10 Songs I Wish I'd Written by Deaf Havana's James Veck-Gilodi

James Veck Gilodi

Since forming in Norfolk in 2005, Deaf Havana have released three full-length albums, their most recent being 2013’s Old Souls. The quintet are currently working on their as-yet-untitled fourth album which is set for release early next year.

We quizzed the band’s chief songwriter James Veck-Gilodi on the 10 tracks he wish he’d written. Unfortunately, due to time and circumstance, the following bands and solo artists pipped him to the post…

10. Ludovico Einaudi – Berlin Song

“I first heard this on This Is England 86 and it basically made me cry, as does all of his music. How he manages to evoke so much emotion through just the use of a piano blows my mind. Also the royalties must be pretty decent from this song as well (laughs).”

9. LCD Soundsystem – All My Friends

“Lyrically, this is incredible. I’m not the biggest LCD Soundsystem fan but this song kills me. The lyrics are so perfect, I read them over and over when I first heard it years ago. It’s the same piano loop the whole way through the six minutes and yet somehow doesn’t get boring. Genius.”

8. Oasis – Morning Glory

“One of the coolest songs of all time. The swagger in the guitars alone is something any songwriter would sell their soul to achieve. I basically just love Oasis and this is my favourite song of theirs.”

7. Blur – End Of a Century

“This is such a solid song and one of the best of the 90s for me. I was always more into Oasis, but this song and a few others really made Blur stand out as more than just another Britrock band.”

6. The Rolling Stones – You Can’t Always Get What You Want

“Other than the fact this is an amazing song, I mainly wish I’d written this because of the royalty payments it must bring in. Yeah, the Rolling Stones’ royalties is why I wish I’d written this one.”

5. The Smiths – The Queen Is Dead

“Undoubtedly, this Smiths song has some of the wittiest and intelligent lyrics I have ever read. Morrissey, despite his flaws, is a true artist for me, he’s an amazing poet and someone who I look up to greatly. Also Johnny Marr is a guitar genius – so the combination is deadly!”

4. Counting Crows – Round Here

“One of my favourite bands of all time. For me, Adam Duritz is one of the greatest lyricists ever, I don’t always understand what he means, but I like that in a way. His phrasing and word placement is something I’ve always aspired to put into my own music.”

3. Bruce Springsteen – Thunder Road

“I chose this because of the genius of Springsteen and his storytelling in this song. I love the melodies and chords and the way the song builds and breaks, but for me the lyrics are incredible.”

2. Elliott Smith – Angeles

“This is possibly one of the saddest songs I’ve ever listened to. I wish I had written this song because of the impact it had on me when I first heard it – any song that has that effect is pretty bloody special.”

1. Björk - Hyperballad

“The first time I heard this song I couldn’t believe that the almost atonal verse could break into such a beautiful chorus. I love Björk more than any other artist and think her songwriting is close to genius.”

Deaf Havana play Reading and Leeds, which takes place from August 26-28. A new single, Sing, is taken from an as-yet-untitled album due in 2017.