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Cole records album entirely in Spanish

It’s been four years since Natalie Cole received a kidney from a Salvadoran donor, and the singer says it not only connected her to Hispanic culture, it has given her the strength to record her first post-operation album – totally in Spanish.

“I don’t believe in coincidences. I believe everything happens for a reason. That this was a Latin family, I feel like I’m part Latino now. That (made) the desire to make this record became even stronger,” Cole said recently during a private listening session of “Natalie Cole En Espanol,” released this week.

This is Cole’s first album since she received her kidney in May 2009. Her donor was a young woman from El Salvador who died while giving birth to a baby boy. The 63-year-old Cole received the donation after suffering from hepatitis C, a liver disease spread through contact with infected blood.

Jagger not stimulated as musician

Mick Jagger thinks his original career plan to become a schoolteacher might have provided plenty of satisfaction.

The Rolling Stones frontman told BBC Radio Friday that his music career has not been challenging intellectually and that teaching might have been “gratifying” instead. He also said he had considered becoming a politician or a journalist when he was a teen.

Despite his interest in other careers, Jagger says he’s “very pleased” with how things have turned out. The band is marking its 50th year together with a series of concerts.

Christo cleared to make river display

A federal appeals board is upholding the Bureau of Land Management’s decision to grant the artist Christo a permit for his Over the River project, which involves temporarily suspending 5.9 miles worth of silvery fabric panels in sections over 42 miles of the Arkansas River in Colorado.

The Interior Board of Land Appeals on Friday rejected arguments that the BLM didn’t fully consider impacts of Over the River before granting the permit. Meanwhile, two lawsuits challenging Over the River in state and federal courts are still pending.

New York-based Christo said in a written statement that he remains confident that state and federal permitting processes were thorough and complete. “This is one of three legal hurdles that needed to be overcome, and I am very happy with this decision,” Christo said.

Even if Christo wins in the lawsuits, it would be at least 2016 before the project would be ready for public display.

The birthday bunch

Actor Gary Busey is 69. Comedian Richard Lewis is 66. Actor-radio personality Fred Grandy is 65. Rock singer Colin Hay (Men At Work) is 60. Actress Maria Conchita Alonso is 56. Actress Sharon Lawrence is 52. Actress Kathleen Wilhoite is 49.


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Macron tells Congress of ‘special’ US-French bond

new  WASHINGTON – French President Emmanuel Macron drew Wednesday on the “shared bond” of U.S.-French relations to call for a rejection of isolationism and instead for the countries to bond together anew for a 21st century security. Macron opened a joint meeting of Congress, saying “the American and French people have had a rendezvous with freedom.”