I’m so excited to finally be writing this blog post. It’s been something I’ve wanted to write for so long and now I finally have some time (whilst on the train home from London) to set to work on it.
It’s no secret that I’m a HUGE music fan. To me music is everything, I can’t imagine a world without it. Music is a feeling, a moment, a memory, a laugh, a cry.
I can pin a single song or album to almost every significant part of my life both good and bad and I thought it would be nice to share those life shaping songs with you today along with a little anecdote of why, when and with who. It’s going to be a long one so buckle up, grab a snack or two and be sure to head to the playlist to the right of the post to find every single song all in one place.
Dodgy- Good Enough
I’m going to start with my first favourite song. This song forever reminds me of being perhaps 4 or 5 and brings back the happiest memories of being a little one with my mum, dad and sister Faye. It’s a song I still adore to this day and listen to all the time if I need a little pick me up; It’s happiness in song form to me and brings back such joyous memories. There’s a few more from this part of my life including Lucky You by The Lightening Seeds, She’s Electric by Oasis and All I Want For Christmas by Mariah Carey- memories of my mum blow drying mine and my sisters hair in our shared bedroom with this playing come straight to mind whenever I hear those iconic first notes to the song.
Dusty Springfield- Dusty In Memphis
This entire album is my favourite album of all time. It’s an album for every emotion, whether I’m sad or happy, relaxed or angry, this album has always been there for me.
It takes me back to car journeys with my dad when I was around 12, I loved it then and I’ve loved it ever since. This album has got me through a lot of heartaches, it’s celebrated success with me, it’s allowed me to relax after a testing day, it’s my favourite album and I’m forever in awe of Dusty and that voice of hers.
McFly & Busted- All the songs and albums
After a childhood filled with Spice Girls, Steps and A1 (luv you Ben) when I reached high school I began to enjoy guitar music. And granted it was just McFly & Busted, but I feel that both of these bands were the gateway into my love of guitar music today, whether that’s indie or rock, both McFly and Busted introduced me to a new world of music and ultimately style. I have so many happy memories of me and friends queuing to see both bands live; waiting backstage after a HMV signing in the hope we’d get that desperately needed selfie with Dougie, Danny or Charlie, those were good, good times indeed!
Queen- Bohemian Rhapsody
Whilst I was at school I played a lot of hockey. Whether it was for my school, for my town or for the North West of England, I was really bloody good and will regret giving it up for the rest of my life!
With playing hockey for my town came socials and parties that have provided me with the most lovely of memories. One that springs to mind every time I hear Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen is the moment I first heard it. My parents were never Queen fans so their music passed me by for quite some time, until I was at a hockey party and as the night was coming to an end, the DJ played Bohemian Rhapsody. I remember the feeling I had when I heard this song for the first time and being completely in awe of it. I was blown away by the different sections to the song, how it felt like three songs had been sewn together, it wasn’t like anything I’d ever heard, despite me hearing it 35 years after it was first released.
Frank Sinatra- My Way
One of my Grandad’s favourite songs. Sadly he’s no longer with us but every time I hear this song I think of him and all the happy memories of holidaying in Turkey with him. My mum, sister and I heard it playing by a string quartet on the street whilst visiting Milan a couple of years ago and all three of us shed a little tear as we listened and remembered our old man Lou.
I’d been to countless concerts previous to this, but they were the likes of McFly, Steps, A1, Justin Timberlake etc and in a seated Arena... This was my first big girl gig at Manchester Apollo and I remember the thrill and sheer adrenaline rush I got when the band first came on stage. I had no idea what to expect and I certainly didn’t expect to be crushed against sweaty strangers all jumping up and down together singing back to the band. It was an incredible night with incredible people and it was my first introduction into seeing live music, something that has been a huge passion of mine ever since.
The Doors- Touch Me
After really getting into guitar music I started delving into my dads record collection, discovering Bowie, The Stones, Bob Dylan and The Doors, I couldn’t get enough of exploring the past. Whilst I could list off countless songs and albums that I adore from all the artists previously mentioned, one that instantly springs to mind when I think to this part of my life is Touch Me by The Doors and more specifically my introduction to Jim Morrison. This was the summer between college and university and was one of the most hilarious summers of my life spent on holiday with the girls and I must admit, spent drunk in 42’s or 5th Ave in Manchester. This song takes me straight back to one of the happiest years on my life, oh to be 17 going on 18 again.
Air traffic- Shooting Star, Charlotte and the Fractured Life Album
Air Traffic, oh Air Traffic. They were MY band for so many years, my absolute favourites, I was completely obsessed and completely in love with the bassist Jim Maddock. Myself and my friends would go to every single gig, we’d wait outside to get our Converse signed and the album just instantly transports me back to that time of feeling like such a teenager; An emotional yet excited and totally free teenager. This album along with The Pigeon Detectives debut album Wait For Me bring back some of the happiest memories of my life.
Marvin Gaye & Tammi Turrel- Ain’t No Mountain High Enough
This is mine and my mums song and I instantly think of her whenever I hear it <3
One Night Only- Just For Tonight
Okay, so I’m going to keep this one brief as to not make you all vom in your mouth. But yes, One Night Only were one of my favourite bands whilst I was in college and the early days of university. I remember the first time I heard Just For Tonight and absolutely LOVING it. I then watched them on Soccer Am and fell totally in love with George Craig. It’s so funny looking back at how besotted I was with him back then and how now I pick up his dirty socks, eat dinner with him every night and just have a really lovely and blissful life with him, it’s so strange how the universe works isn’t it.
Their first two albums take me back to finishing college and starting university, being so excited for the future and all that was ahead, but little did I know my future would be with the lead singer…
This album takes me STRAIGHT back to university. To the slog of working super hard and partying even harder. To new relationships both romantic and friendly and to a brand new adventure in Huddersfield. And whilst this part of my life seems like a distant memory, a dream almost, it’s songs from Bon Iver's self titled debut that remind me that it actually happened, that and the drunken selfies I have in a private folder on Facebook…
James Bay- Chaos & The Calm
Jame Bay’s first album is SO damn beautiful, I love each and every song, but as soon as I hear it it takes me back to being on the tube in London, to being really quite sad indeed. The relationship I was in at the time had come to an end, I’d moved into a new flat and wasn’t getting on very well with who I was living with and it was all a bit sad. It’s funny how an album you love can be tarnished by sadder times, taking you straight to that darker place as soon as you hear the opening song. It’s a shame, as this album is truly stunning but hey, such is life and that’s the thing with music, it can conjure up the most intense of feelings from years and years ago.
Doris Day- Bushel & a Peck
A song my Nanna would sing to me and my cousins whilst growing up. It’s not a song many people know or that you ever really hear but it’s a lyric I love, that I have etched on my skin and that means SO damn much to me and my family.
Colin Blunstone- Say You Don’t Mind
This song reminds me of falling in love with George. Particularly a day spent on the roof of my flat in North London with rosé wine and a mini picnic. We’d only been on one date previous to this so this was our second but I knew I was falling completely in love with him.
It was a day filled with incredible sunshine and the deepest of chats, getting to know the real George and laughing SO SO much. It was one of the happiest and most relaxed days of my life and a day I’ll treasure forever. Throughout the day we created a playlist built up of songs we loved, I picked a song, then he picked a song and I remember he picked Say You Don’t Mind by Colin Blunstone, a song I hadn’t heard before but instantly fell in love with. I was too shy to ask who it was so secretly noted down some of the lyrics to Google later. It’s now one of our songs, a song we’ll dance our first dance to one day and a song that takes me back to that very special day on the roof.
Artic Monkeys- Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino
The best summer of my adult life was just last year, the weather was incredible, work was going so well and everything was right with the world. It was a summer spent with my best friends, pottering around our new house, teaching our puppies new tricks and that of course incorporates music in some way.
This album is my summer 2018 album, we saw Arctic Monkeys at TRNSMT festival which was one of the best weekends ever ever ever and then again at Manchester Arena with the same group of pals so naturally whenever I hear this album I’m taken straight back to summer 18 and all the happy memories that came with it.
Mario Lanza- Because Your Mine
I remember hearing my Nanna sing this, she’s got the most incredible voice, like a Disney princess and I was completely in awe of her in every way. I play it at least once a week and think of her, before calling her up and taking her for pizza <3
Baby bird-Because You’re Gorgeous
Similarly to Colin Blunstone this song is one of mine and George’s and I’m now thinking that perhaps this will in fact be our first dance…
But anyway, during the first few months of our relationship we’d send each other songs that made us think of one another or that made us laugh or whatever, I sent this one to him after hearing it on the radio at a shoot and the rest is history, it became one of our many songs and is forever immortalised on our dining room wall in neon form.
And so there we have a look into the songs that shaped my life and I guess a look into my rather eclectic taste in music. I have a really awful feeling that I'll have missed SO many songs so i'll be sure to note them down as they spring to mind and to create a follow up post with more.
Be sure to check out the playlist on the right, a complete mash up of some of my favourite songs and the songs that have real significance to different parts of my life.
I'd love to hear about the songs or albums that take you straight back to a certain place, music is such a magical thing.