Hey, just a quick post from the Romance-Isn’t-Dead department. As we barrel into Valentine’s weekend, I was reminded recently how simple displays of love can mean so much.
A friend told me about when, this past Saturday night, she and her husband were driving home from a dinner out. “He kept driving around in circles, and I’d ask him what he was doing. He’d say ‘I’m not going to tell you.’ He was playing ‘Moonlight Serenade’ by Frank Sinatra on the stereo over and over.’
“We drove around for 30 minutes before he finally pulled up on this beautiful overlook, dimmed the lights of the truck, came around, and opened my door for me. I didn’t want to get out at first,” she says, but her hubbie convinced her and they danced while the Chairman of the Board crooned. “It made me feel pretty special. All warm and tingly, and like I was the only person in the world that mattered right then to him."
Not that there’s anything wrong with diamonds or expensive dinners out, but it’s hard to beat a simple heartfelt gesture like that, which got me to thinking – a little late this year, I might add – about what the heck it is I’ll do for my Valentine’s. Music and a moment with my wife is hard to beat, so I think I’ll rip a CD of our favorite love songs, plus one or two twisted tunes to keep things from getting too syrupy. And because she’s so sweet, I’ll make my wife (and, OK, me) a dessert this weekend. (I think we’ll fix Brownie Tiramisu.) Maybe we can even make it together listening to a little of the music listed below.
If you’ve got a favorite tune or tunes that’s just right for Valentine’s, let us know. If you’d like to fix a special dessert, SouthernLiving.com has 25 recipes just right for that special someone.
14 Love Songs for the 14th
Love and Happiness: Al Green
Let’s Stay Together: Al Green
My wife and I were raised in Memphis back before Al was a reverend and still ruled the local airwaves. And let me add this –Memphis soul trumps Motown R&B, except in the case of…
Sexual Healing: Marvin Gaye
With all due respect to fellow Memphian Rev. Al and all the other Soulsville serenaders, is there any more romantic a singer than Marvin Gaye?
Walking on the Moon: The Police
Just a wonderful tune about love-induced bliss.
That’s Amore: Dean Martin
Dino’s version probably isn’t the original song of love-induced bliss, but it’s the standard by which all the rest are compared.
Castanets: Alejandro Escovedo
Just like the song goes, “I like her better when she walks away.”
Wild Thing: The Troggs
While this song has become associated with bacchanalian frat throw downs, it’s really a sweet little ditty.
Hate It Here: Wilco
A melancholy tune that explains how OCD tendecies can help numb the pain of lost love. As Jeff Tweedy sings,
“I try to stay busy
I do the dishes, I mow the lawn
I try to keep myself occupied
Even though I know you’re not coming home
I try to keep the house nice and neat
I make my bed, I change the sheets
I even learned how to use the washing machine
But keeping things clean doesn’t change anything”
I Got You Babe: Sonny and Cher
She’s No Lady: Lyle Lovett
Lovett sings, “She’s no lady, she’s my wife.” ‘Nuf said, part II.
Ain’t No Sunshine: Bill Withers
“And she’s always gone too long anytime she goes away.” True that.
When It’s Good: Ben Harper
An ode to reckless, reckless love.
Wicked Game: Chris Isaak
My wife and I can’t help ourselves – every time we hear Isaak’s signature soulful moan, we’re compelled, ala Beavis and Butthead, to mimic it. We’re goobers, but at least we’re goobers together.
When My Baby’s Beside Me: Big Star
Just as I began this list with Memphis music, I’ll end with it and on a powerfully positive note from the original power pop band — all things are possible through love. Whether that’s changing the world through warmth and amour, or just making someone feel like she’s the most important person on the planet.