It must be incalculably bizarre to have two such men as possible fathers

Obituary: Helen Forrest

DURING THE big-band era of the late Thirties and early Forties, six bands were regarded as the most popular and Helen Forrest sang with three of them - Benny Goodman, Artie Shaw and Harry James. She was one of the best of the band singers, and with James she had three million- selling records and countless Top Ten hits, and for two years running was voted the most popular female vocalist in America.

Obituary: Jo Lustig

IT WAS possible to know Jo Lustig for 30 years without being aware of more than a fraction of his unusually well-populated life. The names of Nat King Cole, Jack Kerouac, John Cassavetes, Gloria Swanson, Miles Davis, Lenny Bruce, Frank Sinatra, Herman Leonard, Billie Holiday, Mel Brooks, Nico, the Chieftains, Steeleye Span, Louis Armstrong, Donovan and Anita Ekberg would be no more than a tiny representation of those with whom he came into significant contact during a long career as a New York press agent, a London-based manager of folk and pop singers, and an international television and film producer.

Concert violinist earns more at busking

CLAIRE GOBIN might have expected to make a reasonable living from music.

First Night: Ageless voice can still hit the heights

Tony Bennett Albert Hall, London

Event: Scratch 'n' sniff


Top 10 raves at the grave

AS SONGS one might choose to play at a funeral go, Monty Python's "Always Look on the Bright Side of Life" is perhaps not the most obvious. Still, each to their own. Last year this was one of the top 10 tunes played as people were buried or cremated.

Accidental Heroes of the 20th Century 27: Ann-Margret, Actor

IT ISN'T every actress who can survive a movie that requires her to writhe around under the overcooked direction of Ken Russell. For Glenda Jackson the shame was clearly so great she became an MP. But Ann-Margret, who - for no immediately apparent reason - is made to disport herself in a bath-tub of baked beans in Russell's ineffable version of The Who's Tommy in 1975, came through the experience with her customary serenity.

Paperback roundup

A History of the American People by Paul Johnson, Phoenix pounds 12.99. "The creation of the United States of America is the greatest of all human adventures," Johnson states in his opening sentence. That's probably a truism, but it doesn't do any harm to be reminded of the obvious once in a while. When it was published last year, Johnson's vast book attracted some ridicule for its factual clangers - among other things, apparently, Johnson claimed that Edison invented the telephone. To be fair, a book on this scale is bound to have a few mistakes: cf Norman Davies's Europe: A History. The important thing is getting them corrected, and not only does the Edison one not reappear in this edition, Johnson goes so far as to include his private address for any reader who wants to point out any other errors or take issue with his opinions. Now why would anybody want to do that?

Journalist Winchell tried to set up Sinatra, FBI reveals

IF THERE were any doubts that the life of Frank Sinatra had a murky side, the FBI put them to rest yesterday.

Obituary: Giant Haystacks

"I LIKE to drive wherever I can," Giant Haystacks once said. "The car is my thinking place - I work it all out there, away from the wife and children. I'm a total loner. I travel alone, I wrestle alone. I look after myself, I don't need friends. I could fly but I'm not comfortable on a plane. I always book the seats at the back of an aircraft, I ask them to keep one spare beside me. But I always end up next to one little old lady, smoking away, and then you get aggravation - `Aren't you this Giant fellow?' "

He who lives by the score

Elmer Bernstein has written some of the most famous film scores in history, not least those for The Great Escape and The Magnificent Seven. But what exactly is it that makes soundtrack music great? If anyone knows, Elmer will know.

Book of the Week: Celeb-heavy trawl through monster's domain

Monster! True Tales from a

Friday Books: Of mobsters and pop music


Pop: When Burt met Elvis


Words: Jack, n.

FRANK SINATRA long credited "Something" to Lennon and McCartney - and amended George Harrison's lyric: "You stick around, Jack, it might show."
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Secret politics of the weekly shop

The politics of the weekly shop

New app reveals political leanings of food companies
Beam me up, Scottie!

Beam me up, Scottie!

Celebrity Trekkies from Alex Salmond to Barack Obama
Beware Wet Paint: The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition

Beware Wet Paint

The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition
Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Can 'The Endless River' carry on the tradition?
Sanctuary for the suicidal

Sanctuary for the suicidal

One mother's story of how London charity Maytree helped her son with his depression
A roller-coaster tale from the 'voice of a generation'

Not That Kind of Girl:

A roller-coaster tale from 'voice of a generation' Lena Dunham
London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice. In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence

London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice

In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence
Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with Malcolm McLaren

Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with McLaren

Designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Jourdan Dunn: Model mother

Model mother

Jordan Dunn became one of the best-paid models in the world
Apple still coolest brand – despite U2 PR disaster

Apple still the coolest brand

Despite PR disaster of free U2 album
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits