So Why a Living Room?

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

The Wedding Song...

I had a shirt in college that said:

"Music is life. The rest is just details."

Wouldn't it be great if that were still true?

Maybe I should have a shirt that says:

"Cleaning up messes is life. The rest is just details."

Ah, but there is so much joy associated with all those messes. And all that laundry. And those dishes. And potty training. :) My cute kiddos are worth all the work.  But life now is definitely different than those college days where I spent every waking hour either practicing, performing, being taught, being in class, or doing homework related to music. 

Anyway, amidst the craziness of traveling with two small children over Thanksgiving, (!!!) there were some musical adventures along the way, so I thought I would share one of them.

My brother, Zach, got married in San Diego last Saturday, and oh what a beautiful day. What a radiant couple. What a sublime experience in the temple where they were sealed together for time and all eternity. What fun to remember our wedding day and think about the things that are different and the things that are still the same. My husband and I sang a few different numbers at our reception, and my brother and sister also sang a song that Zach wrote, called "Don't Dream Too Small." Zach had interviewed Kyle before the wedding to get some good fodder for writing a song for us, and Kyle shared that our relationship was even more than he had hoped for, and said "I dreamed too small."

So in Zach's song, in the first chorus, about Kyle he says:

"I dreamed too small,
I'd have taken mountaintops 'stead of shooting for the stars
I was building my own world, and that's when boy met girl
And changed it all
I never knew till I met you,
I dreamed too small"

the 2nd chorus is about Zach realizing that he had been dreaming too small too, until seeing the two of us together,

"I dreamed too small
I was thinking mountaintops 'stead of shooting for the stars
Now I wanna build my world so that when boys meets girl
I'll be ready for it all
I never knew till the two of you
I dreamed too small."

And then the final chorus, his wedding day message to us:

"Promise me you won't dream small,
Don't stay on mountaintops when you were born for stars
They say, you're just one boy, one girl
Who cares? Go change the world!
Go on, change it all!
You start building it today,
so don't dream too small."

What a great song.  That was a neat gift to us.  So of course, as Zach's wedding approached, I wanted to write a song for HIM--but as I remembered back to that song, I realized that I wanted to say the same thing to him about shooting for the stars, as well as follow up on some of the funny things in the verses about him wondering who would sing at HIS reception and things like thatSo I ended up taking his original song, and changing some of the words so that it fit exactly for him, and then my sister and I sang it at the family wedding dinner the day before he got married.  We wanted it to be a surprise, so we didn't want to ask him for a chord chart or anything, and we didn't have any kind of a recording of it--just the words from my wedding album--so it turned into kind of a fun creative project to see how much of it I could remember (from my wedding day!) and then make up the rest however I wanted to.  It turned into "Variations on a Theme of Don't Dream Too Small."  Then, when I realized that once my sister and I met up in California we wouldn't have access to a piano until the night of the dinner, I recorded the song into my iphone as a voice memo so we could practice with it in the hotel and teach her the changes, get her ideas, and figure out harmony and stuff.  We ended up singing it for the first time together, with a piano, as the real thing. Ha!  But it was perfect.  And in the language of love called songwriting that Zach speaks so well, the gift was given and received.  I love the way music can say so much!

So someday we need to record both versions so we can have them forever and share them!
Someday.  Meanwhile, I need to unpack!