Line Of Duty and Strictly curate playlists for dementia radio station


Line Of Duty star Vicky McClure, BBC Breakfast host Dan Walker and former Strictly Come Dancing judges Len Goodman and Dame Arlene Phillips have created personal playlists for a radio station geared towards people with dementia.

The 24-hour station, called m4d Radio, broadcasts songs from the 1930s to the 1970s and is ad-free to maximize the holistic benefits of music.

Each playlist features music important to the celebrity and their parent who lives or has lived with dementia, and will air for a week starting Monday, June 28.

Dame Arlene Phillips (Ian West / PA)

Actresses Jennie McAlpine, Angela Lonsdale, Shobna Gulati, Phyllis Logan and Julie Hesmondhalgh have also signed up to run playlists.

m4d Radio was launched in June 2020 as traditional music care services were disrupted by the pandemic.

Era-specific streams provide free, uninterrupted music that can evoke memories for people living with dementia in a professional or home care setting.

Dancer and former judge Strictly Goodman included Ben E King’s Spanish Harlem and Cilla Black’s Any Who Had A Heart among his picks.

He said, “I have concocted an hour of music that you might like to dance to. I hope you will enjoy the music I have chosen for you. And wherever you listen, I hope it’s a Len 10!

Strictly Come Dancing 2016

Len Goodman (BBC / PA)

McClure’s grandmother, Iris, was diagnosed with dementia before she died in 2015.

The actress, who hosted a BBC One documentary – titled Our Dementia Choir – in 2019, filled her playlist with music she loves to sing, including Bill Withers’ Lean On Me, You Make Me Feel So Young by Frank Sinatra and You Can. ‘t Hurry Love from The Supremes.

She said, “We are making great strides in raising awareness of the transformative impact music can have on people with dementia.

“Music and singing are a great way for people to connect and lift their spirits. I saw this firsthand with my grandmother and Our Dementia Choir.

“Both were in mind when I put together my playlist and I have many happy memories related to the songs I chose.

“I hope listeners enjoy my personal reading list as much as I enjoyed compiling it.”

Dame Arlene, whose father, Abraham, died in 2000 after more than a decade with Alzheimer’s disease, chose tracks such as I’m Still Standing by Sir Elton John and Life On Mars? by David Bowie.

Lonsdale, whose mother died of Alzheimer’s disease, created a playlist of songs that were meaningful to her mother and evoke family memories, including Celine Dion’s Because You Loved Me, which was performed during his mother’s funeral.

Grace Meadows, Campaign Director for Music For Dementia, said: “It is visible how dementia has impacted the lives of many of these celebrities, which reflects the situation in society as a whole.

“We are grateful that they are ready to share their experiences with our audience of caregivers and people living with dementia. Music has the power to animate, stimulate and empower people to express themselves.

“It’s easy to see from looking at these playlists how some of these individual songs can lift their spirits, calm someone down if they’re agitated, and use memories from the past to connect here and now. “

– The playlists will be broadcast for one week from Monday June 28 on the m4d radio mix stream.

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