Songs to make you feel good

At school I played guitar and recorder. We’re talking ‘Going To The Zoo’ and ‘Hot Cross Buns’ respectively, but still. My iTunes library is non-existent and I’d strongly advise you against ever inviting me to a pop quiz team. But I love music. I love how it makes me feel and perform. I love how it can change the spirit of many occasions (for better, or worse) at the mere flick of a switch / skip of a track. Is there anything better than a drive in the sunshine with the radio blaring?

There’s probably a truckload of research I could dig out on the health and wellbeing benefits of music but that’s not what this post is about.

The lovely Lindy has tagged me in her Desert Island Discs themed post this weekend.

Desert Island Discs is an institution, isn’t it? In case you missed the memo:

You’re going to be marooned on a desert island and all you’ll have with you are 8 songs, one luxury (can’t be anything practical or useful), the bible and another book.  

And so to the discs

Somehow (Gawd only knows how), Barry White’s “You Are The First, My Last, My Everything” made it onto my marathon playlist. During Edinburgh, I was on course for a killer PB but I was starting to lose it with four miles to go. I didn’t think I could hold on. Then, there he was, the man that had supported every 5.20am training alarm call (and helped with many a sports bra malfunction in the dark), travelled length and breadth of the country for training races and not once moaned about the all too regular appearance of sweet potato mash at dinner time. He yelled something (probably, “I’ll be so glad when this is bloody over!”) and then Barry’s deep, deep chords filled my ears. I finished that race 44 minutes faster than the one I ran the year before.

Marathon medal

Proud as punch with a new PB and a shiny medal

Keeping with the running theme, StreTch Rayner will vouch for the fact I have achieved the unthinkable during treadmill tabatas whilst plugged into this beauty. Equally, Bonny helped me get off the bus and into the office most mornings after my Mum died. Mock as you will, I’m as good as certain “Holding Out For A Hero” could take you to a whole other level if you let it!

But I wasn’t holding out for too long… In 2011 I married him. We watched Jersey Boys together multiple times when we lived in London, “Can’t Take My Eyes off You – Frankie Valli and The 4 Seasons” was our first dance song.

First dance

He definitely stepped on my toe…


We bought Fi the ‘Abba Gold’ cassette one Christmas. It didn’t get listened to until the following summer when Peg took Sis and I out of Mothership’s hair on Saturdays to cricket matches about 30 miles away. We listed to the cassette allllllll the way there. And alllllll the way back. Every weekend. For six school holiday weeks solid. The “Mama Mia” chorus was always such an immensity.

I knew absolutely nothing about M83 (and still don’t) but I once saw Paleo blogger Lola Berry link to “Midnight City” in one of her Tweets. It was so different from any track I’ve ever loved before. I could listen to it a trillion, billion times and not tire of it. Every time it brings on an uplifting daydream.

For darker days, when you just need a damn good cry (and to be honest anything from Les Mis will do the job), it’s got to be “One Day More”. Yes, I have been known to find myself victoriously marching on the spot as tears stream down my mascara stained face.

My sister is everything I’m not. Practical, smart, considered, thorough and rational. One thing we do share however is a love of Take That and, thankfully, one another. We went to Take That’s first reunion tour together where all the mustard and ketchup from my hot dog squidged down the front of my brand new citrus yellow Gap cardie. Gary was never going to come home with me like that, was he? We drank Strongbow and blue WKD, we sang “Never Forget” in a way that we have never forgotten. My how the mighty have fallen / things have seriously changed.

Take That

Take That: the photo is as blurry as my vision was at the time!

The book

…Would be a thesaurus. If there’s one thing I wish I did more of at school it was practice writing sentences with words you get from opening a dictionary at a random page. Language fascinates me. I envy broad vocabularies. I’d make the most of the time on a desert island to grow mine.

The luxury

…would have to be a personal trainer – providing he brought a decent music collection with him and had yoga instruction capabilities. I’d love to live like an athlete without the pressure of being expected to win medals. Wake – eat – train – rest – eat – train – eat – sleep. Imagine the round the clock endorphin rush, the bronzed glow from running, skipping and jumping outdoors. Think how ripped I’d be on my return!

I tag:

Music supremo & fellow Les Mis superfan Ceri

Culture vulture with her finger on the next big thing pulse Rebecca