8th May 2020

Darling Paloma,

I took out an old radio today and started to fiddle about looking for a station to fit my mood. I hadn’t switched on this radio since my school days when it was my passkey to an outside world.

It was yet another rediscovery during lockdown. I didn’t realise how much I missed the experience of fiddling with the dial and unexpectedly finding a sound that would trigger something that would change me forever: Miles Davis’ Flamenco Sketches, Marvin Gaye’s What’s Going On, the Mamas and Papas transporting me to California.

All those voices you come across unexpectedly, can’t tune in properly. You desperately try to hear him or her more clearly and in doing so, you lose the station. And you know you have found something great and imagine what he or she would be like if you could only find the station again and listen to the song in its entirety. But you never do and your imagination fills in the melodies you may have missed.

It is now your brother that sends me songs that make me want to listen from the beginning to the end – those few melodies that can affect you so much that you pull the car to the side of the road so that you can focus on listening rather than concentrate on driving. His taste is exquisite, and I forgive him for not respecting my choices in return.

If I had to choose one album that I would like you to hear from your mother’s tummy it would be Miles Davis, Kind of Blue – in fact, I am going to put it on now – And I can assure you, my darling girl, if you are born to the temperament of that sound you will have not just your mum, dad and brother falling in love with you but the entire world.

Love,

Papa

Published by Simon Astaire

Simon Astaire was the youngest agent ever employed at ICM starting the Music department and representing a variety of clients before turning to head a PR agency where his clients included brands such as Bulgari, Armani and celebrities and members of the Royal Family. He is regularly quoted in the press and has been described in The London Times as a PR Prince. He had a regular column in the Sunday Telegraph called Station to Station where he interviewed a diverse mixture of high-profile individuals on their imaginary last train journey. He has written six novels and two biographies including soccer star Sol Campbell when he was nominated for best new sports writer. His latest novel The Last Photograph, was made into a film of the same name. It had a US theatrical release in November 2019 and is now available on all platforms. His blog ' Letters to my daughter' began March 19th 2020.

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