English Music

I could not imagine a world without music and English music spans all the ages in more ways than one. It stretches from the plainsong first heard after the Norman conquest to the performers giving their all on Britain's Got Talent or the X Factor.

Music reaches people of all ages, too. It matters little whether you're eight or eighty. There's a style of music and a favourite performer for every one of us.

So in this section of Essentially England I'd like to showcase some of the my favourite composers, performers, bands and albums. There will be classical music, choral music, folk, rock, pop and music from the theatre or the movies.

The best thing about English music is sharing it: finding something new, hearing a band or an album for the very first time.

If there's an album you listen to over and over, a band that makes you go wow or a show that took your breath away - please share them with us! We'd all love to know.

Classical Music

In the very beginning, classical music was pop - then it became more high-brow and upper class. Now, with new arrangements, popular radio stations like Classic FM and hip, young performers classical music is seeing a revival.

When Classical Music MP3 Downloads came along, it got even easier to enjoy wonderful relaxing music.

And high time too, as we don't want to miss out on something wonderful. So here's a short list of my favourite composers and performers.

I'll add more over time and so can you.

Composers Performers
  • Thomas Tallis
  • George Friedrich Handel
  • Edward Elgar
  • Benjamin Britten
  • Gustav Holst
  • Ralph Vaughan Williams
  • William Walton
  • Frederick Delius
  • Herbert Howells
  • Paul McCartney
  • Howard Goodall
  • Nigel Kennedy
  • Lesley Garrett
  • Elaine Paige
  • Medieaval Baebes
  • Libera
  • The Choir of King's College Cambridge
  • Marie Lloyd
  • The Sixteen

Modern Music

I wasn't sure what to name this section, but I've called it modern at the end. England's always been on the forefront of rock and pop and we have the credentials to prove it.

At the moment I listen to a lot of indie music, but that doesn't mean there's nothing else around. My list of favourites will reflect the time I grew up in - the eighties (!!) - but I hope that you will add some of your favourite bands and albums, too.

  • Genesis
  • Pink Floyd
  • Dire Straits
  • Joe Jackson
  • Chris Rea
  • Muse
  • The Editors
  • Coldplay