Trending on Facebook right now is a viral post asking people to list their favourite seven or ten albums of all time. You are asked to copy/paste this text: “I’ve agreed to post one album per day – no explanations, no reviews – just covers. Each day I will ask a friend to take up the challenge. Let’s promote the love of music and give each of us something new to listen to.”
Most of my Facebook ‘friends’ are doing it and yesterday I downloaded one of their recommendations, Stevie Wonder’s Songs in the Key of Life. I listened to the whole album while weeding the garden in the afternoon sun. Nothing else lifts the spirits so quickly as getting lost in good music.
It was great to listen to an entire body of work like that in one go and good to be reacquainted with favourite songs from the past. How beautiful is ‘Isn’t She Lovely’, I adore it when he sings: ‘Boy I’m so happy’. It’s the most wonderful! celebration of that first extraordinary moment in a parents’ life.
It took me a while to choose my seven albums. My vinyls and CDs are up in the loft and it seemed too irksome a journey to make so I’m working from my iTunes downloads. I wanted to avoid some of the obvious GOAT albums plus choosing Greatest Hits compilations is not in the spirit of the challenge and I wanted include at least one fairly current album so I didn’t seem too fuddy-duddy! Here’s my list:
Non-Stop Erotic Cabaret, Soft Cell – came out in 1981, loved every track including worldwide hit Tainted Love. Best track: Say Hello, Wave Goodbye
Listen Without Prejudice, George Michael – his death was such a tragedy, five of his songs feature in my top 50 playlist. Best track: Cowboys and Angels
The Kick Inside, Kate Bush – Extraordinary album, she wrote Wuthering Heights at the age of 18, her poster adorned my teenage boy bedroom for many years. Best track: Wuthering Heights
Hunky Dory, David Bowie – I bought most of Bowie’s albums in my last year at University from a record shop near the original Cavern in Liverpool where the Beatles. Best track: Life on Mars
White on Blonde, Texas – Am a real admirer of Sharleen Spiteri, great singer, songwriter, musician, performer who I’ve seen live three times, Best track: Halo
A Night at the Opera, Queen – the first album I ever bought which I must have played on my very first record player over a thousand times so my parents would say. Best track: Bohemian Rhapsody
Divide, Ed Sheeran – our greatest living songwriter. Best Track: Perfect – not on the album but the Italian duet version with Andrea Bocelli is beautiful
It’s been great choosing the albums, reflecting on the memories evoked by not just the music, but the cover artwork too. Quite possibly something I’d have never got round to if it weren’t for lockdown.