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
The Silk Roads that trace civilisation: Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places

The Silk Roads that trace civilisation

Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places
House of Lords: Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled

The honours that shame Britain

Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled
When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race

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International Tap Festival: Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic

International Tap Festival comes to the UK

Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic
War with Isis: Is Turkey's buffer zone in Syria a matter of self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

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Doris Lessing: Acclaimed novelist was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show

'A subversive brothel keeper and Communist'

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Big Blue Live: BBC's Springwatch offshoot swaps back gardens for California's Monterey Bay

BBC heads to the Californian coast

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Austin Bidwell: The Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England with the most daring forgery the world had known

Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England

Conman Austin Bidwell. was a heartless cad who carried out the most daring forgery the world had known
Car hacking scandal: Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked

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Protect your table and dine in style with a bold new accessory
Ashes 2015: Alastair Cook not the only one to be caught in The Oval mindwarp

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Aussie skipper Michael Clarke was lured into believing that what we witnessed at Edgbaston and Trent Bridge would continue in London, says Kevin Garside
Can Rafael Benitez get the best out of Gareth Bale at Real Madrid?

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Back at the club he watched as a boy, the pressure is on Benitez to find a winning blend from Real's multiple talents. As La Liga begins, Pete Jenson asks if it will be enough to stop Barcelona
Athletics World Championships 2015: Beijing witnesses new stage in the Jessica Ennis-Hill and Katarina Johnson-Thompson heptathlon rivalry

Beijing witnesses new stage in the Jess and Kat rivalry

The last time the two British heptathletes competed, Ennis-Hill was on the way to Olympic gold and Johnson-Thompson was just a promising teenager. But a lot has happened in the following three years
Jeremy Corbyn: Joining a shrewd operator desperate for power as he visits the North East

Jeremy Corbyn interview: A shrewd operator desperate for power

His radical anti-austerity agenda has caught the imagination of the left and politically disaffected and set a staid Labour leadership election alight
Isis executes Palmyra antiquities chief: Defender of ancient city's past was killed for protecting its future

Isis executes Palmyra antiquities chief

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