mixtape masters: profound lack of sound

by lizzie & isaiah on February 11, 2011 · 13 comments

We stayed over at my mom’s house overnight to be closer to work for the last day of the week. We forgot that she doesn’t have anything even remotely close to the Adobe Creative Suite and after a moment of what will we do?!, we settled in and watched a movie.

We’ve come to depend quite a bit on Mixtape Masters every week – we sit together at the computer and put together our playlist and crack up at all of the memories we have for each song.

So instead of sharing some new music: A brief history of our band days and some of our music.

Isaiah was in a rock band for years called Radial Bloom. They were awesome. Someday, he wants to talk really in depth about the dynamics of guys in a band together, how there’s an unbreakable bond, almost, when it works. How he’s had the same friends for more than 10 years and most of them are once-upon-a-time bandmates of his.

Every time I ran into Isaiah at Ernie’s, he was passing out flyers for his band. I wasn’t 21, or even 18 yet, and I didn’t want to tell him that I couldn’t make it past the door to see him play. He sent me tracks online and I, kind of like a groupie, freaked out a bit that “Isaiah from Radial Bloom sent me some tracks from the cd!” Yeah. HUGE nerd.

They weren’t a nationwide known band, no. But they were well known around Aurora and he was always promoting. They toured. Bands that are famous now opened for them. They rocked. I dug it.

I was in a small music project at the time as well. I’ve played classical piano for 18 years, but wanted to venture out into jazz and indie music. I played around the Aurora-land area at coffee shops and bars until I landed at (what used to be) One East Wilson. I played an open mic night at One East once and the organizer, Dana, part out of potentially creepy attention paid to the only (yet underage) female in the bar at the time…offered me a weekly spot and eventually a showcase at the bar. It was becoming a hot spot in Batavia soon enough – not because of me, jeez, because of the music scene there in general. They got a new chef and people sucked down oysters and mussels in a city bar in the ‘burbs.

When I left for college 2 hours away, I played a few coffee shops and one wildly controversial night at a Christian coffee shop. Some friends from high school came down and we started jamming together and practicing. We only got to lay down two tracks together and I only semi-professionally recorded anything, but it was a blast while it lasted. Of course being two hours away from each other doesn’t make for awesome practice times.

Anyways, if you want to listen, use some serious discretion that these were recorded five years ago and with nothing but a Mac and Garage Band. My recordings are much messier than Isaiah’s and his band’s, which we still listen to together on a regular basis.

For my birthday this year, Isaiah got me a USB-powered keystation and I love it. We’ve been playing again, recording, playing with sound…I couldn’t be happier that we can play together and, moreso, that he wants to play with me. Him, Isaiah, of Radial Bloom. And then I feel like such a nerd.

For actual mixtape master madness, check out these peops: Hi-Fi WeddingsOne Cat Per PersonTylreMy SF Budget WeddingFashion Under 100Dead FlowersJo RootingCraft My LifeAnother Damn LifeCasa de KaloiBunnies’n BeaglesSomething DifferentSavoir WeddingsExisting Between Reality and Dreams and Fancy Notion.

Be a Mixtape Master. Email Angie or Ashley to get on the list.


mixtape masters: hallelujah

by lizzie & isaiah on January 14, 2011 · 12 comments

mixtape masters - music handpicked for the week

Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” is one of our all-time favorite songs, although we both have different versions we prefer. On the very top of our list is Jeff Buckley’s – beautiful and eerie…it might be the first or only song you’ve heard him play (if that’s the case, rectify it, immediately).

There have been dozens of versions of Cohen’s majestic ”song-to-end-all-songs” – so we picked a dozen of our favorites. I know we say this every week, but we love music…and if you listen to only one mixtape master of ours ever, it’s this one.

I have never heard a more moving, breathtaking song.

hallelujah mixtape masters versions you should know leonard cohen, jeff buckley, rufus wainwright, k.d. lang, gavin degraw, kathryn williams, justin timberlake, brandi carlile, willie nelson, elisa, bob dylan, imogen heap

What’s your favorite version?

P.S. There’s a Regina Spektor version and Damien Rice version that we like as well if you’re hungry for more.

For more mixtape master madness, check out these peops: Hi-Fi Weddings, One Cat Per Person, Tylre, My SF Budget WeddingFashion Under 100, Dead Flowers, Jo Rooting, Craft My Life, Another Damn Life, Casa de Kaloi, Bunnies’n Beagles, Something Different, Savoir Weddings, Existing Between Reality and Dreams and Fancy Notion.

Be a Mixtape Master. Email Angie or Ashley to get on the list.

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mixtape masters: our year in photos and music

by lizzie & isaiah on January 7, 2011 · 30 comments

I absolutely loved the idea from Kathleen of A Wedding Runs Through It to post a year in Facebook photos. I have a hard time separating experiences into when they happened and that seemed like a pretty good way to do it.

I had 21 albums from 2010 on Facebook and here are my favorites from each album.


We spent New Year’s Eve 2010 on a train to Chicago stopped for an hour when a homeless man attacked the conductor. Upon our arrival in the city, we witnessed a slap-bet of epic proportions.

celebrating new years eve on a train in chicago on love your way design and wedding blog


We took our first getaway trip together to Austin for a PR conference and enjoyed some music, good beer and QT.

austin texas for texas public relations association conference on love your way design and wedding blog


We discovered live jazz nights at the Greenhouse and Isaiah fell head-over-heels for their beer selection.

isaiah drinks delicious, imported beer at greenhouse restaurant in denton texas on love your way wedding and design blog

I rediscovered some old photos from high school. This would be me circa 2005.

lizzie in high school at aurora christian school on love your way design and wedding blog


Walks to the Square in Denton were a weekly occasion for Isaiah and I and our trusty 35mm.

a day about denton - the year in facebook photos 2010 on love your way design and wedding blog


Also known as the wisdom-teeth saga of 2010.

wisdom teeth x-ray

My internship landed us all kinds of perks, like free concerts and top-secret in-studio sessions.

barefoot at the belmont in dallas texas


We spent the day of our engagement session together with our photographer in all of our favorite spots.

engagement photos lizzie and isaiah on love your way design and wedding blog

Took a play right out of the Sleeveface manual.

sleeveface on love your way design and wedding blog

The first stop in my three-part study abroad journey in St. Petersburg, Russia.

st. petersburg russia boy fishing by els photography on love your way blog

Moved on to Berlin, Germany where we visited a labor camp, Frederick the Great’s castle Sans Souci, the Jewish Museum of Berlin and so much more. Berlin was, by far, my favorite city so far…that exists.

lizzie in berlin sans souci study abroad

We stopped at the BMW Welt, which was awesomely modern and industrial.

bmw welt in germany study abroad on love your way


Next stop was Munich, where we got to take a day-trip to Schloss Neuschwanstein, the castle Cinderella’s castle was modeled after.

neuschwanstein castle in munich, germany study abroad

The day trip to Salzburg, Austria was one of my favorite parts of the trip…I could live there.

downtown salzburg austria study abroad


The month in which we made our first true couple-friends in Denton, Texas. Literally, I puked for the first time in four years on their rug the other night…and we went out for burgers the next day. That’s love, son…and also a bit of over-share.

bowling and new friends in denton texas

We spent the month hitting up live-music spots around Denton while researching my article for Denton Live magazine, which I’ll share the second I get it.

mariachi quetzal in denton, texas at dan's silverleaf

Another free show – The Black Keys and Kings of Leon in Dallas – courtesy of my internship at the station.

black keys and kings of leon superpages in dallas


Our kitties, Biggie & Tupac, being about half as cuddly as they normally are for the first good photo we’ve gotten in their two years of life together.

biggie smalls and tupac shakur kitties on love your way

Isaiah and I as mustachio-ed unabombers for Halloween. Hey. It cost $3 for the two of us. Get off my back.

mustache uni-bomber costume for halloween


I dug up some of my childhood photos for the ChristmaHanaKwanzika series. Unfortunately, most of the photos from Thanksgiving haven’t made it off my SD card yet. So hello baby Lizzie circa 1988. For some reason, I feel this is the most iconic photo of my childhood. My mom’s horse-show trophy behind me, tights and pajama pants, me making sounds – which I literally haven’t stopped doing since I figured out how.

little lizzie on love your way


The month of graduation and the holidays.

graduation from the university of north texas public relations lizzie smithson

On to the music.

mixtape masters - music handpicked for the week

We picked our 2010 list of music based on the songs we felt we identified with a certain piece of the year. We saw Sarah Jaffe rock a DJ night at Denton’s Rubber Gloves together. Edward Sharpe’s “Home” was the first love song since “Yellow” I felt really said it all. Last year was the first year I gave a real shot to one of Isaiah’s favorite bands – The Life and Times and fell absolutely in love with them. (Grooveshark only had a garbage 37-second clip of this song…but it’s worth listening to the whole thing). We love My Brightest Diamond, Passion Pit and Phoenix on road trips together all around the surprisingly expansive DFW area. Jeff Buckley is one of our all-time favorites…”What Will You Say” has been a bit of a passion project to cover for Isaiah and our awesome neighbor. We saw Midlake live this year in a packed and sweat-inducing Hailey’s. We saw The Black Keys live this year on the lawn of the Superpages Center. Mf Doom is, and always be, amazing. I re-fell in love with this song from The Shins this year as well, “Turn on Me.”

2010 a year in music - sarah jaffe, edward sharpe, the life and times, my brightest diamond, passion pit, phoenix, jeff buckley, midlake, the black keys, mf doom, the shins

Sorry for the massive overload of a post, but I only have one thing left to say. Don’t forget to enter our banner/header design giveaway (ends Monday at 6pm).

For more mixtape master madness, check out these peops: Hi-Fi Weddings, One Cat Per Person, Tylre, My SF Budget WeddingFashion Under 100, Dead Flowers, Jo Rooting, Craft My Life, Another Damn Life, Casa de Kaloi, Bunnies’n Beagles, Something Different, Savoir Weddings, Existing Between Reality and Dreams and Fancy Notion.

Be a Mixtape Master. Email Angie or Ashley to get on the list.


mixtape masters: psychetude and number 200

by lizzie & isaiah on December 31, 2010 · 8 comments

mixtape masters - music handpicked for the week

We had quite the day yesterday. We spent four hours waiting for a tow-truck…after we decided that my car has been a decoration for far too long (long story), haggled at pep boys over coupons and then took a couple of holiday gift cards out for a treat of a day.

You should know this about us…if you haven’t guessed already. Isaiah was a singer in a rock band for seven years. He is a fantastic singer. I sang in a band for a few years, choir now and then…but mostly I’m a karaoke queen. We sing in the car together just about every minute we’re on the road to anywhere. Not seriously. No. Serious singing is reserved for the nights when I bust out the piano and we plug in the audio interface and get things started over a bottle of wine. This is the most ridiculous mockery you’ve heard of music. We go back and forth trying to make the song sound like the most exaggerated version of itself.

Last night we couldn’t seem to escape “Pump up the Jam” and “Jump Around,” which got us talking that there are a ton of songs from the 90′s (and one from 1989) that keep bringing psychetude to the table.

“How I Met Your Mother” is arguably one of our favorite shows…so we wanted to bring a “Get Psyched” mix to you this week in honor of Barney’s New Year’s Mix.

Get psyched, will you?

get psyched on love your way design and wedding blog - new year's eve mixtape masters with house of pain jump around, technotronic pump up the jam, deee-lite groove is in the heart, tribe called quest bonita applebum 2011

This is our 200th post. We’re pretty excited about it. A lot has happened in 200 posts, we think. We’ve been up and down the wedding planning roller coaster, but still have nothing decided. I went to Europe, during which Isaiah finally learned how to use WordPress. We’ve talked about things I never thought would be something necessary to talk about.

We’ve talked about a few pretty things.

But mainly, it might sound nerdy and introspective, but I feel like we’ve learned a lot about ourselves and pushed our relationship deeper than before…through community, through deliberate thought and consideration, and honestly, forcing our minds to go where they may not have gone if we hadn’t been part of the blog-world.

I’m grateful for you, friends.

Enjoy your new year. We’ll be huddling close with family this year and enjoying another quiet holiday. Resolutions and new year-isms to follow shortly.

For more mixtape master madness, check out these peops: Hi-Fi Weddings, One Cat Per Person, Tylre, My SF Budget WeddingFashion Under 100, Dead Flowers, Jo Rooting, Craft My Life, Another Damn Life, Casa de Kaloi, Bunnies’n Beagles, Something Different, Savoir Weddings, Existing Between Reality and Dreams and Fancy Notion.

Be a Mixtape Master. Email Angie or Ashley to get on the list.


mixtape masters: chickmas

December 17, 2010

It’s hard to get in the spirit of Christmas at home. I’ve been handmaking gifts for the last six weeks or so and we have a medium sized tree and some decorations up…but the 50+ degree weather isn’t helping in the slightest bit. Everyone seems panicky…saying that there is just over a week left and [...]

10 comments you know you wanna read more..

mixtape masters: jazz

December 10, 2010

Today we venture simultaneously into two of our favorite worlds. Film photography and jazz. Francis Wolff’s iconic photography during the hayday of jazz are of my all time favorites and Isaiah even bought me a book, Blue Note Jazz Photography of Francis Wolff at Half Priced Books which sits prominently placed in our bookshelf. Miles [...]

5 comments you know you wanna read more..

from her fridays: a journey of…everything

December 4, 2010

Image from Wide Open Spaces Before I tell you what I really want to tell you, a little backstory. My 2008 New Year’s resolution (and the only one I’ve ever actually completed) was to read a book every two weeks for the whole year. Gave me some time in between to read quickly or take something [...]

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Mixtape Masters: Do the Math Rock

December 3, 2010

If you haven’t noticed, we LOVE Mixtape Masters. This week, we wanted to share another one of our absolutely favorite genres: Math rock. If you aren’t into math rock, you don’t know what you’re missing, but there’s no time for lecturing…we’ve got everything you need to get started right here. Enjoy the mix. Enjoy the [...]

7 comments you know you wanna read more..

Mixtape Masters: Trip-Hop Nation

November 19, 2010

Isaiah’s home genre is the rock, post-industrial rock, space rock, awesome-rock-ness genre. Mine is trip-hop. We share a love for trip-hop for sure and Isaiah definitely introduces me to a wealth of trip-hop…but the Sneaker Pimps have been my jam since the first day I heard Becoming X and one of the only things that [...]

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Mixtape Masters: Rainy Day Post-Modern Rock

November 12, 2010

Today’s Mixtape Masters is all about post-modern rock love. Some of our favorite instrumental and experimental vocal bands together in perfect freaking unison. We’ve been doing a lot of freelance writing and design and my final layout for the magazine was due yesterday, so I speak from experience when I say there’s no better type [...]

22 comments you know you wanna read more..