Prince William has revealed how the Tina Turner hit The Best brings back happy memories of his mother singing it at the “top of her voice” with her sons as she drove them to school.
William shared the poignant family moment in an audio walking tour of the Queen’s Sandringham estate which was recorded for Apple’s Time To Walk series – which encourages people to get active to benefit their mental health.
The future king covered a wide range of topics during the recording, from the emotional effect of working as an air ambulance pilot to being out of his “comfort zone” singing on stage with Taylor Swift and Jon Bon Jovi.
William said he still “secretly” likes the Turner song The Best, one of a number Diana would play to ease the anxiety as she took him and Prince Harry to boarding school.
The duke said: “Because sitting in the backseat singing away, it felt like a real family moment. My mother, she’d be driving along singing at the top of her voice and we’d even get the policeman in the car, he’d be occasionally singing along as well.”
With birdsong in the background, he added: “You’d be singing and listening to music right the way up to the gates of school when they dropped you off and that’s when reality kind of sunk in – you really were going back to school.
“Because before that you’re lost in songs – want to play it again, just to keep that family moment going. And when I listen to it now it takes me back to those car rides and brings back lots of memories of my mother.”
He also revealed how he listens to the rock band AC/DC to get him going at the start of the week.
William said: “There’s nothing better than, on a Monday morning, when you’re a bit bleary-eyed after the weekend and trying to get yourself back into the grind of the week, listening to AC/DC – Thunderstruck.”
The duke adds: “It absolutely wakes you up, puts your week in the best mood possible, and you feel like you can take on anything and anyone.”
His children appear to have inherited his love of music, as the duke recounts Princess Charlotte goes “crazy” dancing to the song Waka Waka by Shakira.
The duke said: “One of the songs that the children are loving at the moment is Shakira, Waka Waka. There’s a lot of hip movements going along with a lot of dressing up.
“Charlotte particularly is running around the kitchen, in her dresses and ballet stuff. She goes completely crazy with Louis following her around trying to do the same thing.”
William said he was “amazed” how his three children had inherited him family’s love of music and “most mornings there’s a massive fight between Charlotte and George as to what song is played in the morning”.
To keep order in the Cambridge household the duke said he alternates between his two eldest children as to who can pick the music.
Reflecting on his own childhood, the duke revealed how his mother took him to a homeless shelter to meet people “down on their luck”, adding: “She wanted to make sure that I understood that life happens very much outside of palace walls, and this is what’s going on. This is the real world here.”
William, who holds patronage roles with the homeless charities Centrepoint and The Passage, said: “And we sat there, and we listened. It really brings it to life when you hear somebody sit in front of you and talk very movingly and very openly about the challenges they’ve been up against.”
During his walk, William reveals the impact of dealing with life and death moments when he was a helicopter pilot with East Anglian Air Ambulance (EAAA) – becoming emotional as he describes meeting a former patient.
The duke’s voice breaks when he recounts being introduced to the unnamed person who recovered, but not fully, following an incident dealt with by the duke and his former EAAA crew, and he says: “It even makes me quite emotional now.”
Apple will stream three special audio airings of the Time To Walk episode featuring William free of charge on Apple Music 1, the global radio station on Apple Music, on Monday.