Whist scrolling through Twitter this morning in between getting together my thoughts ready for a school improvement visit I saw a post from Kenziah Featherstone with the hashtag #Themetune and #playlist. This stopped my in my scrolling. It is something I have often reflected on. When Prince died on 21st April 2016 the magnitude of this hit me like a truck…. no more Prince music , how could this be possible? This musical genius had provided the soundtrack of my life since I could remember. His lyrics somehow hit home with me on such a level it was comforting, a musical travelling partner through life.
It is however the case that I have very wide, eclectic taste in music. I love music and rarely is there no music playing around me. Playlists for the car, school, gym, music is every room at home …. music surrounds me and on deeper refection whilst Prine was and still is the consistent musical inspiration there are many, many more.
With this in mind this blog could go on forever as I adore so many artists, groups , tunes I have however noted the first 10/15 songs that jumped into my head to make reference to and make shed some light as to their importance in ordering my thoughts , adding clarity to life and taking the edge off what can be, at times a serious life ….
Always in my hair by Prince is my number one go to tune to bring me back to centre. A heart felt song about how someone can be in every fibre of your being. The importance of this relationship is everything to me, gives me strength to be me, to be a strong women, to make mistakes, to learn , to be loved.
My Fantasy by Guy is a song that takes me right back to the party days of my youth, big laughs and wild nights. Concerts in London on a shoestring budget and feeling that dancing the night through was all that you needed to get through. In stark contrast This corner of the earth by Jamiroquai brings instant gratification in the warmth of memories. It pulls together all my thoughts of Cleethorpes, it’s quirky creativity, shabby nostalgia of My Dads habit of going every morning to the seafront and looking out to gain a sense of freedom…. how crazy I thought he was, and how I have now grown into this habit.
The search for freedom in a shackled existence is a theme too the Stevie Wonder song Free is also on the playlist …the sentiments are , to me, just what you think on at 2 o’clock on a drizzly Wednesday afternoon after a day of number crunching.. a beautiful haunting tune that always calms me.
Memories of music at home as a child have remained warm… my Mum’s favourites The Drifters on full volume Save the last Dance for me . Then taking Mum to a Drifters concert a few years ago and her whispering to my husband that this was her and my Dads favourite song and him instantly getting up and dancing with her… me with tears streaming down my face, missing my dad and proud of my man. My Dad playing Gloria Gayner I will Survive full blast on a Sunday morning from the sign shop we lived behind and my brother being obsessed with Band of Gold by Freyda Payne ….. these were all played in by also on a record player hidden under a wooden hinged cover that Mum had a crotchet doily on and a hideous blue and white ceramic ornament of figures from the past.
Strong female artist have always sat amongst my favourites on Prince, Stevie Wonder, Teddy Riley ,etc etc. When I finally got out of a job where I was unhappy and went to give my notice in to the chair of governors I got into the car and I’m Coming Out Diana Ross was playing , I turned it up loud and sang at full volume all the way home … this now always reminds me of the joy of getting yourself out of situations that are not for you. Why by Annie Lennox is a favourite mainly , I think , due to that beautiful video and the transformation she goes through from the simple to extraordinary… it’s possible, we can all do this when needed! My All Mariah Carey… simply delicious song about laying yourself on you line for what you want. Right through to my current favourite Million Dollar Bill by Whitney… this song quite simply makes me sing, dance and feel happy. Put it on in my kitchen and I will dance in a Pavlovian type reaction … at the gym I have to be so restrained . when Whitney says If you feel good, If you’re feeling good Put one hand in the air , say yeah I have to stop myself doing just that.
At school, Three Little Birds by Bob Marley hold such a special place in my playlist. My school is a school with high pastoral need, the children need security, understanding and enthusing with high aspirations . When a few years ago on the last day of term when everyone was out on the field in the sun a teacher took out a guitar and started strumming Three Little Birds the whole school,all 350 of them, sang the chorus loudly , spontaneously… just perfect Don’t worry about a thing , because every little thing is gonna be alright . That took them into the summer holidays ..just perfect
Just a snippet of my listening habits that make up my #Playlist so although Sometimes in Snows in April Prince will always be a reminder of the sorrow April 16 brought there are many other joyous tunes that’s make up the full picture …. hang on haven’t even mentioned. Luther Vandross, Beverley Knight , Craig David, George Michael , Solo, Mary JBlige ………