I had probably more fun than I deserved to have writing the acknowledgements section of my book, Trust in Computer Systems and the Cloud (published by Wiley at the end of December 2021). There was another section which I decided to add to the book purely for fun: a playlist of music to which I’d listened and which I’d enjoyed over the months it took to write. I listen to a lot of music, and the list is very far from a complete one, but it does represent a fair cross-section of my general listening tastes. Here’s the list, with a few words about each one.
One thing that’s missing is any of the classical music that I listen to. I decided against including this, as I’d rarely choose single tracks, but adding full albums seemed to miss the point. I do listen to lots of classical music, in particular sacred choral and organ music – happy to let people have some suggestions if they’d like.
- Secret Messages – ELO – I just had to have something related (or that could be considered to be related) to cryptography and security. This song isn’t, really, but it’s a good song, and I like it.
- Bleed to Love Her – Fleetwood Mac – Choosing just one Fleetwood Mac song was a challenge, but I settled on this one. I particularly like the harmonics in the version recorded live at Warner Brothers Studio in Burbank.
- Alone in Kyoto – Air – This is a song that I put on when I want to relax. Chiiiiilllll.
- She’s So Lovely – Scouting for Girls – Canonically, this song is known as “She’s A Lovely” in our family, as that’s what we discovered our daughters singing along to when we played it in the car many years ago.
- Prime – Shearwater – This is much more of an “up” song when I want to get an edge on. Shearwater have a broad range of output, but this is particular favourite.
- Stay – Gabrielle Aplin – I like the way this song flips expectations on its head. A great song by a talented artist.
- The Way I Feel – Keane – A song about mental health.
- Come On, Dreamer – Tom Adams – Adams has an amazing voice, and this is a haunting song about hope.
- Congregation – Low – I discovered this song watching DEVS on Amazon Prime (it was originally on Hulu). Low write (and perform) some astonishing songs, and it’s really worth going through their discography if you like this one.
- Go! – Public Service Broadcasting – You either love this or hate it, but I’m in the “love” camp. It takes original audio from the Apollo 11 moon landing and puts it to energising, exciting music.
- The Son of Flynn (From “TRON: Legacy”/Score) – Daft Punk – TRON:Legacy may not be not the best film ever released, but the soundtrack from Daft Punk is outstanding Electronica.
- Lilo – The Japanese House – A song about loss? About hope? Another one to chill to (and tha band are great live, too).
- Scooby Snacks – Fun Lovin’ Criminals – Warning: explicit lyrics (from the very beginning!) A ridiculous song which makes me smile every time I listen to it.
- My Own Worth Enemy – Stereophonics – I slightly surprised myself by choosing this song from the Stereophonics, as I love so many of their songs, but it really does represent much of what I love about their oeuvre.
- All Night – Parov Stelar – If you ever needed a song to dance to as if nobody’s watching, this is the one.
- Long Tall Sally (The Thing) – Little Richard – Sometimes you need some classic Rock ‘n’ Roll in your life, and who better to provide it?
- Shart Dressed Man – ZZ Top – “Black tie…” An all-time classic by men with beards. Mostly.
- Dueling Banjos – Eric Weissberg – I first heard this song at university. It still calls out to me. There are some good versions out there, but original from the songtrack to Deliverance is the canonical one. And what a film.
- The Starship Avalon (Main Title) – Thomas Newman – This (with some of the others above) is on a playlist I have called “Architecting”, designed to get me in the zone. Another great film.
- A Change is Gonna Come – Sam Cooke – A song of sadness, pain and hope.
- This Place – Jamie Webster – A song about Liverpool, and a family favourite. Listen and enjoy (the accent and the song!).
If you’d like to listen to these tracks yourself, I’ve made playlists on my two preferred audio streaming sites: I hope you enjoy.
As always, I love to get feedback from readers – do let me know what you think, or suggest other tracks or artists I or other readers might appreciate.