Musical memories

Too many notes

Whether it’s the food I eat, the drinks I enjoy or the music I listen to, the main reason always seems to be a particular memory of a place, a person or a moment. This is a list of my favourite music with a few autobiographical grace notes…

Artist Song Memory
ABBA Take A Chance On Me My sister bought the single and I still remember I’m A Marionette on the B-side!
Amy Stroup Alas We Aspire
Anna Nalick Breathe (2 A.M.)
Annie Lennox Waiting In Vain Call me a softie, but Kate Beckinsale in Serendipity
Annie Lennox Walking On Broken Glass My dancing partner Vicki Kereszteny found this for rehearsing our cha
Apollo 440 Stop The Rock Claire Forlani at the foam party in Boys and Girls
Beatles Here Comes The Sun Does anyone remember this as the theme to the Holiday programme…?!
Beatles Let It Be I sang this to myself while cycling to every one of my finals
Bell X1 Eve, the Apple of My Eye
Berlin Take My Breath Away Who can forget the Top Gun theme…?!
Bette Midler In My Life
Bette Midler From A Distance
Billy Joel My Life This was the theme to Bosom Buddies, which gave us Tom Hanks and Donna Dixon!
Black Eyed Peas I Gotta Feeling
Blur To The End Watching Blur at Mile End in the rain
Bon Jovi Livin’ On A Prayer Watching with Joe Oatley in Milton Keynes as he walked in front of 12′ screens full of feedback snow!
Boyz II Men End Of The Road Vicki gave me the Brit Awards CD from 1993, and this was on it…
Bruce Springsteen Born In The USA One of the best presents I ever had was the MTV Plugged CD given me by Mark Highman, and all these songs were on it…
Bruce Springsteen I Wish I Were Blind
Bruce Springsteen Thunder Road (MTV Plugged)
Bruce Springsteen My Beautiful Reward
Bryan Ferry Oh Yeah (On The Radio)
Bryan Ferry More Than This
Cars You Might Think My first girlfriend Paula Buster from Canyon, TX
Carter Burwell Overture I have a soft spot for great theme tunes, and Carter Burwell pulled out all the stops for Conspiracy Theory
Carter Burwell Conspiracy Theory
Carter Burwell Riding
Chicane Don’t Give Up
Chicane Halcyon
Chicane No Ordinary Morning To Anne Crary, the only girl I ever asked to marry me, who introduced me to Chicane when I tried to put on the Bee Gees!
Clem Snide Moment In The Sun
Corey Hart Sunglasses At Night Another one from my time in the States with Paula
Craig Amstrong Portuguese Love Theme Love, Actually didn’t go down well with the Belgians next to me, but to me it was as if the director had exactly the same view of love (and good music!)
Craig Amstrong Glasgow Love Theme
Craig Amstrong PM’s Love Theme
Darude Sandstorm
David Bowie Rebel Rebel
David Bowie Life On Mars?
David Gates Goodbye Girl The Goodbye Girl is one of the great (forgotten) romantic comedies. Richard Dreyfus and Marsha Mason at their best.
David Gray Disappearing World To my musical friend Eden James, who introduced me to David Gray in Brisbane when we ended up singing along to the guitar (and the odd possum on the roof!) after every house party…
David Gray Babylon
David Gray My Oh My
David Gray Please Forgive Me
David Gray
David Gray
David Gray January Rain
David Gray The Other Side
Dido Here With Me I have a bit of a weakness for US teen dramas, so I was easy meat for Shiri Appleby in Roswell
Dire Straits Romeo And Juliet When I made the mistake of showing my diary to Elizabeth at Oxford, this is what I taped back-to-back and listened to over and over again to make the break-up hurt a bit less
Dire Straits So Far Away
Dire Straits Sultans Of Swing (Live Aid) When I was away in Germany, I had to ask my mum to tape Live Aid, but this was the only song I liked (until I accidentally pressed the record button on my tape deck and had to do without it until Napster came along!)
Dire Straits Your Latest Trick
Dire Straits Telegraph Road
Dire Straits Private Investigations
Don Henley The Boys Of Summer
Emily Barker & The Red Clay Halo Pause Another great TV theme from The Shadow Line
Enya Promontory
Etta James At Last
Fats Waller & Benny Payne After You’ve Gone The other contender for the greatest present of all time. I told Claudine Kenny this was my favourite (unobtainable) jazz track, and she managed to track it down for my birthday.
Fine Young Cannibals Good Thing
Flo Rida Club Can’t Handle Me
Foo Fighters Next Year
Frank Sinatra One For My Baby One of the few songs to which I know all the words, which was embarrassing when my mum caught me singing it in Newton Abbot!
Geoffrey Burgon Brideshead Revisited One of the happiest moments of my life came when we all trudged across the gravel on a perfect sunny October morning at Christ Church to have our matriculation photograph taken…and the second years played this from one of the windows in Peck! (They were fined £150…)
Gerry Rafferty Baker Street My sister caught sight of a list I was making of my favourite music and made me a couple of treasured mix tapes including this classic of urban disaffection
Haddaway What Is Love Another one from the Brit Awards CD from Vicki
Herbie Hancock Cantaloupe Island My friend Tio made me a tape of ‘E-type jazz’ in exchange for a ride down the King’s Road in my 1965 carmine red Series 2 roadster, and this was my favourite
Herbie Hancock Driftin’
Imogen Heap Hide And Seek I heard this played over the funeral scene in The OC, so it was perhaps inevitable I should end up living there (Ormonde Court, not Orange County!)
Jon & Vangelis I’ll Find My Way Home
Kasabian Club Foot I actually met Kasabian while playing the referee in Sky Sports’ last World Cup advert!
Kate Bush Wuthering Heights Thanks again to my sister Katharine for buying The Kick Inside. Did Kate Bush really write these songs when she was only 19?! Astonishing…
Killers Human
Little Feat Willin’ One of the best days of my life came when I took a day off to visit Singapore for a birthday treat for my ex-boss at Mercer. Champagne breakfast, waterskiing, sevens, a rickshaw ride, Singapore slings in Raffles, two beautiful girls and this song…
Loreena McKennitt Dante’s Prayer More thanks to Anne Crary for introducing me to this
Lynyrd Skynyrd Tuesday’s Gone
Marshall Crenshaw Someday, Someway
Martin Solveig & Dragonette Hello (Single Edit)
Matt Cardle When We Collide
Miley Cyrus When I Look At You
Morten Lauridsen O Magnum Mysterium I heard this for the first time sitting next to Marina at a concert given by our friend Sam’s choir, and we were both blown away. What a perfect way to discover a wonderful piece!
Mussorgsky The Great Gate of Kiev
Nick Lowe I Love The Sound Of Breaking Glass This memory is so far back, I don’t even know where it came from, but 1978 was a great year for new music (think Wuthering Heights!)
Norah Jones Turn Me On
Norah Jones The Nearness Of You
Old 97s Question This is taken from the moment when Ed proposes to Carol in Ed (obviously!)
OneRepublic Good Life
Paul McCartney No More Lonely Nights
Peter Best Echo Billabong I’m not ashamed to say that Linda Kozlowski in a swimsuit had something to do with this…!
Peter Gabriel Biko
Peter Gabriel In Your Eyes Cameron Fairchild, where are you now?! I met him in Amarillo, TX, and we were best friends for a few months during my year off. He was a fan of Peter Gabriel, and we played Risk, Axis & Allies and Conquest of Empire until the early hours before retiring to Denny’s for the all-day (and all-night!) breakfast…
Peter Gabriel Red Rain
Peter Gabriel Solsbury Hill
Peter Gabriel Mercy Street
Peter Gabriel Book Of Love
Peter Gabriel & Kate Bush Don’t Give Up
Pogues Love You ‘Til The End
Pointer Sisters Jump (For My Love)
Pretenders Human This is the theme from Cupid with Jeremy Piven and Paula Marshall, the best TV show never to be given a full season
Propaganda Duel
Puccini O Mio Babbino Caro I have to admit I heard this first on the soundtrack to A Room with a View, but they certainly picked the right version and the right soprano to sing it!
Puccini Chi Il Bel Sogno Di Doretta Again from A Room with a View, and I almost prefer this aria now
Puccini Nessun Dorma I had a friend Pete Bouman at Oxford, who was an exchange student passionate about opera. One day in his rooms, he tried to play me an aria in which a soprano hit top C, but while he was fumbling with the fast forward and rewind buttons I heard this wonderful classic and made him play it for me. An early taste of Italia ’90!
Rachmaninov Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini Groundhog Day is my favourite film ever, and this music has an important part to play!
Rachmaninov 2nd Piano Concerto, Mvt 1 Who but the most cynical of viewers could fail to be moved to tears by the score of Brief Encounter (even if my mother happened to catch me…!)?
Rachmaninov 2nd Piano Concerto, Mvt 2
Rachmaninov 2nd Piano Concerto, Mvt 3
Ray Charles What’d I Say
Remy Zero Fair
Remy Zero Save Me This one’s from Smallville. US teen dramas don’t get any cornier (so to speak…)
Rolling Stones Gimme Shelter
Rolling Stones Start Me Up
Rolling Stones Sympathy For The Devil I was once at a party with Damian Hinds, who insisted on playing this even though nobody could dance to it!
Rolling Stones Wild Horses Vicki again. Sigh…
Run DMC & Aerosmith Walk This Way This was the soundtrack to my very first race off the lights in Amarillo, TX. Eighty miles an hour, top down all the way. Glory…
Sam Fonteyn Pop Looks Bach
Sarah McLachlan Possession
Scorpions Wind Of Change
Semisonic Closing Time
Sinead Lohan No Mermaid
Sixpence None The Richer Kiss Me
Sixpence None The Richer There She Goes
Smashing Pumpkins 1979
Steve Reynolds House I Built
Stiltskin Inside What a great Levi jeans advert! The music and pictures were in perfect harmony. Amish girl in black and white plus heartthrob and rock music – sounds like Witness!
T Rex Cosmic Dancer From the soundtrack to Billy Elliot
Take That Back for Good (Radio Mix)
Toploader Dancing In The Moonlight Anyone who went to Bananas in Val d’Isere around midnight would remember this one (and Angel by Robbie Williams)!
Train Drops Of Jupiter Stand up, Craig Campbell. I only managed to make you dinner once that season in Mottaret, but we told so many stories while listening to so many songs that I have to credit you with the inspiration for this post!
Trespassers William Lie In The Sound
Trevor Jones & Randy Edelman Ascent/Pursuit From The Last of the Mohicans. Definitely a better film than the book!
Trevor Jones & Randy Edelman Last Of The Mohicans (Main Theme)
U2 Walk On
U2 Where The Streets Have No Name This is the theme to the promotional video of the Gnat Display Team, which I managed for a while in 2010-11
U2 Who’s Gonna Ride Your Wild Horses
Vanessa Carlton A Thousand Miles
Verdi Dammi Tu Forza, O Cielo! Julia Roberts ‘peed her pants’ to this in Pretty Woman. What more can you say?!
Waterboys The Whole Of The Moon
Who Baba O’Reilly
Who The Seeker
Yazoo Only You

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