Episode from the podcastDesert Island Discs

Sir Cliff Richard

Released Sunday, 20th December 2020
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Sir Cliff Richard makes a second trip to the island he first visited 60 years ago, when he had just turned 20, but had already topped the UK charts three times.

Over the course of his career, Sir Cliff has released over 100 albums and sold well over 250 million records. His chart success in the UK has been eclipsed only by his hero Elvis Presley and one-time rivals, the Beatles.

Born Harry Webb in Lucknow, India, Sir Cliff returned to the UK with his family in 1948: money was tight and the family of six shared a room until they were able to move into a council house. Sir Cliff’s father bought him a guitar for his 16th birthday and he initially performed in a skiffle band until he discovered rock ‘n’ roll and started a new band called the Drifters which later became the Shadows. His first hit single came in 1958 with Move It – often credited as being the first authentic British rock ‘n’ roll track – and he dominated the home-grown music scene of the late 1950s and early 1960s.

During his long career Sir Cliff performed on screen in films including Summer Holiday and The Young Ones. He has fronted television shows, twice performed Britain’s entry in the Eurovision Song Contest and starred in two stage musicals. Today, at 80, he is still recording new songs and itching to get back on tour to perform his music in a post-Covid world.

Sir Cliff's return to Desert Island Discs after 60 years is record-breaking: it's the longest time between appearances in the programme's eight decade history.

DISC ONE: Rolling in the Deep by Aretha Franklin
DISC TWO: What's Love Got To Do With It by Cliff Richard
DISC THREE: Heartbreak Hotel by Elvis Presley
DISC FOUR: I Honestly Love You by Olivia Newton-John
DISC FIVE: It Is Well by Sheila Walsh Featuring Cliff Richard
DISC SIX: I Can't Make You Love Me by Bonnie Raitt
DISC SEVEN: Stayin' Alive by Bee Gees
DISC EIGHT: High Water Everywhere by Joe Bonamassa

BOOK CHOICE: Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë
LUXURY ITEM: A Gibson acoustic guitar
CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: It Is Well by Sheila Walsh Featuring Cliff Richard

Presenter: Lauren Laverne
Producer: Paula McGinley

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