Saturday, March 9, 2013

The Vinyl-Spun Wedding / Northern [Vinyl High] Lights

The VVers planned a big event last fall - getting hitched - and had one crazy idea (well maybe not just one, but only one pertinent to this blog).  We had it in our heads to get a pro, old school DJ that would spin our favorite vinyl for the nuptials and reception.  We actually didn't treat it as a crazy idea at all; in fact I think we would have spun ourselves.  There was pretty much no way that we would settle with someone else picking tunes.  We love our friends and family, but do we really trust them to put in song requests for our big night?  Nooooooo.  In fact, we are not the only crazy people in the world that want to play only records at their wedding.  Turns out Mr. Neil Young's daughter also recently had this magnificent idea (after our wedding, of course).

We found a few DJs early in the process that seemed like they could maybe do it, but there was a good deal of hedging of bets on the vinyl end of it.  Luckily we got connected to Aran at Ridiculous Entertainment.  Not only was he completely on board with the concept, he took it as a personal challenge!  Apparently, doing an entire event with just vinyl and minimal digital set-up was just not done anymore.  This did not seem to faze him in the slightest.  Interesting that on top of Aran having nerves (and wheels) of steel, he also is the "Executive Visionary Commando" for the BROS (Baltimore Rock Opera Society) which be, is, and are completely bad-ass.

The VVers set to the task of going through the entire home collection to find their favorite and most dance worthy tunes.  Said collection has a lot of musical variety and we wanted to reflect that in our playlist.  There would be jazz cocktails, reggae dinner, disco desserts, and anything-goes dancing for the remainder of the night.  I gotta say, this was difficult.  It was really the first time we've ever had to see eye to eye on music choices for a big event.  A good example of the difficulty is when one VVer suggested "She Blinded Me with Science" by Thomas Dolby as a great tune to get his brother up on the dance floor, while sneers ensued from the other VVer.  Ultimately this VVer was able to work the argument that seeing the brother-man shake his groove thing would be worth it (it was).  The entire process was a great relationship builder.  We had to try to get in each other's shoes a bit and try not to judge too harsh, all while driving the point on certain essential tracks.  Surprisingly we only had to track down a few additional records for our collection to add to the night.  Clearly the record selection at the Casa de VVer is getting quite sharp.

We sent Aran the working playlist and he came over about a week or so later to talk out the ceremony and iron out details.  There was some consternation about the set-up for the wedding and reception as they were going to be in two different areas of the venue (the incredible American Visionary Art Museum in Baltimore).  Aran suggested going to digital during the ceremony which was kind of a bummer.  Jokingly, this VVer pointed to a portable record player sitting in the corner of our living room which we picked up last summer in a spectacular find at a local estate sale.  This suitcase like object was in practically brand new condition and only set us back ten bones!  He bought into our joking plan to use it for the ceremony vinyl (Flash Gordon wedding theme anyone?) and he was all about it!  Now this VVer wouldn't normally invite a stranger to my wedding, but holy crap we wish you could have been there.  It was sick!  Pretty sure both my parents had a puddle under them and the brother-man's head almost caught fire.  Several of the friends also were in stitches.  The VVers had their vinyl wedding and all the guests exclaimed it was the best music at a wedding in like, ever!  Most important though is that we had an amazing time; especially at the end when Aran threw down Queen's "Somebody to Love."  It's fair to say that EVERYONE with a pulse was up dancing and singing with reckless abandon.  Queen came through and it made an epic end to our wedding celebration!

Off to the honeymoon in Norway which was not likely going to be a vinyl adventure, right?  Who's going to want to haul around a bunch of vinyl all over the Arctic Circle?  Hahahah!  The Vinyl friggin Vagabonds!  That's who mother#&^%@!

Anyways it wasn't that high up on the list of things to do, but we had some truly fun vinyl moments during our trip.  First off, whilst in Tromso (located within the Arctic Circle) we went to Verdensteatret, an amazing, old school bar/lounge in the front section of a refurbished movie theater.  The bar played 100% vinyl and the walls were stacked with plenty of selections.  Conversation with the bar man:

::VVer- Can I pick the next record to play?
::Bar Man- Yes.
::VVer- Which one to play?
::Bar Man- The best one.

Not only that, but when the bar guys were outside on a smoke break and the record ended they gave this VVer the go ahead to hop behind the bar and DJ.  Ha!  Was it mentioned that we were in the Arctic Circle?  Grand.

A later stop on the trip had us on a very brief day and overnight in Trondeheim.  While cruising about in the phenomenal city we happened upon a great urge for a frosty beverage (not uncommon).  We hopped into Cafe Lokka without any preconceived notions.  While relaxing to our libation in the comfy cafe we noticed above the bar several home-produced seven inch records for sale.  After a beverage or two we queried the tender about the music and he was kind enough to spin them for us.  Sale!  Local Trondeheim band, The Daily Hum, provided us with this easy-to-travel with little 45" performing "The Fireman" in two ways.  The very different renditions of the same song called for one side to be played at 45 speed, the other at 33.  Can it please be more confusing?!  Side "Major" proves to be a peppy, ska version of the track, while side "Minor" is a dark, samba-like distorted outlook on the same tune.  A very interesting find that is highly listenable both ways.  The sleeve features sharp, bizarre, melty artwork with brainy lettering and on translucent, red vinyl to boot.  A good find for the VVers.  Norge five!

Final stop in Oslo on the last night of our trek we end up in Nosbled (Nosebleed) Records, basically the most famous record store in all of the Norge.  We didn't know it at the time though, as we just happened to stumble upon it while being half lost in a mad dash to a museum that happened to be closed anyways.  Still, we were there!

Since we returned from our adventures, our new favorite question to ask each other when picking out the next record goes a little something like this (thanks Norge):

VVer 1: "What do you feel like listening to?" [longingly looking at endless spines of records on the shelf]
VVer 2: "The Best One"
VVer1: [Closes eyes and randomly pulls out a record] "Ahh, the best one!"

No comments:

Post a Comment