For the past two years, international singing star Celine Dion has been on a combination of maternity leave and self-imposed hiatus. Now, according to ABC News, she's ready to restart her career. The revelation comes from an interview that correspondent Barbara Walters had with the 33-year-old singer. It will be aired Friday. During the interview, Dion unveiled a new song, "A New Day Has Come." She also talks about her life and the fact that she intends to honor a $100 million contract signed some time ago to appear at Caesar's Palace in Las Vegas. She says she will play there early in 2003. The interview was conducted at the singer's Florida estate.
TRIBUTE CD PLANNED TO HONOR JOHNNY CASH
Producers of a new album to honor "The Man in Black," country icon Johnny Cash, say that an incredible group of stars from a variety of music genres has signed on for the project. Among those who will record tracks are Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen and Steve Earle. Dylan will record "Train of Love." Springsteen has informed the studio he wants to add "Give My Love to Rose" to the CD. Earle's contribution will be "Hardin Wouldn't Run." Billboard magazine's online service says that the CD will be released in late May. By the way, already signed on to help out in the tribute are Emmylou Harris, Sheryl Crow, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Dwight Yoakam, Travis Tritt and Little Richard. Quite a lineup. The release of the CD will honor Cash's 70th birthday.
JAPANESE MAN NOW WORLD'S OLDEST
A retired Japanese silkworm breeder has been declared the World's Oldest Man by the people at the Guinness Book of World Records. Yukichi Ghuganji is 112. He assumed the title upon the death of an Italian, Antonio Todde. He died recently, just shy of his 113th birthday. Ghuganji's 72-year-old daughter tells the publication that her dad is still alert, but confined to his bed. He is able sit up and eat. His favorite meals include beef and pork and lots of miso soup.
BUSY ALAN JACKSON TO VISIT BIG APPLE
After taping a session of "The Late Show with David Letterman," country's sexy Alan Jackson will play a legendary New York nightspot best known for its rock and punk acts. The news provider country.com reports that Jackson -- whose pro-American ballad "Where Were You (When the World Stopped Turning)?" has swept the country -- will play a session at CBGB. The initials originally stood for "Country, Blue-Grass and Blues," but the club's owner quickly shelved the concept and turned the place into a showcase for punk acts, such as Television and Blondie. By the way, Jackson has also scheduled a stop on "The Rosie O'Donnell Show" for Feb. 7. Oddly, he plans to perform lesser-known songs on both Letterman's show and O'Donnell's and not his "Where Were You" ballad.
BILLY JOEL MUSICAL HEADED FOR BROADWAY
Plans are being finalized for the long-awaited mounting of a Broadway musical based on the songs of Billy Joel. Published reports now indicate that the songfest, produced by the multi-talented choreographer Twyla Tharp, will center on the exploits of six close friends from the late 1960s through the late 1980s. Nearly 30 of Joel's compositions will be included. The show, "Movin' Out," will premiere in Chicago. The opening is set for the Schubert Theatre there, sometime in June. Plans are to take the show to the Richard Rodgers Theatre on Broadway in September.
GUILIANI AD HIGH SPOT OF SUPER BOWL
If you watched the coverage of this year's Super Bowl, you likely saw a touching "Thank You" placed in a commercial position, voiced by the former mayor of New York City, Rudolph Giuliani. In the spot, "Mr. Mayor" thanked the country and said that the tragic events of 9/11 not only brought the Big Apple together but congealed America's patriotism. The half-minute presentation was funded by the online job-finding service Monster.com, which says it will additionally donate more than a third of a million dollars to a fund to benefit the surviving families of uniformed officers who died in the attacks. Guiliani apparently wrote his own script and took no fee for doing the commercial. He taped the message from atop the Rockefeller Center building with the skyline of New York City -- minus the Twin Towers -- in the background.
UPI DAILY SURVEY QUESTION NO. 261
Today we are asking: "How many of you watched NONE of the Super Bowl broadcast?" Put BOWL in the subject line and send to email@example.com via the Internet.
RESULTS OF QUESTION NO. 256 (CLOTHING)
Last week we asked about the oldest article of clothing you have that you still enjoy wearing. Here is a sampling of the replies: Cards reports that the timing of our question was ironic. Just hours before reading my column she and her husband were looking at photos of a 1994 religious event and noticed that they still occasionally wear the clothes they had on then. Pam says she still has an old belt that dates from the '60s. The great thing is that it still fits. Angela still wears a 21-year-old skating dress she wore at her first competition. Barbaracsll has a T-shirt she got in 8th grade honoring the St. Joseph School Cavaliers. That was 42 years ago; it is still wearable. I want to know what kind of "gentle" detergent she uses. Djdowling loves to wear a coat that once belonged to a departed grandmother. She says her husband hates it, but what the heck. Christy has a black shirt she has owned since the late 1980s and loves wearing it. Me? I just went to my closet and tried to get into my 1965 Washington Catholic High School, red, black and blue cheerleading sweater. Forget it! GBA.