100 Days, 100 Nights

The title of Ashford and Simpson?s "Ain't Nothing Like the Real Thing" remains the yardstick of R&B. Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings?s 100 Days 100 Nights, featuring a veteran singer who sounds like old school soul circa 1972 is part of her very DNA, revels in feel, a quality that just can?t be faked. Jones, who after a promising start in the 1970s, dropped out of the music business -- eventually becoming a Rikers Island corrections officer before her return in the 90s -- has the kind of mighty vocal assurance that announces itself from the first note on. Yet what best confirms her as the genuine article is the ability to hold back a voluminous voice to best effect; a classic quality that separates her from the mellisma -- obsessed showoffs that clog today?s airwaves. 100 Days is Jones?s third collaboration with the Dap-Kings, and the palpable comfort between singer and band is one of the album?s greatest joys. The Daps had a recent sprinkling of second-hand glory when producer Mark Ronson turned to them while crafting Brit-pop sensation Amy Winehouse?s Back to Black to achieve a sound that no modern technology could conjure up. The Dap- Kings may be for hire, but playing with Jones must feel like coming home for them. --

April 24: "[The HST] lifted a curtain from our view of the universe, changing it so profoundly that no human can look at the stars in the same way..."

Kenneth Calhoun (Black Moon) and Lysley Tenorio (Monstress) of the Discover Great New Writers program on B-movies, heritage, and finales.

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Books, CDs, DVDs to know about now
In the Light of What We Know

Zia Haider Rahman's mystery of a brilliant Bangladeshi mathematician's past barrels through the Ivy League, London high finance, and spy-haunted Afghanistan in a page-turning tale of exile, intrigue and the price of friendship. A Discover Great New Writers selection.

The People's Platform

Once touted as the foundation for tomorrow's digital democracy, the Internet is increasingly ruled by a few corporate giants, while millions of contributors till its fields for free. Astra Taylor looks at why the web has failed to deliver a communitarian cyberscape, and offers a compelling case for restoring its original vision.

A Private Venus

Dubbed "the Italian Simenon," Giorgio Scerbanenco (1911-1969) began his crime-writing career with books set in the USA, but quickly shifted scene closer to home, the city of Milan.  In this adventure, appearing in English for the first time, his underdog hero Dr. Duca Lamberti finds himself in the middle of a seedy, scantily clad criminal racket, where the presence of an outsider could result in death.