Song of the Week – Lord Huron/Lumineers Cover

This month on the MTRC we are covering the topic of Covers. Becky gave some great examples of different ways to Cover a song in her post last week. This week, I’m going to share a recent experience of mine with recreating a song for a specific goal.

My philosophy is that being a Music Therapist is a lifestyle, not just a job title. My training and credentials give me the tools I need to follow my natural instincts in daily life situations. I fill many roles in my life and my goals is that Music Therapist will transcend all of them.

A few months back, one of my sisters asked me to play the music for her wedding. On further discussion, we decided that live music may not be the best plan for an outdoor wedding in Ohio at the end of October (we were right, it was very cold). So we discussed themes and made playlists. But I still wanted to provide live music in some capacity, so I offered to play/sing their first dance together at the reception. And of course, I could not just play their song and let that be the end of it. I wanted to be apart of facilitating a beautiful moment that was unique to their relationship and their journey together (because, come on, I’m a Music Therapist). In order to achieve the goal, I utilized songwriting strategies I have learned in my clinical training and research. I’m going to break this down into steps and include the end result at the bottom.

  1. Client Preferred Music – the first step was to discuss particular songs that are special to the Bride:
    1. Hey Ho by the Lumineers – this has been the couple’s special song because it was very popular when they first started dating
    2. Love Like Ghosts by Lord Huron – this is a current favorite song of the Bride, but the lyrics are not all positive, so she reluctantly admitted it may not be the best for their wedding.
    3. Out Loud by Dispatch – this song holds nostalgic value for the Bride, being one of her first favorite love songs when she was a teenager, still dreaming of meeting that special someone.
  2. Songwriting – I decided to use the Bride’s current favorite song as a base because it would best depict her life now. Furthermore, since I am very familiar with the couple’s relationship and the journey they have been through to get here, I felt that some of the lyrics in this song could be slightly altered to best represent them.

In order to solidify the couple’s relationship to this new wedding song, I added the refrain of Hey Ho towards the end and changed the key to ensure a smooth melodic transition.

  1. Instrumentation – This is where I incorporated aspects of the last song on the Bride’s list (Out Loud). I mimicked the timbre of that song by using acoustic guitar picking and strumming throughout. 
  2. The End Result –

Here are the lyrics of the original song, Love Like Ghosts:

img_0830Yes I know that love is like ghosts
Oh, few have seen it, but everybody talks
Spirits follow everywhere I go
Oh they sing all day and they haunt me in the night

Yes I know that love is like ghosts
Oh, and what ain’t living can never really die
You don’t want me baby please don’t lie
Oh but if you’re leaving, I gotta know why
Oh I sing all day and I love you through the night

Yes I know that love is like ghosts
Oh and the moonlight baby shows you whats real
There ain’t a language for the things I feel
And if I can’t have you then no one ever will

I don’t feel it till it hurts sometimes
Oh go on baby, hurt me tonight
I want ours to be an endless song
Baby in my eyes you do no wrong

I don’t feel it till it hurts sometimes
So go on baby hurt me tonight
All the spirits that I know I saw
Do you see no ghost in me at all
Oh I sing all day and I love you through the night

And here is how I changed the lyrics, including the refrain of Hey Ho

img_0831Yes I know that love is like ghosts,
Few have seen it but everybody talks
Spirits follow everywhere I go
They sing all day and they
Haunt me through the night

Yes I know that love is like ghosts
What ain’t living can never really die
If you want me baby meet my eyes
When we’re leaving
Our ghosts align

Yes I know that love is like ghosts
But in the moonlight baby it shows you what’s real
There ain’t a language for the things I feel
Now I have you like No one ever will

Waiting baby it hurts sometimes
Oh come on stay with me tonight
I want ours to be an endless song
Oh in my eyes you do no wrong

I belong with you, you belong with me
You’re my sweetheart
I belong with you, you belong with me,
You’re my sweetheart

I sing all day and I love you in the night
Now I have you like no one ever will

The song was a success, and I believe it really fit with the flow of the wedding celebration and provided the newly married couple a unique and precious moment together.

Check out our Facebook Page to see the video recording of my performance.

I hope you find this story inspiring and I hope you find the songwriting exercise useful to your own clinical practice.

Happy music making!

Catherine

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