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The New Season: Silvio, followed by Salt-n-Pepa. Shoop!

July 13, 2007 |  1:37 pm


Right around the time we were considering an espresso break, VH1 arrived and woke us up.

Steven First up was Steven Van Zandt, the founding member of Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band and, most recently, our beloved Silvio on "The Sopranos." Van Zandt, sans his pompadour, appeared with Mark Goodman, one of the original MTV veejays, who is narrating a seven-part series "Seven Ages of Rock," which will cover the various genres of rock music and their impact on pop culture.

It was a pleasure to listen to these lovers of all things rock, but, of course, there was The Question: What happened at the end of "The Sopranos"?

Van Zandt: "Well, I don't quite understand that question. Right from the beginning, David Chase broke every rule in the book and everybody loved him for it. Literally, he just refused all along to compromise and play that sort of Hollywood-imposed game of fraudulent closure. That was his position. Life doesn't work that way. It doesn't get wrapped up every 30 minutes or 60 minutes -- and he kept it that way until the end. I thought it was a brilliant ending myself."

Asked to compare working with Chase and Springsteen, Van Zandt said: "They are very similar. Just seeing New Jersey become fashionable twice in a lifetime was remarkable in and of itself. They're both crazy and uncompromising and singular in their visions. They've both been very inspirational to me and I'm proud to call them my friends. They don't do any marketing research. They don't care about anyone's visions. They just have a vision and they realize it."

Then Salt-n-Pepa were in the house to talk about their breakup, reunion and upcoming reality series. In case you don't know who they are, or have forgotten, they were the highly successful '90s rappers who were the first female rap group to win a Grammy.

But they abruptly broke up in 2002 when Salt (Cheryl Wray) called Pepa while she was getting a pedicure and told her "I don't want to be joined at the hips with you anymore."

This was shocking to Pepa (Sandra Denton) and she's been bitter ever since. She didn't understand and apparently Salt didn't explain it very well. She once sent a letter that Pep says she never received and Salt says was never returned to her by the post office.

Now the two women -- both mothers -- are trying to literally get their act together. But it's not easy. The reality series will cover all their mending and venting, they said.

But is healing the priority?

Salt: I've apologized many times.
Pepa: Apologizing means making things happen.
Salt: Apologizing means "Let's make some money." When I make millions, it's all good.
Pepa: You made millions.
Salt: More millions.

-- Maria Elena Fernandez

(File photo by Luis M. Alvarez / AP)