Arts and Entertainment

Does success in one genre guarantee it in another?

Ashton dives as Saints swallow Sale

Northampton Saints 53 Sale Sharks 24: Northampton score eight tries against floundering Sharks to consolidate fourth place in play-off race

Dylan Jones: 'Richard Hawley has a deep baritone voice so rich it sounds almost ironic'

Richard Hawley is the Roy Orbison of the Tens. With his dour demeanour, large-frame spectacles, Bill Haley-standard quiff (grease, I think, not gel) and his velvet-collared jacket, Hawley is a real oddity, an entertainer who has made it his business to walk the walk of the singular and the aloof. He is anachronistic to a T.

Joan Smith: The age of the muse may be over

Sometimes an obituary brings something into focus, not just about its subject's life but about the era in which he or she lived.

Dylan Jones: 'Joan Wasser’s beautiful voice has been described variously as soul, jazz and thrift-store rock'

Her moniker is fairly unprepossessing. Joan Wasser started calling herself "Joan As Police Woman" to distinguish her solo singing career from her work as a violinist. Obviously. And it gives no indication as to what her music – or indeed her voice – might sound like.

Billy the Kid fails to win pardon from governor

They still call him The Unforgiven, because in the Wild West of America, men are men and grudges tend to endure. Almost 130 years after his death, fans of the Billy the Kid have failed in their effort to secure a posthumous pardon for the famous outlaw.

Album: Sandy Denny, Sandy Denny (Island)

Sandy Denny, the queen of English folk-rock, had a voice that cut right to the emotional core of a song, resonating across genres and sensibilities to touch hearts well outside the normal reach of folk music.

Album: Bob Dylan, The Original Mono Recordings (Columbia)

This mono set of the first eight Dylan albums offers a prescient reminder of what can be lost in the pursuit of cutting-edge technology.

Dylan Jones: 'It’s all here, in Keith Richards’ new book - sex, violence and the truth about weaving'

One of the most annoying things I've had to do this year was finish Keith Richards' autobiography. Once it was gone, I simply didn't know what to do with myself. Life is probably the best rock'n'roll memoir ever written, easily as good as Bob Dylan's Chronicles, but much longer.

Returning heroes must display the virtues of saints

Northampton's down-to-earth set-up should ensure England players don't let fame go to their heads. Chris Hewett reports

Dirty Projectors, Koko, London

Dirty Projectors have been cutting a defiant swathe through the indie scene, in various guises, for the past eight years, gathering an impressive list of collaborators along the way. So it comes as something of a surprise when front man, and the axis around which Dirty Projectors revolves, David Longstreth reveals to the audience that their first UK show was as recent as 2007. Following the release of last year's "Bitte Orca", sixth out of seven albums from Longstreth, it's almost impossible to imagine a time before Dirty Projectors, so established is their talent.

Christmas gift guide: Smooth mover

Cut-above choices for the man about town

Irwin Silber: Music critic whose influence on the US folk scene brought him into conflict with Bob Dylan

Irwin Silber was a towering presence in the US folk scene. He edited Sing Out!, the world's longest-lived folk-music magazine, during one of the folk scene's most critical and fraught periods. Famously, in November 1965, he was at the helm when he publicly griped in its pages about Bob Dylan's "reneging" on his protest-song pact and playing amplified music – plus damning him in passing for being seduced by fame. Some commentators later fingered him as the object of Dylan's most bilious piece of vitriol.

Dylan Jones: 'One ancient hollow Baobab tree in Zimbabwe is so large that up to 40 people can shelter inside it'

Oh dear. I have fallen in love again. This time with a tree. A deciduous tree. The African Baobab (Adansonia digitata) is often called the upside-down tree, as its branches look like enormous roots. Others have called it the Tree of Life as it's capable of providing shelter, food and water for the animal and human inhabitants of the African savannah regions where it grows. But it will always be the upside-down tree to me.

Album: Various Artists, Theme Time Radio Hour Vol 3 (Ace)

Bob Dylan's tenure on Theme Time Radio Hour may be over, but this third compilation of 50 assorted highlights from the series confirms the exemplary taste of the show. No other programme covers as wide a range of music, ranging chronologically from Depression-era minstrelsy to the current decade's contribution from Laura Cantrell, and stylistically from country to calypso, rock to reggae, jazz to jive.

The Witmark Demos: 1962-1964 (The Bootleg Series Vol. 9) by Bob Dylan

Readers review this week's big album
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Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project
Diana Krall: The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai

Diana Krall interview

The jazz singer on being friends with Elton John, outer space and skiing in Dubai
Pinstriped for action: A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter

Pinstriped for action

A glimpse of what the very rich man will be wearing this winter
Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: 'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'

Russell T Davies & Ben Cook: How we met

'Our friendship flourished online. You can share some very revelatory moments at four in the morning…'
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef serves up his favourite Japanese dishes

Bill Granger's Japanese recipes

Stock up on mirin, soy and miso and you have the makings of everyday Japanese cuisine
Michael Calvin: How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us

Michael Calvin's Last Word

How we need more Eric Cantonas to knock some sense into us