All You Need is Love
Hey, our annual love songs poll is on, we’re playing cuts from an album by Bob Dylan, celebrating the release of a Steve Tyrell album featuring songs from the rock and pop world, so why not quote the Beatles in our headline? Songs of love have long been a part of the musical vernacular. There are songs that profess undying love, mourn love lost, and dream of love yet to be fallen into. I’ve learned though, that a song can touch one person’s heart one way, and another person’s another way, perhaps depending on their perspective, or maybe the status of their love life.
One of my favorite Frank Sinatra songs is his version of “In the Wee Small Hours of the Morning.” As the lyrics suggest,
When your lonely heart has learned its lesson,
You’d be hers if only she would call,
In the wee small hours of the morning,
That’s the time you miss her most of all.
So it’s a song about love lost. Or it’s a song about Karen being in Boise, me here in L.A. Or, as it smacked me in the face on my first morning back from Italy, Bailey and her baby, it’s a song about missing, longing, love that’s just not in easy reach. As I played Steve Tyrell’s version of “In the Wee Small Hours,” that first day back from Italy, it was clear that any hour away from a loved one could be a wee small one.
Speaking of Steve Tyrell, one of the songs he’s been performing in his shows of late, inspired by the collection of songs on his new “That Lovin’ Feeling” album is a song rarely performed by men, but with lyrics written by a man and emotions that could easily cross the gender barrier. Carole King wrote the music but then husband Gerry Goffin wrote those lyrics that have become a woman’s anthem. But couldn’t a man just as easily wonder, “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow?”
As his new album came out, his 11th, I asked Steve which of the love songs he has recorded is his favorite.
My favorite love song that I’ve ever recorded is “The Way You Look Tonight”. Not only did it give me a career in performing and enabled me to play for audiences all over the world, but It has taken me to more blessed events, like people’s weddings, than you can ever imagine. My version of this song was played at Chelsea Clinton’s wedding, and most importantly I sang it myself to both of my daughters at their weddings. (Steve Tyrell’s “A New Standard” )
From my new album, which is out today, I especially love “Be My Baby.” It’s a great song for any man to give his valentine. I also enjoy “Chapel of Love,” which features my daughter Lauryn, and was also used in the movie “Father of the Bride.”
I posed that same question to Martini in the Morning artists James Darren, Tony DeSare, Nicole Henry and Carol Welsman.
Carol Welsman: I would say my favorite song that I’ve ever recorded is “A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square.”
It has very special meaning to me because it was one of my dad’s favorite songs, as he was in World War II and actually in London at a certain point and saw how they were bombing and decimating London. He used to say to me with a tear in his eye, “How anyone could write a song this beautiful during the war and turn sparks in to stars, I’ll never know.” I knew I had to record it. It was a one take recording; such a beautiful song with such a romantic message. (Carol Welsman’s “Language of Love” album)
Nicole Henry: One of my favorite love songs I’ve recorded, “Make it Last” is one of my top downloaded songs…but one I’ve probably played in public, maybe 4 times ever. Crazy! It’s so obscure; in fact, I couldn’t even find the songwriters to pay them royalties!
It is a very slow song and it centers around wanting to just love someone and hold someone in this calm flame forever. It’s so understated and passionate, so deep and surreal. You just don’t get that sentiment in songs often enough. (Nicole Henry’s “The Very Thought of You” CD)
James Darren: My favorite song that I recorded, is “A Man and A Woman”, from my “All” album, on Warner Bros. The reason is, I love the movie and hearing the song makes me relive seeing that wonderful film. Plus I think it’s one of my better performances. (James Darren’s “All” CD)
Tony DeSare: “How I Will Say I Love You” would be my favorite of the love songs I’ve recorded. I wrote that song about 10 years ago when I actually knew the marriage I was in wasn’t going to work. The song was very bittersweet for me at the time as it was an expression of how I love is more than saying I love you. Thankfully I got through that one relatively unscathed. (Tony DeSare’s “Want You” CD)