Arts and Entertainment

Louis Armstrong singing spiritual-jazz anthem "The Creator Has a Masterplan" (and sounding great) is one of the more bizarre experiences on this neat compendium of black consciousness from the vaults of Bob Thiele's Flying Dutchman label.

Beat that: gnaoua musicians perform in Essaouira

Trail of the unexpected: Essaouira, Morocco

This relaxed port city is full of rhythm. Linda Cookson heard it ... all along the watchtower

The Hollywood Sign, By Leo Braudy

"The Hollywood sign may be unique among American icons," writes Leo Braudy at the start of this dazzlingly enjoyable exposition. "Its essence is almost entirely abstract."

Album: Patrick Wolf, Brumalia EP (Hideout/Mercury) (3/5)

A sort of seasonal addendum to his Lupercalia album (Brumalia being the Roman festival of winter), this seven-track EP takes that album's homesick plea for fellowship, "Together", and gives it a festive slant by following it with "Time of Year", a like-minded song for absent friends at Christmas, especially the military.

Preview: John Cage - Every Day is a Good Day

A collection celebrating the work of avant-garde spectacular John Cage goes on display on Saturday.

Album: John Cage, The Works for Percussion 1 (Mode)

Despite the title, this 43rd volume of Mode's John Cage Edition focuses more on his early experiments with radios, tape and turntables.

Album: Tania Chen, John Cage: Music of Changes (Knitted)

The solo piano piece Music of Changes is one of John Cage's most exacting works, for performer and listener alike.

Album: Berio and Friends, Stories – Theatre of Voices / Paul Hillier (Harmonia Mundi)

Burps, sighs and coughs. Hisses, purrs and groans. Giggles, barks, polyglot whispers and the chaste-sexy shreds of madrigals and motets cast a spell in Theatre of Voices's performance of "A-ronne".

Album: Theatre of Voices, Paul Hillier, Stories (Harmonia Mundi)

In Stories, Paul Hillier leads the vocal ensemble Theatre Of Voices through a challenging series of pieces by composers such as Luciano Berio, John Cage and Sheldon Frank that push the notion of narrative into more abstract realms.

Zappa Plays Zappa – Frank Zappa 70th Birthday Celebration, The Roundhouse,London

A sparkling display of the family jewels

Album: John Cage, Fontana Mix (él)

This compilation of various John Cage pieces from the mid-20th century demonstrates just how restrictive broadcast experimentation has become: who now would countenance The City Wears A Slouch Hat, a Kenneth Patchen surreal radio play with accompanying musique concrète score by Cage, broadcast in the US in in 1942?

Album: John Cage, Cage Performs Cage (Mode)

John Cage's spoken-word pieces are not to everyone's taste, and the two-and-a-half-hour works featured here illustrate why.

Siegfried Palm

Cellist and opera director

Thing-Fish, BAC, London

Kimmo Pohjonen: Whatever you do, just don't call it a squeezebox

Louise Gray meets an improvising accordion player a million miles from 'La Vie en Rose'
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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 15 May 2015
Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine
Letterman's final Late Show: Laughter, but no tears, as David takes his bow after 33 years

Laughter, but no tears, as Letterman takes his bow after 33 years

Veteran talkshow host steps down to plaudits from four presidents
Ivor Novello Awards 2015: Hozier wins with anti-Catholic song 'Take Me To Church' as John Whittingdale leads praise for Black Sabbath

Hozier's 'blasphemous' song takes Novello award

Singer joins Ed Sheeran and Clean Bandit in celebration of the best in British and Irish music
Tequila gold rush: The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product

Join the tequila gold rush

The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product
12 best statement wallpapers

12 best statement wallpapers

Make an impact and transform a room with a conversation-starting pattern
Paul Scholes column: Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?

Paul Scholes column

Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?