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
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Saturday 27 September 2008
Ever come across fifty-quid bloke? A phenomenon of the baby-boom generation, he's not uncommon. You may have one for your dad or have the dubious pleasure of being married to one. Fifty-quid bloke is a middle-aged music fan who hasn't got to grips with downloading and therefore drops £50 or thereabouts on CDs whenever he enters a big record shop. Since I can't stand big record shops, I have fifty-quid bloke moments on Amazon. My most recent splurge was prompted by a long article in The New Yorker about American folk music. Near the start, it mentioned that an Atlanta record producer called Lance Ledbetter had issued "what many consider the greatest gospel compilation ever made: a six-CD set called Goodbye, Babylon". Not being a great gospel fan, this did not lure me.
Friday 19 September 2008
A highly influential steel guitarist, Don Helms was best known for his membership of Hank Williams' band The Drifting Cowboys. His distinctive style, with its blues inflections and characteristic use of the upper octaves, featured on over a hundred of the singer's classic sides, including "Cold, Cold Heart" (1950), "I Can't Help It (If I'm Still in Love With You)" (1951) and "Your Cheatin' Heart" (1952).
Thursday 14 August 2008
A city council printed 720,000 copies of a leaflet praising its residents' recycling - but used the wrong picture on the cover.
Thursday 19 June 2008
A US government oversight office plunged one of the defence industry's most lucrative and bitterly contested contracts into chaos yesterday when it backed a protest from Boeing against the US Air Force's decision to award a $40bn (£20.4bn) in-flight refuelling aircraft replacement programme to its European rival EADS.
Wednesday 11 June 2008
Ernst Stuhlinger was one of the most talented members of the German group of rocket scientists who developed the V-2 missile and subsequently played a key role in most of the major events that led to the birth of the Space Age and enabled their adopted country, the United States, to become the world's leading space power.
Friday 23 May 2008
Karl Rove, the former trusted adviser to President George Bush, will be compelled to testify on Capitol Hill in a high-profile investigation of alleged political meddling by the White House in decisions made by the US Justice Department.
Friday 09 May 2008
John Sayles delves into the early years of rock'n'roll. Danny Glover plays the owner of a blues club in Fifties Alabama who tries to stave off bankruptcy by hiring the New Orleans legend "Guitar Sam" for a one-night-only gig.
Saturday 26 April 2008
Wednesday 23 April 2008
In stark contrast to his Democrat rivals, John McCain spent yesterday far from Pennsylvania, where, unopposed, he will pick up all 74 delegates. He was in a depressed steel town in Ohio, telling voters that under his leadership, the economic good times would return.
Friday 08 February 2008
Dazed survivors of the worst tornadoes to hit the American Bible Belt in more than two decades surveyed the wreckage of their flattened homes yesterday, as state and federal clean-up crews herded them into temporary shelters and started to tackle downed power lines, severed gas pipes, fallen trees and debris as far as the eye could see.
Friday 01 February 2008
Despite having been in existence since the days when music revolved at 78rpm, The Blind Boys of Alabama have never before recorded in New Orleans – and sadly, listening to this latest album, it's no surprise.
Thursday 24 January 2008
Sunday 04 June 2006
Friday 16 September 2005
Monday 05 September 2005
British Muslim leaders outraged after Eric Pickles says followers of Islam should 'prove their identity'
UK terror fears: My jihadist son returned from Syria mentally scarred – now he is being ignored
Nigel Farage: NHS might have to be replaced by private health insurance
Billy Crystal: 'Stop shoving gay sex scenes in my face'
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
French court convicts three over homophobic tweets, in case hailed as a 'significant victory' by LGBT rights campaigners
- 1 The truth about 'girl things': Three cheers for Heather Watson's honesty
- 2 Man who held up 'hire me' sign at Waterloo station returns a year later with 'I'm hiring' sign
- 4 Tennis fan suing Australian Open organisers for 'failing to shade spectators' during Murray match
- 5 Men behaving badly: Urinating while standing, 'manspreading' and the gendering of selfishness