Arts and Entertainment

Ronnie Scott’s, London

Album Review: VARIOUS ARTISTS The Big Lebowski


top ten charts


The Critics: Jazz: Nina, Nina, Nina, goddam

Well , she got the first standing ovation for just turning up. The others followed fairly regularly after that, but it was the opener that was perhaps the most deserved. Hobbling on to the Barbican stage with the aid of two helpers, and cocooned in a mink coat (a nice touch for a Womad event) over a voluminous sparkly gown, Nina Simone looked every bit as big as her legend. Indeed, she looked more than a little like the late actor Divine.

World music: Still doing it her way

Nina Simone at Womad Barbican Hall, London

Pop: Been around the world...

Aboriginal vocalists, Celtic instrumentalists and a Somali wedding tent... All part of the WOMAD festival at the Barbican this weekend

JAZZ / Abbey Lincoln St Lucia Jazz Festival

And the band played on... for all the jazz diva's beautiful disdain.

Songster Mao makes a great leap forward



Self-taught pianist Weldon Irvine has been a prominent jazz artist since 1964, responsible for honing the finest talent in New York. He's written more than 200 compositions, recorded by the likes of Freddie Hubbard and Nina Simone. On Friday and Saturday night, at the Jazz Cafe, 5 Parkway, NW1, he'll be playing his jazz dance classics, like "Walk that Walk, Talk that Talk". These days, Weldon is one of the most frequently sampled jazz composers and his love for hip hop has seen him recording a jazz rap album.

LIVES OF THE GREAT SONGS / Ev'ry which way but loose: Ev'ry time we say goodbye: In the latest excerpt from our history of the hits, Giles Smith presents a guided tour of an urbane wasteland

COLE PORTER, ingenious and effusive as a lyricist, was often restrained to the point of austerity as a composer. His attitude seems to have been: why use two notes where one will do? Think of 'Night and Day', with its introductory verse entirely on a single note and the little strings of repeated notes the melody keeps returning to. Or think of 'Miss Otis Regrets' and the long run on the same note in its opening line ('Miss Otis regrets she's unable to lunch today').

Zoe Heller In America: No place to get lost in, the village of New York

I WAS GOING uptown on the subway the other day, when a man got on at 59th Street and sat down right next to me. The carriage was pretty empty, and there were plenty of other seats available, so straight away I gave him a terrifically filthy look.

ROCK / Frank's blind dates

SOMETIMES, two can be a crowd. On Duets (Capitol/EMI, out on Monday), Frank Sinatra's first studio album in more than a decade, the old master's voice gets shoe-horned into some uncomfortable proximities (not to mention the year's most horrible cover). The disc does not start well. Luther Vandross is a great singer, but his professional smoothness and Frank's dry-as-dust phrasing rub each other up the wrong way, and their 'Lady is a Tramp' is all over the place. The next pairing - 'What Now My Love?', with Aretha Franklin - is much more felicitous, and by the time Barbra Streisand glides into earshot for 'I've Got a Crush on You' all concerned seem to be enjoying themselves: 'I have got a crush, my Barbra, on you.' 'Oh, you make me blush, Francis.'

ALBUMS / The road to Hatfield


REVIEWS / Blood complicated

Red Rock West (15) John Dahl (US) The Assassin (18) John Badham (US) The Fencing Master (12) Pedro Olea (Sp)

CABARET / Hanging on her lips: Tristan Davies reviews Sandra Bernhard's Giving Till It Hurts at the Edinburgh Playhouse

'Bunny Wannabe Sandra Bernhard STARKERS]' Tall travellers, Edinburgh-bound, may have noticed these words screaming down at them from the top shelves of magazine racks in airports and stations, accompanied by a picture of a woman with unfeasibly large lips, hands on hips, pouting aggressively in full bunny regalia.

FILM / Croak and dagger adventures

Freddie as F R 0 7 (U) Jon Acevski (UK); The News Boys (PG) Kenny Ortega (US); Waiting (15) Jackie McKimmie (Aus); Without You I'm Nothing (no cert) John Boskovitch (US)
voicesGood for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, writes Grace Dent
The University of California study monitored the reaction of 36 dogs
sciencePets' range of emotions revealed
Life and Style
fashion Designs are part of feminist art project by a British student
Arts and Entertainment
The nomination of 'The Wake' by Paul Kingsnorth has caused a stir
Arts and Entertainment
The Tour de France peloton rides over a bridge on the Grinton Moor, Yorkshire, earlier this month
Snoop Dogg pictured at The Hollywood Reporter Nominees' Night in February, 2013
people... says Snoop Dogg
Life and Style
food + drinkZebra meat is exotic and lean - but does it taste good?
Arts and Entertainment
Residents of Derby Road in Southampton oppose filming of Channel 4 documentary Immigration Street in their community
voicesSiobhan Norton on why she eventually changed her mind
Career Services

Day In a Page

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
Noel Fielding's 'Luxury Comedy': A land of the outright bizarre

Noel Fielding's 'Luxury Comedy'

A land of the outright bizarre
What are the worst 'Word Crimes'?

What are the worst 'Word Crimes'?

‘Weird Al’ Yankovic's latest video is an ode to good grammar. But what do The Independent’s experts think he’s missed out?
Can Secret Cinema sell 80,000 'Back to the Future' tickets?

The worst kept secret in cinema

A cult movie event aims to immerse audiences of 80,000 in ‘Back to the Future’. But has it lost its magic?
Facebook: The new hatched, matched and dispatched

The new hatched, matched and dispatched

Family events used to be marked in the personal columns. But now Facebook has usurped the ‘Births, Deaths and Marriages’ announcements
Why do we have blood types?

Are you my type?

All of us have one but probably never wondered why. Yet even now, a century after blood types were discovered, it’s a matter of debate what they’re for
Honesty box hotels: You decide how much you pay

Honesty box hotels

Five hotels in Paris now allow guests to pay only what they think their stay was worth. It seems fraught with financial risk, but the honesty policy has its benefit
Commonwealth Games 2014: Why weight of pressure rests easy on Michael Jamieson’s shoulders

Michael Jamieson: Why weight of pressure rests easy on his shoulders

The Scottish swimmer is ready for ‘the biggest race of my life’ at the Commonwealth Games
Some are reformed drug addicts. Some are single mums. All are on benefits. But now these so-called 'scroungers’ are fighting back

The 'scroungers’ fight back

The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
Amazing video shows Nasa 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action

Fireballs in space

Amazing video shows Nasa's 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action
A Bible for billionaires

A Bible for billionaires

Find out why America's richest men are reading John Brookes
Paranoid parenting is on the rise - and our children are suffering because of it

Paranoid parenting is on the rise

And our children are suffering because of it
For sale: Island where the Magna Carta was sealed

Magna Carta Island goes on sale

Yours for a cool £4m
Phone hacking scandal special report: The slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

The hacker's tale: the slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

Glenn Mulcaire was jailed for six months for intercepting phone messages. James Hanning tells his story in a new book. This is an extract
We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

Child abusers are not all the same, yet the idea of treating them differently in relation to the severity of their crimes has somehow become controversial
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

For instance, did Isis kill the Israeli teenagers to trigger a war, asks Patrick Cockburn