Baker's Dozen

Artists discuss the 13 records that shaped their lives

7. Marvin GayeWhat’s Going On

When I was younger there was an NME poll which said this was the greatest album of all time, so I thought I must check it out. It turned out my brother was a big Marvin Gaye fan; he recorded it for me on a cassette, I had a little Hillman Imp with a tape recorder in it and I started to listen to What’s Going On while driving around north London. It has that thing where, because side one plays like an almost uninterrupted piece of music it has a whole dramatic soundscape. I would drive around listening to it thinking, "this is what it must be like driving in America", you almost want to start driving on the other side of the road. The songs are beautiful, his voice is amazing and the arrangements are timeless. I remember thinking that the NME might be right, this may be the greatest album ever made.

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