Martin Luther King Jr.

Facts that prove life is beautiful

So January's over: and here's why it's now OK to feel chipper. Spring is coming. Maybe tonight's the night you'll break a month long detox. It's Friday. And these facts, collected by Ink Tank blog, will (temporarily) make you feel like the world is a brain-meltingly wonderful place (which it might be).

Liberated and liberal Obama sets second-term agenda

This was the real Barack Obama: not the calculating party politician with an eye on the next election, not a president sometimes accused of aloofness, even passivity – but a national leader boldly setting out what he wants to do, and only too aware he has precious little time to achieve it.

The Last Holiday, By Gil Scott-Heron

The only time I saw the late Gil Scott-Heron perform was in a New York nightclub in 2001. I had huge expectations of this iconic, radical, spoken-word artist and musician whose jazz-funk syncopations and uncompromising lyrics spawned generations of imitators. But it was already too late to see the great man as he once was. He would soon be busted for the drug addiction that led to two spells in prison. That night, his crack-ravaged performance was so bad, the audience talked over him.

Martin Luther King quote makes him look a twit, says Maya Angelou

Things carved in stone tend to stay that way forever, but that doesn't concern the poet Maya Angelou, who thinks a quotation attributed to Martin Luther King Jr that appears on a newly unveiled memorial in Washington should be changed because it makes him sound like a "twit".

Album: Denys Baptiste, Identity by Subtraction (Dune)

Tenor saxophonist Baptiste follows Let Freedom Ring!, his Martin Luther King dedication from 2003, with a more questioning reflection on "life's experience as a black man of Caribbean descent, playing jazz music in the UK".

More headlines

Georgia: Home to a city fit for a king

Martin Luther King's home town of Atlanta was a place where a black man could dare to dream. Forty years after MLK's death, Marcel Theroux rakes over the embers