30 songs: I’m a rocket ship on my way to Mars

Way back in time, before MP3s, CDs,. and yes, even before racing airport trucks (although I think we did have Cadbury ads), there were things called tapes. We used them to play music, and they were so small we were able to play them everywhere we went. Including in the car.

Even after I found my own musical taste, it’s fair to say that when it came to in-car music, my dad got the biggest vote. I might be able to sneak something on now and again, but for the most part it was his small tape collection (the much larger vinyl collection being a bit less portable) that got played. And played.

Fortunately (or perhaps consequently) there’s a fair bit of overlap in our musical taste, so it wasn’t all bad. And riding in the front seat meant being able to exert a fair bit of musical control, albeit based on the aforementioned limited selection.

One tape which I absolutely loved was Queen’s Greatest Hits, and it got played to death. It might actually be the first album I knew every word to, although some of the Bohemian Rhapsody lyrics were a little hard to make out let alone understand. That was a favourite song, of course, but then I could apply that moniker to pretty much the whole album – you’d expect quality from a greatest hits album of course, at least back then. Nowadays it seems you can knock out a best of after 3 mediocre albums, one last cash-in before the inevitable fade into obscurity. Not like the olden days…

Ahem. Anyway, Don’t Stop Me Now was another favourite, and if any song can make me happy (today’s topic) I think that has to be it. 3 and a half minutes of unadulterated musical joy that’s so infectious I defy anyone to feel at least a bit happier when it’s being played.

And should there be anyone who falls into that category, there’s always chocolate.

This autumn I'm running/cycling in a 30km duathlon and a half marathon, to raise money for Breast Cancer Campaign. You can read more about my challenge here or support me here. All donations, however big or small, gratefully received!

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