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Help me find the ultimate montage music!
August 20, 2008 1:01 PM   Subscribe

I am editing together a "best of" wedding montage for a friend's anniversary. Give me a piece of music that speaks of beauty, love triumphant, joy and happiness, with a good measure of mysticism, mystery, or, uh, ethereal-ness (?). Bonus points if we can make 'em cry...

Buddy of mine's anniversary is in mid-Sept. I am in possession of the original wedding tapes and would like to suprise them with a montage (maybe more than one) of the highlights of their wedding.

I want to do something personal for them, but this is a suprise, so asking them about their musical tastes is right out, as it'll ruin any suprise. I think a beautiful piece of music and the footage from their wedding (which they have not yet seen) will really blow them away.

I am leaning towards instrumental music, or music with vocalization (i.e. Enya) in another language. If you have something spectacular with great lyrics, I'm all for it, though. The current odds-on favorite is from the Gladiator sountrack - "Now We Are Free" by Lisa Gerrard. Ten points to you if you can find something better!

Things to avoid:
1) Anything cheezy. Like pornography, "cheezy" is hard to define, but I think we all know it when we see it.

2) Anything overused. "Unforgettable" and "What a Wonderful World" are both amazing songs, but WAY too popular. I want something that makes my friends feel special. I'd love it if after they see it they say "Where did you GET THAT MUSIC?!?"

3) Anything TOO out there. "Cold Hard Bitch" by Jet or "Elvira" by the Oak Ridge Boys might be hysterical choices for some of YOUR friends, but not these two. It's not really the moment for a novelty or "joke" song. I'm trying to avoid the posts that say, "Dude, wouldn't it be AWESOME if..." No. No, my friend. I'm afraid it wouldn't....

Ok, having said all that, let's hear 'em!! Was there anything created for you that used a piece of music you just loved, and couldn't get out of your head? Bring it on!
posted by Spyder's Game to Media & Arts (50 answers total) 14 users marked this as a favorite
 
How about "Chances Are" By Bob Seger and Martina McBride? I'm so sorry if that falls under cheezy, but I love that song. It's beautiful!!
posted by Sassyfras at 1:07 PM on August 20, 2008


This is my boyfriend's and my song, so I'm partial to it. Might not be exactly the tone you're going for, but it has the cutest lyrics.

The Postal Service - Brand New Colony

Sample lyrics:
I'll be the waterwings that save you if you start drowning
In an open tab when your judgement's on the brink
I'll be the phonograph that plays your favorite
Albums back as your lying there drifting off to sleep...
posted by wuzandfuzz at 1:17 PM on August 20, 2008


Explosions in the sky - look into the air. EinS makes music that will makes *anything* seem historic.
posted by notsnot at 1:22 PM on August 20, 2008


Some of the music from the LOTR soundtracks would be appropriately beautiful and stirring.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 1:26 PM on August 20, 2008 [1 favorite]


Baba Yetu - it's in (ki)Swahili, is really beautiful/uplifting with some nice instrumentals and I don't think well known.
posted by Solon and Thanks at 1:27 PM on August 20, 2008


a few off the top of my head, but I'll be able to find more when I can look at my music library at home:

Van Morrison, "Tupelo Honey"
The Style Council, "You're the Best Thing"
posted by scody at 1:37 PM on August 20, 2008


Expanding on Solon's thought, can you find music sung in the language of one of the couple's ethnicities? I'm sure you can google "love songs hungarian" and come up with something good that they have never heard before but is somewhat personal to them.
posted by desjardins at 1:38 PM on August 20, 2008


Seconding Tupelo Honey. More by Van Morrison:

Have I Told You Lately That I Love You

Crazy Love

Someone Like You

It Must Be You
posted by marsha56 at 1:44 PM on August 20, 2008


@desjardins - LOL! I'll google to see if I can find some Swedish/Nordic/English love songs! That would have been much easier had they been Indian, African, or something more exotic. Unfortunately, there's just not a lot of range in the "white" ethnic section...

To all - still looking up your choices - good stuff! Please keep 'em coming!
posted by Spyder's Game at 1:45 PM on August 20, 2008


Not really what you've described, but my favorite love song is I'll Still Be Loving You by Restless Heart. Possibly cheesy, I guess, but it gets me choked up almost everytime I listen to it.

The chorus goes:
I'll be yours until the sun doesn't shine,
'til time stands still,
until the winds don't blow.
When today is just a memory to me,
I know I'll still be lovin', I'll still be lovin' you.

This sounds like a lovely gift. Good luck choosing a song!
posted by ashirys at 1:47 PM on August 20, 2008


I love Pavanne from the movie Orlando and used it at my wedding. It's a regal piece of music that was historically used for weddings or processions with lords and ladies. It's pretty spare though--drum and strings--perhaps not the direction you're headed in but I'll throw it in here because it's so beautiful and seems appropriate.
posted by cocoagirl at 1:47 PM on August 20, 2008 [1 favorite]


Well, Cavatina by Stanley Myers is a great one. The John Williams version from the Deerhunter soundtrack is my favorite.
posted by stubby phillips at 1:53 PM on August 20, 2008


True Love Will Find You In the End by Daniel Johnston.
posted by Ironmouth at 1:57 PM on August 20, 2008


Enya usually makes me cringe, but I have to admit her music often is quite effective with photo montages.

The soundtrack from Mission has some beautiful instrumental music (by Ennio Morricone). A slightly different arrangement played by Yo Yo Ma is also a nice variation.

There's also the Flower Duet from Lakme (which still always makes me think of the British Airways commercial).
posted by Kabanos at 2:00 PM on August 20, 2008 [1 favorite]


Ivo by Cocteau Twins?
posted by PTCHFRKR at 2:04 PM on August 20, 2008


The version of "Blue Skies" performed by Willie Nelson always tugs at my heartstrings a bit, it's goddamn beautiful.
posted by i_am_a_Jedi at 2:06 PM on August 20, 2008


Couple of suggestions:

1. For a more lighthearted but romantic instrumental, there's Hang on Little Tomato by Pink Martini

2. A longer piece (8+min) but definitely anthemic, also instrumental - Reimi by Kitaro (from the Kojiki album; you can hear an excerpt on Amazon or iTunes)
posted by twiki at 2:18 PM on August 20, 2008


You're More than A Lover by Tim McGraw

Oooh and the score from Memoirs of a Geisha. It is absolutely gorgeous and moving, composed by John Williams, feat. YoYo Ma. Here is a youtube link with the particular music I'm thinking of.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FoYFEO2ZU6k&feature=related
posted by diablo37 at 2:24 PM on August 20, 2008


I dunno about "ultimate" but Sarah Mclachlan's "Ice Cream" fits at least some of your points. I think it's beautiful & happy but may be brushing up towards cheesy depending on your taste.
posted by GuyZero at 2:29 PM on August 20, 2008


Can't believe nobody's suggested Sigur Ros yet. The older songs may be a little too down, but the latest stuff would work well. Sigur Ros in action for marriage related video.

Explosions in the Sky is also a really good suggestion based on your criteria.

If it was me I'd use LCD Soundsystem's All My Friends. But I'm strange and awkward like that.
posted by dogwalker at 2:29 PM on August 20, 2008


Jupiter, the Bringer of Jollity.
posted by WidgetAlley at 2:32 PM on August 20, 2008 [1 favorite]


Make sure you listen to it all the way through; the first few minutes are sort of frivolous but it gets so beautiful and stately and there is a gorgeous Celtic melody in there too.
posted by WidgetAlley at 2:32 PM on August 20, 2008


Oh man, Sigur Ros. I specifically recommend Svefn-g-englar, although probably much of their music would be perfect.
posted by otolith at 2:37 PM on August 20, 2008


Les Witches, Stingo (from Mr Playford's English Dancing Master).

Tallis Scholars, Ave Maria for Double Choir (track #2 on this recording).

They might be a little too ethereal, particularly the Ave Maria, but they're both uplifting and preternaturally beautiful.
posted by orrnyereg at 2:40 PM on August 20, 2008


I think Iron & Wine has the most beautiful love songs (and they tend toward the ethereal side), but they're kind of all about death. I happen to think that makes them even more beautiful (and tear-inducing), but perhaps it's not the right message for a wedding video. I'll put 'em out there anyway...

Naked As We Came
Each Coming Night (I have... no idea what is going on with that video)
Passing Afternoon (this might not be a love song -- inscrutable lyrics -- but it's beautiful anyway. As long as they don't watch House, because this played during a death scene.)

And of course their cover of The Postal Service's Such Great Heights, which gained fame on the Garden State soundtrack.

Other suggestions (these all have lyrics in English, so they don't quite fit your instrumental-or-non-English specification):

Regina Spektor - Samson (if you don't mind really weird lyrics)

Joshua Radin - The Fear You Won't Fall (um, the only version I could find on Youtube was a Grey's Anatomy montage... perhaps that's not a good sign)

The oldie: Jim Croce - Time in a Bottle

And the verging-on-cheesy option: Norah Jones's cover of The Nearness of You (or pretty much anything by Norah Jones)

None of these are really obscure, but I don't think they're overused either.
posted by pluckemin at 2:43 PM on August 20, 2008


Coney Island by Van Morrison is pretty cool.
posted by sully75 at 2:46 PM on August 20, 2008


Oooh, or Allison Krause & Union Station, "When You Say Nothing at All." It's country, though, if that bothers you.
posted by orrnyereg at 2:48 PM on August 20, 2008


Jane Siberry - Sail Across the Water
posted by philosophygeek at 2:57 PM on August 20, 2008


When Water Comes to Life by Cloud Cult. If that's too popular, check out all their songs cause they're the best band ever this year so far right now.
posted by theiconoclast31 at 3:14 PM on August 20, 2008


ooh ooh even more perfect by them is Chemicals Collide [warning:mp3 link!]
posted by theiconoclast31 at 3:16 PM on August 20, 2008


Knights of Cydonia by Muse has all of those.
posted by demon666 at 3:18 PM on August 20, 2008


Here is a nice version of Cavatina. Definitely a tear-jerker.
posted by stubby phillips at 3:23 PM on August 20, 2008


For a piece of music that speaks of beauty, love triumphant, joy and happiness, with a good measure of mysticism, mystery, or, uh, ethereal-ness that means something to the celebrating couple, why not go back in time and re-hash the songs that were played at their wedding? What was their first dance? The Bride Father/Groom Mother dances?

If any of them have anything to do with winds beneath wings, please ignore the above.
posted by Nick Verstayne at 3:24 PM on August 20, 2008


Here is a version by the man himself.
posted by stubby phillips at 3:28 PM on August 20, 2008


That should look more like Bride-Father/Groom-Mother.

Still, wind beneath anybody's wings is out.
posted by Nick Verstayne at 3:28 PM on August 20, 2008


If you haven't heard Israel Kamakawiwo'ole's version of Wonderful World/Over the Rainbow, that's something to consider. It's been used in a few movies but nothing like the original What a Wonderful World.
posted by clerestory at 6:42 PM on August 20, 2008


From a guy who does stuff like this at work, some thing discreet classical or their first dance song.
posted by DJWeezy at 6:50 PM on August 20, 2008


All is Full of Love by Bjork.
posted by MythMaker at 7:49 PM on August 20, 2008


Pete Yorn - A Girl Like You is incredible simple but so sweet.
posted by ALongDecember at 8:07 PM on August 20, 2008


Dustin O'Halloran - Prelude 2 is a beautiful score, one of my favorites.

Maksim - Somewhere in time is a version of Rhapsody on a theme of Paganine by Rachmaninoff.
posted by JujuB at 8:13 PM on August 20, 2008 [1 favorite]


It's hard to go wrong with Stevie Wonder. "Knocks Me Off My Feet" or "As" are good choices.
posted by edverb at 8:50 PM on August 20, 2008


Definitely check out Clint Mansell's score to The Fountain - Death is the Road to Awe, or perhaps Together We Will Live Forever, for something a little more subdued.
posted by nicolas léonard sadi carnot at 10:05 PM on August 20, 2008


I think you're looking for The Book of Love by the Magnetic Fields.
posted by ludwig_van at 10:50 PM on August 20, 2008


Amadou and Mariam Je pense à toi
Yo La Tengo The Whole of the Law
posted by citron at 11:46 PM on August 20, 2008


Close Your Eyes, the Buffy/Angel 'love theme' by Cristophe Beck (forgive the youtube cheese) is a pretty good, emotionally charged piece. It's short, but good, you could pair it with something easily.

Elvis Costello's 'Il Sogno', the score for a ballet based on 'A Midsummer's Night's Dream' has some beautiful pieces in it, but I wouldn;t want to pick out one individual for you, check out 'The Face of Bottom', or even 'The Wedding'.

And if you need something for reception and other less formal highlights, Mike Doughty's 'I Hear the Bells' always makes me feel like love's bubbling up.
posted by pupdog at 4:29 AM on August 21, 2008


"True Companion" by Marc Cohn is exactly this sort of thing: paino and voice with lyrics that retell the course of a relationship. It's like it was written to be Wedding Video Bait.
posted by wenestvedt at 6:33 AM on August 21, 2008 [1 favorite]


I quite like Praan, which is the song from this.
posted by triggerfinger at 10:47 AM on August 21, 2008


Oooh, I forgot about The Ludlows from Legends of the Fall, which is a gorgeous instrumental.
posted by triggerfinger at 10:58 AM on August 21, 2008


I have the answer. Really: an awesome choice is I Love NYE, by Badly Drawn Boy. (All the YouTubiness with the song has it edited in weird ways for length - the true length is about 3:21.)

Uncheesy, delicate but deep instrumentation, very magical, opens up into a great moment a little more than halfway through. The beginning's even perfect for some sort of brief title sequence.

Only possible lameness is that it was used in some Starbucks ads, apparently.
posted by lauranesson at 11:17 AM on August 21, 2008


The Luckiest -- Ben Folds really beautiful, simple, and heartfelt.
posted by tcskeptic at 7:16 PM on August 23, 2008


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