Jean Renoir’s masterpiece uses the prisoner of war camp as a way to tell a story about social class, patriotism and shared humanity. It is a story that still echoes down the years.
The man who wrote the Cream song I’m So Glad recorded 30 country songs for Paramount as a young man, never saw a cent for them, and disappeared for three decades. But Skip James’ archetypal story earned him a second act in the 1960s.
Songs exist in time, poems exist in space. And other thought on words and music from Pete Atkin.
The opening to Philip Larkin’s poem ‘This Be The Verse’ is the most famous f-word in English poetry. It can survive parodies and remixing.
The battle between Hinault and Lemond in the 1986 Tour is an archetypal story: the old king and the young pretender.
Aretha brought gospel into popular music—and with it the whole history of Black America. On that lies her claim to greatness.
A fictional detective who tracks down lost records and gets into—and out of—trouble as a result. What’s not to like?
In their different ways, Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue and Bernstein’s West Side Story are the sound of 20th century New York.
The great civil engineer Thomas Telford wasn’t admired by all of his contemporaries.
The playwright Alan Plater drew on jazz to inspire and improve his own writing. Some notes on his book Doggin’ Around.