Life and Style

Google Doodle celebrates the Year of the Horse

Obama Quiz: The answers

The pop star: VV Brown

On paper, 24-year-old VV Brown certainly has the makings of a star – beauty, a big voice and, crucially, the backing of a major record label. Add to that her penchant for retro-soul and success on a huge scale seems a foregone conclusion.

My Fantasy Band: Romeo Stodart, The Magic Numbers

Vocals - Bob Marley
His voice really talks to you. I'd like it to be a harmony group with Stevie Nicks and Emmylou Harris on back-up vocals. They'd all sound pretty sweet together.

Pervis Jackson: Detroit Spinners bass vocalist

The fine art of blending vocals in a group is one that was beautifully exemplified by the line-up of the Detroit Spinners. The group's foundation was the bass singing of Pervis Jackson, to which was added Henry Fambrough's baritone and the tenor voices of Bobbie Smith and Billy Henderson. These four were the group's mainstays, but additional fifth members who came and went included Philippe Wynne, whose distinctive falsetto and high tenor graced several hits between 1972 and 1977.

Jerry Wexler: Co-owner of Atlantic Records who produced Ray Charles, Aretha Franklin and Dusty Springfield

The record producer Jerry Wexler was a champion of black music. He not only devised the term "Rhythm and Blues", but he also made some of the best records in the genre during his 22-year tenure at Atlantic Records, including "Shake, Rattle and Roll" by Big Joe Turner, "What'd I Say" by Ray Charles, Aretha Franklin's "(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman" and "In The Midnight Hour" by Wilson Pickett.

Jerry Wexler, rhythm 'n' blues pioneer, dies aged 91

Jerry Wexler, the invisible force behind some of the legends of American 20th century music, died yesterday from congestive heart failure. He was 91.

Howard's end: he's too happy for a recession

Howard Brown, the jolly, bespectacled singing star of the Halifax television ads, has been dropped by his employers after an internal review recommended that the bank's future marketing campaigns should adopt a more serious tone.

Top ten tape tips

Introducing Beth Rowley's gospel truth

Beth Rowley's parents were missionaries in Peru, so it's hardly surprising that the young singer-songwriter has an exotic approach to her music. By Nick Duerden

Clyde Otis: Hit songwriter and producer

The songwriter and record producer Clyde Otis was noted for his long association with Brook Benton. He wrote both ballads and beat songs, but was at his best in reflective work which drew on his own life, such as "Looking Back" (for Nat "King" Cole), "It's Just a Matter of Time" (Brook Benton) and "This Bitter Earth" (Dinah Washington).

Maserati Gran Turismo: The sexiest car ever? Oh yes, yes, yes!

If you fancy a Maserati Gran Turismo, there's a year's waiting list – and that's no surprise with a car that can turn anyone into a foxy love god

Gloucester 63 Bristol 25: Goodridge too good for woeful Bristol

After the humiliation of their EDF Energy Cup hammering by the Ospreys last weekend, Gloucester more than made up for it with this demolition of the Premiership leaders.

Joss Stone, The Carling Academy, Glasgow

There is something eerie in a Joss Stone performance, something unsettling in this white-blonde, apple-cheeked teenager belting out rhythm and blues with the deep, rust-and-honey voice of a soul veteran.

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General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence
Public relations as 'art'? Surely not

Confessions of a former PR man

The 'art' of public relations is being celebrated by the V&A museum, triggering some happy memories for DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef succumbs to his sugar cravings with super-luxurious sweet treats

Bill Granger's luxurious sweet treats

Our chef loves to stop for 30 minutes to catch up on the day's gossip, while nibbling on something sweet
London Marathon 2015: Paula Radcliffe and the mother of all goodbyes

The mother of all goodbyes

Paula Radcliffe's farewell to the London Marathon will be a family affair
Everton vs Manchester United: Steven Naismith demands 'better' if Toffees are to upset the odds against United

Steven Naismith: 'We know we must do better'

The Everton forward explains the reasons behind club's decline this season
Arsenal vs Chelsea: Praise to Arsene Wenger for having the courage of his convictions

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Praise to Wenger for having the courage of his convictions