Life and Style

Google Doodle celebrates the Year of the Horse

LIVES OF THE GREAT SONGS / Sneers'n'leers'n'rock'n'roll: '(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction' - More than any other hit, it sums up the Sixties. But if Jagger and Richards had had their way, it would never have been a single. Jasper Rees continues our series

'(I CAN'T Get No) Satisfaction' was a first, and not just thanks to those brashly placed brackets. It begins more memorably than any pop song before or since. Just two notes of a phrase that sounds like someone haring up a short step-ladder and tumbling down again, and you know what you're listening to - the definitive yell of youth, the original rock'n'roll sneer.

MUSIC / The making of a UK soul diva: Dina Carroll is British, but that hasn't stopped her from becoming a double-platinum soul sensation. Interview by Sabine Durrant

These days, when Dina Carroll arrives back in London, after promoting her album in Japan, say, or the USA, there's a limo to meet her at the airport. She's still getting over it.

ROCK / Frank's blind dates

SOMETIMES, two can be a crowd. On Duets (Capitol/EMI, out on Monday), Frank Sinatra's first studio album in more than a decade, the old master's voice gets shoe-horned into some uncomfortable proximities (not to mention the year's most horrible cover). The disc does not start well. Luther Vandross is a great singer, but his professional smoothness and Frank's dry-as-dust phrasing rub each other up the wrong way, and their 'Lady is a Tramp' is all over the place. The next pairing - 'What Now My Love?', with Aretha Franklin - is much more felicitous, and by the time Barbra Streisand glides into earshot for 'I've Got a Crush on You' all concerned seem to be enjoying themselves: 'I have got a crush, my Barbra, on you.' 'Oh, you make me blush, Francis.'

Frank's on line one, are you ready to sing?: When Phil Ramone needed partners to sing Duets with Frank Sinatra, he simply got on the phone. And spared Frank the inconvenience of singing person to person. Giles Smith reports

It probably won't surprise you that not one of the guest vocalists singing warmly with Frank Sinatra on his new album of duets actually met Frank at the time. Ever since Stevie Wonder and Paul McCartney sang a hymn to racial togetherness from different sides of the Atlantic it's been appreciated that, if you get tricky with a tape recorder, intimacy on records is easily contrived.

ARTS / Lives of the great songs: When the pink bubble bursts: Over the Rainbow: On the surface it's pure innocence. But there's more to Judy Garland's theme tune than lemon drops. In the eighth part of our series, Mary Harron tells its story

TEN YEARS ago, Jerry Lee Lewis played the Wembley Country Music Festival. He flew in shrouded in scandal. Drugs and alcohol had left him with a quarter of his stomach, the US government was pursuing him for tax evasion, he had shot his bass player in a fit of pique, and there had been the mysterious death of his fourth wife (not to be confused with the mysterious death of his third wife). He seemed to be riding out his own damnation. Jerry Lee probably wouldn't show, and if he did he'd do only country music, as it pleased him to frustrate his fans by refusing them his greatest hits.

Obituary: Arthur Alexander

Arthur Alexander, singer, songwriter: born Florence, Alabama 10 May 1940; married (two sons, two daughters); died Nashville, Tennessee 9 June 1993.

Media Viewpoint: Don't let facts spoil a good franchise bid: One could argue as strong a case for a new radio station for men as for women

IN A few months' time there may be a new media type to put on this page: the women's radio station presenter. The illustration will have her clutching a record by Annie Lennox or Aretha Franklin.

Crossing the divide: This is the man who christened rhythm and blues, who rescued Aretha Franklin and made her a star, who went to the South and came back with soul. In the history of popular music, Jerry Wexler's been behind some of the greatest records ever made

GET JERRY WEXLER started on the big bands of the Thirties and Forties and you'll never hear the back of it. Most ageing music moguls have long since sloughed off any real love for music they started out with and sunk into a torpor of cocktails and daytime television. Not Wexler. Wrapped in his enormous hooded bathrobe, with the sea lapping against the jetty at the end of the garden, Wexler seeks solace from his favourite saxophonists - Johnny Hodges, Lester Young, Ben Webster - long into the Florida night. Fifty years after first hearing them on 52nd Street he's still hero-worshipping them, still can't listen to Henry 'Red' Allen on 'Meet Me In The Moonlight' without wanting to cry.

It's all right - he's on the label: Question: is Rod Stewart a) a comedian, b) a Hello] photo-spread, c) a singer? Answer: a, b and c, but not necessarily in that order

IN a miniature cinema in central London, record company employees and press people gather to watch the first screening of Rod Stewart, Unplugged. Unplugged is a series made by the video channel MTV, in which top pop acts play their greatest hits without the benefit of electrical instruments. It's the first good idea to come out of a satellite television station, and many of the artists like the results so much, they release the soundtracks as albums: Paul McCartney first, then Eric Clapton, then Bruce Springsteen. And now Rod Stewart, who is here for the premiere in a white suit and a pair of glasses.

MUSIC / Review: Unnatural woman: Edward Helmore on Aretha Franklin at Radio City, New York

FOR 20 years the title 'Queen of Soul' has, by default, rested with Aretha Franklin. Her entrance at Radio City Music Hall on Sunday night, down the aisle and onto the stage of the spectacular art-deco auditorium, was certainly regal enough. Under a flood of revolving searchlights, she was sporting a black fedora with a halo of purple ostrich feathers and a white foxtail stole and looking self-possessed.

Inauguration Diary: Fat cats and false notes

THERE WERE a few glitches at Monday's dress rehearsal of the Presidential Gala held last night. The sound system went briefly and Barbra Streisand's voice cracked on a high note at the end of a love ballad, Evergreen. She covered it by thanking Mr Clinton for making 'having a hoarse voice fashionable again'.

The US in transition: Mother of all parties begins: Inauguration Diary

WHAT IS it about the US political system that gives so many excuses to frolic - to party in the name of the party? It was party-time at the conventions last summer, party-time in Little Rock on election night, and now the biggest party of all. One theory is that without the over-the-top inaugural festivities the public would not be mentally prepared for what remains a little unbelievable. Yup, that man with the goofy smile and chewed lower lip really is about to become President of the United States of America. Real soon.

TELEVISION / How to get away from the class system, or not: Tracey Ullman is big in America and back in Britain. Robert Butler met her

ONLY a few minutes into talking to Tracey Ullman and she's already given me a dozen different accents. There's a posh little boy who reads the Financial Times. A cockney girl who wants a fat little baby. A spaced-out kid who wants to go to the moon. A Geordie on a phone-in selling a golf club. And a Tory MP who wants her put in the Tower for being rude about the Royal Family. They are quite funny, but the one voice you keep wanting to hear is her own.

ROCK / Riffs: A vital service rendered: Natalie Merchant of 10,000 Maniacs on Aretha's gospel

'Six or seven years ago we were on tour, and my road manager gave me a tape of his favourite gospel music. And on it was this Aretha Franklin performance of 'Mary, Don't You Weep', recorded in church (the New Temple Missionary Baptist Church, Los Angeles). I'd never heard that side of her before, and I went out immediately and bought the entire record, Amazing Grace. It's a form of music that isn't at all contained and it opened a window into a world I could never fully enter myself. You hear an organ and a bit of a drum kit, and James Cleveland's vocal arrangement of the choir in the background. And then there's Aretha, singing the song as if she could raise the dead. She'd become successful by the time of this recording (1972), but some of the important people from her past are in the audience - Cleveland, her father the Rev C L Franklin, Clara Ward - and it's obvious the whole community is ecstatic that Aretha's there, that she's achieved so much. The performance reaffirms the support of her family and her tradition. One thing to the album's advantage - the quality of the sound is good. I buy gospel records all the time, but I'm usually disappointed by the recording. This one works, though it may be to do with the fact that Aretha sings like an angel possessed. I like the gatefold sleeve as well. Incredible pictures - the entire audience with Afros.'

Obituary: Jeff Porcaro

Jeff Porcaro, drummer, born 1 April 1954, died Los Angeles 5 August 1992.
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