Arts and Entertainment

A music documentary that oozes irritating smugness

Album: Billy Bragg, Mr Love & Justice (Cooking Vinyl)

The title neatly defines Billy Bragg's interests as a songwriter – romance and equality – though with a few exceptions, he's covered both with far greater vitality before.

Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly, Koko, London

Despite the heroic overtones of his stage name, tonight is more a case of get cape, fumble, recover, as this idiosyncratic solo artist struggles with the richer soundscapes of his second album. Maybe the fact that Sam Duckworth, to give him his real name, is wearing glasses means that he is more Clark Kent than Superman.

Channel Five to showcase new talents from folk scene

There was a time, not long ago, when folk music was about little more than sticking your finger in your ear, donning your best woolly jumper and pining for bygone times.

Billy Bragg's jailhouse rock project cuts reoffending rate

Billy Bragg has backed the miners, campaigned against racism and promoted perestroika in the Soviet Union. Yet the folk-rock singer from Barking has embarked on his most ambitious socio-political project to date; an attempt to wean convicted criminals serving time away from a life of crime. And it's working.

Billy 'Uke' Scott

Music-hall star and virtuoso ukulele player

Conference Highlights

Dining on Stones by Iain Sinclair

From Aldgate to Essex: Ben Thompson enjoys Iain Sinclair's new symphony of cockney cultural resonance, a paean to the A13

Pop: Now that's what I call trad music

It's that time of the decade again. Folk is back in fashion. But is this the real thing... or soft rock by another name? By Charlotte Greig

Pop: It may be cold inside, but there's nowt so warm as folk

Live; BILLY BRAGG/ KATE RUSBY THE FORUM LONDON

Anyone fancy a calypso with Frank Dobson?

LET'S FACE it, it's been a long time since British local government was associated with matters of culture. Ever since Mrs Thatcher's cruel abolition of England's metropolitan authorities, we have certainly been deprived of anything approaching political colour. The right-on-sister days of politically relevant street carnivals and squabbles about rates- funded pop concerts are long gone. Or are they?

Edinbourgh Festival '99: Reviews

COMEDY

Folk: Crowds in thousands to Cambridge come in for the fair

THE MUSIC begins before any of the three stages are reached. Walking along the pathway through the wooded campground that leads on to the site, the sound of tootling flutes, fiddles firing up and accordions wheezing into life can be heard; a merry idyll in the summer heat and a reminder that at Cambridge there's as many musicians off-stage as there are on.
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Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

Cabbage is king again

Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

Paul Scholes column

The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

Frank Warren's Ringside

No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee