Alt-J, Tom Odell and Jake Bugg revealed on Cameron's G8 playlist gift


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The Independent Culture

It’s assemblage of polite, contemporary pop would make an ideal dinner party backdrop. But the playlist, featuring Tom Odell and Alt-J, was a gift given by David Cameron to his fellow G8 leaders as a “Best of British” soundtrack to their Northern Ireland gathering.

The Smiths-loving Prime Minister did not claim to have spent the night before the summit collating his latest musical enthusiasms in order to impress his guests, who included including US president Barack Obama, Russia's Vladimir Putin and chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany.

The 10-song playlist, contained on a USB stick given to each of the G8 leaders last month, was compiled for Mr Cameron by music industry body, the BPI, which described the gift as “a bespoke creation for the leaders” which was not “available for reproduction.”

However the full selection was revealed after a Freedom of Information request and the “G8 Best of British” has now appeared on streaming service, Spotify.

It is not clear whether the G8 leaders plugged in their USB stick or accidentally left them behind at their luxury Lough Erne resort.

Had they lent an ear, they would have found a selection touching most of the bases – dance, indie, tasteful electronica, singer-songwriter angst – covered by the Radio 2 playlist.

Leading off with Tessellate, the mathematical conundrum by Mercury Music Prize winners Alt-J, the selection gets a little noisy with Jake Bugg, whose early Dylan-isms may have intrigued President Obama.

Were the diplomats aware that a contribution by the Brit-winning newcomer Tom Odell, awarded a 0/10 NME review, has been marked “ explicit” on Spotify?

His Another Love hit includes the lyrics: “So I'll use my voice, I'll be so f****** rude, Words they always win, but I know I'll lose.”

Ben Howard, Laura Mvula and Lianne La Havas would have provided a mellifluous backing to the post-banquet discussions about tax transparency.

The Cameron Collection could be subtitled “the Love album” - the word “love” features in five of the ten song titles, perhaps a nudge to as the word leaders as they sought to find common ground over the divisive question of Syria.

Britain’s answer to Justin Bieber, Conor Maynard, rounds off the playlist with 'Can’t Say No', a treat for chancellor Merkel, since the song reached no 63 in the German charts.

Sadly for President Obama, there is no contribution from Jeffery Osborne, the soul singer he repeatedly confused George Osborne with at the Summit.

Mr Cameron has previously professed his love for The Smiths but said he was looking for a new favourite band after Morrissey and Johnny Marr “forbade” him from liking the 80s indie icons.

In 2006, Mr Cameron was revealed as a secret fan of Benny Hill's comic creation Ernie, The Fastest Milkman In The West, when he chose the 1971 hit as one of his eight favourite records on BBC Radio 4’s Desert Island Discs. He also selected Radiohead, Pink Floyd and R.E.M among his choices.

Cameron’s G8 playlist

Alt-J – Tessellate


Jake Bugg – Lightning Bolt


Laura Mvula – Green Garden


Lianne La Havas – Is Your Love Big Enough?


Ben Howard – Only Love


Gabrielle Aplin – Home


Tom Odell – Another Love


Rudimental ft John Newman – Feel the Love


Birdy – Skinny Love


Conor Maynard – Can’t Say No