I have 19 hours worth of music to give the DJ at my wedding. 19. And there is still music I am dying to add. All those Beatles songs I love. All that Tom Petty. All that Pearl Jam. Ugh, it breaks my heart to not include specific songs. I know we’ll never be able to play it all, but in my head I am hearing every song on that list, and not only am I hearing it, I am dancing to it, too. Yes, that’s right, 19 hours worth of me on a dance floor in a white dress for maybe a six-hour wedding. It’s crazy how many songs I feel an attachment to, how connected they make me feel to something or someone or somewhere from so long ago. How can I not play the Shins’ Chutes Too Narrow album? That’s me driving around in my first car, a plum-colored Honda Civic, going the speed limit on Amherst back roads. How can I not play any Drifters? That’s me half-asleep in the backseat of my parents’ car driving up to the Buffalo Colony late, late at night. How can I not play any Dirty Dancing songs? That’s me singing into a hairbrush with my eyes closed. How can I not play Shimmy Shimmy Ya by Ol’ Dirty Bastard? That’s summertime, skipping two to three steps to jump off porches. How can I not play Least Complicated by the Indigo Girls? I sang it when I had no one to sing it about. The camp songs (You Ain’t Goin’ Nowhere), the high on drugs songs (White Rabbit), the bar&bat-mitzvah era songs (Another Night), the serious relationship breakup songs (One), the running songs (I Got it From My Mama). Every song you know tells a story about something that’s completely unrelated to that song. Better Man is about a kid in the 8th grade singing it to me over the phone. Sounds of Silence is about working to perfect a harmony with an old friend. Shoop is about sex. Obviously.
These are all songs I will love ‘til death do we part. At least one good thing about music (aside from it hitting you and feeling no pain) is that it’s not going anywhere. If I get through even five hours worth of music at this wedding, I’ll be happy. I can listen to the rest of it for the rest of my life.