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Top Ten Tunes

Tim Atkin MW

Wine Writer, Judge, Broadcaster, Journalist, Photographer

Ladies and ... and ... and ... oh well. Ladies and “Gentlemen”! Back in The House, and our first big night for 2015! Yes, the Dayglo' is back in business once more. With feeling. And how strangely gratifying -- a full house. Of Groovers.

Probably due to this week's hot DJ -- direct from Ibiza via East Cheam - one of the world's hottest Jocks, and the Master of MWs, the Man himself... none other that MR TIM ATKIN ESQ MW!

Ladies, let the man through, and give the paisley shirt back...NOW! That's better, here he is, clothed and ready to rock. Fast and eager to please on the dance floor (and nothing if not original with those oh so English moves), slow and deaf in a go-kart, he is a positive adornment to any event involving wine. Adornment, I tell you! As well as being one of the most influential wine writers in the world today, he was awarded Online Drinker of The Year 2014! Wow! Respect! Oh wait, I read that wrong. Correction -- Online Drink Writer of the Year (2014 Fortnum & Mason Awards). Ah that makes sense. In addition -- Online Communicator of the Year (2014 Louis Roederer Awards). You really need to keep up, down the back - and check this out -- (2013 and 2011 Louis Roederer International Wine Website of the year). Ok, enough with the awards suffice it to say that no one is more respected here at TPHQ. What a palate! What command of the Queen's English! What profound knowledge of all things vinous! What a good bloke! What a dancer! (Would someone check on those Tim slightly injured earlier in the night when we played Brian Poole and the Tremeloes -- at his request -- those flailing arms...) And did I mention the photography? No? The man is seriously good. Did I mention the millions of column inches he has written for ... oh shit, stop throwing stuff! Olly Smith -- I saw that! Security! Throw that man out. Now! Jolly Olly -- that's the one -- out now. Noisy bastard. So here he is: dapper, charming, erudite, funny, a true wine legend....take the mike Tim ... with your hands! Ladies and Gentlemen the one and only (thank God) MR TIM ATKIN MW!

  1. Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered - Ella Fitzgerald

    As well as being one of the great feats of songwriting -- try finding something that rhymes with “dyspeptic” and doesn't sound contrived -- this features the incomparable Ella Fitzgerald at the peak of her considerable powers. Beautiful phrasing and vocal control, with a voice that's as warm as a fireside blanket.

  2. Somewhere Over the Rainbow - John Martyn

    This is probably my favourite song, performed here by the wonderfully boozy, dreamy, poetical John Martyn. There are lots of recordings on line, but this is the one I like best. I reckon this was Martyn's favourite song too. “They're playing my tune,” he says. And he's playing mine.

  3. Boogie Wonderland - Earth, Wind & Fire

    It was the American writer Emma Goldman who said that, “If I can't dance, I don't want to be part of your revolution.” I know how she felt. Dancing is part of my DNA, an expression of joy at being alive. Dance songs don't get much better than this. And I love the outfits, too.

  4. Mediterranean Sundance - Al Di Meola, Paco de Lucia and John McLaughlin

    I saw these guys play in the amphitheatre in Orange when I was a modern languages' student in Provence in the early 1980s. It always reminds me of a very happy year learning French and it showcases the contrasting talents of three amazing guitarists. Flamenco meets jazz meets rock and roll.

  5. Won't Get Fooled Again - The Who

    We listen to this at the end of every day's judging at the International Wine Challenge. To me, it's an encouragement not to be taken in by spoofy wines as well as one of the greatest rock songs of all time. Townsend, Moon, Daltrey and Entwistle: what a band. Wish I'd seen them at their peak.

  6. A Day in the Life - The Beatles

    I had to choose a Beatles' song, but I took me ages to decide which one. I listened to this on the day that John Lennon died. That distinctively nasal voice, the vaguely psychedelic lyrics (the holes in the Albert Hall) and the more upbeat contribution from Paul McCartney: the work of two geniuses.

  7. Under African Skies - Paul Simon

    This gives me the chance to include something with a South African connection in my Top Ten. It's a place I love, partly because it's where my wife comes from. Simon's voice, great lyrics, an African beat and some beautiful harmonies from Linda Ronstadt. These are the roots of rhythm and the roots of rhythm remain.

  8. Salle Pleyel, Paris Part VII - Keith Jarrett

    Jarrett would be my nomination for the greatest jazz pianist of all time. He's not much fun to hear live -- he spends half his time berating his audience for coughing and taking photographs -- but boy can he play. I love the recordings with his trio, but it's the solo stuff that moves me most.

  9. Minor Swing - Django Rheinhardt and Stéphane Grappelli

    This is my happy song. I defy you to start tapping your feet within seconds of the start. There's something about the way the gypsy Reinhardt and the more patrician Grappelli combine that's just perfect. I heard the latter play in St Rémy de Provence towards the end of his life and he was still great.

  10. A Handful of Dust - Loudon Wainwright III

    Says it all really. Wainwright's father, Loudon II, wrote this song and it's every bit as truthful as the stuff his son is still writing. “No sin worth sinning, ain't already sinned” and all that . I wouldn't go that far, but the message of the song is clear. Life is short. Carpe Diem.

Brilliant Tim! Ladies and Gents -- give it up please -- Oh please dear God no! There he is back on the floor doing that windmill thing again. No matter, heads down and a big hand for the impeccable Urban Legend himself MR TIM ATKIN!

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