Arts and Entertainment

Sheryl Crow "Feels Like Home" (Warner Bros)

Write and wrong: Authors Julia Crouch and Stella Duffy, left, find common ground

Let me get this straight ... or not: Stella Duffy and Julia Crouch on sexual identity

The novelists Stella Duffy (who is gay) and Julia Crouch (who is not) discuss issues of identity and authenticity that can arise when your lead character is a lesbian – and why authors should simply ignore them all

Stereophonics, Graffiti on the Train (Stylus)

Album review: Stereophonics, Graffiti on the Train (Stylus)

Keep Calm and Carry On from 2009 found Stereophonics struggling to find a decisive way forward, and while Graffiti on the Train is a significant improvement, it's still something of a patchwork affair, lurching between string-laced pieces like the elegaic title track and “Indian Summer”, soulful blues odes such as “Been Caught Cheating” and “No-one's Perfect”, and out-and-out rockers like the swaggering “Catacomb”.

Hollywood: Variety's daily edition gets ankled

Famous film trade mag Variety is adapting for the web by killing off its daily print edition in favour of a once-a-week edition and removing its online paywall. In its honour here are some of its best inside-Hollywood lexicographical inventions (dubbed slanguage):

British group: Mumford & Sons

Brit Awards 2013: No wild things from a music scene in the wilderness of mediocrity

Emeli Sandé, happily, doesn't look like an identikit winner, but she does sound an awful lot like Adele

Barrie Edgar claimed to have been 'the world's worst actor'

Barrie Edgar: Television producer who worked on 'Come Dancing' and 'Gardeners' World'

In a television career spent entirely with the BBC, Barrie Edgar demonstrated a parallel loyalty to his home area of Birmingham. Specialising in outside broadcasts and bearing the title TV Producer, Midland Region, he established his reputation in the single-channel era of the 1950s, continuing as the city's production centre became Pebble Mill in the early 1970s. While his credits were as disparate as children's programmes, variety shows and the 1962 consecration of Coventry Cathedral, he also made programmes that reflected his own interests; as a keen horticulturist, he produced BBC2's Gardeners' World, one of several shows that survive him, in varying formats.

Album review: Various Artists, Reason to Believe: the Songs of Tim Hardin (Full Time Hobby)

Just as he was, by all accounts, an unpleasant man blessed with enviably beautiful gifts, so do Tim Hardin's songs clothe often unwelcome sentiments in gorgeous melodies.

Album review: Buddy Miller & Jim Lauderdale, Buddy and Jim (New West)

Buddy Miller is fast becoming a ubiquitous presence on quality Americana and, through work with the likes of Robert Plant and Richard Thompson, quality Albiona, too.

IoS album review: Jools Holland & his Rhythm & Blues Orchestra, The Golden Age of Song (Rhino)

This collection of collaborative covers trawls Holland's Hootenanny shows, with a dozen specially recorded tunes thrown in.

Taylor Swift, pictured, will play the legendary Joni Mitchell

Why does today's pop music sound the same? Because the same people make it

Experimentation is being pushed to the margins as labels rely on successful producers

IoS paperback review: The Man Who Sold the World, By Peter Doggett

Just as the Beatles' musical revolution summed up the spirit of the Sixties, so, Peter Doggett argues, David Bowie was "popular culture's most reliable guide to the fever of the Seventies".

Frank Ocean’s coming out was a watershed moment for hip-hop and homosexuality

New gay club nights bring hip-hop out of the dark, into the bright lights

Hip-hop has a difficult relationship with gay culture – could a raft of new club nights fix that? Lemma Shehadi reports

The Rochdale Cowboy bows out with guns blazing

The sacking of BBC folk radio DJ Mike Harding is a sad end for one of broadcasting's most tireless characters

After all this time, it's still good to Talk Talk

A book and CD show how influential the band remain, says Pierre Perrone

Green Day

Prolific pop: Should you really release three CDs in four months?

Pop music is going through a prolific period. Elisa Bray reports

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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
A new Russian revolution: Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc

A new Russian revolution

Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc
Eugene de Kock: Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

The debate rages in South Africa over whether Eugene de Kock should ever be released from jail
Standing my ground: If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?

Standing my ground

If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?
Commonwealth Games 2014: Dai Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

Welsh hurdler was World, European and Commonwealth champion, but then the injuries crept in
Israel-Gaza conflict: Secret report helps Israelis to hide facts

Patrick Cockburn: Secret report helps Israel to hide facts

The slickness of Israel's spokesmen is rooted in directions set down by pollster Frank Luntz
The man who dared to go on holiday

The man who dared to go on holiday

New York's mayor has taken a vacation - in a nation that has still to enforce paid leave, it caused quite a stir, reports Rupert Cornwell
Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business, from Sarah Millican to Marcus Brigstocke

Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business

For all those wanting to know how stand-ups keep standing, here are some of the best moments
The Guest List 2014: Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks

The Guest List 2014

Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks
Jokes on Hollywood: 'With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on'

Jokes on Hollywood

With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on
It's the best of British art... but not all is on display

It's the best of British art... but not all is on display

Voted for by the British public, the artworks on Art Everywhere posters may be the only place where they can be seen
Critic claims 'I was the inspiration for Blanche DuBois'

Critic claims 'I was the inspiration for Blanche DuBois'

Blanche Marvin reveals how Tennessee Williams used her name and an off-the-cuff remark to create an iconic character
Sometimes it's hard to be a literary novelist

Sometimes it's hard to be a literary novelist

Websites offering your ebooks for nothing is only the latest disrespect the modern writer is subjected to, says DJ Taylor
Edinburgh Fringe 2014: The comedy highlights, from Bridget Christie to Jack Dee

Edinburgh Fringe 2014

The comedy highlights, from Bridget Christie to Jack Dee
Dame Jenny Abramsky: 'We have to rethink. If not, museums and parks will close'

Dame Jenny Abramsky: 'We have to rethink. If not, museums and parks will close'

The woman stepping down as chair of the Heritage Lottery Fund is worried