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Boy Band Magnate Lou Pearlman Gets Twenty-Five Years in Prison

May 21, 2008 12:50 PM ET

Lou Pearlman, the boy band Svengali who helped guide the Backstreet Boys and 'NSYNC to chart-topping success, was sentenced to twenty-five years in prison today for charges that he bilked investors and banks out of over $300 million dollars. Over two decades, Pearlman convinced investors to dump money into two companies that only existed on paper. Among Pearlman's victims were "his family, his close friends and people in their 70s and 80s who have lost their life savings." The sentencing brings to a close the story of Pearlman who, upon learning that federal charges were coming, escaped to Bali, only to be caught last June by Indonesian police.

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Song Stories

“Nightshift”

The Commodores | 1984

The year after soul legends Marvin Gaye and Jackie Wilson died, songwriter Dennis Lambert asked members of the Commodores to give him a tape of ideas. "And the one from Walter Orange has this wonderful bass line," said co-writer Franne Golde. "Plus the lyric, 'Marvin, he was a friend of mine' ... Within 10 minutes, we had decided it should be something like a modern R&B version of 'Rock 'n' Roll Heaven,' and I just said, 'Nightshift.'" This tribute to the recently deceased musicians was the band's only hit without Lionel Richie, who had left for a solo career.

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