Cowell, the king of pap pop, reveals his desert island tunes

He is responsible for such crimes against musical taste as "So Macho" by Sinitta, "Everybody Get Up" by 5ive and the warblings of Robson and Jerome.

But the music on Simon Cowell's own iPod could not be more different.

On BBC Radio 4's Desert Island Discs this morning, Cowell reveals his love for classic pop songs from the 1950s and 1960s. He describes Herb Alpert's "This Guy's in Love With You" as "the sexiest song ever". French singer Charles Aznavour's "She" is described as "one of the most beautiful songs of all time".

The acts from which he made part of his £50m fortune are conspicuous by their absence. There is just one modern song: Daniel Bedingfield's "If You're Not the One" which he says is "one of the most perfect pop songs of all time".

His favourite is Bobby Darin's version of "Mack the Knife" which he argues is "the best song ever made".

But Cowell slams his contemporaries. "The shark pool is not the media, the shark pool is some of the people who work in this business who are absolutely vile, vile people," he says.

He speaks frankly about shows such as X-Factor, saying: "It is like the outpatients of an insane asylum sometimes. I mean you just think, is this a joke?"He also admits that he was a horrible child who set his home on fire when he was four.

COWELL'S CHOICE

Bobby Darin "Mack the Knife"; Herb Alpert "This Guy's in Love With You"; Charles Aznavour "She"; Righteous Brothers "Unchained Melody"; Wayne Newton "Danke Schoen"; Daniel Bedingfield "If You're Not the One"; Sammy Davis Jr "Mr Bojangles"; Frank Sinatra "Summer Wind"

Suggested Topics
Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Media

Recruitment Genius: Advertisement Sales Manager

£21000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A publishing company based in F...

Guru Careers: Product Design Engineer / UX Designer

£20 - 35k: Guru Careers: We are seeking a tech savvy Product Design Engineer /...

Guru Careers: German Speaking Account Manager

£24-30K + Excellent Benefits: Guru Careers: German speaking Account Manager / ...

Guru Careers: System Administrator / Sys Admin

£23 - 30K (DOE) + Excellent Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a System Ad...

Day In a Page

No postcode? No vote

Floating voters

How living on a houseboat meant I didn't officially 'exist'
Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin

By Reason of Insanity

Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin
Power dressing is back – but no shoulderpads!

Power dressing is back

But banish all thoughts of Eighties shoulderpads
Spanish stone-age cave paintings 'under threat' after being re-opened to the public

Spanish stone-age cave paintings in Altamira 'under threat'

Caves were re-opened to the public
'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'

Vince Cable interview

'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'
Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

The only direction Zayn could go

We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

Spells like teen spirit

A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

Licence to offend in the land of the free

Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

From farm to fork in Cornwall

One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

Robert Parker interview

The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor