I’m not often the soppy sort. I don’t often put kisses on the end of text messages, and I don’t often as much as sniffle at an on-screen break-up.
I don’t remember ever sitting at a candlelit table, adorned with rose petals and accompanied by a tall glass of fizz, staring into the eyes of my dearest. In fact, the last Valentine’s I remember being any different to the others, I had just finished with a boyfriend. He’d planned the most horrendous evening for us, and those plans had solidified my belief that we were too different, not made to fit together.
It is not that I am a bitter spinster. It is not that I do not enjoy romance. It’s simply not really my thing. Besides, the Six Nations are on, so I’ll probably be spending the weekend working the day around that event instead.
That said, I do have some favourite love songs. The song which reminds you of that wonderful feeling of being in love. That song which brings joy to your heart at a happy memory shared with a special person. Even that song which tears your soul to pieces, remembering the love that once was but is no longer. So, I’ve decided to share with you a little Valentines playlist – songs somewhat based on the theme of love.
Wales, and more importantly, the Welsh voice has always been one of my great loves. Moving East was a difficult decision to make simply because I would lose that tie to the country, casting more and more miles between us. But, though my accent lacks any of the Welsh melody, I will always hold a place there in my heart. And so my first two selections come from the valleys.
There are two slow songs which will always get me on the dancefloor, swaying with anyone who I can drag up with me. One is “The Slipper Song” by Hull-band Streaming Lights. And the other – more widely played at discos – is “Autumn Leaves” by the legendary Tom Jones.
In his words: Boot-i-ful!
And next on the Welsh Love Section is Toy Horses with “Love At An Arm’s Length”. Just a lovely song, exploring the concept of love; perhaps even the most lovely break-up song, if you choose to read into that element of the lyrics. I can safely say that I do tend to keep love – not just romantic love – at an arm’s length. I make friends easily, but I have a choice selection of true best friends. I could name them only needing to raise one arm. And so this song reflects that aspect of me. I welcome people into my world, but rarely into my embrace.
Next, is a song about lust. I love Meat Loaf, and I do just love this song. The lyrics are pretty simple really, using the style of a baseball commentary for the naughty section where the guy tries to get his end in. But that’s what lust is: a simple explosion of hormones. I guess love isn’t much different: a surge of emotions triggered by a chemical reaction. So, this song is certainly suitable for a Valentine’s playlist.
I’ve fallen a little bit in love with Frankie & The Heartstrings. Having known a few of their songs, it wasn’t until I saw them live just over a week ago at Adelphi that I took that last leap into pure adoration. “Tender” has those lovely – well – tender moments, as well as fun upbeat sections where you can bounce around and be a bit silly. This is what love means to me – someone who can share those low ebbing emotions with you as well as those ecstatic moments of chaos and excitement. Love is someone who will be there for you when you’re feeling utterly rubbish as well as when everything is sunshine and roses.
And so I shall come to an end with a song which simply holds the emotions of love and joy in every chord, every syllable. I don’t have a Mr Right, or even a Mr Right Now. But I do have a soulmate in my best friend. And we have a song which shall always and forever be our song. Fall Out Boy‘s “This Ain’t A Scene, It’s An Arms Race”… or is that “Arse Face”…
I don’t think we ever sing the actual lyrics anymore.
So, not a conventional Valentine’s playlist, but one which is every shade of love.
And not even the tiniest shade of grey.