December 15, 2013 in Nation/World

People: KISS guitarist’s New York home damaged in fire

From Wire Reports

(Full-size photo)(All photos)

A suburban New York house owned by former KISS lead guitarist Ace Frehley has gone up in flames.

The Journal News reported that firefighters were called to the stone house in the town of Yorktown Heights late Saturday morning.

The home was heavily damaged, with flames burning through the roof.

The newspaper said the musician had been fighting foreclosure on the property in Westchester County Court.

The Red Cross helped a resident with emergency lodging. A neighbor said a caretaker had been living in the home.

It was not clear where the 62-year-old founding member of the famed rock band was at the time of the blaze.

He played with the group until 2002, during what was billed as their farewell tour.

Bruno Mars named top artist of 2013

Miley Cyrus twerked her way to the top of the charts and Justin Timberlake returned to music after a seven-year hiatus, but another artist owned music in 2013: Bruno Mars.

Billboard announced that the pop crooner is the year’s top overall artist.

“It’s flattering. It’s just an honor,” Mars said. “I’m proud to be a part of this whole team that I have.”

The singer’s year included a No. 1 hit with “When I Was Your Man” and a top 5 hit with “Treasure.” His sophomore album, “Unorthodox Jukebox,” was released late last year and has sold more than 1.8 million units. It’s the second best-selling album of the year behind Timberlake’s “The 20/20 Experience.”

Mars added that listeners have resonated with his music because it’s “relatable.”

“You know when you eat that food and it’s filling that void you were missing,” he said, describing his music.

Taylor Swift is the year’s top female artist for Billboard, while Mars is the leading male. Macklemore & Ryan Lewis is the top group and new act.

Timberlake ruled the R&B charts, while groups Florida George Line and Imagine Dragons topped the country and rock charts, respectively.

Mars’ impressive year also includes four Grammy nominations. His No. 1 hit, “Locked Out of Heaven,” is up for two of the top awards, song and record of the year. He’ll launch the second North American leg of his “Moonshine Jungle World Tour” this summer.

The birthday bunch

Actor-comedian Tim Conway is 80. Rock musician Dave Clark is 71. Rock musician Carmine Appice is 67. Actor Don Johnson is 64. Actress Helen Slater is 50. Actress Molly Price is 48. Actor Stuart Townsend is 41. Figure skater Surya Bonaly is 40. Actor Adam Brody is 34. Actress Michelle Dockery is 32. Actress Camilla Luddington is 30.

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