Arts and Entertainment

Sheryl Crow "Feels Like Home" (Warner Bros)

Nashville star Carrie Underwood is due to play at the festival of country music at the O2 Arena

Welcome to Nashville: Carrie Underwood and Tim McGraw to play UK's largest country music festival

Britain is preparing for a rhinestone invasion as Nashville’s stars launch a bid to inject country music’s whisky-soaked anthems into the nation’s musical mainstream.

Nashville star Carrie Underwood is due to play at the festival of country music at the O2 Arena

Nashville woos the UK: Carrie Underwood and Tim McGraw to play largest country music festival at O2

Britain is preparing for a rhinestone invasion as Nashville’s stars launch a bid to inject country music’s whisky-soaked anthems into the nation’s musical mainstream.

Bath Literature Festival: Master storytellers - why some politicians can make us believe

Boris Johnson was the perfect example of a modern politician because he “excelled at telling a leadership story” even if he didn’t do much in the way of actual leadership, Gavin Esler has told the Bath Literature Festival.

My life in travel: Russell Kane

'I've promised myself I'll meet Mickey'

Richard Thompson

Richard Thompson, Shepherd's Bush Empire, London

Playful as ever, Richard Thompson has described his latest project as a “weedy power trio” that plays “folk-funk”. Fact is, tonight offers precious little folk, not much funk and his current, highly economical line-up sounds anything but puny.

Chow down: ham chowder at Nashville’s Capitol Grille

Food Miles: Authenticity is the name, and quality is the game

There's never been a better time than now to be a gourmet traveller. The globalisation of food trends and culture may have led to a certain homogenisation at the very top end of the market, but it also means that chefs and restaurateurs are keener than ever to rediscover what's local and authentic. Foodie destinations are more accessible and Michelin-starred chefs continue to expand their empires into new and sometimes unexpected locations, helping to increase the quality of dining out around the world.

A life as dramatic as any of her songs: McCready in Nashville in 2000

Mindy McCready: Talented but troubled country singer

In 1996 Mindy McCready burst on to the American country music scene with her album Ten Thousand Angels, and a No 1 single, "Guys Do It All the Time". She was a troubled individual and the pressures of success only compounded her problems. She described her own existence as "a whirlwind of chaos" – and after a life as dramatic as any of her songs, McCready apparently took her own life on 17 February.

Man remanded over Facebook comment which kept 3,000 American kids away from school

Comment suggested something violent might happen at high school

'World's oldest person' Besse Cooper dies aged 116

The woman who was listed as the world's oldest person has died in a Georgia nursing home at age 116.

Musician Gillian Welch have got the approval from PM David Cameron

A beginner’s guide to David Cameron’s favourite, Gillian Welch

Gillian Welch has joined a list of musicians – including The Smiths, Lana Del Rey and Band of Horses – unfortunate enough to get the seal of approval from David Cameron.

There are a number of conservative Christian groups in the US that are actively anti-gay.

Anti-homosexual Bible-belt Christian lives 'under cover' as a gay man for a year in a bid to challenge his bigotry

Timothy Kurek grew up in a deeply conservative Christian community in Nashville and was taught that homosexuality was ‘an abomination’ from an early age.

New American drama 'Nashville' is not another 'Glee' - it's a story set to music

Country music is about to go mainstream. Emily Yahr reports

Album: Joss Stone, The Soul Sessions Vol. 2 (Stone'd/S-Curve)

A "revisitation" of the idea which launched Stone into the crossover jetstream: ballsy, mannered reconstructions of what the word "soul" might once have stood for.

Funk Brothers bass player Bob Babbitt dies at 74

Prominent Motown studio musician and Funk Brothers member Bob Babbitt, whose bass playing pounded through the Temptations hit "Ball of Confusion" and Marvin Gaye's "Mercy Mercy Me (The Ecology)," has died. He was 74.

XO, By Jeffery Deaver. Hodder & Stoughton £18.99.

Authors of crime fiction know a way to give their writing a certain cachet: invoke music. Conan Doyle has Sherlock Holmes enjoying the operas of Wagner, while PD James gives Adam Dalgliesh a taste for Elgar's Cello Concerto. All this music has a certain cultural respectability however, and confers a degree of sophistication on your copper.

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Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Ferguson: In the heartlands of America, a descent into madness

A descent into madness in America's heartlands

David Usborne arrived in Ferguson, Missouri to be greeted by a scene more redolent of Gaza and Afghanistan
BBC’s filming of raid at Sir Cliff’s home ‘may be result of corruption’

BBC faces corruption allegation over its Sir Cliff police raid coverage

Reporter’s relationship with police under scrutiny as DG is summoned by MPs to explain extensive live broadcast of swoop on singer’s home
Lauded therapist Harley Mille still in limbo as battle to stay in Britain drags on

Lauded therapist still in limbo as battle to stay in Britain drags on

Australian Harley Miller is as frustrated by court delays as she is with the idiosyncrasies of immigration law
Lewis Fry Richardson's weather forecasts changed the world. But could his predictions of war do the same?

Lewis Fry Richardson's weather forecasts changed the world...

But could his predictions of war do the same?
Kate Bush asks fans not to take photos at her London gigs: 'I want to have contact with the audience, not iPhones'

'I want to have contact with the audience, not iPhones'

Kate Bush asks fans not to take photos at her London gigs
Under-35s have rated gardening in their top five favourite leisure activities, but why?

Young at hort

Under-35s have rated gardening in their top five favourite leisure activities. But why are so many people are swapping sweaty clubs for leafy shrubs?
Tim Vine, winner of the Funniest Joke of the Fringe award: 'making a quip as funny as possible is an art'

Beyond a joke

Tim Vine, winner of the Funniest Joke of the Fringe award, has nigh-on 200 in his act. So how are they conceived?
The late Peter O'Toole shines in 'Katherine of Alexandria' despite illness

The late Peter O'Toole shines in 'Katherine of Alexandria' despite illness

Sadly though, the Lawrence of Arabia star is not around to lend his own critique
Wicken Fen in Cambridgeshire: The joy of camping in a wetland nature reserve and sleeping under the stars

A wild night out

Wicken Fen in Cambridgeshire offers a rare chance to camp in a wetland nature reserve
Comic Sans for Cancer exhibition: It’s the font that’s openly ridiculed for its jaunty style, but figures of fun have their fans

Comic Sans for Cancer exhibition

It’s the font that’s openly ridiculed for its jaunty style, but figures of fun have their fans
Besiktas vs Arsenal: Five things we learnt from the Champions League first-leg tie

Besiktas vs Arsenal

Five things we learnt from the Champions League first-leg tie
Rory McIlroy a smash hit on the US talk show circuit

Rory McIlroy a smash hit on the US talk show circuit

As the Northern Irishman prepares for the Barclays, he finds time to appear on TV in the States, where he’s now such a global superstar that he needs no introduction
Boy racer Max Verstappen stays relaxed over step up to Formula One

Boy racer Max Verstappen stays relaxed over step up to F1

The 16-year-old will become the sport’s youngest-ever driver when he makes his debut for Toro Rosso next season
Fear brings the enemies of Isis together at last

Fear brings the enemies of Isis together at last

But belated attempts to unite will be to no avail if the Sunni caliphate remains strong in Syria, says Patrick Cockburn
Charlie Gilmour: 'I wondered if I would end up killing myself in jail'

Charlie Gilmour: 'I wondered if I'd end up killing myself in jail'

Following last week's report on prison suicides, the former inmate asks how much progress we have made in the 50 years since the abolition of capital punishment