I’ve risked praising VS Naipaul before in this blog’s predecessor – and it made me very unpopular in certain quarters. He holds some repugnant views, I know. But that does not change the fact that he is a superb writer and I admire his writing hugely. This review is worth reading if, like me, you are interested in the man and his work. Thanks to CD for the alert. Toumani Diabate is a similar case. The most beautiful kora player, but a pig of a man who treats those around him like dirt, abusing local Malian fans in a manner that has almost succeeded in putting me off listening to his music altogether. He told me that one of his main aims in life is to play with Michael Jackson – for the fame and fortune, mind you, not the artistic creative opportunity.