From Craig David to Wagner to Diana Ross, this would make one banging Spotify playlist.
He was sworn in as Australia's head of state on the weekend, but today we can reveal the big question on everyone's lips... When the blinds are drawn and he pours himself a nice red at the end of the day, what are the tunes King Charles III puts on the turntable? As a 73 year old British man, he can be forgiven that there's no King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard in the list, but there's a few tunes that might surprise you.
1. The Three Degrees - Givin' Up, Givin' In
You have to respect a guy with an obscure favourite band and The Three Degrees probably isn't sitting atop TOO many people's 'best ever' lists. But these 70s disco divas danced their way into Chuck's heart, even performing at his 30th birthday party in 1978. This tune was the lead single from their album 'New Dimensions' and failed to crack the Australian top 100, although was a #12 hit in Great Britain. The band themselves are more well known for their smash hit 'When Will I See You Again' which was a global hit, peaking at #2 in Australia and the US and #1 in the UK.
It's not all good news for the band though, with the band's lead singer Sheila Ferguson claiming in an article in The Daily Mail that the association to King Charles 'ruined' her love life, with her continuing to rely on dating sites at the age of 74.
“He (King Charles) ruined my love life, and I'll have no problem telling him next time we meet. Every time I got to who I was, Charles's name came up. I thought, 'I'll never find anyone!'".
2. Leonard Cohen - Take This Waltz
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Showing some real taste, the King loves a bit of Leonard Cohen. In an interview with Radio 3 in 2018, the King singled out this tune, a loose adaptation of a poem by Federico García Lorca.
“I’ve always loved Leonard Cohen’s voice and his whole approach to the way he sang," King Charles said. He was obviously incredibly sophisticated in the way he sang, but also wrote. I find it very moving, the words are so extraordinary, sort of Salvador Dalí-like, they lead you into this remarkable Dalí-like world.”
3. Richard Wagner - Siegfried Idyll
We wouldn't want to give off the wrong impression that the new King is a bohemian disco dancer. At his heart, the King is a classical music enthusiast with patronages including the Philharmonia Orchestra, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Bach Choir, Orchestra of the Royal Opera House, Welsh National Opera Orchestra, Monteverdi Choir & Orchestras and English Chamber Orchestra. He selected some of his favourite pieces for a radio special on the UK's Classic FM in 2020 and this piece by Wagner was listed as one of his favourites.
4. Barbra Streisand - Don't Rain On My Parade
Fast forward a century or so and Barbra Streisand delivered this banger in the movie 'Funny Girl'. In a life of high highs and low lows, it's not hard to figure out why the King would love this upbeat ditty of empowerment.
5. Edith Piaf - La Vi En Rose
Now at the risk of delving into every vinyl rack at every Lifeline Bookfest ever, Charles is a big fan of this classic French tune from Edith Piaf. Translated to 'seeing life through rose coloured glasses', there's lots that could be read into this, so I'll let you create your own smart quip to finish off this line.
6. Craig David ft. Bastille - I Know You
You weren't expecting this one, were you? In an interview earlier this year, Craig David revealed that King Charles and he spoke on multiple occasions and that the King was a fan. According to the R&B superstar, Charles said "What's the new thing? "I like that! He's like, 'cool, I know about 'Fill Me In' and '7 Days', I like this, but what's the new stuff man?'. When asked, David listed 'I Know You' as the King's favourite.
"This is the [then] future King's dedication, he wanted to put it out there let you all know that he knows you."
7. Diana Ross - Upside Down
You can envision a young Prince eyeing off a young Princess Diana across the floor at a London discoteque to this Diana Ross hit (NB: this has not been fact checked). No doubt the song that came on after The Three Degrees at possibly the one time he went clubbing (also not fact checked), this tune was huge in 1980, re-establishing Ross as a global music powerhouse, topping the charts in the US and Australia and peaking at #2 in the UK.
8. Jean Marie Leclair - Scylla et Glaucus
Also a big opera fan, King Charles III's love of deep cuts extends across the centuries, selecting this 18th-century opera based on Ovid’s 'Metamorphoses', about the unrequited passions between a sea god and a nymph. Could this ancient love story resonate with his own courtship with Camilla? We'll be sure to ask if we ever get an interview. Selected during the BBC Radio 3 special in 2018, the King referenced its ability to bring up the mood.
“Whenever I hear it, it always makes me feel better,” he said. “It is so incredibly rhythmic, it is incredibly joyful and exciting... do you know those bits of music that put a spring in your step again when you’re feeling a little bit down.”
9. Miriam Makeba - The Click Song
Selected at the same time as he chose Diana Ross and The Three Degrees, this one proves how wide the King's tastes are. And adds to his 'enigma wrapped inside a riddle' musical taste. Craig David is already checking it out for a remix.
10. Dick Powell - Lulu's Back In Town
We thought we'd end on this one. King Charles III lists this song as a favourite because it reminds him of his Grandmother. Passing on March 30, 2002, The Queen Mother was a beloved member of the Royal family and this selection is a reminder, particularly at this time, that the Royals are not just Monarchs, but also humans.
Haven't had enough of King Charles III's musical taste? Check out this playlist from the UK's Hospital Radio featuring even more of his song selections.