Jane Austen’s Persuasion is one of my favourite books and this year I am the same age as Anne Elliot.
If you haven’t read it – read it, then listen to this.
1. Diamonds and Rust by Joan Baez
Nobody does bitter like Baez. In this, my favourite love song, she describes how memory can be both painful and amazing. When Anne realises that ‘he may soon be walking here’ you can feel the sudden rush of painful joy she goes through on knowing someone she has loved so much is back, and this song encapsulates that feeling for me.
2. I Miss You by Kimya Dawson
I was always strong as long as we were a team. I crawled into somebody’s heart who meant the world to me. Love made me strong enough to be alone, it set me free, but with my friends, friends till the end is where I want to be. I don’t need to, but I want to, sing with you. Because I miss you.
3. Rambling Man by Laura Marling
I love the idea of feeling foolish because you want to ask them so many questions but can’t, because to ask them would appear naïve, even though you ARE naïve. This one’s for the Original Rambling Man, Captain Wentworth.
4. Not That Girl Wicked Soundtrack
Three words. Louisa. Bitchin’. Musgrove
5. Mr Beveridge’s Maggot English Trad
Yes I know, it’s the wrong Austen. But I had to find something that summed up the pomp and ridiculousness of the Elliot’s in Bath and this has got a silly name, so what could be better?
6. Forever Young by Audra Mae
Bath’s healing waters were supposed to cure a multitude of sins, plus Anne spends a lot of time reminiscing about her youth with her oldest friends. And it’s a beautiful song, and this is my favourite version.
7. A Million Love Songs Later by Scouting For Girls
Yes, I know, it’s insanely cheesy. And it includes a sax solo. But come on, Wentworth’s letter NEEDS recognition and if ‘You Pierce My Soul’ isn’t the cheesiest line ever then I don’t know what is!
8. Hello Love by The Be Good Tanyas
I love The Be Good Tanyas and this is one of my favourites. I just have visions of Anne dreamily walking up to Wentworth in the garden and knowing everything is going to be alright and this playing in the background.
9. The You and Me Song by The Wannadies
Because we’ve all been 14 to this song. And it’s good to dance to. And it just about sums Wentworth and Anne up as well as The Crofts, and all the other lovely couples in Persuasion.
10. Anyone Else But You by The Mouldy Peaches.
For everyone who’s a part time lover and a full time friend.