If you have a favourite artist – writer, painter, poet, musician… whatever the discipline, you want to know all their work. My favourite current writer is C. J. Sansom who has written the masterly quintet about Shardlake the lawyer set in the times of Henry VIII; he has also written ‘Winter in Madrid’ and his latest book ‘Dominion’ is my next read – I am so excited, can’t wait to start it! I love the paintings of Joseph Wright of Derby, and try to get to every exhibition which contains his work, or visit galleries where it is hung and I have books about him too. I admire Martin Espadá for his human right work, and I have read and reread his poems and have his CD; as, thankfully, he is still very much alive, I know I will have much to enjoy for a long time!
In all those examples I have favourite pieces, or works which I think are outstanding and better than the rest of the artist’s catalogue, ‘Heartstone’ by Sansom, ‘A Philosopher Giving That Lecture on the Orrery in Which a Lamp Is Put in Place of the Sun’ by Joseph Wright, ‘En La Calle San Sebastián’ by Martín Espada.
My favourite band and favourite singer are the Mavericks and Raul Malo. I have every album which has been released, and I have a lot of other recordings too. I have DVDs and videos, and I have been to many, many gigs. I love their music, much of which has been written by Raul, and I have favourite albums among those I possess. They have just released a new album, ‘In Time’ and one of the songs is absolutely extraordinary above all the other extraordinary ones. It is called ‘Call me when you get to heaven’ and it is absolutely the best, the very best thing the very talented Raul Malo has ever written or sung; his voice is at its full power and beauty, and the performance of the Mavericks as an ensemble has never been better. Phenomenal.
To find the story behind the song you can hear what Raul has to say here:
One further reason why this song has so much meaning and resonance for me is that it could be the theme song for my next novel, Night Vision; that meaning and resonance make it a very special piece of music for me.