Leon's taste in music comes from his Mother and Father. Later influences came from Bill Charlotte and David who played all kinds of music. However, Leon knew what he liked and could be very selective. If you put on the wrong CD for him, his finger would be on the eject button within the first 2 or 3 bars of the song. He would often make you go through a pile of CD's until the right one was found. He knew his music. He knew what he liked and what he did not. Music was as much his voice as his eyes and body.
A list of people he liked reads like a who's who of the greats. Ranging from-
Bob Marley & the Wailers
The Rolling Stones
Terence Trent D'arby
Mcalmont & Butler
Tom Jones (Reload)
To name but a few. The Motown influence is not from the Motown stock which continually gets put out into the world but the "backroom boys" the ones who in my view kept Motown going. Songs which are, up to now, not very well known to the public enmasse.
Women. Voices of angels. Powerful voices which would be turned up so you could feel the full impact of their voices.
But like most people, songs make you laugh and Leon was no different, Millie Jackson's 'Phuck You' symphony made him howl every time he heard it.
Queens Bohemian Rhapsody. Especially when everyone in the car did the Wayne's World sequence.
Little Shop Of Horrors. That CD was played a lot, there was just something about it that made him smile and dance. The DVD made him howl and clap as he sat in bed with a bag of chips and kebab meat just chillin'. He could be a slob like any other 18 year old!
By chance we bought a James Brown DVD which to our delight and Leon's contained the "Lost James Brown Tapes" a tape which was rapidly becoming worn.
Over the last year of his extraordinary life his musical taste turned to heavy hitting bands like U2, Nickelback (his mother does not like them, so he turned it up louder), T'Pau, Led Zepplin and many more.
The U2 DVD Rattle and Hum became a staple diet when he was not feeling too well and he often "asked" in his own inimitable way for that and James Brown, Wayne's World, Little Shop Of Horrors and The England V Germany World Cup leg, what the last one has to do with music I don't know.
U2s music is soulful and insightful, that, along with Paul Weller, B.B King & Eric Clapton, Anastacia, Bob Marley, OutKast, Marvin Gaye, Aretha Franklin, Queen, Pink Labi Siffri and James Brown, provided the backdrop for the music which would make a profound statement at his untimely funeral.
No Hymns were chosen. His parents decided that it would not represent Leon the person, Leon the Son, Leon the Friend. We knew his finger would have gone straight to the eject button if we tried to sing a hymn. So a selection of songs chosen from the vast array of music accumulated over the years had to be used.