Radio Four has apparently been inviting listeners to submit their own eight choices, a selection of which is to be broadcast next weekend. For all sorts of reasons I didn't participate, and wouldn't have anyway, as I don't really want my life in music to be diluted into a snippet of a ninety-minute radio show, however well-intentioned. But here, I can waste an evening self-indulging, in the knowledge that I am boring only my few readers rather than the entire population of the planet. So, in no particular order, here goes:
Small Hours, by John Martyn. Eight minutes and forty seconds of exquisite understated guitar and effect pedal work, guaranteed to send you into a delightful soporific haze.
Trying To Get To You, by Elvis Presley. This hit me in the eyes, guts and hormones when I was fifteen. And the vocal break at the end of the middle eight is his best ever singing performance.
A Song Of The Weather, by Flanders and Swann. Although I didn't get some of the more sophisticated jokes on 'At The Drop Of A Hat', the album (Parlophone PMC1033, accept no substitutes) woke me up to the idea of wittiness, at the same time that Tom Lehrer did. I could have chosen any track really.
Concierto de Aranjuez, Rodrigo. I was tempted to submit Miles Davis's great reinterpretion on 'Sketches of Spain', but I needed some proper classical guitar. Any version will do, mine is by John Zaradin.
I Want You, by Bob Dylan. Specifically the live version on the 'At Budokan' album from 1978, where he gives us a slow, heartfelt version of one of his loveliest love songs.
I Saw Her Standing There, by The Beatles. Well, they moulded a great chunk of my youth, so they had to be on my island. And it's worth it just for Lennon's brilliantly knowing line "she was just seventeen, you know what I mean ..."
A Love Supreme, by John Coltrane. Just out of thanks that it exists.
Zing Went The Strings Of My Heart, by the Coasters. Want to go to bed feeling exuberant?