Italy’s 20 greatest cities, according to our expert

Jaime E. Love
This is Italy's greatest city. Do you recognise it? - getty
This is Italy’s greatest city. Do you recognise it? – getty

With Italy reopening to tourists, which city should be first on your wishlist? Let Tim Jepson be your guide

No list of top-ranked cities is definitive, but what fun to compile one. And not just any list, but a list of cities you’d want to visit, even live in; a list that in Italy, with 20 such cities and counting, sees you spoilt for choice. 

What Italians call a city (una città) we might call a town (un paese), in part a legacy of Italy’s medieval city states – once a city, always a city – even if these “cities” today are not what they were. 

One or two of these former cities I have included; others, such as Lucca, Matera, Urbino and Ravenna – for all that they are superb places to visit – are more up for

Read More

Free Food, Free Speech and Free of Police: Inside Seattle’s ‘Autonomous Zone’

Jaime E. Love
A gathering on Wednesday, June 10, 2020, in the Seattle neighborhood of Capitol Hill, where protesters have established an "autonomous zone." (Ruth Fremson/The New York Times)
A gathering on Wednesday, June 10, 2020, in the Seattle neighborhood of Capitol Hill, where protesters have established an “autonomous zone.” (Ruth Fremson/The New York Times)

SEATTLE — On the streets next to a police station in Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood, protesters and officers spent a week locked in a nightly cycle of standoffs, at times ending with clouds of tear gas.

But facing a growing backlash over its dispersal tactics in the aftermath of George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis, the Seattle Police Department this week offered a concession: Officers would abandon their building, board up the windows and let the protesters have free rein outside.

In a neighborhood that is the heart of the city’s art and culture — threatened these days as rising tech wealth brings in gentrification — protesters seized the moment. They reversed the barricades to shield the liberated streets and laid claim to several city

Read More

a rare chance to gasp at Iran’s many splendours

Jaime E. Love
Samira Ahmed by the Bridge of Shadirwan in Shushtar - BBC
Samira Ahmed by the Bridge of Shadirwan in Shushtar – BBC

Samira Ahmed was granted a rare opportunity to journey into the heart of Iran for BBC Four’s Art of Persia, and she didn’t waste it. At many points in this first of three instalments I found myself gasping at the sheer magnificence of the sites she was showing us, and the beauty of the objects found there. The vast, desert ziggurat at Chogha Zanbil, relic of a lost world; the ruins of Persepolis and the grand tomb of its ruler, Darius the Great. These are sights that few Westerners will get to see in real life.

A lesser presenter would have been content to make this into a travel programme, with the occasional observation about the Iranian people. But Ahmed is clever and curious, and you sense that this is one of the great projects of her career.

Read More

Brazilian Pop Star Anitta Announces New Deal With Warner Music

Jaime E. Love

Click here to read the full article.

Brazilian singer-songwriter and actress Anitta has officially signed to Warner Records in the United States. In an announcement on Thursday, the multilingual superstar revealed that she is in the studio recording her U.S. debut, set for release later this year. The album will be executive produced by Ryan Tedder, the OneRepublic singer-songwriter turned producer behind Grammy-winning albums by Adele and Taylor Swift. 

“It’s the most important moment in my career,” Anitta said in a statement. “Now, I can show more about my art and culture to the world internationally. I can’t wait for everyone to hear all the new music I’ve been working on, which will be a fresh blend of both Spanish and English.”

More from Rolling Stone

“We’re thrilled to partner with the global Warner Music Latin team to bring Anitta’s incredible music to the U.S. and beyond,” said Warner Records’

Read More