Soul Singer Is ‘Valley Girl’

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Soul singer GLADYS KNIGHT, who went on tour this year for the first time in her 43-year career without her backup singers, the Pips, has bought a house in Chatsworth.

Knight, 48, rose to fame with the Pips--her brother and two cousins--during the 1960s and ‘70s with such hits as “The Way We Were,” “If I Were Your Woman,” “Heard It Through The Grapevine,” “The Best Thing That Ever Happened to Me” and “Midnight Train to Georgia.”

Her first official solo album, “Good Woman,” was released earlier this year.

She bought a five-bedroom, three-bath home with a mountain view, tennis court, pool and spa for slightly more than $500,000. The nearly 3,000-square-foot house was built 13 years ago but was refurbished just before Knight bought it.


She plans to entertain her children and grandchildren at the house, sources say. Knight also has a ranch in Las Vegas.

Yvonne Matilsky of Fred Sands’ Tarzana office had the listing, and Tiki Greenberg of Sands’ Northridge office represented Knight.


Producer JON PETERS has put his Malibu Colony home on the market at $5.65 million.

The former co-chairman of Sony Pictures Entertainment bought his beachfront house from entertainer Pia Zadora and her husband, businessman Meshulam Riklis, about two years ago.

“They needed a larger house then, and he needs a larger house now,” said Carol Rapf, who shares the listing with her son, Matt Rapf Jr., at Jim Rapf & Associates, Malibu.

After buying the three-bedroom house, Peters installed pegged-wood floors and a hot tub on a beachfront patio and built a pond with a bridge over it, leading to his front door. He also restored and added a projection room to a cottage that is part of his property.

Peters has other homes in Aspen, Colo., and the Beverly Hills area.


JOE PESCI’S film company has leased singer/entertainer Charo’s Beverly Hills house for a year, and the actor and his friends will stay there when they’re in town, sources say.


Pesci’s latest film, “Public Eye” with Barbara Hershey, was just released citywide. He has been in such recent films as “Lethal Weapon 2,” “GoodFellas,” “Home Alone,” “JFK” and “My Cousin Vinny.”

His film company leased the gated, Mediterranean-style home, which has eight bedrooms and maid’s quarters in about 13,000 square feet, for about $12,000 a month, sources say. Built in 1920, the house was purchased by Charo 22 years ago, when she was married to late bandleader Xavier Cugat. Charo lives on Hanalei Bay, Kauai, and has a restaurant there.

The home had been listed with Natalie Janger of Mike Silverman & Associates. Paul Czako and Elaine Young of Alvarez, Hyland & Young represented the film company.


The Hollywood Hills home of the late Oscar-winning British director TONY RICHARDSON has been sold to director Barbet Schroeder for close to its $1.59-million asking price.

Richardson, a leading filmmaker for more than 30 years who won an Academy Award in 1963 for “Tom Jones,” died about a year ago. He had owned the home since 1983.

Schroeder directed and produced “Single White Female,” released last summer, and he directed “Reversal of Fortune” (1990) and “Barfly” (1987). Schroeder, who was born in Iran in 1941, was educated in Paris and worked as a photojournalist in India and as a jazz impresario in Europe before he became a film director in the United States.


His new home is English in style and has two swimming pools plus a guest house, pool house and tennis court. Neal Schultz and Stephen Shapiro of Stan Herman & Associates had the listing, and Schroeder was represented by Steve Robinson of Fred Sands Estates.


A 2 1/2-acre estate in Bel-Air, which was owned by a Saudi prince, has been sold to a Los Angeles businessman and his wife.

A $2-million trust deed was taken out on the property; however, some real estate sources say that the home sold for close to its $8-million asking price, and other sources say that it sold for about $6 million. The original asking price was $10 million.

Even at nearly $8 million, the sale has been described as “an incredible buy.”

The home, on Sunset Boulevard, was built in 1950, but the Saudis, who lived there for a number of years, spent, some say, as much as $10.5 million remodeling it in 1977.

The compound includes a 10,000-square-foot main house, 5,000-square-foot guest house and “royal gym,” with a barber chair and massage room. The estate has 14 bedrooms and 17 baths--”all done to the nines,” said a realtor who was not involved in the transaction.

The buyers were represented by Wayne Pridgen of Jon Douglas Co.’s West Los Angeles office.


Rodeo Realty broker CECELIA WAESCHLE and her husband, TWA pilot Clifford Waeschle, will host their sixth annual dinner benefit for the homeless this Thursday, from 6 to 9 p.m., at the Hotel Bel-Air.


Funds from the $125-a-person dinner will go to St. Joseph Center, a Venice agency that provides food, clothing, child care, job training and housing assistance to 12,000 homeless and low-income people. Rick Merrill, president of Prudential California Realty, and Joyce Rey, general manager of Rodeo Realty, will co-sponsor the benefit.