John gives free concert outside Roman Colosseum

John gives free concertoutside Roman Colosseum
ROME -- Thousands of fans clapped and danced as Elton John performed "Daniel" and some of his other hits at a free concert outside the ancient Roman Colosseum. Fans of all ages had started lining up at dawn to grab good spots for the Saturday night celebration on the Via dei Fori Imperiali, the large boulevard that leads to the Colosseum and is lined with Roman relics. "I love places that have an incredible history," John said in recorded comments released before the concert. "I love the Italian way of life, I love the food, I love the people, I love the attitudes of Italians." Last year, a Simon and Garfunkel concert on the same stage drew hundreds of thousands of fans. In 2003, Paul McCartney also performed on the Via dei Fori Imperiali. John has been performing in Italy since 1973.
Concert damage expectedto be fixed before game
DETROIT -- The Rolling Stones were a huge hit at Comerica Park -- and the damage wasn't as bad as expected. Damage to the sod in the outfield from the Aug. 31 Stones concert was expected to be repaired in time for tonight's Tigers game against the Cleveland Indians, the team's groundskeeper said. Heather Nabozny told the Detroit Free Press that about 22,500 square feet of sod mashed down by the crowd would be replaced. A typical concert at Comerica requires 13,500 square feet of new sod. "It turned out better than I thought," Nabozny said. After the Stones' two concerts earlier at Boston's Fenway Park, the Red Sox replaced 40,000 square feet of sod.
Clooney, Blanchett to star in next Soderbergh film
VENICE, Italy -- Steven Soderbergh's next picture starring George Clooney will be a murder mystery titled "The Good German," set in Berlin some six weeks after the end of World War II in 1945. The director and producer said Saturday that shooting would start soon on the film, which will also feature Cate Blanchett. Soderbergh was in Venice to promote another murder story, "Bubble," in which he used nonprofessional actors in a small Ohio town to give the film a realistic look. "The Good German" will be a "more normal film," said Soderbergh, an Oscar winner for "Traffic." Five years ago, he and Clooney formed a film company called Section Eight, based at Warner Bros. Its first film was "Ocean's Eleven," also starring Clooney.
Notable deaths
Allan Gray, who spent more than three decades as a reporter and editor at the Chicago Tribune, died Friday, just weeks after being diagnosed with lung cancer. He was 62.
Alexandru Paleologu, a leading Romanian intellectual, senator and diplomat, died Thursday after a long illness. He was 86. Paleologu served briefly as Romania's ambassador to France after the fall of communism in 1989.
h R & amp;B singer lifts spiritsof Katrina refugees
HOUSTON -- It wasn't for a concert. R & amp;B singer Macy Gray came to town specifically to help refugees from the flooding in New Orleans. "I just really wanted to help out," Gray said after spending Saturday handing out clothes and toiletries in the Astrodome. The Grammy winner said she was able to lift the refugees' spirits and many were excited to see her. "It is very humbling, but I loved every second of it," Gray said. "It was really gratifying and I had a great time."
Today's birthdays
The former president of the Motion Picture Association of America, Jack Valenti, is 84. Former Federal Reserve Board chairman Paul A. Volcker is 78. Comedian-actor Bob Newhart is 76. Actor William Devane is 66. Actor George Lazenby is 66. Singer John Stewart is 66. Actress Raquel Welch is 65. Singer Al Stewart is 60. Actor-director Dennis Dugan is 59. Singer Loudon Wainwright III is 59. Drummer Buddy Miles is 59. "Cathy" cartoonist Cathy Guisewite is 55. Actor Michael Keaton is 54. Country musician Jamie Oldaker (The Tractors) is 54. Rhythm-and-blues singer Terry Ellis is 39. Rock musician Brad Wilk is 37.

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