Arts and Entertainment

You may be wondering, with his former protégé Plan B at the top of his game, why we still need Mike Skinner, a previous generation's white British social-realist rapper. The fact is that, while Ben Drew's forte is surveying the bigger political picture, few songwriters around can zoom in and focus on fine detail as skilfully as Skinner.

Human story: Anthony Quinn

The Streets, By Anthony Quinn

A thrilling story of deprivation that shows off the bravura versatility of its author

Beck's website: Song reader is an experiment in what an album can be at the end of 2012

Beck's new album to be released in sheet-music form

For some music fans, digital MP3 files aren't a patch on old-fashioned vinyl. But now the singer-songwriter Beck is delving further into the past by releasing an album that will be published entirely as individual pieces of sheet music.

Beastie Boys' founder 'MCA' Adam Yauch dies age 47

Adam Yauch, the gravelly voiced Beastie Boys rapper and the most conscientious member of the seminal hip-hop group, has died, his mentor Russell Simmons said tonight. He was 47.

Jamie Hewlett-designed Chuck Taylor shoes

Trending: Are Gorillaz really 'selling their soles'?

This week, an all-star line-up of three of the best acts of the 21st century (or parts of them, at least) will team up for a new collaboration. It's not for a Brits spectacular, but for a track called "Do Ya Thing" featuring Gorillaz, LCD Soundsystem's James Murphy and OutKast's André 3000, and funded, and given away by, Nike-owned Converse.

We Love: Chucky Ts - The cartoon band Gorillaz were an obvious choice for a new collaboration with Converse, which sees Murdoc and co. decorating four styles of the canvas high-top shoe. From £45, converse.com

The Fashion Audit: Chucky Ts, Anklets and Bobble Hats

What we love, we're not sure about, we're buying and can't wait for....

Album: Gotye, Making Mirrors (Communion / Island)

Anyone coming to Gotye's third album via twinkling torch-song-cum-YouTube-phenomenon "Somebody That I Used to Know" may be surprised, then disappointed.

Heavy D at at the BET Hip Hop Awards in Atlanta last month

Heavy D: Rapper and actor best known for the crossover hit 'Now That We Found Love'

From The Fat Boys to Notorious B.I.G. via Fat Joe and Big Pun, many hip-hop performers have opted for a nom de rap that makes the most of their considerable size.

Science of Speech, Hammersmith Apollo, London

When this show was announced in February, it looked like New York hip-hop was making a stand against today's questionable customisation of the genre or someone had worked out a way to neatly cash in on the legendary reputations of two groups and an MC who've each carved a credible niche in music history. Rakim, for instance, has been every rapper's favourite rapper for the last 25 years, responsible for inspiring lyricists to move beyond pre-school wordplay in favour of more complex rhyme schemes and metaphors. Tonight, he's a respectful warm-up performer, cooly reeling off classics like "Paid in Full" and "Don't Sweat the Technique" with just the help of a DJ. It feels a little rushed and if he'd had 20 more minutes, he might have converted some of the youngsters in the crowd who couldn't help but look on at the 43-year-old obliviously.

Album: Booker T Jones, The Road from Memphis (Anti-)

Having revisited their 1960s landmark Odessey and Oracle a few years back, Rod Argent and Colin Blunstone here revive The Zombies as a going concern, with a new album that repositions the band within the sonic lineage of Steely Dan.

The Streets, Picture House, Edinburgh

A showman signs off in style

Album: N.E.R.D, Nothing (Polydor / Star Trak)

If you thought Pharrell had jumped the shark, Nothing will come as something of a shock.

Album: Mos Def, The Ecstatic (Downtown)

Just when you think hiphopis a spent force, alongcomes one of its moreoriginal talents to provethat the genre can stillpack a punch.

De La Soul, The Ritz, Manchester

Three feet high – and mighty

Album: Busdriver, Jhelli Beam (Anti)

"Be real," says Busdriver at the start of 'Jhelli Beam', "conscious rap failed us."

My Fantasy Band: Just Jack

Vocals - D'Angelo and Lykke Li
I've been listening to 'Voodoo' by D'Angelo quite a lot recently and his voice is indescribable, it acts as another instrument. I think there's just something about Lykke Li and I enjoyed her album, 'Youth Novels'. Obviously she looks cool but I think she has a really interesting and unique voice.

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Sepp Blatter resignation: The beginning of Fifa's long road to reform?

Does Blatter's departure mean Fifa will automatically clean up its act?

Don't bet on it, says Tom Peck
Charles Kennedy: The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

Charles Kennedy was consistently a man of the centre-left, dedicated to social justice, but was also a champion of liberty and an opponent of the nanny-state, says Baroness Williams
Syria civil war: The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of this endless conflict

The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of Syria's endless civil war

Sahar Qanbar lost her mother and brother as civilians and government soldiers fought side by side after being surrounded by brutal Islamist fighters. Robert Fisk visited her
The future of songwriting: How streaming is changing everything we know about making music

The future of songwriting

How streaming is changing everything we know about making music
William Shemin and Henry Johnson: Jewish and black soldiers receive World War I Medal of Honor amid claims of discrimination

Recognition at long last

Jewish and black soldiers who fought in WWI finally receive medals after claims of discrimination
Beating obesity: The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters

Beating obesity

The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters
9 best women's festival waterproofs

Ready for rain: 9 best women's festival waterproofs

These are the macs to keep your denim dry and your hair frizz-free(ish)
Cycling World Hour Record: Nervous Sir Bradley Wiggins ready for pain as he prepares to go distance

Wiggins worried

Nervous Sir Bradley ready for pain as he prepares to attempt cycling's World Hour Record
Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

On your feet!

Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

The big NHS question

Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

Thongs ain't what they used to be

Big knickers are back
Thurston Moore interview

Thurston Moore interview

On living in London, Sonic Youth and musical memoirs
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Floral print womenswear
From leading man to Elephant Man, Bradley Cooper is terrific

From leading man to Elephant Man

Bradley Cooper is terrific