Subscribe to Holyrood updates

Newsletter sign-up


Follow us

Scotland’s fortnightly political & current affairs magazine


Subscribe to Holyrood
by Ruaraidh Gilmour
16 February 2024
Political Spin: Miles Briggs

Miles Briggs

Political Spin: Miles Briggs

What was the first record that you ever bought? 

I was about 11 or 12 and it was East 17’s Stay Another Day, I think. It would have been that Christmas number one that went on forever. That was the first tape that I bought, not a CD, in the record shop in Perth. It makes me feel quite old thinking about that.  

My office will sadly tell you that I have an unhealthy love of Christmas music and I will probably start listening to it come October. 

What record will always get you on the dance floor? 

There’s two. Maroon 5’s Moves Like Jagger is still a triggering song, not that I am a particularly good dancer. And I do love Murder on the Dancefloor by Sophie Ellis-Bextor, which is back in the charts – everything goes full circle.  

What is your karaoke song? 

I love karaoke and if my close friends visit Edinburgh, we always end up doing it. My favourite at the moment is Mumford and Sons’ Hopeless Wanderer. If I am doing a duet with my friends, we always do Moulin Rouge! come what may. The level of quality in performing these songs is for others to decide. I’m currently trying to get my party to get the karaoke back at party conference.  

What song would be your first dance at your wedding and why? 

There are two that I really like. Barbara Lewis, who sings Baby, I’m Yours, and 500 Miles but not The Proclaimers’ version – it’s by Sleeping At Last. The latter was played at the 2014 Commonwealth Games opening ceremony and two Scottish Ballet dancers danced to it before lots of people dressed up as Tunnock’s Teacakes ran out. It’s a really chilled-out, lovely version.  

What song do you want to be played at your funeral? 

One of my favourite musicians is John Mayer and I really like his song Carry Me Away, which is probably quite well named for a funeral, although I don’t think that is what it was written for. There’s another called Free Fallin’, but that would probably be quite inappropriate. 

What songs/music is guaranteed to make you cry? 

I don’t cry that often at music, but the last song that made me feel very moved was at the Edinburgh Festival in 2022 and it was a singer called Camille O’Sullivan. She is a bewitching performer and at the end of a set, she sings Nick Cave’s The Ship Song. It was just amazing – the whole environment, the setting, the atmosphere. The people all around me were crying.

What record do you absolutely hate but can’t get out of your head? 

I don’t really hate any music; I’ll listen to anything once. One that I can’t get out of my head is Harry Styles’ Watermelon Sugar. It’s one of those songs that seems to be playing everywhere. But I like it.  

What record would you be embarrassed to own up to having in your collection? 

Probably a Christmas one, I have all sorts. There are all the Michael Bublé ones, so take your pick. And, oh God, there’s also A Holly Dolly Christmas by Dolly Parton.   

What music would you always associate with your childhood? 

The songs from The Sound of Music. I am one of nine grandchildren and whenever we visited my grandparents my nana would get us all together in front of the TV and watch it. It became one of her key ways of shutting us all up. I know all the words to all the songs because I was brainwashed with them as a child.  

What was the last band you went to see and who with? 

I went to see The Proclaimers when they did the Leith Links concerts last summer. I went with my two sisters and their husbands. It was fantastic.  

Holyrood Newsletters

Holyrood provides comprehensive coverage of Scottish politics, offering award-winning reporting and analysis: Subscribe

Read the most recent article written by Ruaraidh Gilmour - The SNP should have seen this defeat coming.

Get award-winning journalism delivered straight to your inbox

Get award-winning journalism delivered straight to your inbox


Popular reads
Back to top