Arts and Entertainment

Ronnie Scott’s, London

Double Take: 'To Be Young, Gifted and Black' by Nina Simone/Bob & Marcia

Robert Webb's guide to pop's most intriguing cover versions

Arts: Don't let me be misunderstood

In the Sixties, Nina Simone's music radically espoused black civil rights. But by the turn of the decade she had rejected politics. Why?

MUSIC: CD REVIEWS - DANCE

BREAKBEAT ERA: ULTRA OBSCENE (XL Recordings)

Arts and Books: Power and glory at the court of Queen Nina

A NINA SIMONE concert is more like a prayer meeting than a musical event, a religious experience in which the audience declared its devotion and projected its emotions on to a performer they treated like a deity, a people's princess. By the end of a long evening, the audience - young, middle-aged, old, men and women (and particularly the women) - were her devout acolytes, chanting her phrases and singing her praises, celebrating every brief sign. She had become Queen Nina, a sculpture with an inscrutable smile.

First Night: Acolytes chant the praises of Queen Nina

Nina Simone Meltdown/Royal Festival Hall London

The Critics: And his cigarette stayed lit all the way through

Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds Royal Festival Hall, London

Festival: meltdown

This year's leftbank festie on the South Bank is kicked off by its curator Nick Cave (right), playing what is a rare show these days with the Bad Seeds. From there Meltdown 99 is a collection of every weird emotion you'd associate with Mr Cave. Highlights include two shows by longtime collaborator Blixa Bargeld (22 June & 1 July); the Estonian composer Arvo Part on 26 June, backed with a set by Dirty Three; and all-round genius songwriter Lee Hazelwood does a live show in London for the first time in some 20 years. Cave almost hits the mainstream with Sir Les Patterson's Australia Night (24 June), featuring Kylie Minogue, while Nina Simone offers some class on 1 July. It all rounds off on 2 July with Hal Willner's Harry Smith Project, a tribute to the man who did much to anthologise folk music. Cave leads the proceedings with Jarvis Cocker among the others involved. Royal Festival Hall, London SE1 (0171-960 4242) from 17 Jun

Pop: Something to bleat about

Pop LAMB THE PARADOX BRIGHTON

You Ask The Questions: So, Germaine, since animals now have rights, how about men?

Germaine Greer's new book, The Whole Woman, which claims women have settled for a fake equality instead of true liberation, is published next week by Doubleday. Nearly 30 years after she wrote The Female Eunuch, she has been driven to write another feminist polemic by the complacency of a younger generation of women. We asked readers to submit their questions for Dr Greer.

POP: CHARTS

SINGLES

What all the best-dressed corpses will be wearing

Death is no excuse for bad dress sense.

Music: Andy Gill on Albums

The Jesus and Mary Chain

JAZZ ALBUMS

1 Blue For You - The Very Best Of NINA SIMONE

Album Review: VARIOUS ARTISTS The Big Lebowski

VARIOUS ARTISTS
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The saffron censorship that governs India: Why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression

The saffron censorship that governs India

Zareer Masani reveals why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression
Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Supreme Court rules Dominic Grieve's ministerial veto was invalid
Distressed Zayn Malik fans are cutting themselves - how did fandom get so dark?

How did fandom get so dark?

Grief over Zayn Malik's exit from One Direction seemed amusing until stories of mass 'cutting' emerged. Experts tell Gillian Orr the distress is real, and the girls need support
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The cosmic collisions that have shed light on unseen parallel Universe

Dark matter study gives scientists insight into mystery of space
The Swedes are adding a gender-neutral pronoun to their dictionary

Swedes introduce gender-neutral pronoun

Why, asks Simon Usborne, must English still struggle awkwardly with the likes of 's/he' and 'they'?
Disney's mega money-making formula: 'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan

Disney's mega money-making formula

'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan
Lobster has gone mainstream with supermarket bargains for £10 or less - but is it any good?

Lobster has gone mainstream

Anthea Gerrie, raised on meaty specimens from the waters around Maine, reveals how to cook up an affordable feast
Easter 2015: 14 best decorations

14 best Easter decorations

Get into the Easter spirit with our pick of accessories, ornaments and tableware
Paul Scholes column: Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season

Paul Scholes column

Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season
Inside the Kansas greenhouses where Monsanto is 'playing God' with the future of the planet

The future of GM

The greenhouses where Monsanto 'plays God' with the future of the planet
Britain's mild winters could be numbered: why global warming is leaving UK chillier

Britain's mild winters could be numbered

Gulf Stream is slowing down faster than ever, scientists say
Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Donation brings total raised by Homeless Veterans campaign to at least £1.25m
Oh dear, the most borrowed book at Bank of England library doesn't inspire confidence

The most borrowed book at Bank of England library? Oh dear

The book's fifth edition is used for Edexcel exams
Cowslips vs honeysuckle: The hunt for the UK’s favourite wildflower

Cowslips vs honeysuckle

It's the hunt for UK’s favourite wildflower
Child abuse scandal: Did a botched blackmail attempt by South African intelligence help Cyril Smith escape justice?

Did a botched blackmail attempt help Cyril Smith escape justice?

A fresh twist reveals the Liberal MP was targeted by the notorious South African intelligence agency Boss