Marion Meadows – who, as one critic wrote, delivers a “sweet and funky soprano sound” on his saxaphone – will open the show April 22. He released his 10th album, “Dressed to Chill,” last year. The headline entertainment will wrap up with a performance by Wayman Tisdale, who went from slams to jams, leaving a 12-year professional basketball career in the late 1990s to focus on music. Tisdale’s latest album, “Way Up,” is in the top 20 of Billboard magazine’s contemporary jazz charts. “I was born to entertain,” Tisdale said on his Web site, waymantisdale.com. “I just love people, and I feel like entertainment goes right in line with my personality. Whether it’s on the stage or playing basketball, it’s just what I’ve been called to do on this earth.” Norton said the California Poppy Festival will take place, rain or shine, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. April 21 and 22 at Lancaster City Park. For information, visit the festival Web site at poppyfestival.com. LANCASTER – A saxophonist known for sweet and smooth music, an NBA star turned bass player and a roots rock band will be the highlight entertainers in April for Lancaster’s 2007 California Poppy Festival. The festival, Lancaster’s signature event, will feature the band Blessid Union of Souls on April 21. Saxophonist Marion Meadow and bassist Wayman Tisdale will be featured on April 22. The festival, held at Lancaster City Park each year, is expected to draw about 60,000 visitors. “Music is one the cornerstones of the California Poppy Festival,” said Lyle Norton, director of Lancaster’s Parks, Recreation and Arts Department. “Whether it is the chart-topping headliners that perform on the Poppy Stage, talented local musicians who create atmosphere in each area, or the bagpipers who kick off the festival each morning with their unique instruments, there is a genre to peak every patron’s interest.” Blessid Union of Souls is one of those bands difficult to categorize. It plays a mix of early rock, adult contemporary, Southern rock, country and blues. The band’s singles include “I Believe” and “Hey Leonardo (She Likes Me for Me).” james.skeen@dailynews (661) 267-5743160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!
This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. Aetna Raises Earnings Outlook In other market news, coverage continues of the cost and effectiveness of Sovaldi, a new drug to treat hepatitis C, and the related earnings gained by Gilead Sciences, its manufacturer. The Wall Street Journal: Aetna Raises Outlook On Strong Quarterly GrowthThe company raised its full-year operating earnings forecast to $6.35 to $6.55 a share from its prior view of at least $6.25 a share. The insurer in February said it expects to lose money on its business in the Affordable Care Act marketplaces this year, with the demographics of enrollees skewing slightly more than expected toward people likely to rack up higher costs. Still, the company noted that individual insurance represents a small part of operating revenue (Rubin, 4/24).NPR: Costly Hepatitis C Pill Shreds Drug Industry Sales RecordThe launch of Sovaldi, the $1,000-a-day pill for hepatitis C, is shaping up as the most successful ever. The Food and Drug Administration approved the pill in December. And then Gilead Sciences was off to the races. The company said it sold $2.27 billion worth of Sovaldi in the quarter that ended March 31. $2.27 billion! The boffo number beat Wall Street’s estimate for the quarter by more than $1 billion (Hensley, 4/23).PBS NewsHour: New Hepatitis-C Drug Raises Hope At A Hefty PriceA new drug has a 90 to 100 percent chance of curing the Hepatitis-C virus, but costs tens of thousands of dollars for a course of treatment. The announcement by the manufacturer that it earned more than $2 billion in the year’s first quarter raises the question, who should pay when drugs are highly effective, but extremely expensive? Hari Sreenivasan reports on the profits, coverage and costs (Sreenivasan, 4/23).