Mega-billionaire Paul Allen continues to battle cancer bravely.

Sources tell me he did indeed have his annual party aboard his yacht, Octopus, back on December 30th in St. Barth’s. But the party was scaled down to just about 150 people and not the usual 500. Allen, they say, had just finished a round of chemo for non Hodgkin’s lymphoma and wanted to celebrate.

As usual, Allen did manage to play some rock and roll with his house band. His good friend Jon Bon Jovi joined in at one point. Bon Jovi’s David Byron, who wrote the Broadway hit, “Memphis.” played keyboards. But one guest overheard Bon Jovi express surprise when he first saw Allen. The Microsoft co-founder is said to be quite thin, and has lost most of his hair during treatment.

Nevertheless, Allen did entertain a crowd that included his other music pal, Robbie Robertson, of The Band, as well as Usher, Orlando Bloom, George Lucas, Lorne Michaels, Larry Gagosian, and Bob Shaye. And, of course, lots of pretty girls.

Sources say Allen talked about fighting the cancer. He resigned from the board of Charter Communications last December, but said it was not health related.

“His friends rallied around him and convinced him he must live his life normally,” one guest’ told me. “Once he played with his band, he seemed to have a lot of energy and went around talking to everyone. It was good for him.”

Author
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. He wrote the Intelligencer column for NY Magazine in the mid 90s, reporting on the OJ Simpson trial, as well as for the real Parade magazine (when it was owned by Conde Nast), and has written for the New York Observer, Details, Vogue, Spin, the New York Times, NY Post, Washington Post, and NY Daily News among many publications. He is the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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