Sunak reveals the music and TV that helps him relax on campaign trail

Rishi Sunak pops in to The Telegraph office to join Kamal Ahmed and Camilla Tominey on The Daily T podcast
Rishi Sunak pops in to The Telegraph office to join Kamal Ahmed and Camilla Tominey on The Daily T podcast - Paul Grover for The Telegraph

Rishi Sunak has revealed how he unwinds on the general election campaign trail – by listening to country music and watching Yellowstone.

The Prime Minister has been touring the country since he announced the July 4 snap poll in the pouring rain and to the sound of Things Can Only Get Better, the New Labour anthem, which was played by protesters.

Speaking to The Daily T podcast on Wednesday, Mr Sunak said that, in the run-up to the announcement, he had been watching Yellowstone, a hit US show about family and political dramas on a ranch, to unwind.

He said: “I have, over the last couple of months, got into Yellowstone. But as a result of that – very late – I’m getting into country music. It turns out I’ve got lots of friends who are really into it, so I’ve been asking them to send me all their favourite songs.

“And actually some of my protection officers, it turns out, are also massive country music fans.”

Speaking about his favourite artists in the genre, about which he described himself as a “fanatic”, he mentioned popular American artists including Chris Stapleton, Lainey Wilson and Luke Combs.

“It’s very calming music,” he explained. “It’s good. It’s uplifting. I imagine my protection officers in the car are very happy because for the last four years since I’ve been chancellor and Prime Minister, they’ve had to listen to all my pop music, Capital and Heart [radio stations], incessantly.

“And now we’ve switched to a bit more country music in the car. I think they’re all welcoming the change.”

The Prime Minister also discussed his well-documented love of Star Wars, saying his favourite film in the series was Episode V: Empire Strikes Back and describing why he is fond of the 2005 Episode III: Revenge of the Sith.

He said: “I think the second half, particularly of Revenge of the Sith from the new set, the origin story, I think the back half of that is really good. I know everyone didn’t love those prequel movies. But I think actually cinematography, the lightsabers, Anakin [Skywalker’s] descent into darkness, is really good.”

Speaking on ITV’s This Morning last year, the Prime Minister said he likes to listen to Britney Spears while he works out on his Peloton bike, explaining that his instructor “loves Britney”.

Previous PMs have also revealed their musical sensibilities, with Theresa May enjoying classical music such as Elgar’s Cello Concerto and David Cameron saying he favoured British indie band The Smiths.

Gordon Brown was caught out as chancellor when he said he liked the Arctic Monkeys but was unable to name a single track by the band. He later clarified he was more of a Coldplay man.

In 2019, while on the election trail, former PM Boris Johnson said his two favourite bands were The Clash and The Rolling Stones during a campaign video interview.

Tony Blair invited the frontmen of Blur and Oasis for a champagne reception when he became prime minister in 1997. Noel Gallagher accepted, but Damon Albarn declined.

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