Arts and Entertainment

Sheryl Crow "Feels Like Home" (Warner Bros)

KD Lang: 'In the end, I knew it would all come back to the music. And it did'

She has been a lesbian icon, party animal, and paparazzi favourite. But now, she tells Fiona Sturges, she's happy just to be singing

The anti-Gagas: A new tribe of young female artists is going back to basics

They come from the same generation as Lady Gaga – but the young female artists on the following pages certainly don't share her love for outlandish showmanship. simmy richman meets the sisters doing it for posterity

The Secret Sisters, Bush Hall, London

Laughing and joking with the crowd, at ease on stage, you'd never guess that less than two years ago Laura and Lydia Rogers had never been on a plane, let alone performed in front of a live audience. The sibling duo, who hail from the perfectly Bible-Belt-sounding Muscle Shoals, Alabama, formed The Secret Sisters after elder sister Laura (who handles lead vocals) was spotted at an impromptu Nashville audition. Los Angeles beckoned and their self-titled debut album of sweet harmonies and country charm (recorded, in faux-1950s fashioned, without any digital equipment) was born.

Album: Mona, Mona (Zion Noiz/Island)

Much is expected of Nashville-based rockers Mona, winners of MTV's "Brand New for 2011" award.

Emmylou Harris: 'I smoked country music but I didn't inhale'

She may now be winning Grammys for 'contemporary folk', but Emmylou Harris is finally ready to confront the heartache and loss that made her the queen of the red-raw country ballad

Chilli: C'mon baby, light my fire

Spicing our food with chilli has become as British as salt and pepper. But what does our obsession with heat reveal about the national psyche? And can we ever get enough? Christopher Hirst feels the burn

Album: Toy Horses, Toy Horses (Albino Sparrow)

Toy Horses are the Welsh stepson/stepfather duo of Adam Franklin (21) and Tom Williams (40) whose music has, as they say, "gone viral" in the past year, with the result that they were invited to Nashville to record their debut album.

Country Strong (12A)

Starring: Gwyneth Paltrow, Tim McGraw

Ferlin Husky: Country singer who pioneered the 'Nashville Sound'

One of the most versatile vocalists in country music, Ferlin Husky was also one of its most popular all- round entertainers, as assured handling a comedy routine as he was performing classics like "Gone" and "Wings Of A Dove".

Album: The Secret Sisters, The Secret Sisters (Decca)

Laura and Lydia Rogers are twenty-something sisters from Alabama.

Nicole Kidman overjoyed with new baby

Nicole Kidman and Keith Urban are "on cloud nine" with their new baby.

Nicole Kidman and Keith Urban welcome daughter

Nicole Kidman and Keith Urban have become the proud parents of a baby girl.

Album: Indigo Girls, Holly Happy Days (Vanguard)

Christmas is an American state of mind.

Robert Plant, Roundhouse, London

Robert Plant looks as comfortable in his skin as a man can be. He has already skipped past his twin 2007 triumphs, the massively acclaimed hit album with Alison Krauss, Raising Sand, and Led Zeppelin's reunion show. His new album, Band of Joy, sensibly follows up neither, instead finding some of the rock spark missing from his work with Krauss. Playing with this Band of Joy, Plant includes four Zeppelin songs and revisits their wells of inspiration with urbane conviction.

First Night: Electric Proms: Elton John, Leon Russell, Plan B and Rumer, The Roundhouse, London

Elton delivers on the hits... pity about the misses
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The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

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End of the Aussie brain drain

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Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

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Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

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Letterman's final Late Show: Laughter, but no tears, as David takes his bow after 33 years

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Singer joins Ed Sheeran and Clean Bandit in celebration of the best in British and Irish music
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Join the tequila gold rush

The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product
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Paul Scholes column: Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?

Paul Scholes column

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Season's finale brings the end of an era for top coaches and players across the continent

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Bin Laden documents released: Papers reveal his obsession with attacking the US and how his failure to keep up with modern jihad led to Isis

'Focus on killing American people'

Released Bin Laden documents reveal obsession with attacking United States
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Ireland's same-sex marriage vote: As date looms, the Irish ask - how would God vote?

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The underworld is going freelance: Why The Godfather's Mafia model is no longer viable

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