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Top of the Xmas pops?

While the music from Idol is tanking in Australia, the as-yet-undecided winner of The X-Factor here in the UK is the favourite to top the charts at Christmas time. Bookmakers William Hill are offering odds of 1/5 on that being the case. [Pundits say the song may be X-Factor favourite Diana Vickers' version of Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah.] The betting continues: Sir Terry Wogan & Aled Jones with Little Drummer Boy/ Peace on Earth (4/1) and Leona Lewis with a cover of Snow Patrol's Run (10/1). Rolf Harris gets a look in at 33/1 with his remake of Two Little Boys featuring the Fron Male Choir, and the troubled Amy Winehouse is the outsider at 100/1. Worth a pound's punt? Maybe not ...

Idol: The music nobody wants

Here's proof, if it's needed, that Australian Idol is a (waning) TV phenomenon, not a musical one. The Herald Sun reports: "The Idol top 10 album has stiffed on the charts, debuting yesterday at No. 96 with just 565 copies sold nationally. Only 19 copies were snapped up digitally." We await with bated breath the results for winner Wes Carr's debut CD.

Farewell, Richey Edwards

Richey Edwards, the troubled frontman of British band Manic Street Preachers, has been declared dead almost 14 years after he disappeared. While many fans claim to have sighted him, Elvis-style, over the years, and his bandmates have continued to bank his share of their earnings (and will soon release an album using his lyrics), his parents have apparently finally conceded that Edwards won't be coming back. It's widely believed he jumped off the Severn Bridge. May he rest in peace.

Wes What'shisname?

Wes Carr has won. Will we still recognise his name in two years, I wonder.

Are you the next Hi-5er?

Channel 9 and Southern Star have announced that Kellie Crawford is leaving the pre-fab pre-school pop group otherwise known as Hi-5 and the producers are looking for a replacement. If you think you've got what it takes to entertain the kids (and you qualify for a blue card), email this address.

With friends like these ...

"He’s a friend of mine and that’s pretty much it. I’m not going to get into details, but it’s a small world."

So, enigmatically, says 19-year-old American fashion student Andrea Feick, who has been pictured in a bikini cosying up to U2 frontman Bono, 48, but denies having a romantic relationship with him.

Golly, Molly, leave it alone

You can never go back. Unless you're Molly Meldrum and you want to squeeze some more mileage out of the Countdown franchise. The show will return for one night only to launch a new cable music, 111 Hits.

Never mind the butter

Is this the ultimate rock'n'roll swindle? John "Johnny Rotten" Lydon is nearing ubiquity on British television with a series of butter commercials. This is one of them.

Lucky accident?

A plane crash in which four other people died may have saved the life of DJ AM. He says doctors found a potentially fatal blood clot when they examined him.

Farewell, Neal Hefti

Neal Hefti, a former big band trumpeter who became a Hollywood composer, has died at the age of 85. He will be best remembered for writing the theme to the TV show Batman, which was a hit at the time and was later covered by The Jam and a thousand garage bands.

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