Have You Heard About … Prince, Zac Brown, Widespread Panic, Kevin Hart

Prince reported to be OK after an early morning trip to the hospital … Zac Brown comments on police raid in Florida … Widespread Panic keyboardist Jo Jo Herman tells a newspaper the band will cease touring after this year … Apparently comedian Kevin Hart also told a publication that he’s done with road trips.

Photo: NPG Records/AP Photo
Performing at the LG Arena in Birmingham, England.

Prince’s private plane made an unscheduled stop at Quad City International Airport in Moline, Ill., so that the artist could be transported by ambulance to a local hospital, according to TMZ.

Citing those good ol’ unidentified sources, the celebrity news site attributed one source as saying Prince was “not doing well” while another told the media outlet the Purple One was doing OK.

Eventually a Prince representative contacted TMZ to say the artist had been struggling with the flu for several weeks.  Despite being ill, he played his two scheduled “Piano & A Microphone” shows in Atlanta Thursday night.

But his conditioned worsened after he got on the plane, which resulted in the unscheduled landing in Moline.  The rep said he was released from the hospital after a few hours and has returned home.

Zac Brown has learned his lesson about staying out late.  The country star released a statement Friday in response to reports that he was in a Palm Beach, Fla., hotel last week when police raided the room and arrested three people for possessing drugs.

According to Fox 411, police were called to the Four Seasons Hotel to investigate a “suspicious vehicle.”  They arrested a man who reportedly had “35 small zip lock baggies containing white power that later tested positive for cocaine.”

Photo: Vance Frick
Intrust Bank Arena, Wichita, Kans.

The man told police that he was with two women who were in a room at the hotel.  The officers reportedly discovered nine people in the room, including Brown.  Although Brown wasn’t arrested, police did bust the two women, reported to be strippers, for possessing cocaine and slapped cuffs on another man for having marijuana.

While reporting on the bust, TMZ presented the story as if police were covering up the fact that Brown was in the room.  However, Fox 411 reports it has obtained an events report listing the singer’s name.

Meanwhile, Brown copped to his presence at the hotel via a post on his Facebook page:

My dad always said nothing good ever happens when you stay out late. It’s a lesson I learned the hard way last week, being in the wrong place at the wrong time. I attended a private gathering at a Miami-area hotel and had only been there for a short time when police officers arrived and arrested two people in the room who had just showed up a few minutes before. I did not know these people and had no idea that there were drugs in their possession. I cooperated fully with the authorities and am not part of any ongoing police investigation. Everyone is responsible for their actions, and I regret using poor judgment and putting myself in that position.

I am focused on continuing to make great music for my fans, and on representing my family and community well with our philanthropic work.

And next time I’ll make sure to remember what my dad taught me.

Widespread Panic played two nights in Jackson, Miss., earlier this week and keyboardist Jo Jo Herman apparently told the local paper that the band will cease touring after this year.

Although the headline in the Clarion-Ledger says “Widespread Panic To End Touring In 2016,” the article spends the first few paragraphs summarizing the band’s accomplishments, its extremely dedicated fanbase and how the Panic is “intrinsically connected to Mississippi.”

But it’s Herman’s remarks in the last few paragraphs that really stand out. 

“We’re really wearing it out this year because we’re basically going to call it touring-wise after this year; we’re not going to tour anymore,” Herman said.

The newspaper article notes that Widespread Panic isn’t breaking up or completely retiring from the concert stage.  Herman told the paper the band will still play gigs at places such as New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival or the Red Rocks Amphitheatre near Denver.  It is also planning a New Year’s Eve gig.

“We’re still all brothers and sisters and still going to play together. … It is really not that big of a deal, I don’t think.  It’s a part of  life. … I’ll go home and figure out what I’m going to do for the rest of my life.  I will probably go back to Proud Larry’s (in Oxford) and set up a piano.”

Photo: AP Photo

Kevin Hart wasn’t exactly in positive-touring mode while in Las Vegas for the movie industry’s CinemaCon where studios and distributors show off their new flicks. The comedian told an audience made up of theater owners that his recent road adventure just might be his last.

“I don’t know if I’m ever going to go out and do it again,” Hart said, according to Variety.  “It was my last fucking tour.”

Hart was at CinemaCon to promote his upcoming “What Now” film depicting the funny guy in the middle of his last tour.