mon 16/05/2022

Simon Cowell

Johnny Mercer: The Dream's on Me, BBC Four

Johnny Mercer (right) with Nat King Cole, one of his discoveries for Capitol Records

Jazz enthusiast Clint Eastwood, who co-produced this film with the BBC's Arena, clearly harbours a particular regard for songwriter, singer, impresario and record company mogul Johnny Mercer. When Eastwood made his film of John Berendt's book...

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theartsdesk in Abu Dhabi: Doing Things by the Book

One of the most serious crises facing the Arabic-speaking world in recent years - but which has received precious little comment both in the Middle East and internationally - has been the serious decline in literacy and the art of reading. A United...

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A Band for Britain, BBC Two

We know the grammar now by rote. Some local institution is on its uppers. A traditional way of life is threatened by changing times. Sic transit etcetera and so forth. What’s wanted is a shot in the arm, a kick in the seat, preferably administered...

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Music Business 2000-9: The Medium, the Message

The point at which the, ah, Noughties revealed themselves to me as a decade in search of more than just a decent name arrived when Sky News' showbiz gofer phoned up to ask me to come on and blah about this exciting new band that everybody was...

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Television 2000-9: Reality TV

It’s possible Endemol didn’t give the book too close a reading. George Orwell conceived Big Brother as an all-seeing eye whose function was to enforce social and political conformity. Let us not revisit here the gallery of desperadoes, sextroverts...

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I Dreamed A Dream: The Susan Boyle Story, ITV1

"They all laughed at Rockefeller Centre, now they’re fighting to get in,” as the Gershwins put it. Much the same applies to Susan Boyle, the implausible contestant from Britain’s Got Talent who has soared fantastically from a closeted life of...

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