Screen Shot 2018-08-14 at 13.00.20

Unfaithful friends, unresponsive companies, unbelievable bureaucracy, undelivered fridges… Sometimes the only way to not completely unravel it is to put the right music on.

I’m not going to add to the numerous lists of music to get furious to; songs like ‘I hate everything about you’ do nothing for me on any level.  I like to be positively pissed off, come out the better for it – but not without enjoying a bit of musical f**k-you in the process.

The Spotify playlist is here: spoti.fi/2B3cjXZ and first up is…


1. YOU GET WHAT YOU GIVE (New Radicals)  

Favourite lyric:

You’ve got the music in you,

Don’t let go…


Absolutely my go-to stompickmeup. Basically: I’ve got the music in me, so I’m immune to your crap – and anyway, karma is going to get you! Shopaphobes will enjoy the video.


2.  ALL RISE (Blue)

Favourite lyric:

And if you thought you had me fooled

I’m telling you now, objection overruled!


Oh yes: put that bastard in the witness box and see him go down! With the lovely Blue boys singing their hearts out in support.


3. THAT’S ALRIGHT (Laura Mvula)

Favourite lyric:

I will never be what you want and that’s alright


A musically delicious war dance against those people who want to control you. Go Laura.


4. GET IN LINE (Ron Sexsmith)

Favourite lyric:

If you intend on making me feel bad

You best get in line

Oh, it’s a long line

It’s a long line

It’s going out the door…


A bit obscure this one, a country ditty really, but perfect for those days of soul-sapping, life-eating, multi-source nagging, whinges, wind-ups and pointless tasks.


5. I LOVE YOU (Woodkid)

Favourite lyric:

Is there anything I could do  

Just to get some attention from you?


So, what’s positive about that, you ask; despite the thwacking rhythm, the lyrics are pure self-pity. But sometimes you’ve got to let yourself sink into that a bit before you move on – and talking about sinking, you have to watch the award-nominated video (Icelandic scenery, whales, sweetly suffering Russian chap… This one might just be about welcome distraction).


6. FEEL GOOD Inc (Gorillaz)

Favourite (and only comprehensible) lyric:

Feel good


Bit surreal and manic, but nearly does what it says on the label. For me, comes with bonus memory of a small son wearing out the living room carpet dancing to it.


7. GOODBYE MR A (The Hoosiers) 

Favourite lyric:

You had all the answers but no human touch

If life is subtraction, your number is up

Your love is a fraction, it’s not adding up


Musically emphatic sod-off for teacher, boss or the company not delivering your replacement fridge. Sing along with all the oh-oh, oh-ohs for extra relief.


8. COMO LA CORRIENTE (Estrella Morente) 

Favourite (and only makeoutable) lyric:



Great bit of self-affirming, clacking flamenco from this wonderful diva and her band of Ole-ing hombres hanging on her every word.




What’s your favourite song to get positively pissed off to?


My novel The Lighthouse Keeper’s Daughter – which comes with its own Spotify playlist and, according to one reviewer, ‘very good swearing’ – is available from bookshops or online from various sources, including this exasperating bunch: