Berlusconi named ‘Rockstar of the Year’

The Italian edition of music magazine Rolling Stone said on Monday it has elected sex scandal-plagued Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi as its 2009 ”Rockstar of the Year”.

Berlusconi, a former cruise ship crooner, who continues to record Neapolitan love songs, did not win the title based on musical merits, the magazine indicated.

The 73-year-old media magnate-turned politician earned it ”with a lifestyle for which the rock’n’roll definition seems even to be reductive,” Rolling Stone editor-in-chief, Carlo Antonelli said.

”Rod Stewart, Brian Jones and Keith Richards are greenhorns in comparison to Mr Berlusconi,” he added, referring to rock stars whose philandering or drug-related excesses have made headlines in the past.

”Michael Jackson’s Neverland is a little prairie house compared to Villa Certosa,” Antonelli added. He was comparing the late ”King of Pop’s” fairground-themed residence with Berlusconi’s sprawling Sardinian villa.

Earlier this year, Berlusconi took legal action to block the publication of photographs in which topless young women were seen cavorting at Villa Certosa.

Reports also emerged of dozens of young women allegedly paid to attend parties by Berlusconi at Villa Certosa and his Rome residence, Palazzo Grazioli, while a self-described prostitute claimed she spent a night with the premier.

In June, Berlusconi’s wife, former actress, Veronica Lario, began divorce proceedings after accusing him of consorting with underage women. — Sapa-dpa

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