Music has a special way of transporting us to a particular time and place.
Sometimes, all it takes is the first few notes of a meaningful song to wash over us before we’re overcome by emotion.
Pair that nostalgia with romance, and the fireworks fly.
In honor of Valentine’s Day, we’ve asked six Lancaster musicians to share love songs they love.
Eric “Dr. E” Deatrick, guitarist and vocalist
Love song: “I Just Can’t Stop Loving You” by Michael Jackson featuring Siedah Garrett.
“Jackson and Garrett deliver phenomenal vocal performances on the record that wrap the listener in their passion and enthusiasm. It was co-produced by Michael Jackson and Quincy Jones and, as to be expected with that duo, everything is brilliantly orchestrated, recorded and produced.”
Brian Norcross, Allegro Orchestra musical director
Love song: Self-composition “For the Beauty of Earth” and Aaron Copland’s Fanfare for the Common Man.
“For our wedding, my wife and I had a 24-piece brass choir made up of many of my students when I taught high school in Massachusetts. We had a 30-minute prelude of brass and organ music before the wedding service, which included the premiere of a piece that I wrote for Kim based upon her favorite hymn, ‘For the Beauty of the Earth.’ The prelude concluded with Aaron Copland’s ‘Fanfare for the Common Man.’ I conducted both the premiere piece and Copland. Yes, I conducted at my wedding. My romantic music choice would be the Copland ‘Fanfare for the Common Man,’ and Aaron Copland’s Symphony No. 3, which is based upon that fanfare. They all remind me of our wonderful wedding day.”
Liz Fulmer, singer-songwriter
Love song: “Can’t Help Falling in Love” by Elvis Presley.
“There’s something so stunning about this song’s simple tune and lyrics. It’s been covered a million times over (my favorite version by Ingrid Michaelson), which makes it feel timeless. It also happens to be my wedding song. When I sing it, I almost always get choked up around the line ‘take my hand, take my whole life, too.’ Good thing my wife knows she married a sap.”
Stephen Gunzenhauser, Lancaster Symphony Orchestra conductor and director
Love song: “Best Thing That Ever Happened to Me” by Gladys Knight and the Pips.
"When I hear that song, it strikes home because of meeting my wife and being married for almost 49 years."
Corty Byron, singer-songwriter
Love song: “You Send Me” by Sam Cooke.
“On October 7, 2017, Katie Martin and I were married in our backyard alongside family, friends and our dog, Icy Pup. Veteran local musicians The Tom Pontz Trio backed up vocalist Tuck Ryan, who performed the song right after we tied the knot. Katie and I started dancing together for the first time as married folks.
On our first anniversary this past year, we danced again to an original 45 copy of Sam Cooke’s version. This time it was just us … and our dog.”
Nick “DJ Salinger” Reiner, DJ
Love song: “I Only Have Eyes For You” by The Flamingos.
“This was the song my wife and I chose for our first dance at our wedding, and we consider it ‘our song.’ This is one of my favorite love songs ever written. The reverb-drenched ‘bop-shoo-bop’ background vocals and pitch-perfect doo-wop harmonies make it super dreamy. It evokes that new love feeling like you’re floating around in outer space.
“My second favorite love song would be ‘Natural High’ by Bloodstone, which coincidentally has a similar dreamlike vibe. I like that this song seems to be about daydreaming about a crush, like a fantasy of love that doesn’t exist. ‘Why do I feel this way, thinking about you every day... and I don’t even know you.’ ”