Happy Aberlady Playlist

Reasons to be cheerful, parts one, two and three.

It’s simple enough. Everyone in our community gets to choose a tune for the Happy Aberlady Playlist and we can’t refuse to add it, however cheesy it is – unless it’s really not happy!

There’s only one rule: if it’s already in the playlist, you can’t have it again.

It works like getting a request on the radio, so please let us know your name and whereabouts in our village you are from. Everyone in the family can pick a song, kids included.

Send your requests to awesomeaberlady@gmail.com

This is designed to lift your spirits … with all that’s going on in the world, this is your respite … our neighbourhood needs you, so practise some social responsibility and be good to each other!
Huey Morgan, BBC 6 Music, March 21, 2020

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Week 2

A special Monday tribute to Bill Withers, who died last week (April 3, 2020) at the age of 81. In a career lasting just 15 years, from 1970 to 1985, he made some of the most inspirational music ever recorded. His family described him as a ‘solitary man with a heart driven to connect to the world’. On ‘Lovely Day’, he set the record for the longest sustained note on a US chart hit, holding a high E for 18 seconds.

Reached no. 6 in the UK and no. 3 in the US in April 1984, and had the bit in brackets added to its title following Van Halen’s hit earlier in the year. The song appeared in ‘Love, Actually’ in 2003 and Girls Aloud recorded a cover version for the movie, which wasn’t used.

Defiantly bouncy track from 1983. The original video, filmed in Nice, features Bruno Tonioli of Strictly Come Dancing. There’s an excellent cover by Taron Egerton as Johnny the gorilla in the soundtrack to Sing (2016).

From Descendants 2 (2017), the second of three made-for-TV movies about the teenage children of four classic fairytale villains (Maleficent from Sleeping Beauty, the evil queen from Snow White, Jafar, and Cruella de Vil). Get dancing, Harmony!

From the soundtrack of Despicable Me 2, released in 2013, ‘Happy’ stuck around to become the best-selling song of 2014 in both the US and the UK. Pharrell broke as a solo artist after providing vocals for Daft Punk on their album Random Access Memories in 2013 and he originally wrote this song for CeeLo Green to perform. Thanks Matthew!

Verging on the wistful, this, but then Kathy says she generally prefers sad songs. This track is from Eddi’s 1996 third album, ‘Candyfloss and Medicine’ (another bittersweet combo).

Top rockers Van Halen were formed by brothers Alex (drums) and Eddie Van Halen (guitar), along with vocalist David Lee Roth and bassist Michael Anthony. Alex and Eddie’s dad, Jan, was a saxophonist and clarinet player, and features on this track from the band’s fifth album.

New Radicals, from LA, released an album and this single in 1998, then got tired of touring and promotional interviews, and broke up in 1999 before their second single had even been released. A lotta fun, and Gordy loves it because it reminds him of the Millennium celebrations.

Born in Chicago in 1945, Scott-Heron was the son of a Jamaican soccer player, Gil Heron, nicknamed ‘the Black Arrow’, who in 1951 became the first black footballer to play for Celtic. He scored on his debut in a League Cup tie against Morton but only made five appearances for the club.

Week 1

‘No one wants to stay at home, nobody wants to be alone,’ sings Kylie, appropriately for the times we now live in. Her next line, however, is: ‘When you come knocking, I’ll be at your door.’ Errm… what? Who’s where?

Because it’s totally her favourite song. And it’s almost certainly one of Mr Hutch’s faves, too.

April Fool’s Day special from 1956, by a doo wop group out of Washington Heights, Manhattan who were notable as the first all-teens ensemble in pop.

Because Morten was her pin-up. (No, Niall, not Greenock Morton.)

‘A dumb pop song, but it’s quite excellent really because it’s so absurd, so out of character, very optimistic and really out there in happy land’ – Robert Smith

The story behind this one is too sad to repeat here. Kind of beautiful too, though. Look it up.

First number one in both the UK and USA for George and Andrew, in May 1984. The video featured the boys in oversize T shirts designed by Katharine Hamnett with the slogan ‘Choose life’.

By a J-pop artist who sprung to fame when this tune played over the end credits of the Studio Ghibli movie. Its title in our alphabet is ‘Kaze ni Naru’, which translates as ‘Become the Wind’. Stop sniggering at the back, there, Niall.