Nation/World

Kids have own fun before inauguration

First lady Michelle Obama, center, and daughters Sasha, left, and Malia react during the Kids’ Inaugural Concert on Saturday where Katy Perry and Usher were featured performers. (Associated Press)
First lady Michelle Obama, center, and daughters Sasha, left, and Malia react during the Kids’ Inaugural Concert on Saturday where Katy Perry and Usher were featured performers. (Associated Press)

Usher sang “Yeah!” Katy Perry donned stars and stripes for “Firework.” And a ballroom full of lucky kids got to rock out with Sasha and Malia Obama at Saturday’s Kids’ Inaugural Concert, a star-studded event that honors America’s military families.

“Now, inauguration is a pretty big deal,” first lady Michelle Obama, who hosted the event along with Jill Biden, told the assembled families at the Washington Convention Center. “But I have to tell you that my very favorite part of this entire weekend is being right here with all of you.” She paid tribute to the sacrifices that military families make, including their kids.

The choice of talent for the concert seemed to reflect the fact that the Obama girls are 4 years older. In 2009 the entertainers included Miley Cyrus and the Jonas Brothers. This time it was Usher and Perry, along with the groups Mindless Behavior and Far East Movement. Also performing were cast members from the Fox TV hit “Glee.”

Perry sang her hits “Teenage Dream,” “Part of Me,” “Wide Awake” and then “Firework,” which was accompanied by a slide show of President Barack Obama. “I’m very proud to be here … and to see the Obamas and the Bidens here for four more years,” Perry said.

Tree spider species named for Bono

It appeared Bono and arachnids didn’t mix when his “Spider-Man” musical had a rough Broadway run, but that didn’t keep a biologist from naming an actual spider species after the U2 singer.

Jason Bond, of Alabama’s Auburn University, has identified 33 new species of trapdoor spider, including three of them in the California desert at Joshua Tree National Park. The park’s namesake is featured in the title and cover of U2’s 1987 album, “The Joshua Tree.”

Bond named two of the spiders after Indian tribes and one, A. bonoi, after Bono.

Bond has named other spider species after Angelina Jolie, Cesar Chavez and Stephen Colbert.

Keys to sing anthem at Super Bowl

Alicia Keys is adding her voice to the Super Bowl show for the third time.

The Grammy-winning R&B singer will perform the national anthem before the NFL championship game on Feb. 3 in New Orleans.

The birthday bunch

Country singer Slim Whitman is 89. Former astronaut Buzz Aldrin is 83. Singer Xavier is 45.



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