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Kele Okereke's Ultimate Playlist


Bloc Party burst onto the music scene with 2005's Silent Alarm, and have never looked back, releasing three subsequent critically-acclaimed albums over the next seven years; meanwhile, lead vocalist Kele Okereke also found time to release a more dance-influenced solo record, The Boxer in 2010.

Kele continues his creative path by teaming up with Bobbie Gordon, to release a brand new track Down Boy, as part of the Bacardi Beginnings project, via the world's first 3D printing record store, which will open in London for just two days on Friday 13th December and Saturday 14th December. Each record will also be sold in limited edition record sleeves specially designed at Studio Moross, led by designer Kate Moross with all sales proceeds will go to music charity Nordoff Robbins.

We caught up with Kele to find out his Ultimate Playlist: read on for some great songs, and the stories behind his choices.

Listen to the whole playlist on Spotify


Favourite Movie Soundtrack Song

"It's probably a movie soundtrack rather than a song - my favourite movie soundtrack is the Phillip Glass-scored Notes on a Scandal. To be honest, I don't usually buy film scores, but I remember as soon as I got home from watching that film, I went and bought that soundtrack, because it was just very haunting. It was a real occasion where the music really brought out an atmosphere in the film...I just thought it was very, very haunting. It's a great film - I was really blown away by it."


Favourite Sad Song

"These Days by Nico probably. You can just really hear the melancholy in the recording; in the restraint in her voice. I'm not really a big fan of Nico's delivery, but I think on that track is works really well. There's just an air of resignation about the whole thing."


Favourite Song From My Childhood

"Tears Of A Clown by Smokey Robinson and the Miracles. My parents were big kind of Motown fans and whenever we would go for long drives to my aunt's or uncle's houses who lived on the other side of London, they would always put on a tape, and I remember the words in this song, and the kind of fairground melody that starts the track. I'll always remember the weird juxtaposition between the words - the lyrics - and the sound of the track - it sounds so upbeat, but the words are so sad."


Favourite Club Anthem

"There are lots, but I guess one of the first club tracks I remember having an effect on me was Higher State of Consciousness by Josh Wink. It's a real transcendent piece of work that I guess still sets a tone for what I like in dance music now. It's one of the first club tracks I really remember resonating with me."


Favourite Song That No-one Else Has Heard Of

"There's quite a lot of music I like that not many people would have heard of, but this track To Them, To Me by Holger Zilske...it's just this real kinda moody tech house track that has a very restrained atmosphere - it's just nice to put this on after you've been out all night and you're just winding down."


Favourite Wedding Song

"I guess something by the Beastie Boys - Sabotage always gets people going I guess - when that comes on, everyone starts like trashing the room, so I guess that's a good party track!"


Favourite Lyric From a Song

"That's really hard...at the moment...I saw that film yesterday Jeune et Jolie, the François Ozon film, which translates as 'The Young and The Beautiful'. It's a really good film, but it made me think a lot of that Lana Del Rey song, Young & Beautiful - "will you still love me when I'm no longer young and beautiful? - I know that you will". I guess it's something that, as a man, I don't think too much about - kinda, if my looks disappear with age, but I guess for women it's something slightly different, isn't it? When I woke up this morning, that song was on my mind. This idea of something so magical that you have in your youth fading as the years go by - again, it's not something that I worry about too much, but I can see how it affects women of a certain age."


Favourite Current Song

"There's a track right now that they play in my gym a lot, but it doesn't have sound, so I had no idea what it was for ages but I saw yesterday it's by Breach. The girl with red hair, and there's lots of versions of her dancing, and each version she has less clothes and they take her skin off. I haven't actually heard the song but I really like the video - I think the video's awesome!"


Favourite One-hit Wonder

"I was talking the other day to a friend of mine about Babylon Zoo - they had that song Spaceman that was on the Levi's advert. That was awesome. It was such an awesome 30 seconds and when the track actually started, it all slowed down and everyone was like 'what the f*ck's this?'. He had a short-lived career; I think he was planning to the next David Bowie or something and it didn't really happen, but that song was a real moment."


Favourite Song From Your Own Music

"At the moment, it's a track called Rise from my solo record. I just love the sentiment in the song and it's one of the ones that moves me now, still, when I listen to it. Usually, once you've make a record, because you love it so intensely whilst you're making it, then when it comes out it stops being yours, so you kind of distance yourself from it. But there are a few songs on the records that you still remember the feeling you had when you were recording them, and that's quite magical. And this song Rise, whenever I hear it, it takes me back to the day we recorded it - it still moves me, it's one of my favourites."


Kele and Bobbie's new record forms part of the third and final creative project in the Bacardi Beginnings music mentoring programme which has seen some of the UK's most exciting established and up-and-coming music artists come together to push the boundaries of music releasees. The campaign also provides a unique platform for some of the UK's best up-and-coming music talent to showcase their sound to a wider audience.

(Images: Rex)



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