I am thrilled to share my selections for Lifetime’s Desert Island Discs. I have listened to hundreds of choices on the BBC radio app and they have proved a fascinating insight into the lives of some extraordinary people. In turn they also expose you to such a varied and eclectic music selection. This, and the genius of music streaming, takes you on a musical journey that I have thoroughly enjoyed.
Disc One: Always On My Mind – Elvis Presley
My first selection takes me right back to early school and a much cherished friend who sadly passed away. We spent a lot of time together and he was a massive Elvis fan. When we were in junior school he used to do Elvis impersonations whilst eating chips! It was brilliant and this record reminds me of him, those early school days, and also later when we used to ‘cruise the streets’ in his red escort van, listening to Elvis among others! So, here is Always On My Mind.
Disc Two: Roxanne – The Police
The first record I heard in a nightclub was Roxanne by The Police, back when I was about 13 years old and they had ‘junior night’ on a Monday! It was at the Birdcage at Hoyland. When I left school I had a summer job, living away from home in York. That summer’s charts were dominated by another Police track, Every Breath You Take. I’ve gone for Roxanne but it is a close call!
Disc Three: Forever Young – Alphaville
My third choice is again a reflection on times gone by. When I was at school you fell into one of three groups: Mods, Rockers or Punks. I was in the ‘Rocker’ group. However, a new electronic sound really took off, with groups like The Human League etc. The song I have chosen reminds me of that time and that sound but also this song was attached to a short documentary showing Gazza’s football prowess.
Disc Four: Symphony of Sorrowful Songs (2nd movement) – Henryk Gorecki
Something a little different now. Thinking music! This symphony by Henryk Gorecki really does resonate with me. I like to lay in a dark room and play the whole of this symphony. You can easily lose your thoughts to this haunting music. I never tire of listening to this and would find it equally satisfying while lying on my desert island! Symphony of Sorrowful Songs 2nd Movement. Have the volume turned up!
Disc Five: Empty – Ray Lamontagne
My favourite artist is Ray Lamontagne. He evokes such atmosphere in his music and I have a number of his songs that I class as personal favourites. When I go sailing and we are meandering across the oceans, with the sun in the sky and the sea so blue, we play all the albums of ‘Raymondo’ on shuffle! It is perfect sailing music as time slows to a snail’s pace! The track I have chosen for number five is Empty. Enjoy!
Disc Six: Fields of Gold – Eva Cassidy
I have chosen this because it is one of my favourite songs. A timeless classic, written by a real man of his time, Sting. I am choosing the Eva Cassidy cover of it because I love her version and how she added something to an already brilliant piece. Her voice is simply amazing.
Disc Seven: Amazing Grace – Royal Scots Dragoon Guards
This next track is a little left field! I am going for a reminder of a special place, that takes me back to lots of memories of childhood and family holidays, and the home of golf. Whenever I hear the sound of bagpipes it always stirs happy memories.
Disc Eight: Old Before Your Time – Ray Lamontagne
The last track is an easy one for me. Back to Ray Lamontagne. The title is ‘Old Before Your Time’. The lyrics to this song resonated with me the first time I heard it and I always enjoy a singalong in the car, especially with Scarlett (my youngest daughter). I simply never tire of this track. The man is an unassuming genius!
Choice of Book: Poor Charlie’s Almanack – Charles T Munger
This book is filled with wit and wisdom. I don’t think I will ever tire of reading and thinking about its content.
Luxury item: A (proper) coffee machine!
Episode 24: Peter Clarke