting fears the crane's boom could crash to the ground.

With the city bracing for massive storm Sandy, which made landfall in southern New Jersey later on Monday, the crane's upper arm dangled over the street near Central Park from what should eventually become the city's tallest residential building, where condominium units will start at $16.75 million.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg said the crane had been inspected on Friday, as other construction cranes had ahead of the storm, and that the cause of the accident remained unknown. Engineers went to the top of the building to examine the crane but stopped short of attempting any repairs, officials said.

"It's conceivable that nobody did anything wrong whatsoever and it wasn't even a malfunction, it was just a strange gust of wind," Bloomberg told a news conference.

"Just because it was inspected, that doesn't mean that God doesn't do things or that metal doesn't fail. There's no reason to think at this point in time that the inspection wasn't adequate," he said.

Firefighters closed streets for several blocks surrounding the site, evacuated 300 apartments in three buildings and were preparing to evacuate more, a Fire Department spokesman said.

Passers-by stared in amazement and apprehension, while some stopped to take pictures of the building that will feature $90 million duplexes.

"It's fascinating, I saw it on TV and came out to see it. But it's also scary. If it happened there, who knows where else it could happen," said Sam O' Keeffe, 25, a bartender who lives in the neighborhood.

The building, known as One57 and designed by Christian de Portzamparc, has been climbing ever higher and, at 1,004 feet (306 meters), it will tower over other buildings near Columbus Circle at the southwest corner of Central Park.

Ninety-two luxury condominiums will sit atop a five-star Park Hyatt hotel.

Two of those units were under contract for more than $90 million each, The New York Times reported last month, citing the president of building developer, Extell Development Company.

Extell, which did not respond to requests for comment on Monday, announced in May it had reached $1 billion in sales and that half of its units had sold in six months. Occupancy was set for 2013.

The contractor was Australia's Lend Lease Construction and Canada's Pinnacle Industries own the crane, said Mary Costello, a spokeswoman for Lend Lease.

"We are working with structural engineers and the DOB (Department of Buildings) on evaluating any additional measures that can be taken to secure the boom and crane structure," Costello said.

In April, a 30-year-old laborer died at a subway construction site after the boom of a subway crane came off and crashed down. Yonkers Contracting Co. Inc. was cited with 10 serious violations by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration as a result.

That same month, a Manhattan state judge acquitted a construction company owner of manslaughter for a crane collapse that killed two workers in May 2008 and raised concerns about high-level building projects in New York.

In that case, a nearly 200-foot-tall crane snapped in half and crashed onto a building on the Upper East Side. I n March 2008, a giant crane fell and crushed a residential building in Manhattan, killing seven people. (Additional reporting by Martinne Geller, Luiciana Lopez and Ilaina Jonas; Writing by Daniel Trotta; Editing by Philip Barbara and Paul Tait)

source: abs-cbnnews.com

How to Save on Your Halloween Costume

Halloween is just a few weeks away, and if you’re like me, you may still be scrambling to think about what your costume is going to be. But one thing I know for sure is I’m not going to bust my budget on the costume. Several years back, I spent way too much money on a pricey costume I bought online. It was a nice costume, but it was overpriced, and I will probably never use it again. Instead, I’ve vowed to plan ahead and get creative with my costumes, and be sure to shop at the places that will save me money. Here are affordable costumes and where to find them:

There are many costumes that don’t require any purchases whatsoever. There are two ways to find a costume. First, you can make a list of costume ideas you’d like to scour stores for. Or, you can have a blank canvas, and search your own home and affordable stores for inspiration for a costume.

Different Decade

It’s easy to mix and match pieces from your wardrobe to come up with an outfit that looks like it’s from another decade. A white undershirt, jeans, black sunglasses, and black leather jacket can easily pass for the 50’s, flared jeans and a tie-dye shirt works for the 70s, and through on bring neon shirts and leggings for the 80s.


 Whether it’s in your own closet or something from a friend, uniforms from a doctor, police officer, nurse, construction worker, or fireman can be borrowed to wear as a practical costume.


You’d be surprised at how just styling your hair a different way, putting on specific makeup, or throwing on a certain outfit, could pass for a celebrity costume.

Things that require only an accessory

You can buy or make cat ears, and simply wear all black to go as a cat. Purchase a pair of wings or a halo, wear all white, and you’re an angel. A black dress only requires a witches hat, and you’re all set. A fedora hat can turn a men’s suit into a different era costume.

Place to find affordable costumes

Friends and Family

Why pay for a costume when you can get one for free? Ask your friends and family to borrow a costume or even another type of uniform or outfit they may have. You can also suggest and organize a costume swap amongst your friends, family, or neighbors and community. People can bring their old costumes from years back to switch for a new one.

Thrift Store

Even if you can’t find an actual Halloween costume, you’ll be able to use the eclectic items at a thrift store to put something unique together.


Many people in your area may be selling an old costume online. And it isn’t just after Halloween. Last year, I found there were several costumes for sale the weekend before Halloween since some people celebrate early.

Dollar Store

The dollar store is perfect for super affordable little accessories and pieces that can give you a fantastic costume.

Craft Store

The craft store is the perfect place to get creative with your costume. You can find unique items that can add a lot to your costume.

source: financialhighway.com

Aerosmith album should have been two records

Aerosmith bassist Tom Hamilton believes the band should have considered making two separate albums rather than merging styles on comeback release Music From Another Dimension.

He admits they had concerns over working with classic-era producer Jack Douglas, but says the overriding vibe in the band was delight that, for the first time in a decade, every member wanted to make a record.

Hamilton tells Puregrain Audio: “There are times in the past where we thought we’d record stuff, and ‘wouldn’t it be great to work with Jack?’ Everyone would kind of nod, but it seemed, ‘Is this really a great idea? Are we trying to go back to the past or what?’

“I don’t think everybody wanted it really, really bad. There was a day we’d do it because that was our cycle – we’d tour for a couple of years and make a record. That’s not true now.

“There came a moment when there was absolutely no doubt. It’s what got us into the studio. I’ll go out far on the limb and say Jack is the reason there’s an album, really.”

While Hamilton says Aerosmith didn’t consciously decide to make a 70s-sounding record, he accepts there’s a heavy influence from the band’s early era, which is contrasted with a series of 90s-style ballad tracks.

Asked if they ever thought of making Music From Another Dimension into a pair of distinct products, he says: “No, but we probably should have.

“It would have been a great business decision to save half the record for later, but it’s been too long since we put out a record. We chose what was on this album based on how good the songs came. We really wanted to get it all out there and not wait not hold back.”

 Aerosmith frontman Steven Tyler recently caused controversy by describing former tour mates Kiss as a “comic book” act and saying their work sometimes “offended” him, prompting responses from Paul Stanley and Peter Criss. Hamilton has a different view of his colleague’s words.

“If you talk to Gene Simmons, he might even agree with it – he was a huge comic book fan, like most of us were in our early days. Some of us made a separation between that and what we did musically, but he wanted to live that out with his band.

“It’s pretty cool. I don’t necessarily listen to Kiss that often, but I love that songs of theirs, ‘I want to rock and roll all nite and party every day.’ It’s just really accurate in describing what teenage males want.”

Music From Another Dimension is released on November 6. Aerosmith will play a show in the streets of their home town Boston the day before.

source: classicrockmagazine.com

California Pizza Kitchen opens in Binondo

MANILA, Philippines - For California Pizza Kitchen, nothing is off limits. This is precisely why California Pizza Kitchen (CPK), without fear, opened its eighth location where dimsums reign – Binondo.

During the launch of its newest branch at the third floor of the barely three months old Lucky Chinatown Mall in Binondo, CPK vice president of international franchise Gabriel Sinohuiz said Binondo, despite its old China atmosphere, is in tune with the east-meets-west concept of CPK.

He said the Beverly Hills-based pizza parlor is very much into experimentation, resulting in “unexpected” flavors rolled into one pizza.

“When we first rolled out, we were the pizza authority…in innovative gourmet. It’s our niche,” he said.

Binondo, which is a melting pot of cultures, is likewise prepared for gourmet pizza, he said.

“We’re providing Chinatown residents and visitors something that is expected of such a historic location: the best-choices in California-inspired cuisine, exciting and flavorful pizzas and American quality service,” added Archie Rodriguez, chief executive of Global Restaurant Concepts, Inc., the franchisee of CPK in the Philippines.

And in a few months’ time, the unique palate of Binondo residents and hobnobbing clients from faraway north will get to add to the increasing list of inspired pizzas in CPK’s menu. Just a few years back, CPK rolled out its adobo pizza, which even surpassed the classic barbecue chicken pizza in terms of popularity, Sinohuiz added.

“Being Californian is just a mindset,” he said. In fact, even Asian-inspired CPK menus even make its way to other branches across the world.

One of the interesting options offered to guests last Wednesday was the Asian Specialty Wrap: prime steak ribs sautéed with yellow onions, red and green bell peppers, bean sprouts, quesadilla cheese wrapped in oven-hot tortilla and nori.

An ordinary pizza parlor would go the route of calzone in view of the Italian craze, but CPK is doing the wraps this time. It’s not just the steak that makes this wrap the star of the launch, but the delicate and slightly fruity taste of the enoki mushroom and then dunked in wasabi sauce or teriyaki glaze.

Sinohuiz expects that the Asian wraps (another option is chicken strips) will find its way into the international market.

He said he will not be surprised if wanton wraps or squid-ink pizzas will each get a spot soon on the menu list.

Cuisine comes to Chinatown

Besides the heavily favored Asian Steak Wrap, guests were also treated to the innovative use of different herbs from the soup to the pasta.

Reading “mushroom cappuccino soup” in the menu already ups the ante, but having it served in shot glasses makes one think: “Am I cosmopolitan, or what?” More mushrooms here (fresh button mushrooms and abalone), but this time crushed and mixed in shiitake cream.

The cappuccino surprise is more of the milk froth and nutmeg topping the soup. Maybe the last two ingredients blended into oblivion into the richness of the mushrooms, but sweets should be served via dessert.

Of course, the shot glass was only for proportion purposes, in order that guests will still have room in their stomachs for the main menu.

The Chinese Chicken Salad, which has long been in the core menu of CPK, was as refreshing as usual.

A taste of the Chicken Piccata pasta would bring back memories of college days. Owners would probably cringe at this pasta being compared to a famous instant pancit canton noodles that benefited well the hungry college kid.

This should be taken as a compliment, however. Instead of the sometimes soggy two minutes-overcooked instant noodles, Chicken Piccata uses the firmer spaghettini with lots of lemon caper sauce and chicken strips.

What is CPK without the pizza? Guests were served with the Farmers Market pizza that should attract vegetarians and almost gorged patrons. It has grilled zucchini, tomatoes, goat cheese and other kinds of cheeses. Somewhere in between bites, an overbearing Pinoy will have to sink his teeth into the roasted squash and think of camote or sweet potato.

CPK also serves a fruit sangria, which some guests adventurously chose to wash down their food. Instead of the Spanish red sangria, CPK uses the blush wine (from same red grapes but skins are removed after fermentation, thus the lighter color) with a dash of soda and apple chops.

The desserts were not Asian-ish, however, with the usual ref cakes and chocolate cakes.

Sinohuiz explained, however, that the desserts were “localized” for the Filipino palate. While Americans want their cakes sweeter, Filipinos will opt for the sugar level down a few notches.

CPK’s popular key lime pie in the US also evolved into the mango crunch pie to celebrate the Filipino fruit, he said.

The innovation will further continue and the CPK menu list will see a restructuring when Global Restaurant opens a few more branches in the next few months, including an expansion outside Manila.

CPK senior operations director Luisa del Rosario Lomotan said at least three more will open this year, including one at Harbor Point in Subic on November 6 and another at the Bonifacio Global City on November 15).

Sinohuiz said branches in Boracay, Cebu and Davao are also in the pipeline.

“CPK is a very flexible and adaptable brand,” he said, adding the Philippines is a very good opportunity while its market in the US is undergoing rebranding to make CPK a pizza authority once more.

source: abs-cbnnews.com

Hagar’s happy to gig for free

Sammy Hagar enjoys playing music for free – although he admits it would be difficult for him to get into that position if he was starting out in the modern world.

The Chickenfoot frontman says he doesn’t look for money from his musical performances because the cash he made in the past enabled him to set up several successful businesses.

But he knows the path he took isn’t open to young hopefuls in the twenty-first century.

Asked about his opinion of the modern music business he laughs: “What music business?”

Hagar tells CNBC: “I’ve sold almost a hundred million records in all my incarnations, and made money enough to make me secure for the rest of my life – so I can’t complain about what’s going on.

“I like playing music for free. I no longer play music for a living. I pay my band, my crew, everybody else, but I don’t look for it in my income. I don’t have to do it.”

The former Van Halen singer – who recently said all he wants from former bandmate Eddie Van Halen was an apology for “backstabbing crap” – has seen stark changes in the music industry since he started out in 1967 then found fame fronting Montrose in 1973.

“There’s all kinds of bigger stars than me,” he says, noting that some of them have become successful through a single online track. “On the internet they get a hundred million hits. I put my stuff up there, I get thirty or forty thousand. What’s up with that?”

Hagar is glad to have removed the financial aspect from his artistic activities, and recommends everyone else who’s able to should do the same. “We should take the business out of it. I’m fortunate that I have other ways to make a living.”

As a successful businessman he says the one piece of advice that’s never served him badly is: “Go with your gut. If you feel uncomfortable about going into a business relationship, if that’s the first feeling you get about it, walk away.”

source: classicrockmagazine.com

What You Need to Know Before Going Into Debt

Let’s face it, if you want to get ahead in today’s world, you’re going to need to go into debt, at least a little. The key is managing your debt properly and avoiding common traps. Not all debt is bad, even if we have been trained to think that it is. Going into small amounts of manageable debt with a goal of increasing your future income is known as leveraging your debt and this is a very smart practice.

Before you rush out and apply for credit cards willy nilly, there are a few things that you need to consider before going into debt. It is all too easy to fall into a bad debt trap, when you could have used those funds much more wisely. Let’s go over a few points that you must never forget when it comes to handling debts.

First and foremost, never go into debt beyond your means. This is not a good strategy and it rarely pays off. If you’re just starting out, you want to keep the amount of overall debt to a small amount that you could easily pay off if you had to. This helps you build up your credit score and helps you learn the ropes of proper debt management. It’s a good rule of thumb to keep your initial debts to less than three months of your current salary. This will make sure that you don’t get into too far over your head, but you should still have enough resources to leverage your debt properly.

Next, you never want to max out any credit card or blow through a loan. It’s easy to think of a loan or a credit card as free money, but it is anything but. Credit cards can have interest rates as high as 30% and once you start that process of maxing out a card, you’re going to have to deal with over limit fees (check out How A Credit Card Limit Is Determined), higher interest rates and it will take longer to pay back that debt. Use your loans and cards wisely, and leverage them to start making money for you. This means that you should avoid frivolous spending and focus on how to make that debt pay off for you in the future.

Lastly, it is vital to make sure that you are able to keep making your payments so that your debt doesn’t ruin your credit rating. One of the easiest ways to give yourself an insurance policy is to add up six months of your monthly minimum payments and put this aside in a savings account. If you should lose your job, you’ll have that six month cushion that will help you stay on track with paying your bills. This is a good strategy for all of your bills actually and can be very useful in many situations.

The key to proper management of your debt is using your debt for the right reasons. Spend that money wisely so that instead of ending up with a bunch of things you don’t need, you’ll have income coming in thanks to your leveraged debt.

source: richcreditdebtloan.com

Women smokers who quit before 40 gain nine years in lifespan

PARIS - Women can add nine years to their lives by quitting smoking before the age of 40 but still face a 20-percent higher death rate than those who never smoked, a study said Saturday.

Published in The Lancet, a survey of nearly 1.2 million women in Britain showed that smoking throughout adulthood chopped on average 11 years off lifespan.

These results echoed the findings of earlier research conducted on men.

Among women who kicked the habit before the age of 40, the researchers measured an average lifespan gain of more than nine years compared with those who never stopped.

For those who quit before 30 the gains were even bigger -- about 10 years.

"Whether they are men or women, smokers who stop before reaching middle age will on average gain about an extra 10 years of life," study co-author Richard Peto of the University of Oxford said.

But the paper warned this did not mean that it was safe to continue smoking until 40 before quitting.

"Women who do so have throughout the next few decades [of their lives] a mortality rate 1.2 times that of never-smokers. This is a substantial excess risk, causing one in six of the deaths among these ex-smokers."

In Europe and the United States, the popularity of smoking reached its peak among women in the 1960s, decades later than for men.

The Lancet study is one of the most extensive probes into the impacts of smoking on this generation of women, the first likely to have smoked substantially throughout their adult lives.

The research is part of a vast survey that enrolled 1.2 million women in the UK between 1996 and 2001. The volunteers were asked to detail their smoking history, and were followed for an average of 12 years.

The women were on average 55 years old when they signed up. Twenty percent of them were smokers, 28 percent ex-smokers, while 52 percent had never smoked.

The researchers found that the group of women who continued smoking had three times the overall mortality rate of never-smokers.

While the risks increased with the amount smoked, "Even those smoking fewer than 10 cigarettes per day... had double the overall mortality rate than never-smokers," warned the study.

It also cautioned against so-called "light" cigarettes, smoked by most of the women in the study.

"Low-tar cigarettes are not low-risk cigarettes and... more than half of those who smoke them will eventually be killed by them," the authors warned.

The key causes of death among smokers were chronic lung disease, lung cancer, stroke and heart disease.

source: abs-cbnnews.com

Rolling Stones Blow Through 12-Song Set in Paris

The Rolling Stones played their first show in five years yesterday, blowing through a 70-minute warm-up set for an crowd of 600 in the Paris club La Trabendo, according to multiple reports. The band made 350 tickets available for the show, at about $20 each.

The rockers played 12 songs spanning their career, including the classics "Tumbling Dice," "Midnight Rambler" and "Jumpin' Jack Flash" and the new song "Doom and Gloom," which comes from the band's new greatest his collection GRRR!, due November 13th.

The intimate gig was a test run of sorts for four much bigger shows to come: the Stones play a pair of dates November 25th and 29th at London's O2 Arena, and two more shows December 13th and 15th at the Prudential Center in Newark. The London shows sold out in just seven minutes. Tickets go on sale today at noon EST for the Newark shows.

Although the band hasn't yet announced any concerts beyond those four, guitarist Keith Richards recently told Rolling Stone, "We ain't doing all this for four gigs!"

The Rolling Stones' Paris set list:

"Route 66"
"It's Only Rock & Roll (But I Like It)"
"When the Whip Comes Down"
"Champagne and Reefer"
"Doom and Gloom"
"Miss You"
"Start Me Up"
"Midnight Rambler"
"Tumbling Dice"
"Jumpin' Jack Flash"
"Brown Sugar"

source: rollingstone.com

McDonald's to start selling bagged coffee

McDonald's Corp will start selling bags of its ground coffee in major Canadian stores in November, its Canadian chief told Reuters on Thursday, in a likely challenge to rivals like Starbucks Corp, Dunkin' Donuts and Tim Hortons Inc.

The McCafe-branded coffee, priced at C$6.99 for 340 grams (12 ounces), is being launched as McDonald's steps up its expansion in Canada after holding back for more than five years.

Representatives for McDonald's said they were not aware of the company selling bagged coffee anywhere outside Canada.

Earlier this month, market watchers noticed McDonald's had filed with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to use its McCafe brand for "ground and whole bean coffee." Some speculated that the company might launch bagged coffee in the U.S. market.

Speaking in an interview, McDonald's Canada President John Betts credited the coffee business for a turnaround at his unit and said there was the potential for a much larger footprint across the country.

"This year, we're going to build more restaurants than we've built in the last seven or eight years," he said on Thursday. "Next year, it's going to ramp up from that."

Around 30 new stores will open by the end of 2012, Betts said. He did not give specific figures for future periods. McDonald's has about 1,400 outlets in Canada.

Coffee is not an obvious point of entry in Canada, where Starbucks is ubiquitous and doughnut and coffee chain Tim Hortons borders on a national symbol. But between McDonald's coffee push and Tim Hortons' expanding lunch menu, the two chains are increasingly going head to head.

Tim Hortons, Starbucks and Dunkin' Donuts already sell packaged coffee.

A U.S. spokeswoman for McDonald's said this is not the first time McDonald's has sold bagged coffee, but did not offer other examples.

Privately held Mother Parkers Tea & Coffee, McDonald's long-time coffee supplier in Canada, will also provide the bagged coffee for the chain.


Betts' upbeat message stands out against last week's earnings release, when McDonald's reported its worst quarterly restaurant sales growth in nine years thanks to tough competition in the United States.

All the Canadian stores will give out free takeout coffee next week, Betts said, the eighth round of that promotion, which the company has also run in some U.S. stores.

In the company's home market, fast-food players are dueling for customers with aggressive promotions, and bagged coffee and similar products have become a significant line of business.

In Starbucks' fiscal year ended Oct. 2, 2011, bagged coffee, bottled drinks and coffee served in hotels and offices accounted for $1.06 billion of its $11.70 billion in overall revenue.

Still, Bernstein Research analyst Sara Senatore said a McDonald's entry into the bagged coffee market would not necessarily shake up the U.S. market.

"It's a different price point, flavor profile, and customer" than Starbucks, she wrote in an email. "The others may be closer in flavor profile but again, (Dunkin's) business seems to have held up well in the face of (McDonald's) entry into specialty coffee."

McDonald's started rolling out its McCafe line, which now includes espresso-based beverages and smoothies, in 2009.


Over the long term, Betts said, McDonald's may also look at the expanding market for single-cup coffee brewing.

The company does not currently sell K-cups, used in Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Inc's Keurig machines, or similar products for competing systems.

"Down the road, as our coffee journey and beverage journey evolves, we'll look at other things, certainly grocery, and K-cups and all those kind of things," said Betts.

Tim Hortons recently entered the single-serve coffee market, joining chains like Starbucks and Dunkin' Donuts, a unit of Dunkin' Brands.

source: abs-cbnnews.com

Man beats up cashier in Manila, faces raps

MANILA, Philippines – The Manila Police District on Friday said it will file charges against a man who was seen attacking a restaurant cashier in Manila last Monday.

A closed-circuit television (CCTV) footage, aired by GMA news program "24 Oras", showed suspect John Paul Encinas dousing cashier Marjorie Reynaldo with water, throwing a bottle at her, pulling her by the collar and shoving money in her face.

The altercation reportedly began when Encinas asked Reynaldo if he could go to his car first to get the money for his P85 bill.

However, Encinas claimed Reynaldo rudely responded to his request by saying: "Ay hindi, kailangan magbayad ka na. Kailan ka magbabayad, ngayon? Bukas? Sa isang taon?"

An infuriated Encinas left the restaurant but later came back and then attacked Reynaldo.

Encinas admitted his mistake and said sorry on national television. However, he said he hopes Reynaldo also learned her lesson.

"Siguro tao lang po kaya nagagawa po iyun… nagsisisi ako sa action pero sana nabigyan ko din siya ng konting lesson," Encinas told GMA News.

Police said Encinas is facing unjust vexation, physical injury, and threat and slander by deed. – with a report from Ricky Velasco, dzMM

source: abs-cbnnews.com

Prince Has Torrid 'Rock & Roll Love Affair' on 'Kimmel'

The Jimmy Kimmel Live studio couldn't hope to contain Prince, so when the rock great stopped by the show last night, he performed to a large, enthusiastic crowd on the outside stage. Dressed in orange-yellow pants and a wildly patterned shirt with impressive dangling tassels, Prince played his new single "Rock & Roll Love Affair" with absolute joy, sneaking in a few grins as he stomped through the funky, horn-blaring track. He calls it an affair, but almost 35 years after his first album, it might be a little more serious than that.

App offers iWitness reports

An iPhone and iPad app offers first-hand accounts of some of rock’n'roll’s formative moments by the people who took part.

The release, entitled iWitness, is compiled by renowned music writer Johnny Black, and includes material covering the Clash to Eric Clapton and the Beatles to Nirvana.

Entries include Elvis Presley recording his first record, Pink Floyd’s Venice concert, Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours sessions, Kate Bush’s early career and the formation of Crosby, Stills and Nash.

Kurt Cobain talks about putting Nirvana together, The Clash recall their first US tour, Eric Clapton discusses Cream, Deep Purple reflect on recording Smoke on the Water and Sir George Martin reveals details of recording the Beatles.

iWitness also includes features on Led Zeppelin, the Eagles, Band Aid and much more. Each event is located on Google Maps and every report links to iTunes so readers can further explore artists’ histories.

The app is on sale now via the Apple App Store, costing $2.99 / £1.99.

source: classicrockmagazine.com

Jeff Beck Group missed Woodstock over wife affair rumour

Rod Stewart has told how the Jeff Beck Group missed the chance to appear at the Woodstock festival over a rumour about the guitarist’s wife.

They were gearing up to play the iconic event during their final visit to the US – but then Beck flew home after hearing his other half was having an affair.

In a Rolling Stone excerpt from his book Rod: The Autobiography, singer Stewart recalls how the band played the Fillmore East and the Newport Jazz Festival in the summer of 1969, with the last date on the trip scheduled to be “some outdoor event or other in upstate New York.”

The Jeff Beck Group were staying in a hotel at JKF Airport, waiting to play the show then return to the UK later the same night.

“But then the call came through,” Stewart says. “The gig wouldn’t be happening. Jeff had already flown out. He had got wind of a rumour, which turned out to be false, that his missus was having an affair with the gardener, so he was quite keen to go home.”

Looking back on the missed opportunity to play Woodstock, the singer reports: “Ah, well. Seen one outdoor festival, you’ve seen them all.”

In the same excerpt Stewart discusses the band’s first US trip the previous year, recounting how he and Ronnie Wood decided to make a pilgrimage to the Apollo Theater in Harlem – without considering the risks involved.

“We didn’t think it might be a dangerous place for a couple of white boys to go,” he says. One taxi driver even refused to take them to their destination. But thanks to the way their “London finery” the Harlem crowd accepted them as musicians or performers, and they enjoyed their visit.

He also recounts how he started his first US show half-hiding behind an amplifier, terrified that black members of the crowd might object to his interpretation of blues singing. He says: “I was about to perform, for the first time, in a country in which people were allowed to own guns.”

Rod: The Autogiography is published on October 23.

source: classicrockmagazine.com

Sting Moves Philippines Concert After Environmentalists' Petition

Sting has agreed to move the location of his upcoming concert in the Philippines after a petition by environmentalists called attention to some potentially destructive development plans by the original venue's owners, the Associated Press reports.

The "Back to Bass" concert was originally set to take place on December 9th at the SM Mall of Asia Arena on Manila Bay, a venue operated by the conglomerate SM Prime Holdings. The conglomerate has plans in place to uproot 182 trees in a mountain city in the northern Philippines in order to build a parking lot and mall expansion.  A local environmentalist named Karlo Marko Altomonte wrote of SM's plans to the Rainforest Foundation, the environmental protection group that Sting and his wife, Trudie Styler, established in 1989. Altomonte told the Rainforest Foundation that removing the trees would increase air pollution and the risk of landslides and flooding in Baguio City, and started the petition, which declared that "Sting can't be saving rainforests and enabling SM to rape the environment at the same time!"

"Understandably, the known environment advocate artist was left with no choice in spite of the SM representatives' appeal," a spokesman for the arena said in a statement.

source: rollingstone.com

Bonham admits BCC frustration

Black Country Communion drummer Jason Bonham admits he’s frustrated over the band’s inability to tour new album Afterglow.

He says he was told the supergroup would be hitting the road to promote its release – despite Joe Bonamassa’s insistence that everyone knew he didn’t have time to do so.

On Wednesday the guitarist broke his silence over the fall-out between him and Glenn Hughes, saying he was upset that the frontman had tried to “bully” him into playing live.

Now Bonham tells Classic Rock: “It is kinda sad that we do this product, then when it comes to touring there’s no plans. I find that really amazing.

“When I started this project I didn’t know what we were doing. As it took off I thought we were bound to start working more. I’m not blaming anybody in particular – but we should tour. I love everyone in the band and I’d love to take it on the road. Certain powers-that-be are holding us back.”

The drummer says he wasn’t aware that Bonamassa wouldn’t be available – and if he wasn’t, he wonders why BCC went into the studio to record Afterglow when they did.

“All I know is, when we did the album there was talk of touring to promote it,” he reports. “I thought there would be.

“I can go on the internet and I can see Joe’s schedule – he’s booked up throughout the whole year. So I felt: what was the rush to start the album when we did? Surely we should have done it when we had time, and Joe had time, to promote it?”

Bonamassa has said he refused to appear at BCC’s one-off show in Wolverhampton because he was worried Hughes would “make some stupid fucking announcement on stage” relating to whether the band had a future.

Asked if he can explain exactly what happened, Bonham says: “I have no idea. I’ve had no contact with the other guys except Glenn. I tried to get a reaction from Joe’s management but they just said there were complications.

“I could sense there was something up – somebody was upset somewhere about something.

“It’s very fucking frustrating: I absolutely adore Joe to bits. He’s one of the best guitar players around. But I just wish we could tour.

“I know he’s busy; I get it, I do get it. But Glenn, myself and Derek Sherinian, we’d love to tour. Maybe we’ll figure out some way to do it. Who knows? I just hope we can work something out.”

Afterglow, BCC’s third album in two years, is released on October 29. Find out more at www.bccommunion.com

source: classicrockmagazine.com

AC/DC fan movie clip released

A new clip from AC/DC fan movie Beyond The Thunder has been unveiled by director Kurt Squiers. View it below.

Squiers and colleague Gregg Ferguson left their jobs and travelled round the world to put together a film explaining why the Aussie giants matter so much to supporters.

They’ve never received permission from the band’s management to make or distribute the movie, but Squiers lives in hope that the word will be given one day.

Meanwhile, he’s offered the preview below, in which advertising agency bosses discuss why they use AC/DC music to increase interest in the products they promote.

Find out more at www.BeyondTheThunder.com

source: classicrockmagazine.com

Georgina Wilson says sorry to Nora Aunor

MANILA, Philippines - Celebrity Georgina Wilson on Friday finally spoke on the controversial
mock-up image of superstar Nora Aunor that she uploaded on Twitter last month.

The mock-up image, which showed Aunor wearing a two-piece swimsuit, made fans of the veteran actress angry.

Wilson made it clear, however, that she was not the one who created the photo, adding that she has great respect for Aunor.

"I respect Ms. Nora Aunor. A fan sent me that photo. Hindi ako ang gumawa and I posted it kasi parang I thought it was funny. Some people were offended so I took it down. I didn't say anything," she said as she was launched as the newest calendar girl of Ginebra San Miguel on Friday.

"Of course my intention is not to offend her," she added. She's our superstar and I was talking to Tita Gloria (Diaz) about it and she said that people just took it the wrong way."

Wilson also apologized to Aunor and her fans.

"I apologized and I also feel that I really didn't mean anything wrong. And if I offended her fans and her, I'm really sorry about that. But I really would never offend someone who's already an institution in our showbiz world," she said.

While a number of people found the mock-up image of Aunor "disrespectful," Wilson initially thought of it as a tribute of sorts to the country's "Superstar."

"Akala ko mga fans niya ang gumawa noon so I thought, 'how cute naman of them to think of me and put her picture. Big fan naman ako ni Ate Guy. So na-confuse talaga ako when it became a big issue. But I'm sure it's not an issue for her, she's a superstar," she said.

Last month after the photo was uploaded, Aunor gave Wilson some words of advice.

"Ituloy lang niya kung ano 'yung mga pintas na gusto niyang iparating sa akin, at tatanggapin ko nang buong puso," Aunor said when asked for her message to the Filipina-British model.

source: abs-cbnnews.com

You’ve got Mail! AOL launches new Alto mail program

The company that brought mail to the masses has taken a new look at email -- and hopes to once again revolutionize the inbox.

AOL’s Alto is a free new service that works with your existing Gmail, Yahoo! Mail, AOL Mail and .Mac account (sorry, Hotmail users, Microsoft's service doesn't support the necessary IMAP standard). It sifts through the mile-high stack that is your inbox and automatically sorts the thousands of messages piled up there into “stacks” -- photos, attachments, daily deals and so on -- in order to make it all far more accessible.

After all, email isn’t just email any more, said David Temkin, AOL’s senior vice president of mail.

“The nature of the medium has completely changed,” he told FoxNews.com.

He’s right, of course; what was once simply a digital way to write your aunt Flo in Tulsa is now how we get catalogs, pass photographs to our family, read the news and more. And with all that junk in your inbox trunk, the modern email account has not 10 or 20 personal letters to family and friends but thousands or even tens of thousands of things.

If you’ve ever missed an email from your sister under that deluge, you’ll find Alto a wonderful answer to the problem.

“The way we use email has changed radically over the years, but the core email application experience hasn’t,” said Joshua Ramirez, senior director of product for AOL Mail. Gmail, Yahoo, and everything else is at heart one big list, he said. Alto is different.

When you first enroll, Alto takes an hour or two to read your mail, sorting it into those stacks like a digital mailman. It reads the metadata embedded in your pictures to sort them by date. It associates the people emailing you with their Facebook account, since that message from Shelia is from the same person who posted that pie recipe on Twitter.

Temkin assured FoxNews.com that the company respected privacy concens. AOL doesn’t send any information back to its databases, he said, or even save copies of your messages on its servers.

Once sorted, the program presents you not with the boring list you’re familiar with but a few elegant piles. And creating new ones is simple enough -- any emails from Steve and Jim at the office can be automatically sent to one. Statements from your bank and credit card company? Straight to another.

Alto’s layout is beautiful, too, with tall, elegant fonts and subtle coloring; use it for a few minutes and the utilitarian inbox you had before will become the silliest thing you’ve ever used. I have how many messages? Which ones are important? Where’s the beef?

“We built Alto for people who believe, as we do, that organization is beautiful, who are overloaded with email and aren’t happy with the status quo of existing email experiences,” said Joshua Ramirez, senior director of product for AOL Mail.

The app is far from perfect, of course. There’s no way to tweak the contents of the photos folder, for example, so you’ll likely find irrelevant images among the good stuff. And a “Top Stories” stack is meant as interface to your favorite news sites; at present, however, it’s largely a way to feed you Huffington Post headlines. The people page is neat, but only supports Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn at present.

Plus it’s a limited beta release, at present; visit www.altomail.com and you might be allowed to try it out.

But the app has great potential. And for anyone suffering under inbox overload, give it a shot. It’s enough to make you glad you’ve got mail. Again.

source: foxnews.com

New app from Finland takes crime fighting to phone screen

HELSINKI — Noisy neighbors and parking violators: beware. A new smartphone app being used in Finland allows reporting of nuisance crimes with a few clicks, and its developer has started to pitch its service to police services around Europe.

The company, Grafetee, on Thursday globally launched its free location-based tagging application for Apple and Google Android devices. The app allows users to bookmark locations and link data from services like Foursquare, Yelp, Flickr and Instagram to the sites.

So far, the police reports feature is available only in Finland where local police now monitor reports from the app.

Juha Huttunen, Grafetee’s co-founder, said the app is mostly used to report disturbances such as noisy, intoxicated youth gangs. Finns continue to call the emergency number in case of serious problems.

Petri Marjamaa, superintendent at Finnish Police Board, who introduced the solution internationally to other police forces last week at a cyber crime conference in Czech Republic, said the interest to adopt the app was clear.

“It’s something they were very keen to see replicated in their countries,” Marjamaa said.

source: interaksyon.com

Rolling Stones Announce London Dates

The band will play two shows next month

The shows at the O2 Arena in Greenwich take place on 25 and 29 November and they will be called 50 Years & Counting - Rolling Stones Live.

The two shows are the band's first live dates in five years, since the band last played at the same venue to close their Bigger Bang tour.

Mick Jagger commented, "Everybody loves a celebration, and London and New York are two good places to do it in!”

Keith Richards said, ”Sorry to keep you all hanging around but the waiting is over. I've always said the best place for rock and roll is on the stage and the same is true for the Stones. I'm here with Mick, Charlie and Ronnie and everything is rocking. See you very soon!"

Tickets for the dates are on sale on Friday at 9am.

Meanwhile, the band will also play two shows in New Jersey at the Prudential Center, Newark on 13 and 15 December.

Interview: Lamb of God Guitarist Mark Morton Discusses US Tour, India Show and More

American heavy metal giants Lamb of God have been through a lot during the past few months, including singer Randy Blythe’s arrest and release from prison in the Czech Republic.

Thankfully, things have been sorted for the time being, and the band is gearing up for an extensive U.S. headlining tour with support from In Flames, Hatebreed and Sylosis. The tour — which starts October 30 in Phoenix, Arizona, followed by a Halloween-night show in Los Angeles — is set to go well into December.

On Thursday, October 11, I chatted with Lamb of God guitarist Mark Morton about a variety of topics, including the tour, the new album (Resolution), the band’s recent India show and lots more.

Enjoy the conversation below, and visit the band’s official website for tour dates and other info.

REVOLVER: You guys have an extensive U.S. tour coming up, which is something you haven’t done in a while — a long headline tour of your own. This must be a good feeling for you, I’m sure.

Yeah, we are excited! It’s been honestly far too long since we have toured the U.S. I think the last time we did it was the summer of 2010 on Mayhem. We did a quick one-week run in January of this year, but yeah, it’s been a while. And you know, U.S. is our favorite place to tour in the whole world, so we’re definitely looking forward to get back out. With everything that’s happened with our singer Randy, it feels good to get back on stage again and get back in front of our fans, particularly at home. So yeah, we are very excited for this tour.

The tour was supposed to happen in August with a totally different lineup. It got delayed for reasons that are obvious to everyone now. What did you end up doing in these extra couple of months? Did you just end up taking a break?

Well, yes and no. I mean, there’s a lot going on behind the scenes with respect to the situation with Randy, so I can’t say it’s been a particularly relaxing few months. Outside of that, it’s not like we delayed a tour and picked up exactly where we left off. We basically canceled the tour we had planned and then had to put together an entirely new package and an entirely new routing.

So in that sense, we were pretty much starting all over again. That’s what we spent the last couple of months doing, just putting together this new tour, rerouting it and getting prepared to go out again, and all the behind-the-scenes stuff that’s going on with the Randy situation which I don’t really care to give a lot of detail about at this point, but there’s still a lot going on there as well.

The LA show on this tour is on Halloween night. When was the last time you played Halloween night?

I think the last time we did it was probably with Metallica, and I only remember that because Chris actually put on a Spider Man costume [laughs]. But I couldn’t tell you where it was. I just remember we were opening for Metallica somewhere.

Looking at the venues, I think some of them are smaller than what Lamb Of God usually play. That’s cool, because I feel the smaller venues capture the Lamb Of God vibe a little better. Would you agree?

I think it’s a toss-up. In big shows, obviously the crowds are bigger, but you tend to lose sound quality and there tends to be a little bit more of a disconnect between the band and the audience. So it’s a trade-off, you know.

In the smaller club shows, the crowd is close-up so you can interact with them better, and I think overall the sound tends to be better. That being said, I guess some of these are smaller venues, but we play those usually when we do the Mayhem tour or as support act.

Looking over the itinerary, I generally feel these are same-sized places we play when we headline, may be with a few exceptions. But even with consideration of that, we’re bringing out our production package that’s bigger than anything we’ve ever done before. So it should be a pretty exciting show for the fans that get to see it.

On the new album, Resolution, did you try anything new or different in terms of gear?

Yeah, I did. For the most part, I used my Mesa Boogie Mark 4, which I’ve used on pretty much every album, but I brought in some different guitars and a couple of different amps. During the course of this album, I discovered the new Mesa Boogie Royal Atlantic, which is an amp I’m very, very fond of. We used that on several tracks and for quite a few of the overdubs and solos and stuff like that. So primarily, in terms of impact, that was the biggest new piece of gear that we implemented.

Would you say the focus will be on Resolution for the set list on this tour?

No, not really. I’m not sure yet because we’re still kind of deciding, but we’ll probably play three to five new songs. There’s a lot of bands on the bill, so we’re only playing for 70 to 75 minutes. We’re on our seventh album now, so even in that short set we’ve really got to include a lot of the older stuff too that people expect to hear.

It’s not like we can play a show and not play “Walk With Me In Hell,” “Now You’ve Got Something To Die For,” “Ruin,” “Black Label,” “Redneck,” “Set To Fail” and all those songs. So the further we get along in terms of the albums in our career, it becomes tougher to choose the songs because as I said, there’s songs people absolutely expect to hear but there’s also new songs we need to work in as well. So I would say it’s a good balance. We’re going to play stuff from pretty much every Lamb Of God album. But there will be a handful of new songs in there as well.

Earlier this year, you played a show in India. I actually saw you there. That was your second show in India. What was that experience like?

Both times we were just absolutely astonished about how well received we are in India, the sheer number of fans that turn up, particularly in light of the fact that it was only our second show there. So for that many people to come out and be a part of it, and to show their allegiance with Lamb Of God, we are very proud of it.

I was at the press conference the day before that show, and you were missing because your guitar tech missed his flight and you had to do your own set up! What was that like?

Well, yeah, that sort of thing happens when you travel so far. A lot of times you get snafued a little bit. There’s always some issue with somebody’s traveling. But I’m pretty well acquainted with my gear, so I had no problem setting up. One of the problems though, was that in transit some of my gear actually got damaged, so I was using a backup rig. That posed a few challenges in terms of sound quality, but we got it together.

On that tour, you were shooting a documentary. When we expect that to be released, and how will it be different from previous Lamb Of God DVDs?

It will be very different from the previous DVDs, because they have all focused on the band and the personalities within the band. But the band is kind of sidelined in the new film. It’s not so much about us. It’s really more about our fans, and specific fans in unique parts of the world. So that’s really what it’s about. The band is a sideline character in this film.

In terms of when it will be released, I’m not exactly sure. I think sometime in 2013 it will be in theaters. We’re not releasing it the same way we did the previous stuff either, and it’s not going straight to DVD and it won’t be something we’re going to market immediately as a DVD. It’s more intended to be in theaters and viewed as a documentary film.

Is the filming for that complete or are you going to film more stuff?

There’s a couple of tiny little things we still need to get, but for the most part it’s complete.

I was on Twitter five minutes before this interview, and I saw a bunch of your posts where you answer fans’ questions. Is that something new you’ve started doing?

No, I’ve been doing that for quite a while, I’d say probably at least a year if not longer. I enjoy it, you know. It’s a way to stay in touch with fans and kind of see the types of things they’re thinking about. I enjoy answering the questions. Some of them are pretty mundane, but sometimes I do get some interesting questions.

I think as a band we’ve always tried to stay open to our fans and give them an inside look, and this is just another way for me to do it. It comes and goes, sometimes I’ll go a few days or weeks without being on there, and other times I’m on twitter quite a bit for a few days. I just try and answer questions as they come, and it’s a good way to stay in touch with fans.

I think you get fans really excited by doing this. I noticed some of them even saying it was their biggest achievement in life to get a reply from you!

I would say they should probably set higher goals for themselves [laughs].

source: revolvermag.com

Top 5 most addictive foods

While we all know about the dangers of alcohol, drugs and cigarettes, did you know that you could become addicted to your favorite food? From withdrawal symptoms to changes in brain chemistry, our snacks have surprising ways of keeping us wanting more. Here is our guide to five of the world’s most addictive foods.

1. Chocolate

Many people claim to be chocoholics, but can you really be addicted to chocolate? The answer is... perhaps. One reason many people feel "addicted" to chocolate is that the food's chemical compounds (including theobromine, phenyethylamine, anandamide and tryptophan) actually have pleasure-inducing effects that can mimic the effects of drugs on the brain. Chocolate also contains alkaloids (tetrahydro-beta-carbolines) which are present in alcohol and have been linked to alcoholism.

However, before you go booking yourself into Chocoholics Anonymous, it is important to note that many researchers have pointed out that the chemicals in chocolate also exist in other foods which most of us do not crave. It has also been suggested that the chemicals in chocolate are not in high enough doses to lead to addiction. Regardless, it is impossible to deny that chocolate is one of the world's most-craved foods -- whether this is due to psychological reasons or a physical addiction.

2. Cheese

From pizzas to cheeseburgers, cheese is a staple of many widely craved junk foods, but there could be more to our cravings than we think. Various studies have discovered the presence of opiates -- including the highly addictive morphine -- in the popular dairy product cheese.

While the amounts of morphine in cheese are very small and probably not enough to cause addiction, some researchers have expressed concern about its levels of casein (the main protein in cheese) which produces morphine-like opiate compounds called casomorphins during digestion. On top of this, cheese also contains phenylethylamine, a substance with stimulant effects which is thought to give consumers a natural "high," and which is reputed to have addictive qualities.

3. Sugar

We all know that sugar is bad for our health, but according to numerous studies it can also be addictive. Studies have suggested that when we eat sugar, chemicals called opioids are released by the brain, which leads to an intense feeling of pleasure. It is this feeling that people may crave in the absence of sugar.

A study by psychologists at Princeton University investigated sugar addiction by studying its effect on rats. They discovered that after rats were fed a diet high in sugar, they experienced symptoms similar to those produced by drug withdrawal when the sugar was withdrawn, including shaking and changes in brain chemistry. The study therefore concluded what other researchers have also suggested; that it is possible to become severely dependent on sugar.

4. Burgers and other processed meat

Numerous researchers and studies have suggested that fatty, processed junk food such as burgers may actually be addictive. According to Professor David Kessler, an ex-commissioner of the US Food and Drug Administration and author of "The End of Overeating," the combination of fat, salt and sugar in junk food triggers our "bliss point" and leaves us wanting more.

Scientists at the Scripps Research Institute in Florida backed up this theory with a study which found that the addictive responses in the brains of rats when fed junk food including fatty meats were the same as in those that consume cocaine or heroin. On top of this, meat -- like chocolate, cheese and sugar -- releases opiate-like substances during digestion which some studies have suggested can leave us craving more.

5. Coffee

Many feel that they can't start the day without a cup of coffee and people often joke about having a caffeine "addiction," however this may not be far from the truth. Although there has been much debate over the years about whether or not caffeine is genuinely addictive, it is difficult to deny that many of us crave it to the point where we feel we can't function without it.

One reason that people may crave caffeine so much is due to the fairly severe symptoms of caffeine withdrawal that people often face, ranging from fatigue and headaches to irritability and depression. However, it may be that, rather than being physically dependent on caffeine, you are actually addicted to the belief that you can't function without your morning cup of coffee. Whatever the reason, caffeine remains the world's most popular drug and a staple of many daily routines. Read more at www.realbuzz.com. 

source: abs-cbnnews.com

Eric Clapton sells Richter painting for record $34.2 million

LONDON – A painting by Gerhard Richter owned by British guitarist Eric Clapton has sold for £21.3 million ($34.2 million), a record for the work of a living artist, auction house Sotheby’s said.

An anonymous bidder bought the red, blue and yellow oil painting on canvas, “Abstraktes Bild (809-4)”, in London on Friday for more than ten times the $3.4 million that Clapton paid for the painting plus two others in New York in 2001.

The price beat pre-sale estimates and Richter’s previous record of $21.9 million in May for “Abstract Picture (7938-3)”.

The German artist, 80, is described as the world’s top-selling living artist.

Richter was born in Dresden and grew up in communist east Germany. He now produces both abstract and figurative painting as well as photographs from his Cologne studio.

His profile has been boosted by a retrospective, “Gerhard Richter: Panorama”, which has been shown in London, Berlin and Paris this year.

Clapton, 67, known for his work with Cream and the Yardbirds and for songs including “Crossroads”, “Layla” and “Tears in Heaven”, has an extensive art collection.

The sale comes as the art world descends on London for Frieze Art Week, with contemporary art exhibits from hundreds of galleries around the world.

Sotheby’s senior director Alex Branczik said: “The combination of outstanding provenance and gold-standard quality in this sublime work by this blue-chip artist made for an historic auction moment.

“Gerhard Richter’s international appeal as one of the hottest contemporary artists was once again confirmed this evening.”

source: interaksyon.com

Billboard shakes up charts to include digital, streaming data

LOS ANGELES – Billboard shook up its singles charts for country, Latin and hip-hop music on Thursday by including digital download sales and streaming data from services like Spotify, Rhapsody and others in its weekly rankings.

The move follows Billboard’s decision earlier this year to incorporate the fast-growing digital market into the Hot 100 singles chart, which includes all music genres.

In addition, Billboard said in a statement it has launched a new chart for R&B songs that will use the same hybrid formula and will separate R&B from rap or hip-hop singles.

Billboard uses data provided by Nielsen SoundScan to compile its weekly chart of the top albums and singles in dozens of different categories.

The new system reflects a more inclusive approach to compiling the most popular singles in the United States.

In the past, the charts for Latin, R&B and country singles have been determined mainly by air play on radio stations that play music exclusively in respective genre.

From Thursday, airplay data will be compiled from more than 1,200 radio stations across the United States under a formula that recognizes and rewards cross-over artists, such as country-pop singer Taylor Swift.

“With digital downloads hitting record highs and streaming services such as Spotify, Muve, Slacker, Rhapsody, Rdio, MOG, Sony Music Unlimited and Xbox Music continuing to grow, the impact of digital music is growing more and more pronounced,” Jim Donio, president of the National Association of Recording Merchandisers (NARM), said in a statement.

“We are happy to see that Billboard recognizes this trend and is taking steps to ensure that its charts will continue to serve as the industry standard well into the future,” Donio said.

source: interaksyon.com

Metallica Offering Free Download of Orion Music + More Fest Soundcheck

Metallica are offering fans a free download of their entire June 22 soundcheck from Orion Music + More festival, which took place at Bader Field in Atlantic City, New Jersey.

The soundcheck set includes three tracks: “Creeping Death,” “Hell And Back” and “The Call Of Ktulu.”

Since this was a casual rehearsal, James Hetfield skipped the first verse of “Creeping Death” as he walked around the catwalk, surveying the grounds while playing guitar.

Metallica headlined both nights at the festival. On June 23, they played all of Ride The Lightning; they performed the Black album on June 24.

Get your free download here.

source: revolvermag.com

Top 10 Skullcandy Reasons How Music Controls Your Life, Moods

MANILA, Philippines — Many studies have proven that music greatly affects people’s mood, behavior, and perception. Skullcandy gives us a rundown of different scenarios from academic performance, health benefits, and down to shopping behavior where choice of music can alter, mold, or even control you.

1. Make you smarter.  The Mozart effect proves that classical music activates the brain and affects cognition. Recent studies show though that any kind of music stimulates some regions of the brain responsible for memory, motor control, timing, and language.

2. Manage your pain. It reduces the sensation and distress for chronic and postoperative pain, even depression by at least 25%. Music is being used in hospitals to lessen medication during childbirth, even used as a complement to anesthesia during surgery.

3. Speed up recovery for heart problems. We’re taking here about your physical heart, but music does help with a broken heart too. A Harvard study has shown it helps speed up the recovery from cardiac procedures.

4. Increase your EQ. Turn the music up. Emotional Quotient is significant to determine a person’s social skills, and music, among all forms of art, is said to influence EQ most. Music fires up emotions, but it also teaches the art of balancing it.

5. Boost productivity. According to a report in the journal of Neuroscience of Behavior and Physiology, persons recognize visual images, letters, and numbers faster when listen to rock or classical music in the background.

6. Combat fatigue. Upbeat music is an easy pick-me-upper, so drop that chocolate, and just turn the iPod on. Music can stamp out fatigue caused by exercise and monotonous work.

7. Motivate impulse buyers. Unplanned purchases are mostly prevalent when shopping in the company of background music. So, good thing, or bad?

8. Beat insomnia. Listen to relaxing music, like classical, 45 minutes before bedtime for much-needed restful sleep. This type of music improves sleep through muscle relaxation and distraction of thoughts.

9. Induce brain pleasure. The brain releases feel-good hormones that make us calm, happy, and responsive when loud music is playing. However, be extra cautious as this is not recommended for your eardrums.

10.  Improve memory. Memories are processed faster when associated with music, which is why we still remember our sing-song lessons from kindergarten. Plus, it may help people suffering from Alzheimer’s remember more.

Skullcandy supreme sound features a full range of attacking bass, natural vocals, and precision highs for a full on audio experience. What you listen to tells a lot about who you are, and your choice of audio brand can only make or break you.

article source: mb.com.ph