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Showbiz Real Start Stories: Gene`s Other Kids; Tyson Revelations, Wilson Phillips Still Holding On; Giuliana`s Cancer Reality

Aired July 4, 2012 - 23:00:00   ET


A.J. HAMMER, HOST: On this special edition of SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, Showbiz Real Star Stories revealed. Carnie Wilson`s shocking weight loss surgery secrets. Giuliana Rancic`s revelations about having a double mastectomy. Tonight, the real story behind Giuliana and Carnie`s incredible health comebacks.

And Showbiz rocks --

Kiss, Sammy Hagar, Blondie, get your air guitar out, SHOWBIZ TONIGHT is taking you backstage with some of the biggest, hardest rocking bands of all time, and they`re revealing their secrets to me. This special edition of SHOWBIZ TONIGHT starts right now.


NISCHELLE TURNER, HOST: Hello. I`m Nischelle Turner with a special edition of SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, "Showbiz Real Star Stories." Hollywood`s A- list isn`t always quick to tell their personal secrets. But tonight all that changes. First up, confessions of a rock star. Gene Simmons is part of the iconic rock band, Kiss. He`s known as a tough guy, who says what he means and means what he says.

His reality show, "Simmons Family Jewels," has given us a new look into his life as a family man, and now we`re getting an even deeper look at an emotional side of Simmons. I went one-on-one with Gene and got him to reveal what really makes him tick. Warning, this confession might just tug at your heartstrings.


TURNER (on camera) I think the jig is up with you, Gene Simmons, because you introduce yourself at the beginning of "The Family Jewels" as, "I`m Gene Simmons" --

GENE SIMMONS, "GENE SIMMONS FAMILY JEWELS": You mean -- you mean "Gene Simmons Family Jewels."

TURNER: Yes, "Gene Simmons Family Jewels." And you say, "I`m Gene Simmons, rock god." But this reality show has shown a different side of you.

SIMMONS: Well, you know, if you stick around long enough, then you get to crawl under the skin of the bad guy.

TURNER: And dare I say that you even come off a bit sweet, especially with the kids in Africa?

SIMMONS: Two, three.


SIMMONS: This will be a lifetime memory. And I wish all the school -- all the schools in America, the school kids, could experience seeing another side of life on Planet Earth, because we live here and you`re in L.A. or you go to New York and this is the world, and it`s not.

And there are -- I don`t know what the numbers are, but clearly, half the world is going to sleep hungry, many of them children. And it`s not -- it`s not an unbeatable idea. We can beat this and everybody can do something.

TURNER: If you don`t mind me asking, what is the cost of that?

SIMMONS: About $30 a month will feed a child, which really means the family, because they will apportion foods and stuff like that. So I`m taking over. I`m going to do thousands and thousands of children.

Do some of them come to school hungry?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, of course.

TURNER: I love that passion. I really do.

SIMMONS: My father left us when I was about six or seven. And one day, a box came in. It was a cardboard box. Later, I figured out it was a care package. I picked up my first can of food. It was canned peaches. I`ve never seen a can. You know, we didn`t even have a toilet when I was growing up.

And she opened up with a knife. She had to break through it and opened it up. And I remember tasting -- this gets a little emotional for me. So I remember tasting those canned peaches, sweetest things I`d ever had. And all of a sudden, I had the idea that somebody cared. And I don`t know what it meant. And it was a sweater, there were some holes in it, that I put that was too big for me. But I probably went to school wearing it.

And once I grew up, I promised myself I`ve got to make a difference. You can`t go through life and die and leave things the way they are because we can all make a difference and if I die today I know I made a difference.

TURNER: Is that what you pass on to your kids?

SIMMONS: You betcha. Sophie, my daughter, who`s 19, on her own, raises money, goes there and visits the kids, consoles them, comforts them, so that these kids -- when you`re abused, when you`re hungry, when you`re alone, you have the feeling nobody cares. Sophie makes sure they know somebody cares.

TURNER: You talked about how talented your kids are. And you do -- I remember seeing Sophie sing "At Last" at the wedding. Crazy.

SIMMONS: Well, they all -- everybody can sing except me.


SIMMONS: Shannon can sing. Sophie can sing. Nick sings. They love blues and torch songs, all sort of stuff. I can -- I can`t sing. I`ve got a long tongue. That`s about it.

TURNER: How many times a day do fans ask to see your tongue?

SIMMONS: All the time.

TURNER: Do you ever get tired of showing them your tongue?

SIMMONS: Well, you have to give them something to believe in. Because women out there believe that it`s just a legend. But, girls, it`s true.


TURNER: I`m telling you, that Gene Simmons, he does not quit. He and Kiss have been doing the rock star thing, get this, almost 40 years. Fire- breathing, smoking guitars, rockets on stage, they are definitely legends in my book.

So why aren`t they in the rock `n` roll hall of fame yet, huh? The group puts on their face paint and tells A.J. Hammer the real story. And let me tell you, in true rock star fashion, they break it down without sparing anyone`s feelings. They`re fired up and they have got a lot to say. Do they think they`re being dissed over less talented acts? A.J. has that fired-up interview in just a bit.

Mike Tyson has long been considered a loose cannon inside and outside the boxing ring. From the infamous bite fight to that face tattoo and of course his rape conviction, Mike Tyson`s public personal has been shaped by a lifetime of outrageous behavior. But as I learned, there`s more to Mike Tyson than all of that.

I caught up with the boxing great in Las Vegas when he was rehearsing for his one-man show, and he confessed some shocking details of his life that really had a profound effect on him.


MIKE TYSON, FORMER BOXER: (INAUDIBLE) raw individually periodically, I guess, you know. I don`t know. That`s what I want to be. That`s what I was taught to be raw. My mother and her friends are sex workers. And I wasn`t any men in the house. So I was not really around men, I was around a lot of women. I was young.

TURNER: When you say sex worker, you mean a prostitute?

TYSON: Yes, like -- yes. Well, you know, politically correct is sex workers now.

TURNER: Do you think that -- seeing your mother be a sex worker and the other women, do you think that`s what some people would say you didn`t treat women with respect?

TYSON: Hundred percent, 100 percent. No doubt about that, that I didn`t understand a commitment until like a couple of years ago, three years ago because I -- you have to understand, every man I met, they`re all chauvinistic. They believe they`re superior to women. That`s the world I grew up in.

TURNER: The truth is, I was a little nervous today because yes, that`s the image. I was a fan of you boxing. But the image is this tough, mean, rough, sometimes dangerous man.

TYSON: I was very successful in my job, making you think that.

TURNER: Well, can I ask you this because you talked about how you went to prison and you talked about that here? What did you learn from that experience?

TYSON: I was never at peace with myself. I was never comfortable in my skin, you know, because of things I`ve seen as a kid. And I used to grow up in a real violent, dysfunctional household. And that`s why I see the violence in. Dysfunctional and (INAUDIBLE), all that stuff. And it`s just really a big burden and I didn`t like myself because of the things that I seen.


HAMMER: So I thought it`s really interesting that you admitted that you were nervous before you actually spoke with Mike and told it right to his face. How do you feel about the guy now?

TURNER: You know, Mike Tyson -- he`s an interesting character. I`m not really sure, to be honest, how I feel about him now, A.J., still. Do I think that he is fully there and fully evolved? No. But do I feel like he`s a work in progress? Absolutely. And I think he has made steps. He`s been clean and sober for three years. He`s now a vegan, he`s trying to live the life of a domestic married man. So I think he`s trying to take some positive steps into really cleaning up his life.

HAMMER: Certainly a different guy and so candid. He opened up to you in such a big way about his life and al of his troubles.

TURNER: Yes. HAMMER: And he even had a very candid conversation with you about what was happening behind the scenes of "The Hangover."

TURNER: Yes, crazy. I had to ask him about his scene-stealing role in "The Hangover," A.J., and what was going on in his life then. I have to say I was very surprised when he admitted that he was doing drugs at that time. Take a look.


TYSON: Gambling with life back then. I wasn`t the person I am now. Just gambling with life.

TURNER: What I --


TURNER: You were battling addiction when you were doing that movie?

TYSON: Yes, I was doing drugs. But listen, I was on the set. And I was just doing my lines. Regardless of my situation, if I was high or if I was obnoxious, I come to work, I come to give 100 percent. That`s what I credit myself with being a real professional artist, you know. I`m never late. And it`s always on top of my -- my personal life is disgusting, I`m always late, I`m a mess. But I`m talking about for my professional life, I`m impeccable. I`m unstoppable. I`m on my game.


HAMMER: Well, compelling to hear him talk about that. And it`s really interesting that he says --


HAMMER: -- he wasn`t the person then that he is now.

SHOWBIZ TONIGHT`s Nischelle Turner, thanks so much, Nischelle.

TURNER: Indeed.

HAMMER: Well, we turn now to Carnie Wilson`s real star story. Tonight, the real story behind Carnie`s second dramatic weight loss surgery. She reveals to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT the truth about her two-decade struggle to stay healthy and how she`s finally feeling like she`s coming out on top.

Plus Giuliana and Bill Rancic`s cancer reality.


GIULIANA RANCIC, TV HOST: So for me it was very important to go public and let other young women know, that if it can happen to me, it can happen to them.


HAMMER: Giuliana opens up to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT about her double mastectomy, her incredible brave recovery and why she shared her private pain with the world.

This is a special edition of SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, real star stories on HLN.

And now, Tony Bennett`s real star story about recording his now famous duet, Amy Winehouse.


TONY BENNETT, SINGER: Everybody says, look out. You know, but she showed up completely sober. You know, and with her dad, and they were so nice to me. And she told me, she said, when she received her first Grammy years ago, she said, it wasn`t that she won that thrilled her but the fact that Tony Bennett announced that she won.



HAMMER: That of course, Wilson Phillips, still holding on after two decades. Are you with me? Kind of hard to believe it has been a massive 22 years since Wilson Phillips first topped the charts with their huge debut hit "Hold On" back in 1990.

Welcome back to this special edition of SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, real star stories. Tonight, pop stars get personal. Wilson Phillips still holding on after two decades, but so much has happened in their lives since the trio first topped the charts around the world all those years ago. More hit songs, of course, marriages, kids, and some very well-publicized struggles, including the dramatic story of Carnie Wilson`s second weight loss surgery.

Well, I sat down with the three ladies of Wilson Phillips for a very revealing SHOWBIZ TONIGHT newsmaker interview and I asked if they had any reservations about covering songs that were made famous by their superstar parents.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: We were afraid of being accused of, you know, nepotism basically. And we`ve dealt with that our whole career. But we`ve really stood on our own now with our own hits and everything. And we thought, you know, it`s time to embrace the legacy.


HAMMER: Well, and, Carnie, you`re still talking about stuff that you and I have had some pretty serious and heavy conversations about --

CARNIE WILSON, "WILSON PHILLIPS": Still losing weight.

HAMMER: Still losing -- look. It`s very interesting to see that you are still talking about getting healthy and being healthy on your show, some 12 years after you had your first surgery.


HAMMER: The gastric bypass where you lost like 150 pounds. And you`re talking about that right before you had yet a second surgery.


HAMMER: We even remember you broadcast that first one on the Internet. Why did you decide to continue to sort of put this stuff out there?

C. WILSON: Because I don`t hide anything that I do, and especially when it`s about the message of getting healthy, that I needed help again. And I reached out and got it. And I just try to encourage people to not feel afraid if they feel vulnerable or they need help, to ask for it, and try to make a positive change in their life. I needed help and I got it. And the main thing is that it`s not just that I had a lap band put on and that I feel full quickly, thank you, god, for this tool.

But it`s the change of behavior. It`s what I`m doing every day. It`s what I`m putting in my mouth. I`m changing the way I`m living. And I`m hoping that that`s for good. That`s my intention.

HAMMER: Yes, and I`ve said to you before I love that you put it out there because I do feel you do it in a responsible way and let people know, hey, these are my choices, maybe use this to inform whatever conversations you`re having with professionals or whatever it is.

C. WILSON: That`s right. That`s right.

HAMMER: But here`s the thing. We`ve seen this play out on the reality show, particularly as you were getting set to have your next surgery. And you broke the news to these ladies that you were having the surgery --


HAMMER: You`re going to have it a month before you went on tour.


HAMMER: Let`s see how that unfolded, shall we?


C. WILSON: I don`t want to become diabetic.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Yes, I agree with her.

C. WILSON: Within a year, I could become diabetic. And I`m not -- I`m not doing it.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: When were you planning on doing this procedure?

C. WILSON: It`s going to be in the next week.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Why are you springing this on us today?


HAMMER: OK. I mean -- you know, she`s springing it on you, Chynna. Did that worry you?

CHYNNA WILSON, "WILSON PHILLIPS": Well, I mean, it just took us by surprise because we were planning on doing a show in New Orleans and we had all of these plans and then all of a sudden Carnie`s getting surgery. So it freaked me out a little bit. And I definitely am supportive of Carnie and I wanted her to do it. It just was a little off-putting. I didn`t know what to do.

HAMMER: Wendy?

WENDY WILSON, "WILSON PHILLIPS": It was scary. I mean we felt like we were walking on eggshells.


W. WILSON: We didn`t want to be sued, you know, we wanted to please our audience.

C. WILSON: You know life happens. And that`s what this show is about.


C. WILSON: It`s real. Because that`s really what`s happening in my life. And the truth is, I think, particularly with the scheduling of the doctors and everything you`re going through, so many women can relate to what you are dealing with.

C. WILSON: Of course. I mean try standing next to these two. I don`t care -- I`ll try my whole life, I`ll never be as thinner or tall as them. And that`s the way it is. But I`m proud of who I am. We should all be proud of who we are. We`re born with what we have and we`ve got to work with it. And it`s (INAUDIBLE).


HAMMER: Carnie, Wendy and Chynna, I think they`re just such amazing women, so much fun. And it was so great as always having them right here on SHOWBIZ TONIGHT to share with us what they`ve been up to as well as what I think were some really important tips. And if you haven`t done so yet, I urge you to check out Wilson Phillips` album, "Dedicated," it`s available everywhere.

Well, from Carnie Wilson`s real star story of her second dramatic weight loss surgery, to Giuliana Rancic`s real-life cancer confession. Giuliana and her husband Bill Rancic open up to SHOWBIZ TONIGHT about why she made her battle with breast cancer so public.


G. RANCIC: For me, it was very important to go public and let other young women know that if it could happen to me, it could happen to them.


HAMMER: How has life been for Giuliana since having a double mastectomy?

Plus SHOWBIZ rocks. Hanging with Hagar. I`m one-on-one with the legendary Sammy Hagar. How he became the $100 million man. It`s got nothing to do with Van Halen.

This is a special edition of SHOWBIZ TONIGHT real star stories. And now Justin Bieber`s real-star confession about being bullied.


JUSTIN BIEBER, SINGER: I feel like I was bullied and I think that almost every place --

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: You were actually bullied?

BIEBER: Yes. I feel like most people in their lifetime have been bullied at some point. And I think that it`s about time that people start making a change. And a lot of times principals just let it go or teachers let it go or, you know, other students just let it go.




G. RANCIC: And I was sitting in the doctor`s office waiting, no one was coming. And like an hour went by, no one was coming in. And I was just so nervous. And I`m like, something is really wrong. So I thought, if I just leave the building, then I won`t hear this news.


HAMMER: Wow. Such raw emotion from Giuliana Rancic about her breast cancer diagnosis. And she shared her real star story on her reality show with her husband, Bill.

Welcome back to a special edition of SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, real star stories. Tonight, Giuliana and Bill Rancic`s cancer reality. We watched as they juggled two demanding careers, as they struggled to have a baby, and then their toughest challenge came when Giuliana learned that she had breast cancer.

Through it all, Bill has been by Giuliana`s side as she had a double mastectomy and went through recovery. It has certainly been an emotional and difficult journey, but one they have been very open about. So I had to ask Bill and Giuliana how they felt about watching their real-life drama from her cancer diagnosis to her double mastectomy unfold on their reality show.


G. RANCIC: I remember when this was all happening to me at the very beginning. I would look at childhood pictures of myself and I would go, how did this -- how did I go from that to here? How the hell did this happen to me?

HAMMER: Such a young age.

G. RANCIC: You know? It`s just shocking at 36 years old. How did this happen to me? And that was one of the reasons I went public is because I realized for the first time in my life, I`m really not invincible. I`m really not bulletproof. Yes, I take care of myself. That doesn`t matter always. You still have to stay on top of this. So for me, it was very important to go public and let other young women know that if it could happen to me, it could happen to them.

HAMMER: Yes, I mean the invincibility thing, I think that`s something we all feel until a point when something happens in our lives, something like you`re going through.


HAMMER: And Bill, we have talked extensively in the past about this decision to go public because it still is a very personal decision and a very big decision that you guys made together. Has there been any point or is there any point now where you feel like, despite the good that you`re doing and you will continue to do, that you want to pull it back, maybe say, you know, we need a little more of our privacy?

BILL RANCIC, GIULIANA`S HUSBAND: You know, I mean, we get plenty of privacy. I mean the show, it`s not as if they live in our home. And you know, we`re producers on the show. So we do, you know, have the ability to control some of the content. But from -- you know, from day one with this reality show, we said, we`re going to, you know, use the show for good and not evil.

HAMMER: Right.

B. RANCIC: And that`s what we`ve done over the last five seasons. We`ve tackled a lot of issues that affect a lot of couples. And I think this is going to be a great legacy for Giuliana because, you know, if she saved one life as a result of going public, that`s more than most people can say they`ve done in their -- you know, lifetime.

HAMMER: But it`s not lost, I mean, you want to do your show for good and not evil.


HAMMER: And the show is a success. And it`s going on with season five now.


G. RANCIC: Season five.

HAMMER: You know, evil usually wins out on reality show --


HAMMER: Bravo for Bill and Giuliana.


HAMMER: I give them a lot of credit for being so candid. It`s pretty incredible.

Here`s what`s coming up at the bottom of the hour on a special edition of SHOWBIZ TONIGHT. SHOWBIZ rocks. Why is Gene Simmons slamming the rock `n` roll hall of fame?


HAMMER: For some unknown reason, you guys aren`t there yet?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It doesn`t matter.

HAMMER: You`ve been eligible since `99. Why does it matter?

SIMMONS: It doesn`t matter because it`s become a sham.


HAMMER: Gene Simmons and Kiss reveal to me what that beef is all about in a must-see SHOWBIZ exclusive interview.

Plus, I go one-on-one with rock legends Blondie. What does the legendary rock group think about becoming reality music show judges? Can you imagine Deborah Harry on "American Idol"?


HAMMER: Tonight on this special edition of SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, "SHOWBIZ Rocks," KISS diss, the giants of rock have a bone to pick with the Rock `n` Roll Hall of Fame.


HAMMER: For some unknown you guys aren`t there yet?

GENE SIMMONS, BASSIST, KISS: It doesn`t matter.

HAMMER: You`ve been eligible since `99, why doesn`t it matter?

SIMMONS: It doesn`t matter because it`s become a sham.


HAMMER: Those are fighting words. Will KISS ever kiss and make up after their rock snub?

And backstage with Blondie, these guys are sounding better than ever. But tonight they`re sounding off about being judges on "American Idol." This is a special edition of SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, "SHOWBIZ Rocks."

Welcome to this special edition of SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, "SHOWBIZ Rocks." And there is no way to even think about rock `n` roll without the ultimate rock showmen, KISS. It is truly a wild time whenever I get to hang out with those guys. And is it me? They don`t seem to age, right? I guess all that makeup helps.

Anyway, there`s not a lot that gets these guys fired up like the massive pyrotechnics you can see in their concerts except for one thing, their exclusion from the Rock `n` Roll Hall of Fame.

These guys have been eligible for more than a decade now, and they haven`t been inducted yet. You have to hear what KISS told me about that. But first, I had some fun with the guys, reminiscing about the very first time we met, all the way back in 1996.


HAMMER: Would you care to reminisce a little bit?


HAMMER: Let`s just fire up the old iPad and see what we got here. Let`s see, what`s that?

STANLEY: Look at that.

HAMMER: Huh? He was harassing me way back then.

SIMMONS: Oh, my God, it`s Ryan Seacrest!

HAMMER: Thanks so much for that.

STANLEY: What a handsome young man. Look at this.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Gene tried to kiss him then, too.

STANLEY: Look at that.

HAMMER: That was the closest Gene Simmons`s tongue ever came to my cheek until right now.

Do you remember this? Oh, now, it touched me.


HAMMER: This was 1996.

STANLEY: This was the reunion. This was the tour that started back into the glory of KISS in all its makeup and fine haberdashery.

HAMMER: Let`s just talk a moment about the Rock `n` Roll Hall of Fame. For some unknown reason, you guys aren`t there yet.

SIMMONS: It doesn`t matter.

HAMMER: You`ve been eligible since `99. Why doesn`t it matter?

SIMMONS: It doesn`t matter because it`s become a sham and because this is an insult to Madonna and all the other disco and rappers who have been inducted in there, because, now, they can`t get into the Disco Hall of Fame. It`s a sham. We`re thinking of buying it and firing everybody.

HAMMER: Would you burn the place down?

SIMMONS: No. Leave the Elvis stuff. You leave the Stones. You leave the Beatles. There`s a lot of bands that shouldn`t be in there and you know it.

HAMMER: But there is a chance you will be inducted? Your fans certainly hope you are. And will you show up?

STANLEY: Gladly, because it means something to the fans. The fans want us in the Rock `n` Roll Hall of Fame so, of course, we`ll do it for them.

But when you don`t even know who is voting for these people, it`s a great marketing ploy. You have a bunch of people who came up with this title, Rock `n` Roll Hall of Fame.

Who are these people who do the voting? It`s obviously not the people because when you look at some of the nominees, you don`t even know who they are.

HAMMER: So things are obviously a lot different now than when you guys started. The way people get noticed is different. We`re talking about "American Idol." That is certainly one of the ways.

Do you guys think you would have perhaps considered competing on a show like that? Or would you be putting your videos up on YouTube from the very start when nobody knew who you were?

STANLEY: You know, it`s such a different time now to try to have these hypothetical discussions of what we would have been like. Would we have survived? Could we have come into existence today?

You know, we`re fortunate that we are mighty dinosaurs who still rule the earth.


HAMMER: They definitely still rock. I also had the great pleasure of spending some time with the legendary Sammy Hagar in one of the greatest music cities in the world, New Orleans. And I can tell you that I learned very quickly, any time Sammy`s around, it`s a party.

The man did launch his own tequila company. Now he has got a brand- new rum company. But the question is, would he trade all the good times on stage for a gig as a singing show judge on TV? You`ve got to hear what he told me about that. But first, Sammy tells me why if he`s not performing in Cabo San Lucas at his infamous Cabo Wabo Cantina, there`s only one place he wants to be, and that`s New Orleans.


SAMMY HAGAR, SINGER: Well, Cabo San Lucas, New Orleans, Las Vegas, those are party towns. Really, I love playing these towns because it`s like the party is already here. We just go join it.

HAMMER: I was a little surprised, Sammy, you know, you walked into the bar. I half expected you to just go behind the bar for a second to make sure they were properly featuring.

HAGAR: I checked.

HAMMER: Well, just in case, I checked for you. I did my research.

HAGAR: Thank you, sir.

HAMMER: . and I made sure that the Cabo Wabo brand was represented here at the house.

HAGAR: I`ve got one in my -- well, at worst, I just represent this way. But I`ve got one in my dressing room. So I`m cool. We roll with a bunch of them. But the truth of the matter is that I think they have it here part of the time or most of the time.

You know, people market things and put their name brand on anything, and then they show me, hold up a bottle of tequila, I go, I didn`t put my name on that, I invented that. I put the bottles and put the tequila in them and put the corks in them myself. I mean, I totally started that from scratch. I didn`t endorse.

HAMMER: That was not a little vanity project like, you know...


HAMMER: A lot of stars, particularly female stars and some men as well, they`ll come -- the brand will come up with a perfume for them, and then they go into a factory and they sniff a bunch of perfumes and then slap their name on it.

You came up with the tequila.

HAGAR: No, the whole name, the brand, we built the Cabo Wabo, the whole nine yards. So I didn`t slap my name on nothing.

HAMMER: You know, you obviously, with the kind of career you have had and the longevity you have had, you worked long and hard to get there. It`s not lost on anybody. It`s a much different game now. Fame and success comes much differently and in different ways than it used to.

There are people and some quite talented people who get instant fame, whether it be because of YouTube or they went on one of these music competitions or reality shows. Anything wrong with that in your mind? Is it just a different day?

HAGAR: Just a different day. There`s nothing wrong with anything. You know, I`m a firm believer. I even -- the whole thing about giving the music away, I think it straightened a lot of record companies who had been really tough on artists and they ripped so many people off their whole life.

You know, karma comes around. I`m OK with playing music for free, giving music away. I`m OK with all that. You know, you`ve got to find a way that makes people more creative.

HAMMER: Were you ever approached to be a judge on one of these shows?

HAGAR: Yes, I was.

HAMMER: Because it`s -- I just look at you. I`m thinking, it`s perfect.

HAGAR: I`ve done numerous shows. One of the ones I really like a lot, I won`t say who it is, and I turned it down. I was with my management this afternoon flying in here. We were talking on the plane about doing this and doing that. And I just said, you know, I really don`t want to do TV, because I get offered tons of TV.

And I don`t want to do it, because it`s hard work, I admit it.

HAMMER: Everybody always wants to know and you have said not all that long ago that you feel it is inevitable that one day you will find yourself back on stage with Van Halen. My question.


HAMMER: My question -- you said it.


HAMMER: But here`s my question. First of all, do you still feel that way?

HAGAR: So much water would probably have to go under the bridge. I`m really not interested right now, anyway, but I haven`t been asked. So I`m not like saying no, because I haven`t been asked. And I`m really happy that Eddie seems to be on a good foot and healthy, and that`s the most important thing for that band.


HAMMER: Sammy is 64. I know a lot of fans think it would be really cool to see Van Halen in a reunion show with Sammy Hagar some day. But in the meantime, Sammy`s still rocking on his own. He has got big plans for a tour that he calls "Four Decades of Rock," and feature music from his bands Chickenfoot, the Wabos, and Montrose, plus "Van Hagar," songs from his days as the front man for Van Halen. So you should keep an eye out for that. It should be next year at some time.

Well, picture this for a moment. You`re stressed out. You can`t get to the beach. So you pop on your iPod for an instant trip to "Margaritaville" with Jimmy Buffett. Don`t you feel better already? Jimmy Buffett talking with me about being the king of all things cool. And find out which young band he chills out to.

And backstage with Blondie, sounding off about "American Idol" and Justin Bieber?



HAMMER: "It`s Five O`Clock Somewhere." No truer words have ever been sung. And of course, the great Jimmy Buffett taking everybody in New Orleans on a little trip to "Margaritaville." But just before that, we sat down backstage for an exclusive SHOWBIZ TONIGHT interview.

Welcome back to a special edition of SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, "SHOWBIZ Rocks." As a proud part-time "Parrothead," I was just thrilled to hang out and talk to Jimmy Buffett just moments before one of his legendary shows. Jimmy is an icon, not only for his music, of course, but for his enormous and extremely profitable "Margaritaville" empire.

He`s got the margarita-maker, the restaurant, he has even got his own new skin care line for all those long days in the sun. But even with all that, Jimmy tells me that for him, there`s nothing like getting on stage, especially in New Orleans, because that`s where he got his start as a street performer some 40 years ago.


JIMMY BUFFETT, MUSICIAN: New Orleans was always in my heart when I went out and traveled and moved to other parts of the country because I grew up here. I`m a child of Highway 90. I really believe that. And New Orleans was the first city that I came away from and I went to college 90 miles up the road. So it`s pretty ingrained in what I do, is this is the base out of which I came.

HAMMER: And we feel it in your shows. I listened to quite a few of your shows on Radio Margaritaville. They`re playing all the time. And I get the impression with everything that you`ve done in your life, with the books and all the business and everything else, I still genuinely get the feeling listening to you play that you`re at your happiest when you`re on that stage bringing summertime to everybody in the audience.

BUFFETT: It is. I mean, it`s coming up. We have got a beautiful day here. And I came out -- I thought it was great because it`s kind of a festive atmosphere. I have got to hand it to the promoters who did this show. They really kind of put this thing together to make it comfortable for us performers.

And I wasn`t quite sure because it`s kind of out of our element. We usually kind of roll in our own circus, you know?

HAMMER: The unique thing about you, look, a lot of artists when fans come to meet them, they`ll say, oh, I saw you in concert in Oklahoma or, oh, I bought that record when, and they`ll give you a little story.

You`re probably the only guy who has fans coming up to you saying, oh, I have your margarita-maker, oh, I stayed at your hotel.

BUFFETT: Well, yes.

HAMMER: That`s kind of cool.

BUFFETT: Well, it`s to the point that we were lucky enough to kind of create a brand as we went along. And it`s pretty authentic. I still do those things. And the things that I like to do have kind of become a part of the brand.

And, you know, as I said, I don`t know anybody that wouldn`t want to spend two weeks at the beach. And that`s worked pretty well.

HAMMER: Exactly, what is the strangest item that somebody has ever approached to you and asked you to perhaps license and slap your name on?


HAMMER: Something that you said, I don`t think.

BUFFETT: That I`ve said no to?


BUFFETT: There were some interesting things. There was like a guy had a thing that he wanted to like -- you could put -- you could kind of shave your name or you could shave like a fin onto a dog like -- it was like a trimmer. And I went...

HAMMER: No, not for you?


HAMMER: He really is that laid back. Another fascinating thing I learned about Jimmy Buffett, he`s a huge fan of the band Black Keys. Yes, one of the coolest guys on the planet rocks out to one of the coolest bands on the planet. And I quickly learned why after hanging with The Black Keys.

Now Dan Auerbach and Patrick Carney have been at it for a long time. But they really hit it big with their album "El Camino." Dan and Patrick are kind of reluctant celebrities. They still really feel like they`re just two guys from Ohio who make music in their basement.

That couldn`t be further from the truth anymore. The reality is they are international music super stars who now get to rub elbows with other megastars and, quite frankly, some not so megastars.

You`ve got to hear what The Black Keys told me about their strangest star encounter since becoming famous, being interviewed by "The Situation" from "Jersey Shore." Watch this.


PATRICK CARNEY, MUSICIAN, THE BLACK KEYS: He`s interviewing us at the Grammys and he asked Dan -- my brother, Mike, was there, too, because he was nominated for a Grammy. He asked the three of us what our "Jersey Shore" names would be. And my brother told him that his would be "The Situation." And he couldn`t process that.

HAMMER: No? I`m shocked to hear that.

DAN AUERBACH, MUSICIAN, THE BLACK KEYS: No, he`s not very nimble mentally.

HAMMER: But right now, as you well know, there are many ways for bands who are working really hard, who are not working really hard to get famous very quickly. Obviously shows like "American Idol" and "The Voice" are among them.

Is there anything wrong with that? I mean, you guys had a much different path, but the instant success that can come with a show like the boys from "American Idol" in your mind?

AUERBACH: I don`t think there`s anything wrong with playing music, loving music, and playing music and trying to do it for a living any way you can figure out how to do that. It`s such a difficult business. I wouldn`t suggest someone get in their van and drive around for 10 years playing shows in crappy little clubs.

HAMMER: Seems insane.

AUERBACH: It was insane. It seems insane to us and we did it. You know what I mean? So there`s no wrong way to do it, I don`t know.


HAMMER: Be on the lookout for The Black Keys, the movie. No, Dan and Patrick haven`t gone Hollywood. Their red hot summer tour this summer is being filmed for a documentary. Not your dad`s kind of rock doc. The director tells Spin magazine, the film is going to be a buddy movie with perhaps the greatest soundtrack of all time.

Coming up tonight, we have my exclusive with the great Blondie.


HAMMER: I`m curious what they think of the current music scene and shows like "American Idol." And I want to know from Debbie Harry, would she judge on a show like "American Idol"?

I bet your answer is going to surprise me. But hold your thoughts.


HAMMER: And find out which member of Blondie is a "Belieber." "SHOWBIZ Rocks," backstage with Blondie. You`re watching a special edition of SHOWBIZ TONIGHT.

Right now, Jay-Z tells SHOWBIZ TONIGHT why you are going to have to wait a little longer before he drops his next album. But here`s a hint. He`s got a girl problem.


JAY-Z, RAPPER & MOGUL: I thought I would be really motivated with all the things that`s happening and all the change, and, you know, a child in my life now, to get back in the studio. But I find that I`m really just motivated to just be with her.


JAY-Z: Yes.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: How is fatherhood?

JAY-Z: Oh, it`s fantastic.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: How has it changed you?

JAY-Z: It`s amazing.



HAMMER: Tonight, backstage with Blondie, "Heart of Glass," "Call Me," "Rapture." Those classic hits shattered the image of what was considered rock back in the late `70s. And all these years later, I`m happy to report Debbie Harry, Chris Stein, and Clem Burke sound as great as ever on stage.

I went one-on-one with them just before one of their big shows, and I had to ask what they thought of the flood of singing competition shows on TV. Are they cool with the instant fame that winners get and would they be judges of one of those shows? You might be surprised by what Debbie and the guys had to tell me about that.


DEBBIE HARRY, MUSICIAN, BLONDIE: I don`t know if i could really judge people. It`s very hard to -- well, I mean, I figured if they`ve got it together to do it, that that was high marks.

HAMMER: Well, yes, because you were late on the artist level to what these people have poured in, their heart and soul into just getting up on stage and having that moment.

CHRIS STEIN, MUSICIAN, BLONDIE: That`s what great about some of the shows that you are seeing the output of emotion and the personal connection that they have with the music and with the audience and all that stuff. That comes across, I think.

HAMMER: But obviously what has happened is it changes the way people become music stars. Like I said, you guys, look, you paid your dues for a long time and made your way through in a way that is not done anymore. What do you think of it.

STEIN: Justin Bieber, man, right? God bless him.

HAMMER: Instant.

STEIN: Yes, you know, YouTube, right?

HAMMER: So what do you think of that, though? In terms of.

STEIN: I like Bieber a lot. I think he has got a great voice. I think he`s a really nice kid. He seems like a great kid. I would like to meet him. I`m a fan.

HAMMER: And obviously the definition of what it has been to be Blondie has probably changed radically in the decades you guys have been at it. What was the best part of being Blondie in 1980?

HARRY: In 1980?


HARRY: We had our first hit in the States, right? "Heart of Glass," I think that that was.

BURKE: `79.

HAMMER: Yes, 1979, "Heart of Glass," and of course the others not far behind.

HARRY: And then what was after that that was.

HAMMER: "Call Me" came a couple of years later.

BURKE: I enjoyed the chaos of it all, that was like really fun, just the sort of spontaneity, the sort of "punk-rockness" of it all. Yet we had the commercial aspect going. We had hit records, but we had like one foot in the underground and one foot above ground.

HAMMER: What`s the best part of being Blondie now, 2012?

BURKE: Doing gigs like this.

HARRY: We`re still alive, man.

STEIN: We`re still here, yes.


HAMMER: I just loved seeing them playing live in 2012, and it was so much fun bringing you some of the greatest musicians of all time. I had a blast. Hope you did, too.

That is it for this special edition of SHOWBIZ TONIGHT, "SHOWBIZ Rocks." I`m A.J. Hammer. Remember, you can catch SHOWBIZ TONIGHT exclusively weeknights at 11:00 p.m. Eastern and Pacific right here on HLN.