Happy Anniversary!

One week on from our wedding and we started listening to the wedding music CD in the car last night on the way home from David Jones after spending some of our vouchers given so generously to us for the celebration.  We got maybe 3 songs in and got home, so I carried on listening to it on the way to work this morning.  It did make me angry when I thought of all the hard work that went into choosing it all, making sure it was in the right order, for it to be so royally stuffed up on the day.  So I will vent my spleen on here for a little bit, describe why we chose the songs and music we chose, then forever hold my peace.  Enlightenment is accepting what is, so I accept that with all the mishaps leading up to and on the day, we didn’t get the day we planned or wanted, we are still officially married, highlighting to everyone else the commitment we made to each other when it was decided that I would move to Australia with Dan.

Here is the playlist (we still have some CDs spare if anyone would like one – give me a shout:
Nimrod (from Enigma Variations) – Edward Elgar
An Ending (Ascent) – Brian Eno
C’est Le Vent, Betty – Gabriel Yared
Canon – Johann Pachelbel
Gabriel’s Oboe – Ennio Morricone
Down Under – Men At Work
Hoppípolla – Sigur Rós
Maybe Tomorrow – Stereophonics
Heartbeats – José González
Overkill – Lazlo Bane
God Only Knows – Beach Boys

We deliberately had 20 minutes of music prior to us walking in together, as we were told that the celebrant would be there well before the service (3:30pm) so that everything would be set up ready to go for bums on seats at 3:40pm.  We also wanted people to be listening to instrumental music before the ceremony, not songs, to focus on the wedding at hand.  In the end, we don’t know what was played prior to us walking in, as she arrived at the time the CD was due to start.  We walked in to Down Under, designed to make us and the guests laugh, and relax me as I knew I would be a mess by then.  I wasn’t I was more fed up of waiting and watching months of planning whizzing away in front of me.  Before we walked in, we then were very clear that we wanted the rest of the CD played in the garden while register/certificate was signed and group photos were taken, as Hoppípolla is a triumphant piece of music it would have suited the mood (that is why we chose it!).  Instead we had Down Under played again, then the CD switched from one player to another, then stopped altogether as the celebrant left. 

When we decided to ‘go out’ together properly, one of the firsts gifts that Dan gave me was a playlist on iTunes, (the Gen Y version of a mix tape).  He’d chosen songs that he liked that reminded him of me, put them together and played them to me while we opened a bottle of wine and chatted in his living room. 
Music is a vital part of both our lives, we listen to it all the time, and as anyone knows hearing a piece of music is like walking past and smelling a friend’s perfume on a stranger.  You are taken straight away right back to the most vital time you heard (or smelt) it, it can lift, lower, ruin or celebrate your mood, it can clear a dance-floor if the DJ makes a wrong choice, it can keep a party going for hours if it is the right choice.

Here is why we chose the music we chose:

Nimrod is a piece of music I grew up with.  Both of my parents love it, my brother loves it, I love it.  It starts so quietly you don’t know if you are hearing anything at all at first, then that unmistakable slow melody, played on strings with the horn section slowly moving up behind it to give it some oomph, makes the hairs on the back of my head stand on end.  Anyone who knows me knows that I spend an inordinate amount of time trying to please my Father, this was not only my little ‘I love you Daddy’, but also because it is such a beautiful piece of music it wouldn’t have been my wedding without it.

An Ending (Ascent) is one of Dan’s favourites.  He gets goose-bumps when he hears it.  The music is played slowly, only a few notes are used throughout it all giving the track a disjointed sound; it was written for a film about the Apollo 11 mission to the moon, very ethereal.  Again one refrain is repeated over and over, building up slowly and dying away slowly, so the track finishes as quietly as it began. It wouldn’t have been Dan’s wedding without this piece of music.

C’est Le Vent Betty is from Betty Blue, one of my favourite films, the music played throughout matches what is happening on the screen so well.  Even as Betty descends into madness, the music is still beautiful.  I have brought the CD 3 times in total, once in Lincoln with Glenn, once in Eastbourne, once in Winchester.  Each time I have ended up losing it, or it being kept in the separation of CD collections; finally I brought it from iTunes so it is locked inside my computer now.  This always reminds of long walks, hand in hand, with your hair blowing in your face, skin windburnt, but happy.  So happy.

Canon how do I share this with you?  This piece is so well known, but to me it reminds me of two lovely ladies, my Grandmothers.  Without them, I wouldn’t be here, without their patience and guidance I wouldn’t be as a good a cook as I am, I wouldn’t love flowers as I do, I can’t look at a rope swing and not laugh, I can’t blow bubbles and not smile. 

Gabriel’s Oboe this one is for both our Mums.  Dan’s mum died before I could meet her, she lived in Queenscliff for a long time before she passed and so was one of the main reasons we got married there.  For 2½ minutes of music, it sure packs a punch to the heart strings, Mum sits and sways as she listens to it, her eyes closed enjoying it completely.  It gives us both goosebumps.

Down Under when we were choosing the music, we didn’t know what to walk into, we knew we wanted to walk into together as we were Team LG (Ladele-Grant), now we are on the QT, but when I suggested this as a laugh, it got stuck.  As the rest of the list built itself around it, it stayed, and the guffaws we heard walking through to the courtyard were worth it, even if we couldn’t hear the ‘do do doddle do’ at the beginning.  It also mentions Brussels, where we got engaged – awwww.

Hoppípolla from the original mix tape made for me, this was used on the BBC for Planet Earth trailers just as Dan and I got our act together, a series that makes you feel small and insignificant and makes you mad that people who could do something to save the Planet can’t stop arguing long enough to DO something about it.  Although the language is a mixture of Icelandic and whatever sounds fitted the music, it is joyous, makes us smile whenever we hear it and musically is w00t!

Maybe Tomorrow the last song added to the mix, literally a few days before the CDs got delivered.  Featured across the closing credits of Long Way Round this song has so many great lyrics in, but it is the whole package that makes us love it.  Also there is the Ewan McGregor connection, who we both have a bit of a thing for.  We both adore him (in different ways!)
So maybe tomorrow, I’ll find my way home
This was us when we were packing up our lives to leave the UK, and has been us for the past year as we scrambled to get everything organised around real life, jobs, moving house and we’re still wondering what is the last of the boxes in the study.

Heartbeats another one from Dan’s original mix for me.  This was in the advert with the coloured balls bouncing all over San Francisco, it is a gorgeous cover version, and is firmly one of ‘our’ songs.

Overkill this is an Aussie staple, and has been given various incarnations by lots of artists down under, but the Lazlo Bane version is another one of Dan’s favourites, giving him goosebumps and again was on his mix for me.  This is the final verse;
I can’t get to sleep
I think about the implications
Of diving in too deep
And possibly the complications
Especially at night
I worry over situations
I know we’ll be alright
It’s just overkill

God Only Knows finally one of my favourites to finish off.  My salute to Dan: God only knows what I’d be without you.  He met me when I was battle scarred and weary from the end of my first marriage; we met, laughed, haven’t stopped laughing since, he stood by and watched me heal and grow from the bombsite I was into the person I am now.  Encouraging me to be me, helping guide me and make the right choices in my life.  He is truly the best friend I have ever had, I love spending time with him, be it watching films, people watching, in museums and art galleries, having dinner, cooking, pottering about the house.  We just have a great time.  My friends and family would not have let me move away from the UK had it not been for him taking such good care of me, of us.  I am truly blessed to be with him, and I choose to be with him, I don’t have to be with him; there is a whole world of difference. 

So now can you understand why the pair of us were so pi$$ed off the music got stuffed up?  Now, after my spleen has been vented and I am choosing not to listen to the voice in my head any longer re-hashing how frustrated we both were and the rush of adrenaline of anger has worked its way out my system, I will think of it no more

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