Let's get it on. Where "it" is a lawsuit. Photo: Paul J Richards/AFP/Getty Images
Tracey Thorn: Your songs are like your children – you have to wave them off into the world
By Tracey Thorn - 27 March 14:20

Copyright law encourages artists to feel they're in control of what they've made. But in reality, a song is a different thing once it leaves its creator.

Sara Najafi (centre-right) organises a controversial concert in Iran.
When singing is a revolutionary act: the women challenging Iran's fear of female creativity
By Anna Leszkiewicz - 25 March 9:06

No Land's Song, a new documentary by Ayat Najafi, follows her sister Sara's fight to put on a revolutionary concert. 

Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny is slick and energetic – but unsuited to the Royal Opera House
By Alexandra Coghlan - 19 March 17:22

The Royal Opera House is a fundamentally unsuitable space for its otherwise impressive production of the satire on capitalism, Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny.

Young Fathers interview: “Pop needs to represent culture as it really is”
By Kate Mossman - 19 March 15:50

The Scottish trio tell Kate Mossman why they want racists to hear their music.

Death becomes her: Juliette Binoche as Antigone. Photo: Jan Versweyveld
In love with the impossible: Juliette Binoche’s alluring but impenetrable Antigone
By Jason Cowley - 19 March 11:18

Binoche’s Antigone is easier to respect than to pity and, for some reason, one never really feels the pathos of her struggles.

The BBC National Orchestra Of Wales. Photo: BBC/Guy Levy
Budget 2015: Why George Osborne’s tax cut for orchestras is really unfair
By Caroline Crampton - 18 March 15:13

When is an orchestra not an orchestra? The way this policy defines it, northern brass bands and Scottish bagpipe groups will be excluded from the tax relief.

The New Statesman's unlikely role in the progressive rock movement of the 1960s
By Anna Leszkiewicz - 17 March 16:14

"Painter/musician badly needs rent cheap." 

How not to adapt a British sitcom in America
By Lea A Donovan - 16 March 15:40

For every successful American remake of a classic British comedy there is a handful of dreadful clangers that never make it beyond a pilot.

A more modest view of Aidan Turner.
Second helpings: even with its sea vistas and a firm, pink bottom, Poldark fails to shine
By Rachel Cooke - 12 March 16:15

Plus In and Out of the Kitchen, where the courgette gags just don't make sense.

If you think Robin Thicke's Blurred Lines plagiarises Marvin Gaye, you don't understand songwriting
By Rhodri Marsden - 12 March 14:35

A jury's view that Robin Thicke and Pharrell’s Blurred Lines copied Marvin Gaye’s 1977 song, Got To Give It Up is based on a fundamental misunderstanding of what songwriting is.

Mr Songbird: Ray Davies at the Flask pub in Highgate, north London, 1972. PHoto: Gijsbert Hankeroot/Redferns
The Kinks frontman Ray Davies: an imprisoned rock legend or just plain mean?
By Mark Ellen - 12 March 10:40

The title of veteran rock writer Johnny Rogan's biography Ray Davies: a Complicated Life may be something of an understatement.

Suspended disbelief: Elizabeth Streb’s dancers.
Defying gravity: LGBT voices and daredevil acrobats delight Ryan Gilbey at BFI Flare
By Ryan Gilbey - 11 March 13:13

BFI Southbank's LGBT film festival Flare has become more eye-catching. Now it dazzles.

Tim McMullan (Mendoza) & Ralph Fiennes (John Tanner). Photo: Johan Persson/National Theatre
George Bernard Shaw and David Hare: the political theatre that gets better with age
By Mark Lawson - 05 March 11:21

George Bernard Shaw's Man and Superman and David Hare's The Absence of War have an ideology that speaks to today's politics.

Latitude 2014. Photo: Carys Lavin
Latitude Festival announces 2015 line-up: alt-J, Portishead, Noel Gallagher
By New Statesman - 03 March 12:03

The music and arts festival reveals this year's line-up.

The Beatles in London. Photo: -/AFP/GettyImages
Having failed to get hold of Ringo Starr’s tonsils, I tried to make some cash out of John Lennon
By Suzanne Moore - 27 February 11:32

I didn’t really know what tonsils were but my 'uncle' Peter had taken me to see the Beatles.

At the Brit Awards 1998, Chumbawamba's drummer poured water over John Prescott. Photo: Getty
The Brits are so polite these days. One reason? There’s no bands left
By Tracey Thorn - 26 February 18:14

It used to feel like a school canteen full of rival gangs - now it's a civilised dining room.

Kim Gordon. Photo: Rachel Murray/Getty Images for MOCA
Writing the end: Kim Gordon's autobiography is a thoughtful story from inside an epic band
By Kate Mossman - 26 February 14:19

Girl in a Band reaps the rewards of its introspective author with a pan-American story that will engross fans and non-fans alike.

Reading festival. Photo: Simone Joyner/Getty Images
Just why are there so few female artists on music festival line-ups?
By Stephanie Boland - 26 February 13:31

The Reading and Leeds line-up is outrageously light on women musicians - but with set-in-their-ways promoters and the exclusionary demands of touring, it's going to be hard to change.

The Beatles. Photo: Getty Images
Hunter Davies on reading his own obituary – and writing John Lennon's
By Hunter Davies - 26 February 11:39

Begad, he revives! I came home and asked my wife if she realised she had been a widow since 1980.

A spa treatment room. Photo: Merlin resort, Thailand/Flickr
Tracey Thorn: I know just how uptight I am when I find myself at a spa and unable to chill
By Tracey Thorn - 19 February 17:05

I envy calm people for their apparent immunity to overexcitement or overreaction.

James MacMillan in action.
Conjuring sound: James MacMillan conducts a retrospective of his own works
By Caroline Crampton - 19 February 16:27

Appearing at the Barbican with the BBC Singers and London Sinfonietta, the composer's hands seem to shape music out of thin air.

Dawkins with the band in the studio.
Richard Dawkins to feature on Finnish metal band Nightwish's new album
By Stephanie Boland - 13 February 9:43

The biologist-turned-atheist campaigner is sampled on the band's forthcoming Endless Forms Most Beautiful.

Mark E Smith, lead singer of The Fall.
Totally mired: The Big Midweek reveals the dark side of The Fall
By Austin Collings - 12 February 10:21

Steve Hanley and Olivia Piekarski's new book lifts the lid on one of the most turbulent bands in pop.

Seduced by the devil. Image: Manuel Harlan.
Europe and its demons: How To Hold Your Breath at the Royal Court Theatre
By Barbara Speed - 11 February 12:19

Beyond the intellectual weight of the play's message the production falls a little flat.

ENO's The Mastersingers of Nuremberg. Photo: Catherine Ashmore
Topped in translation: two new London operas make a case for English-language productions
By Alexandra Coghlan - 10 February 15:26

The English National Opera’s  The Mastersingers of Nuremberg and the Royal Opera’s L’Ormindo show that translated music-theatre can be exceptional.

Prodigy: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart as a child. Picture: Rex features
Extended play: the world's longest Mozart festival debuts at Wigmore Hall
By Caroline Crampton - 05 February 15:15

On Mozart 250 and Sarah Connolly in America.

Mind over matter: Olivia Vinall as Hilary in The Hard Problem
A night at the brain gym: Tom Stoppard’s new play The Hard Problem is his most diverse yet
By Mark Lawson - 05 February 15:06

It may be the shortest Stoppard full-length play, but The Hard Problem still offers 100 minutes of touching humour from a varied cast.

Jeremy Clarkson at the Top Gear Festival in Sydney. Photo: Brendon Thorne/Getty Images
Tracey Thorn: The more attention we pay to childish behaviour, the more we get
By Tracey Thorn - 05 February 14:47

Indulging childishness is why we’re stuck with Boris Johnson, Katie Hopkins and Jeremy Clarkson.

Tom Stoppard on art, Charlie Hebdo - and why it's a bad time to be a voter
By Erica Wagner - 05 February 10:51

"Time is short, life is short. There's a lot to know."

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