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Baker's Dozen

Things I Hold Dear: Nadine Shah's Favourite Albums
Jeremy Allen , June 3rd, 2020 08:46

In this week's Baker's Dozen, Nadine Shah guides Jeremy Allen through favourite albums from Mariah Carey to Fat White Family, along the way discussing her friendship with Amy Winehouse and why Richard Dawson is the only man who should be allowed acoustic guitars at parties


Robert Palmer - Honey
It's not Robert Palmer that I like. In fact I know hardly anything about him apart from that misogynistic video for 'Addicted To Love', but Honey is an album that my mum loved when I was growing up. They had this nice house and were always entertaining and throwing parties all the time. My mum would always have this album on. She would play it so often, and I just have these really lovely memories of her getting the house ready and preparing these canapes and me helping her in the kitchen as she's drinking a Bacardi and Coke which I'm stealing a swig of. I've got such fond memories. 

My mother was taken ill last year, and a really positive mental attitude to keep your spirits up when you have an illness helps your physical health I think. And music is such a great gateway to getting someone to relive a happy point in their life. I got this Sonos system in the house and we would just have evenings where I'd play albums that she loves and I think even my mum was surprised when I put this on. She'd been very ill and her face just lit up as soon as I put it on because it took her back. I think she'd forgotten about that album and we played it and were dancing around the kitchen to it. She just loves it. 

I'm really missing home, and I'm missing my mother especially at the moment - I'm in Ramsgate - and I play it and it makes me smile so much. And actually, sonically, it's a pretty damn good album. There are some pretty lyrics, and some naff ones too [laughs]. My mum's favourite ['Honeymoon'] is a kind of Astrud Gilberto bossa nova thing - something about pink dolphins and champagne which she always sings along to. It's kind of opposite to Lauryn Hill, which is a really coherent piece of work, but it's one of my mum's favourite albums and I think those tend to stick with you. I don't think it's a bad album - sonically there are some really interesting things going on there.