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Mum, what's your favourite song?


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My earliest memories of music involve my parents, as most people’s do. I remember sitting in the lounge at the weekends watching Madness music videos with the entire family. The most important flashbacks, however, are sitting in my mum’s car, singing along to the same CDs with no sense of boredom or repetition.

Image Credit: Kat Smith

It’s safe to say that my mum is my best friend, with music being a strong catalyst for our bonding throughout my childhood.

Vintage Take That is my first memory of music when it comes to my mum: shamelessly screaming the lyrics to ‘I Want You Back’ and ‘Relight my Fire’ in the back of her people carrier on the way to school. The memory is so early that I can’t even remember learning the lyrics. It led to me spending my first load of iTunes credit, accumulated across multiple birthdays, on the Gary Barlow boyband.

Aged 10, I was watching a forgotten music channel with my mum when we discovered The Script. ‘The Man Who Can’t Be Moved’ left us both speechless and led to mum instantly buying their debut CD, which we played on repeat for at least a year. The love affair with the early Irish band led to us seeing them at London’s O2 Arena for my first ever live music experience. I’m thankful for my mum being so eager to expose me to live performances, as I definitely caught the gig-bug early on.

At 13, we saw Take That at Wembley Stadium for their Progress tour, where we shared exasperated gasps at Robbie Williams ceremoniously bursting out of the screen and got emotional when we sang ‘Never Forget’ in unison with the thousands of people around us.

Take That via Wiki Commons

I strongly believe my mum has made me treasure music more. With countless streaming services and accessibility to music like never before, it’s easy to take our beloved music for granted. The permanent stack of CDs in the boot of my mum’s car and her insistence on buying the physical copies of her favourite albums is a humbling reminder of the value of music. She rarely skips songs, savouring every beat and each lyric. To this day, mum’s Spotify is a carefully-curated collection of playlists, featuring nothing but her most-loved songs, most of which she already has in a physical format.

Though I now have an online library full of songs, I still want to share music with my mum. Knowing the similarity in our tastes, as well as being thankful for my musical education as a child, I try to enlighten her with my favourite songs in return. To give back a little of what she gave me as a child. She's an unwavering fan of Radio 1 and her select CDs, so I try to play her new lesser-known music, mostly in the hope that she will love them as much as I do.

So thank you mum; for teaching me to love music, to treasure it and chase the opportunity to experience it live. I may now be 20, but it’s safe to say that, from Take That to Tom Misch, our friendship will always be set against a musical soundtrack.

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