Oak Folk: Our Wedding Mix

So our wedding has come and gone, and everything went marvelously. The dust is starting to settle, and I am slowly descending back down to the real world...I can't wait to get our photos back from our photographer so I can post about the wedding, but until then I figured I'd share a little detail that Corey and I had decided on from the very beginning of our planning process.

I've written here before many times about how elemental music is to our relationship, and to each of us as individual people. Music brought us together, and music is ever present in our daily lives. Our biggest moments all have soundtracks, as well as all of the lovely mundane moments that are the lion's share of our love. When it came down to making a favor to hand out at the reception, a mix cd was the obvious choice. We realized that though we have each made mixes for each other throughout our love, we've never collaborated on a mix. Both Corey and I are extremely satisfied with the product of our working together, as each song is chock full of meaning and we think that even someone who doesn't know the meaning of each song should be able to enjoy this mix as well.

So without further ado, this is our wedding mix entitled Oak Folk: 11-12-11
This is the album jacket I created. :)

Oak Folk by Keri Mezo on Grooveshark

 Go ahead, press play, and enjoy. 
 It's okay. I'll wait. :)

That's nice, right? Let it wash over you, and I'ma break our song selection down for you, Hey Kerianne style. 

 1. Tonight May Have To Last Me All My Life - The Avalanches
This song was a no-brainer to start the cd off with. Corey used this song as an opener for one of the first mix cds that he made when we first got together, when we were first learning who the other was. We drove around the city for hours on end because we had no place to go but couldn't bear to be apart. We loved and laughed with this song as the background. I am instantly transported back to the hot, muggy summer nights that our love sprung from.

2. Squeeze Me - Kraak & Smaak
Corey and I didn't get to spend our first Christmas together, as Lisa had invited Margie and I to spend the vacation in Seattle with her. Since we were going to be apart, Corey made a playlist for me to listen to whenever I missed him. I listened to this mix, and in particular this song, over and over on the trip, from the plane rides into Seattle and our daytrips into Portland, and during the day on Christmas when I got to missing him particularly fierce. This song is infectiously happy, just ecstatic really, and the lyrics are completely true to my feelings for Corey. "You make me feel so nice, when I'm around with you/wake up in the morning and I'll spend my whole life with you..."

3. Maybe So, Maybe No - Mayer Hawthorne
We listened to this song together a lot in 2009, and I have two distinct memories attached. One is when Corey went on our first road trip together to see my best friend Alex, who was living in Atlanta at the time. It turns out that she loves Mayer Hawthorne too, and so she and Corey were able to click instantly upon their first time meeting and we sang this song together at the tops of our lungs. It was extremely important to me that these two meet and love each other as much as I independently love each of them, so this moment is a vividly wonderful one. My second memory is of the day that Corey and I were going to go get our keys to our first apartment together. We were having trouble the entire day, with banks giving us grief over cashing checks and we barely made it to the apartment manager's office in time to get the keys. At one point Corey turned to me and asked if I thought that this was a bad omen, and I started to freak out a little...until this song immediately started playing on my car stereo. We looked at each other and knew that we were meant to move in together, and that everything along the way was just a minor setback. Our moods instantly changed along with our luck, and we got our keys and danced our way into our new apartment (and new life) together.

4. Venus - Air
This song is a relatively new one in terms of holding meaning for the two of us; we spent this past summer gliding along the highway during the evening dusk with this song playing. Corey would drive and I would sit in the passenger seat, playing with his hair or holding his hand or just touching him somehow, anyhow, any way I could just to be in contact with him. The instant soothing feeling I get from being in physical contact with him is a completely addictive thing, a wonder and a marvel to me. I love him so much.

5. Serenade - Blockhead
This song is just a little interlude. Corey and I love Blockhead and this song works as a perfect segue into the next genre. "What's the matter, didn't you guys ever see a pretty girl before?"

6. In A Sentimental Mood - Duke Ellington
I've always loved this song, having grown up in a family with a jazz background. I even learned and played a [simple] version of this on the piano for my freshman piano class at DA. I've just always loved this song. One day, after living together for about a year, I came home to find Corey listening to this song while cooking. I quietly walked into the kitchen, surprised him with a hug from the back, and he and I proceeded to slow dance in our small kitchen for the duration of the song. It was one of those small, beautiful moments where you feel infinite. The kind of moment where you know you'll do anything to keep this love alive so that these moments keep happening. So, so, so in love with this man.

7. Mushaboom - Feist
This song just perfectly encapsulates our life, our love, and our dreams. We have simple dreams, to have cozy little house to raise our babies in, to have a garden that our kids can help us grow food in, to have each other every day together. Beautiful.

8. Dreams (Fleetwood Mac cover) - Morning Benders
This is another addition from our first days as a couple. The first time Corey met Margie, we rode to the pizza parlor on a beautiful drizzly day and this song was playing. The first time Corey slept over at my house (without permission, of course, as I lived with my parents), this song was on the playlist I made. During Easter, and Memorial Day, and Labor day, when I was cleaning and cooking for my family and wishing that I could be with Corey, I was humming this song. 

9. Balcony - Cave Story
This song is from an indie video game, and it's just a short little instrumental but it is so sweet and soft and beautiful. I put this song as an interlude on the first mix cd I ever made for Corey and he had it as his ring tone for me for a long time. I think of the quiet dark nights he and I have had, where his arm is around me and I can feel the stubble on his chin against my temples.   

10. Away With Me - Blue Sky Black Death
"Oh, I will take you away with me, as far as I can...every sky will be blue as long as you love me."
This song was the 4th track on the mix that Corey made me for Christmas of 2010, and we listened to it on the long drive out to Callahan to have Christmas lunch with his (my) family. This song has a chill hip hop beat with dreamy laid back vocals that hit my heart in all of the right spots. Corey always knows which songs I will instantly love, and the fact that he proves daily that he knows me so well gives me reassurance that we'll always be in love. 

11. Stormy Weather - Little Dragon
This song is slow, and simple, and beautiful. Yukimi Nagano (the lead singer for Little Dragon) has a masterful grasp of inflections, with a hint of jazz training in everything she sings. Beyond my love for this song on an objective level, this song means a lot to us personally. We've had slow dances in the kitchen to this song, and late night drive cuddles, and there's one memory in particular that always draws me back to this song. I woke up from a bad dream one night, I think it involved the death of a close family member, and when I woke I was too shaken to fall back asleep. Corey got me a glass of water and stayed with me until I had calmed back down, and then put this song on my ipod when he tucked me back in. I drifted back to sleep, soothed by his love and by this song. "Stormy weather...when it ends, we'll stay warm together..."

12. Something About Us - Daft Punk
I put this song on the first mix I ever made for Corey, and this song also takes us both right back to when we were first getting to know each other. I remember listening to this when we were going downtown for a jazz concert at the Museum of Contemporary Art. Even though we were surrounded by music, everytime I looked over at Corey the first strains of this song would queue up in my brain. This song represents that feeling of knowing there's a spark, but being unsure of where it will lead. The recognition that this person is obviously special, and will obviously play a great part in your life story...but you don't know how deep it will go quite yet. 

13. Groovin' Slowly - John Butler Trio
This is an infectious love song, a love song for two people who have been together for some time and still feel love just as deep as ever. I love John Butler because he is one of the few role models that I have found as a musician who writes passionately about one woman, his one love. Part of the reason that I love this song is that it applies for me and Corey, but it also makes me think of his older brother Geoff and his wife Erin. They share a love like ours, and they are also role models to me and Corey. I like looking at how open Geoff is with his love for Erin and seeing that Corey has clearly taken notes. I love a man who is outspoken about how head over heels they are and I am proud to have both of these men be a part of my life. :) 

14. Blackhearted Love - PJ Harvey & John Parish
I've loved this song since I first heard it a few years ago. I think the reason why I love this song so much is because it features a woman singing about love, but not in the goopy-high school girl Taylor Swift kind of way. The songs speaks of a woman completely smitten, but in a quiet way, that only she and her black-hearted love know about. "Who would suspect me of this rapture?" This song is sultry, and powerful, and speaks of a very adult love.

15. Great Expectations - Elbow
Corey introduced me to this song shortly after he proposed to me. The lyrics of the song could mean a few different things depending on how you interpret them, and I'm aware that it has a possibly sad connotation. All I see though, and all I hear, was Corey bending down to whisper the lyrics "you were the sun in my sunday morning, telling me never to go...I love you, I always will..." into my ear. I know the song has different origins and different meanings for different people (and even from me to Corey it's different) but for me I will always be reminded of Corey singing to me in the afterglow of being newly engaged to my love. 

16. Bitter Apple - Dave Gahan
Ok so Corey has a long standing love for all things Depeche Mode stemming from the days when he would hang in his older bro Kevin's room as a young boy, and as Dave Gahan is the lead vocalist for Depeche Mode it would follow that Corey loves his solo work as well. I had obviously heard of Depeche Mode before but really only knew of their hits, and so I had a pretty superficial knowledge of the band. This song is significant because it is the first Depeche Mode-related song that I absolutely fell in love with, and it is the song that sent me on my own journey through Depeche Mode's back catalog (even though this isn't a Depeche Mode song). Dave Gahan's voice now triggers memories of driving through Georgia with Corey, being goofballs on a day off together. We spent the day wandering around back country highways listening to Depeche Mode. We even drove through a small town called Enigma and we spoke in the form of questions until we exited city limits...teehee. 

17. It Means Nothing - Stereophonics
I have been listening along to each of these songs while I've been writing about them, but there are two songs on this mix that I can't do that with lest I start crying at my desk. This song is the first, and Home (the last track) is the other. Corey and I decided pretty much instantly that this song would be our first dance, as the words hit our hearts every single time and describe our view of each other perfectly. "It means nothing, if I haven't got you." I could live my life without Corey, sure. But for what? Now that I have met him, I can't imagine ever not knowing him. He knows me perfectly, and loves every single quirk I have. We have our own language, and our own view of the world around us, he is as passionately in love with me as I him and he wants to raise a family with me just as much as I do him. He is the only person I have ever known that I never need a break from, and every time I am away from him I miss him...though at the same time, I am calm and at peace just knowing he is somewhere on the same planet as me. He gives meaning to my existence, as all I want to do is show the world the love he inspires in my heart, and all I want to do is show the world that this deep of a love is possible. None of this means anything if I haven't got Corey.

18. Piano Happy - Lone
This track is another instrumental interlude track. I don't know what it is about this song but it makes me see clearly every happy sunset I have ever had with Corey, and every day that I have breathed blissfully since I have known him. This song just hits me, deep, and I could probably write an essay about this little two minute long snippet of a song. *Happy sigh*

19. So Real - Jeff Buckley
This song...this song started out as Corey's song. He confided in me, months and months after we began dating, that he would listen to this song after we first met. He would go home after a night of laughing and flirting with me and listen to this as he lay in bed processing everything that had just transpired. Corey told me this, of course, while we were listening to the song in our apartment together, and I kissed his knuckles and started to tear up. The thought of this beautiful man thinking of me while this beautiful song played struck me as such a perfectly encapsulated moment of time, and now every time I listen to this song I can't help but think of my own feelings from the nights we were learning to know each other.

20. Reprise (A Splash of Debussy) - DJ Food
The final instrumental track of this mix is special because it manages to mix all of the things I love into one beautiful whim of a song. Debussy has been my favorite composer since I was barely in middle school, and as I have grown older there is not much more that I need to make me happy than a jazzy hip hop beat. This song, chosen by Corey, combines both to a wonderful effect. Love it!

21. Home - Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeroes
And here we are. It seemed fitting to end the mix with the song that never fails to bring tears to my eyes. Home, ah home...home is wherever I'm with you! This song is just so joyous, so raucously happy and freespiritedly passionate, it was the perfect choice to walk down the aisle to. I think I knew that I would be a little choky when it came to my vows, and so this song kinda says it all... "man oh man you're my best friend, I sing it to the nothingness, there ain't nothin' that I need!" From the moment the whistling starts, my eyes go a little misty and I just want to run around outside with Corey and climb trees and be with my best friend, I want to ride in the car with him with the windows down and sing the lyrics at the top of my lungs, I want to go to the beach and splash in the waves and I want to travel to new places and pick out furniture for our home together and I want to knit baby clothes and I want to shower my love with kisses, all at once. This song is so powerful to me, this song embodies everything I feel for Corey. Ah home, let me go home! Home, you are me and I am you!