In an unforgettable 2019, Leah Williamson helped England reach the World Cup semi-finals and Arsenal win the Women’s Super League title – but a hugely contrasting 2020 has seen the WSL season come to an early end.
In the latest part of BBC Sport’s ‘In isolation with…’ series, the 23-year-old Gunners dressing room DJ talks about her love of music and shares her five recommended albums for the coronavirus lockdown.
With everything that’s going on in the world it feels as though life has slowed down – and the music I’m listening to is following suit. Even the volume I have the music playing at is turned down.
During this time, I’ve not really been listening to much dance music or anything like that, because I just want to be chilled out in my house, so I’m enjoying the softer music at the minute.
Don’t get me wrong – there’s always time for a dance around the kitchen and there are appropriate songs for that. But the situation we’re in, this is the first time I’ve ever slowed down, so it’s been nice to chill and the music definitely reflects that.
Growing up, sitting in the car with my mum on the way to football, we always had Motown on, but I’m also really into country music. I like to listen to things that take me back to memories and have connotations of good times.
My whole family absolutely loves music, and I get a wide range of music taste from them. I’ve been influenced by so many different genres.
More from BBC Sport’s ‘In isolation with…’ series:
By Kacey Musgraves
I think people sometimes switch off when they hear ‘country music’ because they think of the real classics, but country music has changed a lot, and I’m a big fan. It comes from watching the television series Nashville, since my early teenage years.
Something my grandma and I have always wanted to do is go to Nashville and spend some time out there in that culture.
Over lockdown, I’ve been listening to Kacey Musgraves. This is what I mean about country music changing, and I love her album Golden Hour.
Everybody is trying to chill out in this time and I just think this album is sort of appropriate. It has such strong singer-songwriter vibes and she is really cool.
Butterflies is one of the tracks that is really nice music, and that’s my go-to at the minute, along with Harry Styles.
By Harry Styles
I like ‘different’ – and Harry Styles just doesn’t care about being different.
I think his personality away from music is everything that people love about today’s world: Be exactly who you want to be.
And, for me, that comes out in his music. It’s good music that intrigues people, fascinates them, and makes them interested.
He’s not the pop star he used to be. He’s a musician, and his new album is unreal.
I used to love One Direction, and then of course the band breaks up and you’re heartbroken… But then they start making their own music, and his stands out. His latest record is top tier.
By The Temptations
My vinyl is my pride and joy. I adore my record player.
I have an LP record that is probably my most-used vinyl that I listen to, and it’s The Temptations’ Greatest Hits.
They are such an influential Motown group from the 1960s and 70s and this LP is my grandma’s. It’s very old so I have to look after it.
When I got my record player for Christmas, my dad gave me his old records, therefore he gave me all 80s dance music – he loved Rick Astley and Rod Stewart.
But my grandma’s collection is all about soul. Think Diana Ross and lots of Motown. This album from The Temptations is probably the best one out of that lot.
We’ve always listened to The Temptations. One of my favourite songs ever has got to be ‘My Girl’. I suppose I’m way beyond my years here.
I probably sound extremely old to people of my generation, but they’re just timeless really. That’s the beauty of it.
Bridget Jones’s Diary: Music from the Motion Picture
Do you remember when people had those six CD slots in the car, and so you had the same ones on repeat, switching them around? This one was always there for us. This is one of my favourite CDs ever.
The soundtrack from the Bridget Jones movies, the first and second one, was a favourite of mine and my mum’s.
The songs on it have shaped my music taste I think. Even when I watch the films, I think I watch them for the music really, rather than the film.
I love Notting Hill, Love Actually and Bridget Jones – I could watch those films over and over again and never get bored. The soundtrack is brilliant.
With some movies, I like the soundtrack more than the movie itself. I’ve not even seen Guardians of the Galaxy, but I know it has a great soundtrack, because my brother loves it and he brought me an LP of it for Christmas.
The defamation of Strickland Banks
By Plan B
I always say one of my favourite CDs is by Plan B. He’s like a bad boy, or at least that’s the persona he comes across as.
You sense he’s living a sort of dangerous lifestyle, but then he comes out with this like high-pitched voice. It’s brilliant.
There’s some rapping, but some songs that are really proper song-music too. The whole album tells a story. It’s quality, and if you appreciate music you’d appreciate his songs.
So we have come back to soul music again, but I just don’t think it can be beaten.
However, I could honestly listen to anything. I like music because I listen with my family and with groups of people.
My grandma and I rock up to concerts and see what it’s about. I’ll buy two tickets and say ‘are you free?’ and she does the same. All of my cousins will go to concerts with her, which is really nice.
I could go on forever, so I’ll leave you with my tune of the moment, which is Tim Chadwick’s ‘I need to know’.
Leah Williamson was talking to BBC Sport’s Tom Garry.