Where I try to make the Internet pick my Desert Island Discs for me.

It’s Christmas! This means that party season is upon us. Fatness is growing (yeah, I know what I said here, and I’ll totally get back to that in January. Totally), and hungoverism is becoming the order of the day.

But internet I need your help, because tonight’s Christmas meal has A Theme. Desert Islands Discs, albeit a cutdown dinner party friendly version. So I have to select three tunes, one book and one luxury item that make me appear cool, witty and interesting by this evening.

This is a challenge. I’m not, generally speaking, a massive muso. I play music as a functional exercise to take the edge of the quiet, usually when I’m supposed to be writing and the crushing silence of an extended lack of typing becomes oppressive. So, for me, thinking of three tunes at all is a bit of a stretch.

And one book? ONE book? I own several hundred books, possibly into the thousands, and my favourite is generally whichever I’m looking at right now. How can I possibly be expected to commit to just one book for the rest of forever? The rest of forever is, potentially, ages.

And a luxury item. That could be anything. Am I allowed to pick a person? John Cleese picked Michael Palin, but specified that he would have him stuffed. I’m not sure that really helps. If I’m not allowed a person then what? I could be all dull and writerly and demand paper and pens, but that is very boring, isn’t it?

So help me out Internet? Three tunes. One book. One luxury. What would you pick? (And if you want to hear what I go for in the end, just subscribe or follow and you’ll get a little notification as soon as I get around to letting you all know).

Author: Alison May

Writer. Creative writing teacher. Freelance trainer in the voluntary sector. Anything to avoid getting a real job... Aiming to have one of the most eclectic blogs around, because being interested in just one thing suggests a serious breakdown in curiousity.

8 thoughts on “Where I try to make the Internet pick my Desert Island Discs for me.”

  1. I would have the opposite problem to you with the music… just 3 songs? Forever? Oh dear. You could be a real smartarse and have a laptop and internet connection as your luxury item, thus giving access to all the books (and music) you want?


  2. Oooh this is an important question. I once sat down and planned my full choices for desert island discs ready for when I was famous. (I had a phase of listening to DID on podcast on my phone which peaked at finding out that me and David Tennant are very musically compatible and would be fine stranded on a desert island together). But to get it down to just 3 songs mmm…

    Off the top of my head I’d want

    1) ‘Shackles’ by Mary Mary, cos it makes me want to dance, it’s uplifting and bizarrely reminds me of Grandad Maynard,

    2) ‘One’ by U2 (Hamish’s favourite record)

    3) either ‘Concerto de Oranquez’ by Rodrigues (probably none of that spelt right) but the brass band version off the Brassed Off soundtrack, great film, makes me cry, Ewan and makes me sound cultured and eclectic OR ‘Mr Brightside’ by The Killers, cos I like lyrics generally more than tunes and the bit about ‘cos she’s making him sick..now she’s touching his ….chest now’ makes me laugh every time and you’d need a laugh on the desert island.

    Now book ….probably ‘The collected works of Dorothy L Sayers’ cos DLS detective stuff is my feeling depressed comfort reading, the romance between Lord Peter Whimsy and Harriet Vane is one of the best love stories EVER and after ditching the detective stuff she went on to do lots of very intellectual wrinting and translating which I’ve never read but could have a go of on the desert island.

    Luxury item would have to be something boring like a bed/duvet and pillow cos I’m a princess about not sleeping if I’m uncomfortable and I become moody and irrational when I don’t sleep (as you know :-))

    OK – That comment was almost as long as the original blog but it wasted half an hour of my last day at work before holidays!

    See you soon xxx


  3. I have my full 8 discs chosen for tonight – nothing shows me as being cool, witty or remotely interesting! Getting it down to 3 is a chore…but like you, I’d rather take more books than music. I can cope with the Bible, but reading Shakespeare is dull – it was never meant to be read, only performed. As for suggestions for music choices, I did hear someone say they would definitely NOT chose anything personal – remembering good times when you are forced to spend time alone on an island would only make you feel lonely…Good luck with your choices, and I look forward to hearing them!


    1. I think I’ve picked! I’ve gone the other way and gone more personal/good memory oriented. I’m not posting what I’ve picked yet, so I don’t spoil the suspense, but will do a little blog update tomorrow!


  4. It’s a gospel song and the lyrics are reminiscent of the verse of ‘And can it be’ where it says ‘my chains fell off, my heart was free, I rose went forth and worshipped thee’. I remember Grandad once saying that he didn’t really hold with these modern ‘happy clappy’s’ but that verse of ‘And can it be’ was his favourite and the only hymn that made him want to stand and shout ‘halleluhah’ spontaneously. This must have been such a startling image that it stuck firmly in my mind and when Mary Mary sing ‘You broke my chains so I can lift my hands….and I’m gonna praise you’ that’s what it reminds me of!! And I just like the song 🙂

    Did you have a good night and what did you pick?


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