“All You Need Is Love” is one of the Beatles’ most iconic recordings. The song was released in 1967 and was supposed to be an anthem for socio-political optimism for peace and love. Unfortunately, John Lennon’s words weren’t exactly taken quite as optimistically as intended. For more of what happened the following year, read on.
But before I get on a rant here, the purpose of this post is to talk about how The Beatles’ song became a surprise hit again in 2003. This joyful scene from the beloved rom-com “Love Actually,” written and directed by Richard Curtis, redefined music for wedding recessionals. [Although it is difficult to pull off hiding brass instruments under your tuxedo at a real wedding, the concept remains totally charming.] The scene stars three then-unknown Brits: a breathtakingly gorgeous 18 year-old Keira Knightley; a charming 26 year-old Chiwetel Ejiofor, (10 years before his Academy Award for “12 Years A Slave;“) and a lovelorn 30 year-old Andrew Lincoln, seven years before his breakout role as the star of “The Walking Dead.”
Not surprisingly, “All You Need Is Love“ is the most-often requested bridal recessional by my brides and grooms. And between the message of the song, and the pure joy of the moment, it really is the perfect bridal recessional.
There’s nothing you can do that can’t be done
Nothing you can sing that can’t be sung
Nothing you can say but you can learn how the play the game, it’s easy
There’s nothing you can make that can’t me made
No one you can save that can’t be saved
Nothing you can do but you can learn how to be you in time, it’s easy
All you need is love,
All you need is love
All you need is love, love
Love is all you need
Now for some historical perspective. The year after “All You Need Is Love” was released turned out to be one of the ugliest years in American history. Here’s a short timeline of events in 1968. On April 4, The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King was assassinated; on June 5, Robert F. Kennedy was assassinated; from August 26-29, Mayor Richard Daley turned Chicago into a bloody war zone pitting Chicago Police and Illinois National Guardsman against Anti-War protestors, polarizing the country more than anyone could have ever imagined. [Careful what you wish for, Mr. Trump.]
However, the song remains a reminder of the eternal hope that “love” will prevail. The idea that “All You Need Is Love” will always be a beautiful, if naive, notion. Love is all you need.
Leave a comment and let me know what you think.