I have been asked to choose 5 pieces of music. The challenge has not been finding 5 pieces, the challenge has been keeping it to only 5. However, for various reasons I have finally decided on the following:
1. Little Arrows – Leapy Lee
I remember this song from my childhood as it was one of my Dad’s favourite fun songs at the time. I have a very vivid picture of him whenever I hear it as he obviously just found it a very catchy tune and had some fairly strange antics, which I think was his version of dancing, while it played. This song will always bring a smile to my face as it brings back fun family memories.
2. Leaning on a Lamppost – George Formby
This is another song that brings back all sorts of family memories. Dad was a huge fan of George Formby and he also played the ukulele. Although he played and sang a number of George Formby songs, his favourite was always Leaning on a Lamppost and he used to sing it to our Mum on a fairly regular basis. In my early twenties I remember going to see the musical ‘Me and My Gal’ when the lead role was played by Andrew O’Connor, and Leaning on a Lamppost was performed by Andrew during the show. He was a good family friend and in 1997 Andrew came along to a magical convention which was being held in Montrose when our Mum was the President of the Scottish Association of Magical Societies. Andrew sat on the edge of the stage and, unbeknown to mum, he started to sing this song to her in front of the full audience. This was truly a magical moment as Dad had sadly passed away a couple of years before, but we know that he would have approved of Andrew singing his song to Mum.
3. Viva La Vida (instrumental version) – Coldplay
My daughter Mandy performed her magic and was one of the dancers at the House of Illusion in Salou in Spain for three years and this music was the introduction to the evening. There were various voice overs during the introduction and this piece really set the tempo and mystery of the evening. It always gives me a good positive feeling whenever I hear it.
4. Riding Along on the Crest of a Wave – Ralph Reader
My sister, Rena, has already mentioned the song These are the Times which was written by Ralph Reader and is sung in every Gang Show around the world. Crest of a Wave is probably Ralph Reader’s best known song from these shows and it is also sung by Gang Shows all over the world. Our family was, and still is, deeply involved and very passionate about Gang Show. The opportunities and experiences given to young people within the Scout and Guide movements through a Gang Show can be life changing and anyone involved, even vaguely, with a Gang Show will always have fond memories when hearing or singing Riding Along on the
Crest of a Wave.
5 Scotland The Brave – Pipes and Drums of The Royal Scots Dragoon Guards
I used to perform a full Scottish magic act, which was done as a tribute to the act which my Dad performed with Mum. This piece of music was the closing piece for both my parents act and also my own. It always makes me think of Dad in his full kilt outfit and Mum in her white ballgown with tartan sash. It also gives me great pride in being a Scot and at the end of the act it was the perfect piece of music to get any audience clapping along. All of these factors gave me a great passion for performing and maybe one day I can do a recreation of the act at an event in the Church.
Having more than 2000 books in our home this is a difficult choice. However, I think I would be happy to have any of the Alex Gray books with me, and the whole series would be ideal. I enjoy detective books and her series are easy reading. They are all set around Glasgow and surrounding areas in Scotland with many references to places I know and love.
This would need to be a fully stocked cocktail cabinet, with some bottles of good gin and appropriate mixers. I could then relax on the sand with glass and book in hand.