Student

Matthew Wood, on a year abroad at the University of Alabama, discusses what life is like today in one of the major battlegrounds of the 60s

28 killed as storms ravage US

Powerful storms stretching from the US Gulf Coast to the Great Lakes in the north wrecked two small towns and killed at least 28 people as the system tore roofs off schools and homes and damaged a maximum-security prison. It was the second deadly tornado outbreak this week.

Louisiana Red: Blues singer and guitarist who found fame at Montreux

Popular music may be a young person's game but from time to time older performers come tonational attention long after what might be regarded as their sell-by date. Gordon Haskell, Ted Hawkins and Seasick Steve are good examples, and so too is the blues singer and slide guitarist, Louisiana Red. He had been a journeyman musician for many years before he triumphed at the Montreux Jazz Festival in 1975 and soon was seen as an elder statesman of the blues.

DVD: To Kill a Mockingbird (12)

Restore your faith in humanity with this stupendous adaptation of Harper Lee's masterpiece.

The anti-Gagas: A new tribe of young female artists is going back to basics

They come from the same generation as Lady Gaga – but the young female artists on the following pages certainly don't share her love for outlandish showmanship. simmy richman meets the sisters doing it for posterity

US tornadoes kill four

Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick declared a state of emergency and authorised 1,000 National Guard troops to be called up to provide support after at least two tornadoes touched down.

Deadly tornado tears through the US midwest

Search teams bathed in the harsh glow of floodlights early today picked through rubble of neighborhoods and commercial districts demolished by a tornado that killed at least 30 people in the southwestern Missouri town of Joplin.

The Secret Sisters, Bush Hall, London

Laughing and joking with the crowd, at ease on stage, you'd never guess that less than two years ago Laura and Lydia Rogers had never been on a plane, let alone performed in front of a live audience. The sibling duo, who hail from the perfectly Bible-Belt-sounding Muscle Shoals, Alabama, formed The Secret Sisters after elder sister Laura (who handles lead vocals) was spotted at an impromptu Nashville audition. Los Angeles beckoned and their self-titled debut album of sweet harmonies and country charm (recorded, in faux-1950s fashioned, without any digital equipment) was born.

Rupert Cornwell: Violent, extreme and contrary (the weather, that is)

Out of America: The larger-than-life meteorology of the US – its twisters, floods, and droughts – mirrors the nation

Queen 'appalled' by US storm deaths

The Queen has expressed "deep sympathy" for the families and friends of people killed in the storms that have hit Alabama and the southern United States.

Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit, The Garage, London

Jason Isbell strides onstage and apologises for the slimmed-down nature of his band, trimmed from five to three for his current tour. "We're not so much the 400 Unit tonight as the Jason Isbell power trio," he admits, but nobody's complaining: Alabama blue-eyed soulster Isbell has the burly, no-nonsense look of someone who can take care of himself pretty well. Besides which, he's one of the few guitarists for whom the phrase "power trio" doesn't portend endless indulgence, but rather an attention to texture and rhythm that plugs any holes in the arrangements.

Tornadoes leave US communities devastated

Thousands of people still reeling from the second-deadliest day of tornadoes in US history surveyed scenes of devastation across the South yesterday as they prepared to mourn the hundreds killed with a day of sombre church services. All told, at least 342 people died across seven states, including 250 in Alabama. Thousands more were injured. Alberta City, a neighbourhood in Tuscaloosa, Alabama was flattened by the tornadoes.

Twister season is the deadliest since 1925

With emergency services knocked out or worked to breaking point, volunteers bring vital supplies to those left stranded across the southern states

Obama tours areas wrecked by twisters

Barack Obama yesterday toured parts of Alabama devastated by a string of tornadoes that have killed nearly 300 people.

Obama to visit scene of deadly tornados

President Barack Obama planned today to tour parts of Alabama that were devastated by an outbreak of tornados that killed nearly 300 people in the U.S. South, as survivors tried to recover what was left of their belongings.

250 die in one day as twisters rampage from Texas to Virginia

Search-and-rescue teams were last night hunting for survivors beneath fallen masonry and tangled joists, power lines and fallen trees in towns and hamlets across seven states in the south-eastern US which were ravaged by the worst outbreak of tornadoes seen in almost four decades. Almost 250 people are known to have died.

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Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
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Lake Garda, Venice & Verona
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Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
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Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
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Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

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Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

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A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
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Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

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These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

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A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

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