Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Takin' it AAALLLL the way back to the 80s...

Evening all. So, me and the family Frod went on a bit of a jaunt for the last couple of weeks and it culminated in our attendance at a wedding in South Wales. It was a fabulous do - beautiful setting, lovely people, great weather, big marquee, Welshmen sculling red wine from pewter pint tankards. The lot, really. And also, of course, there was the wedding disco (mini-Frod is here shown enthusiastically and encouragingly welcoming his arrival, replete with coloured lights and - oh yes - lasers!!!), a tradition as solid and reliable as Swiss concrete.

Even before the disco arrived, a friend and I speculated that an unnecessarily large rig was a near certainty (it was), that Come on Eileen would be used early (it was), that his name would be Kev (it wasn't) and that most songs would be not so much mixed together, rather linked by a small bout of inane chatter - "Oh yeah, its Rob and Rachael's wedding, so lets keep the party going by taking it all the way back to 1976...." - in order to facilitate the changing of CD (pretty much always).

But, of course, this kind of larking was rather like shooting fish in a barrel or spotting Guardian readers at a farmer's market. Too easy. And so, as the evening wore on and the Brains' bitter took hold, an interesting theory slowly arose - namely that wedding DJing is a bloody difficult job. Very easy to get wrong (god knows, the fat get who did mine tried his best when my humble request for Superstition - I was THE GROOM, remember - was met with a blank face and a shrug) but yet incredibly hard to get right. You must cater to a vast range of tastes, after all, and can't really let the mood slip for any more than one song at a time - if at all. Slowly but surely, as we rocked the boat, danced the night away and finally did it our way, a grudging kind of respect emerged for the honest graft of the travelling cheese-peddler.

And so, I thought to myself, here's a nice little challenge for me and The 'Spill. Let's all DJ the last half hour or so of a wedding and see how it goes. Remember that EVERYONE is drunk, so keep the songs that people don't know to a minimum. Granny is up on her feet by now so doesn't want too much Gabba or Grindcore. There's a lot of palettes to appeal to, so try to keep everyone on their feet by mixing it up a little There will be some emotion in the air, so try to tug at a few heartstrings but, most importantly of all, lets see if we can find some of those songs that just make you smile, make you happy and make you want to get up and dance. NOT because they involve some gash routine, NOT because they have been done to death elsewhere but, well, maybe because you'd forgotten just how good a song it was in the first place. Oh, and because you're lashed.

To kick us off, then, here is my hastily assembled effort which, I fully accept, is far from perfect. Its probably even far from my own rubric, but what the hey. Imagine them all seamlessly mixed together with consumate skill or, if you prefer, imagine me garbling some nonsense about rocking and rolling and all getting down and boogying til dawn in all the gaps. Whichever you prefer.

Its all good.


steenbeck said...

I think it depends on who's tipsy grandparents you're talking about. Mr. Steenbeck's family is scottish, so our 3rd mixed tape had a lot of corny scottish drinking songs. All good. I like the challenge, and I'll be back w/ a list.

snadfrod said...

Oops alive. I've just realised that, due to a badly labelled CD, what should be 'Dead Ringer For Love' is actually 'Midnight at the Lost and Found'. Still Meat Loaf, sadly though, MUCH less what I was intending.

Ah well. You pays your money...

steenbeck said...

Aahh, forgot to say, miniFrod is a beauty--lovely picture.

ejaydee said...

I like the idea of Granny bopping her head to California Love.

snadfrod said...

Right. Ignore above comment. Playlists mistakes now fixed. And, consequently, I think we can add Dead Ringer for Love into the brass fantastics, no?

Oh and Steenbeck, thankyou very much. She was bridesmaid for the day and had fairy wings on, too. AND it was her birthday. Big day, indeed.

Sadly we think she then got at a few Pimm's soaked strawberries, so it all got shaky there for a bit...

Ejay: I like the idea too. Whether it would actually happen or not, I love the challenge of seeing whether you can sandwich something fairly un-grannyish in between other more palettable stuff and thereby keep the old ones fruggin' to Tupac'n'Dre. Its an image, no?

CB said...

Rule #1 No 'Young Hearts Stay Free'.
Rule #2 No 'Band of Gold'.

FP said...

Utter donds for a superbly naff wedding disco. They are always dire and just there to be enjoyed. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE check out comedian Peter Kay's sketch about family weddings here:

steenbeck said...

Good list, Snadfrod, I finally had time to listen. Shoot, I forgot to put Beirut in my horn list. I meant to do Guyamas Sonora. Ah, well, it was getting too long anyway.

CaroleBristol said...

Donds to miniFrod is a beauty.

Some good calls on the playlist.

Seeing as we are trying to appeal to a wide age range as well as a drunken demographic, I think I might do something like;

Bill Medley and Jennifer Warnes " I´ve had the time of my life"
Teardrop Explodes "Reward"
Siouxsie and the Banshees "Dear Prudence"
Wham! "Club Tropicana"
Hall and Oates "Maneater"
X-Press 2 "Lazy"
Rozalla "Everybody's Free"
EWF "September"
Dave Edmunds "I knew the bride"

Then a few more mellow ones;

Moody Blues "Nights in White Satin"
Aerosmith "Crazy"
Aretha Franklyn "Angel"

I thought about "Hi Ho, Silver Lining" but that is far too 1970s Student Union Disco.

Not exactly cutting edge but I doubt that Bob Mould or Kristin Hersh would be ideal stuff.

I'd like to include "God Is A DJ" but that might offend people of a religious persuasion and it might be a bit too blissed out for a conventionally relaxed audience.

CaroleBristol said...

I just noticed I misspelt "Franklin".

My Bad.

TracyK said...

Amusingly, at a friend's wedding in South wales a few years ago, the female dj was a bit too full on. She actually changed outfits halfway through the night, took to the floor with a microphone, developing a mid-Atlantic/Swansea tinge and produced inflatable guitars and saxophones. My dear, dear friend the bride (not a girl you should EVER cross, these Welsh girls are very feisty) was livid and stood, arms akimbo, scowling at her and griding "Make.It.STOP." at her new hubby...Fun day all round.
My cool indie brother was horrified when at his wedding the dj junked his and the brides' entire request list (compiled way in advance of the day with the dj saying he'd do as promised), only to go from Al Green's Let's Stay Together to the Mavericks and Robbie Williams. Not best pleased.

snadfrod said...

"Reward" gets a massive dond. That is a tune. And perfect for a wedding too.