Question for you: If you had the chance to spend an hour in the car with one of your musical heroes—you are driving—what music would you play? Believe it or not, this is a difficult, stressful decision. And my next guest, northwest London-based Emily Capell, faced this very dilemma. Emily, who literally grew up on the Clash and its various offshoots, is an old soul. Her music is inspired by, well, the Clash, Big Audio Dynamite, but it goes beyond that. You’ll hear some Sinatra, you’ll hear some ‘60s doowop, you’ll hear a lot of ska, Blondie, you name it. In this exhilarating interview, Emily and I talk about two songs from her 2019 debut album Combat Frock—Bonanza and Ipso Calypso—and then we talk about two newer songs, 2020’s Flamingo, recorded with the London-based Dreadzone, and a cover of Big Audio Dynamite’s E=MC2, recorded with the song’s co-writer, legendary punk-rock DJ and studio innovator Don Letts. We discuss what it was like to record with Letts, one of her heroes, and the troubles and trials of being a musician in a pandemic. Mostly, though, we talk about the music. Emily is one of the freshest talents recording today, so go grab your beer, sit down, and welcome Emily Capell to For Songs.