Time to face the music

PUBLISHED: 16:35 22 January 2014 | UPDATED: 16:35 22 January 2014

Radio Norfolk presenter Matthew Gudgin in the studio at the Forum, Norwich. Photo: Steve Adams

Radio Norfolk presenter Matthew Gudgin in the studio at the Forum, Norwich. Photo: Steve Adams


I’m in musical meltdown – BBC Radio Norfolk has invited me to be a guest on Matthew Gudgin’s Tuesday evening programme, sharing my choice of music with his listeners.

As someone who has been planning her own private Desert Island Disc style selection since childhood, I am well prepared for eight carefully considered choices – even my luxury item (will it be the fully-functioning bathroom or the family photos?) But this is a special weekly section within Matthew’s popular show . . . with only six options. Just six! Which two to sacrifice?

As I’ve started pruning out the beloved songs, I’ve been left wondering if it’s time for a complete rethink of all eight? I’m now doubting what had previously worked in my castaway imaginings – would my six survivors balance each other (too many soundtracks to the 1950s and 1960s musicals from my childhood, too much 1970s and 1980s punky memories from youth – eclectic, at least! – and where to even start from the past three decades?)

It’s the quandry that Matthew says many of his guests face: Do they choose current favourites, music that says something about themselves or that marks important moments in their life? I can imagine that most of the guests – typically given three or four weeks’ notice of their radio appearance – will be scouring DVD collections, flipping through their iPods and pulling out their hair as they try to narrow down their final choice.

Matthew says: “Sometimes they want to change their choices, and we can do that right up to the last minute because we have access to hundreds of thousands of recordings in the BBC record library.”

The guest slot began five years ago and has seen a wide variety of men and women from all walks of life in the county. “Everyone we ask on to the show has made a contribution to Norfolk life,” he explains. “We’ve had people from business, politics, entertainment. It’s a really good way of discovering their life stories – some people are a bit reluctant to talk about themselves, which is a typical Norfolk trait, but I can usually persuade them to talk about their musical choices.”

So what would Matthew choose if the tables were turned? “Ah, I get to pick my choice every day!” he laughs. “But if it was me in the chair, I would like some 1960s stuff, a bit of The Beatles, plus some classics as well, Mozart and Beethoven. I do like pre-war dance bands and some early rock and roll.”

And as for my six? Currently Ella Fitzgerald, Johnny Cash and The Clash are definites; I’m just hoping I’ve finally decided on the other three by the time I appear on the show! Keep listening on Tuesdays, 6-7pm (repeated on Sunday 1-2pm) on BBC Radio Norfolk.

Your choice

I’d love to know which six songs you’d choose. Write to Angi Kennedy, EDP Norfolk, Prospect House, Rouen Road, Norwich, NR1 1RE, or email angela.kennedy@archant.co.uk.

Their choice

Some of the guests on the show in 2013 shared these favourite tunes:

Albert Cooper

Norwich jazz musician

Jack Buchanan – Night Time

Clifford T Ward – A Day to Myself

Handel – Hallelujah Chorus

Bob Dylan – Subterranean Homesick Blues

Bill Monroe and the Bluegrass Boys – Uncle Ben

Albert Cooper – I’ll Play the Blues for You

Elizabeth Talbot

Partner and co-owner of TW Gaze auctioneers in Diss and BBC antiques expert

The Beach Boys – Good Vibrations

Ultravox – Vienna

The Contours – Do You Love Me?

Paul Simon – Father and Daughter

Aztec Camera – Jump

Allan Sherman – Hello Muddah, Hello Faddah

Sheila Kefford

Former head of the Norwich Society and ex-Sheriff of Norwich

The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra – Nimrod

Chris Barber – Petite Fleur

The Four Seasons – December 1963 (Oh What a Night)

Orchestra of St John’s, Smith Square – Arrival of the Queen of Sheba

Queen – Radio Ga Ga

English Chamber Orchestra – Zadok the Priest

Tim Bishop

Chief executive of The Forum Trust in Norwich and former boss of BBC East

Bob Marley – No Woman, No Cry

Bob Dylan – Shelter From the Store

Bad Meets Evil – Lighters

Johnny Cash – The Man Comes Around

Don McLean – American Pie

Puff Daddy – I’ll Be Missing You

Graham Cole

Broads-based actor, best known for The Bill

Rod Stewart – Maggie May

Frank Sinatra – World on a String

Simon and Garfunkel – Bridge Over Troubled Water.

Bette Midler – Wind Beneath my Wings

The Clash – London Calling

Tina Turner – The Best

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