1) Also sprach Zarathustra – Strauss
I’m a timpanist – how did you expect me to start!
2) Hansel & Gretel Overture – Humperdinck
This opera is so beautiful, so full of wonderful moments.
3) Just You, Just Me – Oscar Peterson and Milt Jackson
They just sound so good. I played a lot of jazz vibes before going to music college – not as well as Mr Jackson sadly...
4) Symphony No. 5, final movement – Mahler
The summer before I went to music college I saw the LSO performing this at the Proms – amazing.
5) On the Trail of the Lonesome Pine – Laurel and Hardy
This routine is etched in my memory. They are just brilliant.
6) Im Abendrot – Strauss
I think we’ve had this before on Sunday Soundtrack! No apology for putting it in again. This is the Schwarzkopf version. Sublime.
7) Prelude and Mazurka from Coppélia – Delibes
I’ve always loved this ballet, particularly the opening, since playing it with Sadler's Wells Royal Ballet many years ago. At the time the timpanist was Steve Webberley. I was lucky enough to sit in the percussion section with Steve playing timps and I learnt more about timpani playing on those few occasions than in my three-ish years at the Royal Academy. He is the most naturally gifted player I have ever seen, and one of the kindest and most generous people I have ever met. Every time I play this I pray to the timpani gods to make me sound like Steve!
8) September in the Rain – George Shearing
I’ve always loved the distinctive sound of George Shearing. Cocktail anyone?
9) German Requiem – Brahms
I studied this at A level many years ago and have loved the music of Brahms ever since. I feel he really understood how to use timpani as a mature orchestral voice in a way that changed how the instrument was perceived.
10) Bring It All Back – S Club 7
Music is all about wonderful experiences. This was the first ‘single’ that my eldest daughter bought and was omnipresent in that year’s summer holiday. This song brings back such happy memories...
11) Symphony No.8 – Bruckner
You only have to listen to the first 17 bars to realise why timpanists love this piece.
12) A Mighty Wind – The Folksman
This is from the same filmmakers that brought us Spinal Tap. It’s a folk mockumentary lovingly done, beautifully acted and all the cast actually play the instruments. A must-watch film!