Best of Desert Island Discs


Well, I finished my 100+ episodes of Desert Island Discs.  Some of them I couldn't completely get through (sorry Luise Rainer), some were less than fun to listen to (Michael Crawford I am looking at you), but overall they were informative, funny, and thought-provoking.  Here are some of my favorite choices, quotes, and anecdotes, as well as my own observations.  

Eric Clapton on Prince (he picked "Purple Rain" and it was his favorite of all 8 discs): "It's a reincarnation of Little Richard, Jimi Hendrix, and James Brown in one."

Richard Dreyfuss wanted "The Entertainer" by Marvin Hamlisch as one of his DID.  That is...insane.  Who would want to listen to that every day? But his luxury was a book delivery service, and that is quite good.  But seriously, "The Entertainer"?  On repeat for the rest of your life?  I would drown myself!

So many people had "Some Enchanted Evening" (Andrew Lloyd Webber, Hal Prince), which I think is a very overrated R & H song.  Give me "If I Loved You" any day.  Richard Curtis and Mark Gatiss agreed with me.

Speaking of Richard Curtis: "Record #4 is an opportunity, Sue, for me to make an important public apology.  I wrote a song when I was very young called "Meaningless Songs in Very High Voices" about the Bee Gees.  Which was a mistake.  The title should have been "Fantastic, Long-Lasting Pop Songs by the Greatest Songwriting Duo Since Lennon and McCartney."  (The disc: the song the Bee Gees wrote for Diana Ross, and sung by her: "Chain Reaction".)

John Cleese wanted Michael Palin as his luxury item!  And Sue told him he couldn't because he's animate, but he could have him stuffed.  "That'll do," said Cleese.  So sweet.

Both Margaret Atwood and Emmylou Harris picked "Talk to Me of Mendocino"! And considering the lyrics, it's such a perfect choice. 

Nick Hornby's luxury item: iPod, which Sue had never heard of (it was 2003), and banned after his choosing it.  Too bad.

Richard Curtis' book: Guinness Book of Pop Music, so he would be reminded of songs to sing himself.  And his luxury item: the Pizza Express from Notting Hill.  Great choices, both.

Sue Johnston picked The Pogues' "Fairytale of New York."  Brilliant.

Ewan McGregor's luxury: a chromatic harmonica so he can carry it around with him around the island and make music wherever he goes.

Cameron Mackintosh picked "Oh What a Beautiful Morning" by HUGH JACKMAN!  I recently saw a photo them together on the set of the new Les Miserables movie, 11 years after his DID.

I love it when people have Christmas music on their lists--who knows how long you'll be on the island?--like Emma Thompson ("Ceremony of Carols") and Michael Caine ("Happy Christmas (War is Over)").

Morrissey's luxury was a bed, because 'we all love to go to bed'--and Michael Palin wanted one too.

I love David Mitchell for picking Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass's  "Spanish Flea" as an "appropriate piece of music to go mad to on a desert island."  What's more, on of his song's is Kermit (well, Jim Henson) singing "The Rainbow Connection."  I love that man.

David Walliams picked The Smiths "Please, Please, Please Let Me Get What I Want" as his one favorite disc because "as soon as that song finishes, you want to hear it again."  Truth.

Ricky Gervais wanted to take a VAT of Novocaine as his luxury.  Not to be outdone, Stephen Fry wanted a suicide pill.  But even better, one of his songs was Meat Loaf's "Bat Out of Hell" because Hugh Laurie used to play it on the piano for them all the time.  I nearly died!

Harriet Walter picked "Well, Did you Evah?" from High Society!

Person With the Most Surprisingly Awesome List: Omar Sharif, hands down.  His list:

1) "All the Way" by Frank Sinatra
2) "Wasted" by Donna Summer
3) "Nevertheless I'm in Love with You" by Liza Minnelli
4) "Wish You Were Here" by Pink Floyd
5) "La Vie En Rose" by Edith Piaf
6) "Let the Music Play" by Barry White
7) "Seul Sur Son Etoile" by Gilbert Becaud
8) "Don't Rain On My Parade" by Barbra Streisand


My own Desert Island Discs will be revealed soon!  (Sheesh, I'm really building this up to more than it is.)


Spiro said...

I agree with David Walliams, man, listening to it again.

Maryann said...

right? It ends waaay to quickly.