Peter Kay’s Car Share isn’t a musical, but it’s half way there. In every episode, John (played by Kay) and Kayleigh (Sian Gibson) commute to work, listening to Forever FM, playing “timeless hits, now and forever”.

Its playlist (62 songs over the six episodes of the first series, which Radio Times has analysed) was meticulously chosen by writers and old friends Kay and Gibson, who met 23 years ago at the University of Salford where they both studied drama.

“We did spend a lot of time selecting the music,” says Kay, “probably more than writing!” “It was the most enjoyable part. We spent ages going through the music and reminiscing,” explains Gibson. “We both have the same taste.”

“No we don’t!” Kay interjects. “We do mostly,” smiles Gibson. It seems life imitates art.

John and Kayleigh’s bickering about music defines their relationship, from their favourite albums (Rumours by Fleetwood Mac for John, Now 48 for Kayleigh) to the songs they want at their funeral (Kayleigh wants someone “to read the words to S Club 7’s Reach”, whereas John wants “Kenny G or a bit of Enya”).

Similarly, Kay and Gibson are not going to be swapping iPods any time soon. “She always says if I was any more middle of the road I’d get knocked down,” Kay jokes.

Carefully curated soundtracks aren’t rare on television these days, but one of the differences between Car Share and, say, Peaky Blinders is its love of “guilty pleasures” or… well, rubbish. From MMMbop by Hanson to Blue and B*Witched, you’re not going to be buying this on vinyl.

Most of Forever FM’s output is pop from the late 1980s, but this nostalgia is the driving force behind one of TV’s great will they/ won’t they couples – or “the modern-day Terry and June” as Kay refers to them.

John and Kayleigh talk almost entirely in musical references, from her “Carol Decker” hairdo to his encyclopaedic knowledge of Enya. The pair sing along to the songs on Forever, and it feels natural when we dive into their imaginations to watch them star in their own music videos.

The last series saw Kayleigh dress up as Anastasia and Cindy Lauper although, “Rush Hour by Jane Wiedlin would be my favourite, as we were in the video together,” says Kay. 

Episode 1

Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It), Beyoncé, 2008

Martika’s Kitchen, Martika, 1991

Call Me, Spagna, 1987

I Love to Love, Tina Charles, 1993

When We Are Together, Texas, 1999

Losing My Religion, REM, 1991

C’est La Vie, B*Witched, 1998

A Little Respect, Erasure, 1988

I’m Outta Love, Anastacia, 2000

Every Day Hurts, Sad Café, 1979

Episode 2

Birdhouse in Your Soul ,They Might Be Giants, 1990

Ignition, R Kelly, 2003

Turn Back the Clock, Johnny Hates Jazz, 1988

Ordinary World, Duran Duran, 1993

Inside, Stiltskin, 1994

All Rise, Blue, 2001

A Thousand Miles, Vaness  Carlton, 2001

True Colors, Cyndi Lauper, 1986

I Love the Nightlife, Alicia Bridges, 1978

Gloria  Laura Branigan, 1982

I Believe in You, Kylie Minogue, 2007

Episode 3

Can You Dig It, The Mock Turtles, 1991

Xanadu, Olivia Newton- John, 1980

How Will I Know, Whitney Houston, 1985

Here Comes the Hotstepper, Ini Kamoze, 1994

I Wanna Sex You Up, Color Me Badd, 1991

The King of Rock ‘n’ Roll, Prefab Sprout, 1988

Waiting for a Star to Fall, Boy Meets Girl, 1988

Please, Please, Please Let Me Get What I Want, The Smiths, 1986

Episode 4 

Keep On Movin, Five, 1999

Mmmbop, Hanson, 1997

Bump N’ Grind, R. Kelly 1994

How Bizarre, OMC,1996

If Only I Could, Sydney Youngblood, 1989

Everybody Wants to Rule the World, Tears for Fears, 1985

Love Shack, The B52s, 1989

Episode 5

Cherish, Madonna, 1989

When Smokey Sings, ABC, 1987

Put Yourself in My Place, Kylie Minogue, 1994

New Sensation, INXS, 1987

Have a Nice Day, Stereophonics, 2001

Hero, Enrique Iglesias, 2001

Picture of You, Boyzone, 1996

Devil Woman, Cliff Richard, 1983

Drive, The Cars, 1984

I Knew You Were Waiting (For Me), Aretha Franklin, 1987

Somewhere in My Heart, Aztec Camera, 1987

This Time I Know It’s for Real, Donna Summer, 1989

A Thing Called Love, Johnny Cash, 1971

Episode 6

Valerie, Steve Winwood, 1982

Cry for Help, Rick Astley, 1991

Don’t Talk Just Kiss (feat. Jocelyn Brown), Right Said Fred, 1991

Love Plus One, Haircut One Hundred, 1982

Ebony & Ivory, Paul McCartney, 1982

I Love Rock ‘n Roll, Joan Jett and the Blackhearts, 1981

Never Be Lonely, The Feeling, 2006

Baby Baby, Amy Grant, 1991

Rush Hour, Jane Wiedlin, 1988

Pure and Simple, Hear’Say, 2001