Wednesday, March 18, 2009

A long post about dancing. Or music. Or memory. Or, something.

IC and I were friends, best friends, for many years before we decided "oh yeah, I love you, let's get married!" Yeah, one of those.

A lot of moments from our platonic past now take on new meaning. Take the first time we met, almost 12 years ago now. Both of us remember it pretty clearly. It was at a bar in the East Village called Opaline. My friend Frank had brought his college friend IC out with our little Brooklyn group. IC was pretty shy but he and I took to each other right away and by the end of the night he had his arm casually draped around me. We both remember one of our first conversations:

Me: So, what kind of music do you listen to?
Him (with a look that implied he was unaware there was any other kind of music): Hip-hop.

I hated hip-hop at the time. Not *hated* actually, more like revolted against. I grew up in Brooklyn, hip-hop was everywhere. I didn't listen to hip-hop but still knew more about it than most people who lived outside of Brooklyn and were casual listeners of it. There was no other option. Hot 97 was the only station anyone ever listened to. On long road trips with friends, I'd negotiate for a different station, or for time for my alternative cds. I never won those battles.

I would fall completely in love with hip-hop years later, while everyone around me was listening to indie rock. Maybe I just like to rebel.

Anyway, back to IC and me. We have lots of songs that we associate with our relationship. Some good ("Homecoming" by Kanye, "Lovestoned" by Justin) some embarrassingly bad ("Do you" by Ne-Yo, "Make me better" by Fabolous), none that would work for our first dance.

One morning, early in our relationship, IC texted me "I don't wanna let you go, with you I'm in no hurry", a line from a Buju Banton song and since then we've considered "Love sponge" to be "our" song. Ever seen two white people (Jews, no less!) get down to a reggae song as their first dance? Neither have we, and we don't want to subject our friends and family to us being the first.

But I love the lyrics to the song. "Slow motion is the way for us to enjoy the day...", "never know you woulda really feel so nice" and, of course, the one IC sent me that day. So I did what any crazy person would do, put an ad on Craigslist for someone to rerecord the song for us. I offered $100 because IC refused to budget anything more for this ("we can just pick a different song!"). And I got zero responses. What recession?

I have musician friends but the one I'm closest to, my awesome, creative friend Jessica, is already playing the violin for us as we walk down the aisle and I didn't feel right asking any more musical favors.

I then got some recommendations from a musician friend of mine and it looks like his sister will record the song for us. She's got a great voice and is very talented.

But the song will only be ready about 4 days before we leave for the wedding. IC is the type that needs a back-up song, just in case ours doesn't work out.

If there was one thing I never, ever thought we'd bicker about in terms of the wedding, I was sure it would be the music. The guy who only likes hip-hop and only has about 10 cds surely isn't going to put his foot down in terms of songs, right? WRONG.

It seems I have expanded IC's musical world. He can now identify many non-hip-hop songs and artists, though he still occasionally confuses Nick Cave with Leonard Cohen and can never seem to call Tom Petty despite having randomly attended his concert many years ago ("I went for the tailgating"). A few months ago, I sent him a link to a Leonard Cohen video. I obsessively love Leonard Cohen. I have, more than once in my life, got the comment "enough with the Leonard Cohen already." IC fell passionately in love with the song. I said that I love it too and we put it on the list to be played as our last song.

But now IC wants it as our first song. And I just don't. I love the song, love the man, just envisioned something a little different for our first dance. Something more like this:

"Too edgy," says IC who, strangely, actually likes Magnetic Fields (he has a real appreciation, as I do, for the songs Underwear and Luckiest Guy on the Lower East Side). "I don't want our first dance to be edgy." I've taken to singing it around the house "but IIIIIIIIIII, I love it when you read to me and youuuuuuuuuuuu, you can read me anything." It's not working. "Why can't you just let me have this?" says the guy who never pressures me to do anything. "Because I don't want toooooooooooooo" says the girl who could care less about flowers and colors and ribbons on the backs of chairs but has over 1,000 cds and cares deeply, deeply about music. I had other suggestions, "Ship Song" and "Into My Arms" by Nick Cave. "I don't really like those, what about that duet song he does?" IC said. "'Where the wild roses grow' with Kylie Minogue?" "Yeah." "He kills the girl in that song." "Oh."

So I don't know. Do I just give in to this? Again, I love the song he wants, I do. I just wanted something different. I would give in on almost anything else. Is this compromise in relationships that people keep telling me about?


  1. OK, I just want to say that you have selected some of my favoritest songs. I have never pictured dresses or flowers but I have always thought about music at my one day wedding. And Book of Love and Into My Arms are on the short list.

    Also? Are you doing a father daughter dance? I've got a list of goodies for that one, starting with Loudon Wainright III's Daughter in the Water.

  2. The Book Of Love has been covered by a few people now -Peter Gabriel, and this one by Tracy Thorn, both sound more traditonally love songy than the MF (excellent) version
    Just a thought, if you wanted to include the song at some point regardless :-)
    You gotta admit the wedding rings line is apt!

    - Steff

  3. Making a planner for wedding is most important part of any marriage. It should comprise of all the things necessary in wedding. Nowadays couple and families can consult with marriage counselors to take advice about all necessitates needed in wedding. You don't have to rub your mind it will save your time and give you the complete list items.

  4. I went to a wedding that had the MF version playing as the bridal party assembled at the altar. It was awesome.