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Blige, fans get apology

Burger King is apologizing to Mary J. Blige and her fans for releasing an ad that garnered the singer serious fan backlash.

The clip featured Blige soulfully singing about the fast-food chain's new chicken snack wraps. It immediately went viral when it was released Monday, and some in the black community said it was stereotypical. Burger King pulled the ad Tuesday over what the company said was a music licensing issue. The company explained Wednesday the spot was unfinished.


Lauer to stay on 'Today'

Matt Lauer planned to announce today he has signed a long-term contract to remain as co-host of "Today," the No. 1 morning show, NBC News spokeswoman Megan Kopf said Thursday.

Lauer's decision provides important stability for "Today" and puts to rest speculation that he might reunite with his former co-host, Katie Couric, on the syndicated show she's launching this fall.

There had been some reports that "American Idol" host Ryan Seacrest could replace Lauer, and the two bantered about it Wednesday when Seacrest visited "Today" to announce he would take part in NBC's coverage of the Summer Olympics.


Chip off the quarterback

When Rachel Bradshaw was a little girl, her father, Hall of Fame quarterback and part-time singer Terry Bradshaw, would pull out a guitar and employ the four chords he knew to sing Patsy Cline's "Crazy" with his daughter.

Two decades later, father joined daughter Wednesday night at a dinner to celebrate her signing a record deal with Bigger Picture Group. The younger Bradshaw came to Nashville from her hometown of Dallas to go to Belmont University, but she had an ulterior motive.

"My parents wanted me to be in college, but I came here to find out everything about music and about songwriting: Who do I talk to, how do I talk to them?" Bradshaw said. "I spent a few years just meeting people and getting to know everybody I possibly could, and I made friends and we'd start to write songs together."

Now, the 24-year-old country singer will soon begin recording her debut album with Keith Stegall, Bigger Picture's chairman and chief creative officer and a producer known for his work with Alan Jackson and Zac Brown Band.

Rachel's not the only member of the family with new music.

Terry Bradshaw, who signed a deal with Mercury Records in the mid-1970s at the height of his career with the Pittsburgh Steelers, has released five albums with various labels and plans to begin work on a sixth soon.

-- From News and wire services