A Beautiful Friendship - Musical Date Night with Ian and Mariah Stewart
The Challenge: Come up with a musical playlist for your dream Date Night. Classical Music Host Bobbie Barajas went with seven hot and sultry pieces, while Hour with the Guitar Host Grete Dollitz went all in with one gorgeous romantic piece. We wondered what Ian Stewart, host of the World Music Show, would come up with. Here's Ian's take on the challenge:
When I was trying to think about what songs I like that constitute a date night or a romantic night in our household, I could only come up with songs that were more about longing or the pains of love. So I enlisted the help of my wife, Mariah. She decided to go with the standard list, while I opted for the opposite (in most cases). Many of my songs are not World Music related either.
My Songs that sound like love or romantic love songs but aren't (in no particular order)*:
- *note: clicking on the album cover takes you to amazon, where you can purchase the featured album or song. Using our link provides a small financial benefit to the station - your cost is the same.
1. I Want You, by Elvis Costello.
A perfect sounding song of desire on its first listening. But the more you listen to it, the more you realize that the narrator is quite obsessed and mad (using the British translation here) about the object of his desires.
2. Temptation, by Elvis Costello.
Yes, I tend to have the whole Elvis catalog in my head. The title should say it but it's about lust and the temptations of other women and of a better life. Can you guess that these two Elvis selections were from my younger life?
3. Girlfriend in a Coma, by The Smiths.
Morrissey's lyrics that at times he could have "strangled" his girlfriend bring back memories of frustrations with past girlfriends--not that I wanted to strangle any of them, but it reminded me of being young and unable to communicate in an adult way--especially during times of break-ups. While part of me wanted them gone, the other part of me couldn't let them go.
4. I Scare Myself, by Thomas Dolby.
This is another song of desperate love, with some of the lyrics saying: "I scare myself just thinking about you,
I scare myself when I'm without you." The melody that surrounds this song is beautiful, though. And it sounds like a complete contradiction, which I love.
5. Love is Stronger than Pride, by Sade.
Ok, I wanted to at least add a couple of songs that I really do think of as romantic, date night music. I used to listen to this song off her CD Stronger than Pride--in fact, the whole CD or in my case, the cassette, was played relentlessly because it set such a great mood.
6. Love Remix, by Mosquitos.
All the songs off of their CD Sunshine Barato, are a great date night selection. They're airy, bouncy and fun to sway to with someone else.
7. Adore, by Prince.
It's a perfect love song about admiration and deep affection. And for Prince, it's slow in the right way and not overly "Prince-ish," in that he has a double message of religion and lust. I got to see him do this live once and it was just amazing.
8. The Summer Wind, by Frank Sinatra.
Ok, one classic on my list. A long time ago, I used to have a second job catering weddings. And believe me when I say I've heard almost every "romantic" song in the book--so much so that they've become cliche and almost grating when I hear them. But not this one. My wife and I have this one pegged as "our song," because it was the first song we ever slow danced too. So for that, it will always be special.
Now, some selections from my wife, Mariah:
1. Better Together, Jack Johnson.
Jack Johnson is a staple in our house...our kids love his music and can pretty much call out a song a few bars into it. Better Together captures my sentiments about our family and always makes me smile.
2. Crash Into Me, Dave Matthews.
Love this song. Listen to the lyrics...
3. Come Away With Me, Norah Jones.
Makes me think of a rainy day, cup of coffee in hand, just enjoying some quiet time with the husband. The reality of life last time I listened to this song? Kids screeching, toys strewn across the living room floor, maybe I did have that cup of coffee in hand, but I'm sure the husband was probably trying to diffuse some issue between the kids. But the song is romantic, right?
4. Girl From Ipanema, sung by Astrud Gilberto (Antonio Carlos Jobim).
One of my all time favorite songs...ever.
5. The Ending, Mosquitos.
Juju's voice is lovely, the song is soothing and sweet...."flowing like a dream, the simple life for me and you..."
What do you think? Do you like Ian's list of painful longing - or Mariah's classic set? What are YOUR favorite songs for a romantic date night?
Ian Stewart is the host of WCVE Public Radio's World Music Show, playing on Saturday Nights at 10 pm. You can listen online at ideastations.org/radio/streaming/hd1. Also follow Ian on twitter: @wcveworldmusic
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