By Sarah McMullan
There are few things in life as perplexing as Valentine’s Day. The inexplicable closeness and incontestable feelings of love you share with your partner are all relinquished come February 14.
Is this card the right balance of comedy and sentiment? If I get my boyfriend a card that says ‘I like your tits’, does that merit a dumpable offence? Both of these dilemmas circled in my head as I undertook this painstaking procedure for another year. However, as I glanced through the salutations that exclaimed such ingenious sentiments as ‘Have a wank, you deserve it…Happy Valentine’s Day’, I couldn’t help but laugh. And, more importantly, wonder: Has love changed, or have we?
An area I harbour no such doubts is music. Where love exists music persists: the love of writing music, the love of listening to it, the experience of love driving us to do both. Music speaks to the nonsensical part of us, the subconscious, where love and all other incomprehensible feelings thrive without constraint.
Urging us to embrace our inner hippie and downright FEEL THE LOVE TONIGHT is the Wickerman Festival, who have acquired a reputation for romance. At last year’s event they hosted a wedding on site which was featured on BBC3’s Don’t Tell The Bride and there was also a (separate) marriage proposal via fly-by plane.
Wickerman, the lothario of ticketed outdoor fun, has launched a novel new initiative by offering* 12 music-loving romantics the opportunity to propose to their partners this July… in a yurt. Not any old yurt, though. The (ahem) Wicker Love Lounge will be decorated with a handcrafted kneeling stool to help gentlemen – or women – seal the deal as well as champagne, flowers, photographs and the couple’s signature song.
So it would appear that romance isn’t dead; in fact it is very much alive in the fields of Dumfries and Galloway. Those lewd messages that have become more common in Valentine’s cards are merely the adult equivalent of hitting the person you like in the playground.
I have decided to reverse this vicious cycle and instead attempt to inspire the rare feeling of a bold and honest love without the quintessential British need for coyness or crudity. I’ve gathered some of the best love songs of all time (my iTunes), their teaming of lyrics and melody the perfect partnership, and not a mention of tits or wanking to be found.
The new kind:
Few things compare to the first fleeting moments of romance and we possess fewer words to describe them. These songs perfectly illustrate the overwhelming happiness that escorts infatuation. Their melody banishing the boring and focusing on the intoxicating – we are left undoubtedly love drunk. And like the best nights out we’re not entirely sure how it happened.
The Maccabees – First LoveFirst Love
Edward Sharpe And The Magnetic Zeros – HomeHome
First Aid Kit – EmmylouEmmylou
The effortless kind:
My appreciation for such is usually inspired by a Sunday morning hangover on the way to work. On these mornings nothing sounds more appealing than being granted the time to be lazy in the company of your other half. Monster Munch for breakfast and re-runs of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition are the things of dreams. These songs expertly depict the carefree attitude that accompanies the beauty of the banal.
The Beatles – Two Of UsTwo Of Us
Louis Armstrong – We Have All The Time In The WorldWe Have All The Time In The World
The unconditional kind:
Not much in 2013 has been left untouched by terms and conditions but love might just scrape through. Any definition I’ve tried to assign to unconditional love seems lacking, completely inferior, even when laced with words such as selfless and limitless – perhaps because I’m not granted the fortune of melody. I’ll let Nick Cave do the talking.
Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds – Into My ArmsInto My Arms
*Wannabe proposees should email email@example.com with 100 words on how they met their partner and why they want to propose at the Wickerman Festival before April 14, with successful entrants being notified by April 30.