Virgin Records recently celebrated its 40th anniversary. To celebrate, business mogul founder Richard Branson made a head-turning announcement; from next month his new UK domestic airline, Little Red, will feature live music as in-flight entertainment.
We applaud Virgin’s indefatigable ingenuity. But we can’t help considering that it’s perturbing enough to have a wailing child on an aeroplane, so why give a wailing adult a microphone and speakers? Will Branson’s passion for plugging ‘the rich music scenes in Scotland and Manchester’ lend itself to an executive audience? We think not. However, we wouldn’t put it past Virgin to characteristically prove us cynics wrong.
So for the sake of amusement, let’s mute our voices of reason and momentarily immerse ourselves in Virgin’s world of infinite possibility. Come fly with us as we ponder the five acts we’d most like to see on a plane…
1. Foo Fighters
The magnetism of Dave Grohl in drag circa the ‘Learn to Fly’ video still haunts us, and for the sake of closure, we’d love to view it first-hand. Imagine Dave, Taylor and co. decked out in frilly dresses, stomping to the anthem of aviation as the plane hit turbulence. It would be like ‘The Rocky Horror Show’ meets ‘Airplane!’ In other words, well worth a ticket.
2. R Kelly
Kelly could serenade passengers with ‘Ignition Remix’ during take off and a sing-along of ‘I Believe I Can Fly’ at peak altitude. Cue dimmed lights in the cabin and a relinquished smoking ban. Picture the rows of weeping businessmen, cigars in mouths, waving their lighters in tribute as the aircraft sways in rhythm.
3. Michael Buble
The slick, suited swinger would bring a touch of elegance to an in-flight experience, with topical renditions of ‘Come Fly With Me’ and ‘Fly Me To The Moon.’ And let’s not forget the epic ‘Home’ chorus, ‘Let me go ho-o-o-ome!’, which is perfectly apt for irritable and/or frequent flyers.
4. Lenny Kravitz
The funk rock maverick would get the party started with ‘Fly Away’, with its soaring, distorted riffs and escapist lyrics. What could be more empowering than chanting ‘I want to get away/I wanna fly away!’ in mid air? Nothing, that’s what. Another bonus is he’d make the poor souls on board believe they’re off on a sun-drenched rock’n’roll adventure, not en route to a drizzling city somewhere in Britain.
5. Elton John
Ever fond of aeronautical allegories, Elton’s songs ‘Rocket Man’ and ‘Bennie and the Jets’ would be great crowd-pleasers. This performance would probably only be a one-off reserved for VIP passengers, as his fee would likely rival the start-up cost for the company itself. Jessica Zbinden-Webster
More music to keep you flying high here.