Chris Lee's Inheritance Tracks
Inheritance tracks – Chris Lee, tenor
The song I’ve inherited from growing up in a musical family is Merry Christmas You Suckers by Paddy Roberts (1962).
We had it on a scratchy (it probably wasn’t like that when bought; it was much used and abused) 45rpm vinyl disc that was brought out every Christmas Eve – in fact it wouldn’t have been Christmas without it. My dad could obviously relate to the quite clever, well-observed lyrics - he was probably the keenest to play it each year (and, annoying, whistled the catchy tune until well past Boxing Day!) Right Said Fred sung by Bernard Cribbins also came out regularly during the rest of the year.
The song I’d pass on to the next generation is The long and winding road by the Beatles (1970) – the last song they recorded together.
I grew up on Merseyside – Beatlemania was in full swing and my elder sisters used to go to see the band play at places like the Floral Hall in Southport. I was too young to see them perform, but this song has a particular significance in my life from 1973 when driving with my best mate (who sadly died far too young) to Bordeaux in France to pick grapes. We’d both just left school and this was the first time I’d travelled abroad without my family – what freedom! But there was also a romantic twist – I was stopping off en route to see my girlfriend, my first true love, and we arrived late at night south of Paris – but at the wrong place! As we raced 50 miles further south to the right location, The long and winding road rang out on my mate’s in-car 8-track (remember the chunky tape cassettes?) player.