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Who is Ryan Adams? What you need to know about the singer-songwriter

David Ryan Adams is a 44-year-old singer-songwriter born in Jacksonville, North Carolina. He has had a long career across multiple genres and musical acts.

He is also the subject of a New York Times expose on numerous accusations he psychologically abuses women.

Background

Adams first came on the music scene in an alt-country band he founded called Whiskeytown. The group released three major albums, making it big with “Strangers Almanac” in 1997.

The group split in 2000, after what a Guardian story called a “particularly gruesome Michigan show.”

>> Ryan Adams covers Bryan Adams and the internet can't get enough

Solo career

Adams’ first solo album, “Heartbreaker,” was a hit, especially with critics. A Pitchfork review called it “a startling 15-song masterpiece.”

His follow-up, “Gold,” was also a hit and earned him three Grammy nominations.

However, as the Guardian article put it, “Then something went askew… (he) got a reputation for being a boozy, druggy brat.”

At one point, Adams left a scathing message with profanities on the answering machine of the music critic for the Chicago Sun-Times.

Since then he has performed with the band The Cardinals and done more solo work.

He is known for his 2015 release “1989,” a song-for-song alt-country cover album of Taylor Swift’s album “1989.”

He is a prolific producer, working with Willie Nelson and Fall Out Boy. He has also worked with Weezer, Norah Jones and Counting Crows.

Abuse allegations

On Wednesday, the New York Times published a story detailing allegations of abuse against Adams.

“In interviews, seven women and more than a dozen associates described a pattern of manipulative behavior in which Adams dangled career opportunities while simultaneously pursuing female artists for sex,” Joe Coscarelli and Melena Ryzik wrote.

>> Read more trending news 

For example, 20-year-old musician Phoebe Bridgers told the Times that Adams invited her to his studio. She said he praised her music, and the two had a short relationship.

However, she said, when she broke off the relationship, Adams rescinded an offer to be the opening act on his European tour.

One of the women who talked to the Times was Adams’ ex-wife, actress and singer Mandy Moore. She said he psychologically abused her and blocked her progress as a musician. They divorced in 2016.

Megan Butterworth, who was engaged to Adams recently, also called him “controlling and emotionally abusive.” She told the Times he tried to isolate her “socially and professionally.” They broke up in 2018.

Adams allegedly corresponded with a fan as well, starting when she was 14. She said he exposed himself during video calls on Skype. 

According to texts reviewed by the Times, Adams questioned her about her age and sometimes she gave a false, older one. 

In one text, he told the girl,” And tell me that your mom is not gonna kill me if she finds out we even text.” 

Adams called the article “inaccurate.”

Read more here.

Here’s how many pushups men should be able to do to avoid heart attacks, study suggests

Want to reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease? Pushups may be able to help, according to a new report.

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Researchers from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health recently conducted a study, published in JAMA Network Open, to determine the relationship between pushups and heart disease, which can lead to heart failure, heart attacks and strokes.

To do so, they examined health data from 1,104 active male firefighters collected from 2000 to 2010. The subjects, who were around 40 years old, completed annual physical examinations and health and medical questionnaires. The analysts also measured the participants’ pushup capacity and their performance on the treadmill.

During the 10-year assessment, there were 37 incidents related to cardiovascular disease. All but one of the events occurred in men who completed 40 or fewer pushups at the beginning of the trial.

After further analysis, the scientists calculated that men who could do more than 40 pushups had a 96 percent reduced risk of cardiovascular disease events compared with those who were able to do less than 10.

“Our findings provide evidence that pushup capacity could be an easy, no-cost method to help assess cardiovascular disease risk in almost any setting,” first author Justin Yang said in statement

Furthermore, pushup capacity was more strongly associated with lower incidence of cardiovascular disease events than treadmill performance.

The team did note some limitations. They only evaluated middle-aged men, so results may differ for women or men of other ages. 

Nevertheless, they believe their findings are strong. 

“This study,” senior author Stefanos Kales said, “emphasizes the importance of physical fitness on health, and why clinicians should assess fitness during clinical encounters.”

Snowy conditions cause massive pileup at Donner Pass

Snowy conditions led to a multiple-vehicle wreck Saturday that left traffic at a standstill for hours along Donner Pass. 

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The accident blocked multiple lanes of eastbound I-80 around 11:04 a.m., according to Caltrans

Drivers were seen standing outside of their vehicles as they waited for traffic to move again as a snowstorm blanketed the area. 

The vehicles were removed about an hour later, Caltrans said.

Intoxicated passenger who didn’t want to sit next to toddler removed from flight 

An intoxicated woman was removed from a flight after becoming disruptive and upset for having to sit next to a toddler. 

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Valerie Gonzalez, 32, was removed Thursday from a JetBlue flight to Las Vegas before takeoff, WCJB reported

"I'm not sitting next to a (expletive) 3-year-old. I've been drinking all day," Gonzalez said, according to Broward County Sheriff’s Office deputies. 

Then she went to a seat she was not assigned to. 

Passengers took video of the incident as it unfolded. 

"Oh, you want to (expletive) tape this, make this viral, (expletive)?" Gonzalez says in the video. 

Eventually she grabs her bags, blows kisses to the other passengers and leaves the plane when the flight crew asks for deputies to be called to the plane. 

Gonzalez tried to return shortly after and hit a JetBlue employee who tried to stop her, WCJB reported

Gonzalez spat at passengers, JetBlue employees and deputies as she was being taken into custody, WCJB reported. She stopped when officers requested a spit mask. 

She was arrested and charged with battery. 

Antonio Brown solicits questions on Twitter, responds to conflict with Ben Roethlisberger

Just when you thought a resolution could be found and wide receiver Antonio Brown would be able to return to the Pittsburgh Steelers next season, he goes to Twitter and burns more bridges. 

Brown solicited questions and the first he responded to asked about the conflict between him and quarterback Ben Roethlisberger.

“No conflict just a matter of respect! Mutual respect! He has a owner mentality like he can call out anybody including coaches. Players know but they can’t say anything about it otherwise they meal ticket gone. It’s a dirty game within a game. #truth”

It was reported Friday afternoon that Brown would meet with owner Art Rooney II in Florida to air out grievances and determine how both sides would move forward. 

When a fan asked Brown if he would ever play for the Steelers again, this was his response:

One fan asked Brown what he would tell people who say he only wants a new team to get a new contract:

Another fan asked Brown about the last time he sat out during the Bengals game last season:

Customers continue to line up as restaurant burns

Customers continued to line up Sunday at an A&W drive-thru as the restaurant was burning to the ground. 

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Firefighters fought the flames around 5 p.m. as drivers continued to pull into the drive-thru, Global News reported

Everyone inside the restaurant were able to evacuate before responders arrived. One firefighter was injured but did not need to go the hospital, Global News reported

The cause of the fire is under investigation. 

Black History Month: Billie Holiday bio, music, facts and more

The gutsy Billie Holiday, fondly remembered as Lady Day, would have been 104 years old come April. Her discernible voice — sultry, mellow and strikingly melancholy — earned the “Strange Fruit” singer an indelible posthumous legacy.

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Born Eleanora Fagan to a pair of poverty-stricken teenagers, her personal life was plagued with tragedy and scandal from the very start.

Her stage name was a tribute to movie star Billie Dove and her father, jazz guitarist Clarence Holiday, who was only 15 when his daughter came into the world on April 7, 1915. Her mom, Sadie Fagan, was 13. The union didn’t last long.

Growing up, Holiday would run errands for a Baltimore brothel in exchange for a chance to listen to jazz icons Louis Armstrong and Bessie Smith, two legends who inspired her most. But it was ultimately desperation — not desire — that led Holiday to song, according to her obituary in The New York Times.

Upon moving to New York, her mom fell into a debilitating depression and was unable to find work. A teenage Holiday went down to Harlem “looking for any kind of work,” the Times reported.

Both mother and daughter had ultimately turned to prostitution.

After a stint in prison for solicitation, Holiday landed her first singing gig at Harlem’s Jerry Preston’s Log Cabin, where the amateur had been turned down as a dancer. For $2 a night, six nights a week, you could hear Holiday serenade audiences with “Trav’lin All Alone” or “Body and Soul.”

In 1933, she entered the studio to sing “Your Mother’s Son-in-Law” with Jack Teagarden, Gene Krupa, Joe Sullivan and Benny Goodman, who had heard of her talents through producer John Hammond.

Her time with the group catapulted her to fame as Lady Day, a nickname later given to her by Count Basie tenor saxophonist Lester Young.

With her head tilted back and white gardenias in her hair, Holiday’s famous 1939 performance at New York’s Café Society introduced the world to two of her most renowned songs, “God Bless the Child” and “Strange Fruit,” the latter of which left witnesses stunned then — and still resonates with many today.

Ahmet Ertegun, the legendary record producer, called the song, which Holiday first sang 16 years before Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on a Montgomery, Alabama, bus, “a declaration of war … the beginning of the civil rights movement,” Times critic David Margolick wrote in 2000.

Written by Jewish poet Abel Meeropol (pseudonym Lewis Allan), “Strange Fruit” was a protest song about lynching, “the first to shoulder an explicit political message into the arena of entertainment,” The Guardian reported in 2011. But “it was not, by any stretch, a song for every occasion. It infected the air in the room, cut conversation stone dead, left drinks untouched, cigarettes unlit. Customers either clapped till their hands were sore, or walked out in disgust.”

The biting depiction, further haunted by Holiday’s vulnerable performance and the measured cadence of her finger snaps, came at a time when lynching was on the decline in the country but still common in the South.

When she’d sing “Strange Fruit,” she said she always thought of her father, who died at age 39 after being denied treatment at a “whites only” hospital in Texas, according to her 1956 autobiography, “Lady Sings the Blues.” While touring in the South, she was banned from sitting with white vocalists and was asked to use a hotel’s freight elevator so as not to offend white clientele.

“Political songs legendarily age poorly, yet even with listeners desensitized to ‘Strange Fruit,’ the song has acquired a painful and unwanted freshness in the age of Walter Scott and Eric Garner,” The Atlantic wrote in 2015.

Holiday’s rise to fame in a world still ripe with racism further crumbled with her own growing battle with heroin. She was arrested for a narcotics violation in 1947, a conviction that kept her from retaining the cabaret license required to perform in New York’s nightclubs. Her entanglements with a series of abusive men and inescapable drug and alcohol abuse through the 1950s exacerbated the fall. Self-destruction eventually stole the luster from Holiday’s hardening voice.

On July 17, 1959, Holiday was arrested and handcuffed for drug possession as she lay dying of pulmonary edema and heart failure at New York’s Metropolitan Hospital. She was 44 years old. Her last album, “Recording,” was released just four months before her death. At the end of her short life, Holiday had just 70 cents in her bank account, and most of her recordings were out of print.

More than half a century later, you can find them all. With a posthumous Lifetime Achievement Grammy to her name, spots on both the Grammy and the Rock and Roll Halls of Fame and much more acclaim associated with her work, Lady Day’s enduring legacy lives on.

Deputy recognizes suspect with face tattoos after passing him at McDonald’s

A man was arrested after a deputy recognized him as a suspect wanted in connection with a drug investigation. 

>> Read more trending news 

Sebastian County Sheriff’s Office Sgt. R.D. Crouch was walking into a McDonald’s restaurant Wednesday when he passed Carl Ashworth, who was leaving, KFSM reported

Shortly after, Crouch heard a description that matched Ashworth, whose face is heavily covered in tattoos, related to a drug investigation, KFSM reported

Crouch approached Ashworth, who was walking down a nearby road and started to flee, KFSM reported

Ashworth was taken into custody shortly after. He was arrested on outstanding warrants, as well as charges of fleeing and possession of methamphetamines, KFSM reported.

Tesla adds Dog Mode to Model 3

In response to a suggestion on social mediaDog Mode is included as a software update to the Tesla Model 3

Possibly meme-inspired after good Samaritans would break car windows to save pets, a display indicates to passersby that the car is set to a comfortable temperature for the furry friends waiting in the car and that the driver will be back shortly. 

>> Read more trending news 

The company does say the mode is not intended to be used in places where local laws restrict keeping animals alone in vehicles.

The update is for the Model 3 and will come later to the Model S and X vehicles built after August 2017, Popular Mechanics reported. Dog Mode will be readily available on all newly purchased Model 3, S and X vehicles.

A Sentry Mode, which uses the car’s autonomous driving cameras to deter would-be criminals or anyone else from coming too close, is also added as part of the software update.

Beto O’Rourke: ‘I'd take the wall down’

Beto O’Rourke said he would remove the existing fences and barriers that separate El Paso, Texas, from Mexico, if he could.

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O’Rourke, a Democratic former congressman who ran a high-profile senate campaign against Ted Cruz in 2018, made the statement in a Thursday interview with MSNBC’s Chris Hayes. He was answering a question asked on Twitter by Rep. Dan Crenshaw, R-Texas, "If you could snap your fingers and make El Paso’s border wall disappear, would you?"

"Yes, absolutely. I'd take the wall down," O’Rourke said.

President Donald Trump held a rally Monday night in El Paso to drum up support for a border wall, citing the city’s bollard fence as proof that “walls work,” CNN reported. In his tweet, Crenshaw also said border fences have caused illegal crossings to drop. But O’Rourke, who held a rally Monday to counter Trump’s, disagrees that barriers on the border have helped security.

"Here’s what we know: after the Secure Fence Act, we have built 600 miles of wall and fencing on a 2,000 mile border," O'Rourke said. "What that has done is not in any demonstrable way made us safer."

"We do this, whether it is the war on terror, the war on drugs -- we project our fears and anxieties to places like El Paso, to the U.S.-Mexico border, and punish the people who live here. There's no reason to do that. But it is the fear and the anxiety that is stoked by people who should, and frankly do, know better that results in these policies," he said.

He said that the fencing has instead forced migrants to the most inhospitable areas of the southern border, "ensuring their suffering and death.”

O’Rourke criticized Trump’s decision to declare a national emergency in order to fund his border wall.

"It's hard to make a rational case for an emergency declaration or troops on the border or any amount of additional border walls or border fencing or steel slats," O'Rourke said.

Congress passed a government spending deal Thursday to avoid a government shutdown. The deal would provide further funding for border security but not for Trump's wall. Trump said Thursday he’d sign the spending measure, but would also declare a national emergency "to ensure we stop the national security and humanitarian crisis at the border."

O’Rourke has said he will decide this month whether he will run for president in 2020.

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