Independent Plus

Watch the videos below to take in tracks from Jay Z:

Pop: As you Likwit

Hip hop drunkies Tha Alkaholiks are making a name for themselves on the gig circuit and still find time to pick up new talent for their own record label

Music: Pop - Ringmaster General

He's the Dolly Parton of hip hop, a tough talking Jamaican giant in crushed velvet. Emma Forrest admires the glamour that adorns the talent of the hugely cool Busta Rhymes.

Bath sneak home

Bath 27 Borders 23

Pop: Lil' Kim makes a BIG noise

The death of Notorious BIG hit hip-hopper Lil' Kim very hard. But now she's back, joining Puff Daddy at Wembley

EYE CATCHING

West London is bracing itself for the biggest party of the year at this weekend's Notting Hill Carnival. The 32nd annual event, the spirit of which is captured in Marcel Knobil's picture (above), is expected to attract more than 2 million people. The event kicks off at 6pm tonight with the Steel Bands Panorama at Horniman's Pleasance in Kensal Road, but the proceedings really come to life from 2pm tomorrow, when the 15,000 members of the massed and steel bands weave a three-mile course from Ladbroke Grove to Westbourne Park on a fleet of floats. Headliners on the live stages at Portobello Green and Horniman's Pleasance include Spearhead and Soul II Soul, with Wyclef Jean of the Fugees appearing on the Kiss 100 stage on Monday.

The Clansmen

Method Man, U-God, Ol' Dirty Bastard, InspektahDeck, Genius, Raekwon, RZA, Master Killer and Ghostface Killer are... Mad, bad - but awfully nice when you get to know them. Emma Forrest travels Europe with American rap stars the Wu-Tang Clan. Photographs by Steve Double

Pop: 'This is the bleakest sound in modern music; for rap, the future starts here'

Wu-Tang Clan Wu-Tang Forever RCA 74321457682

Rugby Union: Rowell calls up Redman

Rugby Union

The Notorious BIG

ANDY GILL ON ALBUMS: Life After Death Bad Boy/ Arista 78612-73011- 2

Pop Albums: Spearhead Chocolate Supa Highway Capitol CDEST 2293

You have to admire Michael Franti's gift for surfing the successive waves of hip-hop style without diluting his polemical ardour. In the Disposable Heroes of Hiphoprisy, he offered fierce Public Enemy-style lectures on neo-colonialism and cultural decay; with Spearhead's 1994 debut, he shifted more towards a blend of funky didactic soul; and now, with its follow- up, he makes another subtle but significant shift in direction, with swingbeat, ganja and basketball more to the fore.

De La Soul: The Forum, London

Pop Music

POP / The Fugees Kentish Town Forum, London .

The greatest hip-hop circus on earth comes to town

Pop: New box-sets: the gospel truth

Two shopping days to go. Your only hope is a box-set. Let Andy Gill be your guide

OBITUARY: Darren Robinson

The current popularity of Public Enemy, Cypress Hill and the more militant and sensationalist end of the rap scene has rather overshadowed the work of the genre's more populist performers. But the Fat Boys were one of the first rap acts to cross over in a significant way to appearances on television, in movies and in the charts.
Sport
World Cup 2014
Sport
Rihanna celebrates Germany's win
Arts and Entertainment
Sheeran arrives at the 56th annual Grammy Awards earlier this year
musicYes, that would be Ed Sheeran, according to the BBC
Sport
Rio Ferdinand, Alan Shearer, Alan Hansen and Gary Lineker during Hansen's final broadcast
Sport
News
newsBear sweltering in zoo that reaches temperatures of 40 degrees
Arts and Entertainment
Brendan O'Carroll has brought out his female alter-ego Agnes Brown for Mrs Brown's Boys D'Movie
filmComedy holds its place at top of the UK box office
News
Ian Thorpe has thanked his supporters after the athlete said in an interview that he is gay
people
Arts and Entertainment
Professor Kathy Willis will showcase plants from the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew
radioPlants: From Roots to Riches has been two years in the making
Arts and Entertainment
TV The follow-up documentary that has got locals worried
Arts and Entertainment
Eminem's daughter Hailie has graduated from high school
music
Career Services

Day In a Page

Independent Travel Shop See all offers »
India and Nepal
14 nights from £2,159pp Find out more
Dutch Masters
five nights from £679pp Find out more
La Robla and Rioja
nine nights from £1599pp Find out more
Classical Spain
six nights from £539pp Find out more
California and the Golden West
14 nights from £1,599pp Find out more
Bruges
three nights from £259pp Find out more
Iraq crisis: How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over the north of the country

How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over northern Iraq

A speech by an ex-MI6 boss hints at a plan going back over a decade. In some areas, being Shia is akin to being a Jew in Nazi Germany, says Patrick Cockburn
The evolution of Andy Serkis: First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

The evolution of Andy Serkis

First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial: Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried

You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial...

Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried
Refugee children from Central America let down by Washington's high ideals

Refugee children let down by Washington's high ideals

Democrats and Republicans refuse to set aside their differences to cope with the influx of desperate Central Americas, says Rupert Cornwell
Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Malorie Blackman appeals for a better ethnic mix of authors and characters and the illustrator Quentin Blake comes to the rescue
Blackest is the new black: Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...

Blackest is the new black

Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...
Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

The US Ambassador to London holds 'jeans and beer' gigs at his official residence – it's all part of the job, he tells Chris Green
Meet the Quantified Selfers: From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor

Meet the 'Quantified Selfers'

From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor
Madani Younis: Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Madani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

When it comes to national stereotyping, the Irish – among others – know it can pay to play up to outsiders' expectations, says DJ Taylor
Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy: Was the otter man the wildlife champion he appeared to be?

Otter man Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy

The aristocrat's eccentric devotion to his pets inspired a generation. But our greatest living nature writer believes his legacy has been quite toxic
Joanna Rowsell: The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia

Joanna Rowsell: 'I wear my wig to look normal'

The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef gives raw ingredients a lift with his quick marinades

Bill Granger's quick and delicious marinades

Our chef's marinades are great for weekend barbecuing, but are also a delicious way of injecting flavour into, and breaking the monotony of, weekday meals
Germany vs Argentina World Cup 2014 preview: Why Brazilians don't love their neighbours Argentina any more

Anyone but Argentina – why Brazilians don’t love their neighbours any more

The hosts will be supporting Germany in today's World Cup final, reports Alex Bellos
The Open 2014: Time again to ask that major question - can Lee Westwood win at last?

The Open 2014

Time again to ask that major question - can Lee Westwood win at last?