Inspiral Carpets – This Is How It Feels (1990)
Not quite as much fun to sing as it used to be, since City became half-decent, but still a cracking tune from the Oldham band named after a local clothes shop. Military side-drum and a piercing Vox organ form the background to this bleak little tale of domestic sorrow that somehow succeeds at the same time in being thoroughly uplifting.
Elbow – One Day Like This (2008)
This string-drenched epic from the Bury slow-burners is the one Elbow track firmly embedded in the national consciousness, having become every TV producer's musical shorthand for "the emotional ending". Overexposure aside, though, it's actually quite a lovely song, with Guy Garvey's vocals soaring over layered violins and a driving beat. Best enjoyed among 20,000 festival-goers.
The Monkees – I’m A Believer (1966)
Okay, there's only a tangential relationship between The Monkees and Manchester – singer Davy Jones was born in Openshaw – but this track is the one everyone remembers. Another mean organ-stab riff and twangly guitar underpin the sweet story of Micky Dolenz's conversion from love-lorn to love-struck in the blink of a beautiful eye. A perfect piece of 60s bubble-gum pop.