Black Chalk: the Launch Party Playlist

Black Chalk, UK hardback

Here’s a playlist with the theme ‘Music From an Oxford College, 1990-91’, which will be the music at my US launch party, April 1 (click for details).

This is the music you would hear if, traveling back in time twenty-something years ago, you were to wander around my fictional Pitt College, music that would be playing on the bar’s jukebox, at one of the college bops* or pouring out from a student’s room.

Click here to open in Spotify (although a few of the tracks aren’t on Spotify and therefore won’t be available). Alternatively, I’ve embedded the Spotify track list at the bottom.

(*Bop is terrible Oxford slang for ‘disco’; although, arguably there is no good word for such an event, including the word ‘disco’.)


  1. Come on Eileen — Dexy’s Midnight Runners
  2. The Eton Rifles — The Jam
  3. Anarchy in the UK — Sex Pistols
  4. Smells Like Teen Spirit — Nirvana
  5. Freak Scene — Dinosaur Jr.
  6. This Is How It Feels — Inspiral Carpets
  7. Step On — Happy Mondays
  8. There’s No Other Way — Blur
  9. I Wanna Be Adored — The Stone Roses
  10. Love Will Tear Us Apart — Joy Division
  11. Tainted Love — Soft Cell
  12. Bizarre Love Triangle — New Order
  13. Cemetery Gates — The Smiths
  14. Boys Don’t Cry — The Cure
  15. Groove Is In The Heart — Deee-Lite
  16. Loaded — Primal Scream
  17. Revolution — The Beatles
  18. Positively Fourth Street — Bob Dylan
  19. Walk On The Wild Side — Lou Reed
  20. Suffragette City —David Bowie
  21. Maggie May — Rod Stewart
  22. It’s The End of the World As We Know It — R.E.M.
  23. Every Day Is Like Sunday — Morrissey
  24. There She Goes — The La’s
  25. Taste — Ride
  26. Sit Down — James
  27. I’m Free — The Soup Dragons
  28. Debaser — Pixies
  29. Should I Stay or Should I Go — The Clash
  30. Nelson Mandela — The Special A.K.A.


Now, to fully set the mood, light up something good, pop the cork on something bad and let’s all start talking shit about stuff we know nothing about like we’re world-class experts.

Huge thanks to everyone who helped me with this, most of whom were there: Liz Nice, Ros Wynne-Jones, Charlie Rowlands, Theo Blackwell, Tabby McIntosh, Kitty Ussher, Elizabeth Pearson, Yvonne Illsley, Mackenzie Dawson, Shaun Pye, Craig Hansen, Eric Bailey, Ali Miremadi, Graeme Dolan, Debbie Riley, Edna Mairi Holywell, Ivan Martinez, Ian Moss, Matthew Alldis, Tony Brennan, Alan Connor, Alan Beattie, Jon Gurney, John Camm, Jane Manie, Adam Carpenter, Margi Conklin and Joshua Cody.



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