‘I could probably tolerate one Abba track’: Kerry Godliman’s honest playlist

The actor grew up listening to Toni Basil and the Beatles, but what would she play at a party, and who did she see on an early date with her future husband?

The first songs I remember hearing
Bowie, Steely Dan and Here Comes the Sun by the Beatles were the stuff my parents played when I was little. I was born in 1973, so it was a good time for music. I’ve still got all my mum and dad’s vinyl.

The first single I bought
Either Pass the Dutchie by Musical Youth or Mickey by Toni Basil, from Woolworths in Greenford Broadway in west London, with my pocket money. I’ve still got all my singles in their original covers.

The song I do at karaoke
I once won a karaoke competition by doing the deep-voiced “I’d like to help you, son, but you’re too young to vote” part of Summertime Blues by Eddie Cochran with my friend Sally’s dad Bob while on holiday on the Greek island of Poros when I about 12. Bob was an old rocker and did the proper rock’n’roll bits, and I just did the voice. I’ve since heard myself singing and had to stop.

The song I inexplicably know every lyric to
I know the words to loads of songs because when I was a kid I used to learn them. I really like Up the Junction by Squeeze because it’s got a story and it’s tellable.

The best song to play at a party
It depends on who’s at the party. Are we talking kids? Old people? I would go with Crazy in Love by Beyoncé or It Takes Two by Rob Base and DJ EZ Rock.

The song I streamed the most
A Song for You by Donny Hathaway because I’ve been watching Euphoria and it knocked me for six, so I keep playing it.

The song I can no longer listen to
Anything by Abba or Groove Is in the Heart by Deee-Lite because they are so overplayed. I could probably tolerate one Abba track but no more.

The song I wish I had written
I Will Always Love You by Dolly Parton is the perfect song.

The song that changed my life
I grew up with the Beastie Boys and was 21 when Ill Communication came out, so I just love the first song, Sure Shot, because it sounds so different. Killing in the Name by Rage Against the Machine – I’d never heard anything so angry. And I met my husband doing a fringe play at the White Bear in Kennington in south London, where I played his psychiatric doctor. He bought us tickets to see Gillian Welch when we first started going out.

The song that gets me up in the morning
Lively Up Yourself by Bob Marley or Feeling Good by Nina Simone.

The song I won’t play at my funeral
Do You Realize?? by the Flaming Lips because the lyrics resonate with mortality and grief and an understanding from a macro point of view that everything dies and goes round.

Kerry Goldiman hosts the Stolen Hearts podcast, available now on Wondery.


As told to Rich Pelley

The GuardianTramp

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