The 100 Day Project: 100 Days Of Love Songs

Not only do I share a birthday with Academy Award-winner Nicolas Cage, he is now my indirect kickstarter.

I stumbled upon The 100 Day Project while reading an article on Medium about how Madelin Woods made ‘One Hundred Portraits of Nicolas Cage‘ for 100 days straight. Amidst my tears of laughter over this ridiculous yet brilliant effort of commemorating America’s National Treasure (and they’re really good), I was in awe of the artist’s complete dedication to her daily project.

The 100 Day Project is a digital collaboration initiated by Elle Luna and The Great Discontent, in which participants choose an action to perform every day for 100 consecutive days. The project that celebrates the process of creation, meaning it’s less about the end result and more about the drive the artist exhibits to show up and like their work (no matter the quality) be seen. It’s a bite-sized and do-able way to play creatively in your busy lives.

An essential component to the project is documenting and sharing your artistic journey. And what better social media platform is there for this purpose than Instagram, where artists, makers, and creators of all forms from all around the globe are interacting with each other, sharing their work with each other, and getting inspired by each other. On Instagram, participants tag their posts with #The100DayProject, along with their unique project hashtags, sharing their projects with the worldwide creative community and supporting each other with kudos. The projects are so wide and diverse in scope, from watercolour paintings (check out these Irish landscapes by Kate Bedell) to haiku poetry.

I participated in this year’s project, which commenced on April 6th and concluded today on July 14th. One of the prompts was: “What are you passionate about? Is there something you used to do that you gave up, something you’d like to explore, something that intrigues you?” With those questions in mind, I felt compelled to challenge and commit myself to do something that I’ve always wanted to do and that was out of my comfort zone (which fits in line with my year-long mission to be more bold and daring)…

100DaysOfLoveSongs

For my 100 days of making, I did #100DaysofLoveSongs. Singing is a passion I’ve long enjoyed, yet want to explore more. It started when I had my first solo spot, singing “The First Noel” at the elementary school Christmas pageant, and continued throughout years of choir in grade school (and later, a stint in the vocal jazz group in university). To this day, I’m constantly singing–when I wake up in the morning, in the shower, in the car, in conversations when something said sparks a lyrical response, and always, always in my head, 24/7. Whenever people ask me that dreaded question, “What is your dream job?”, my secretly withheld answer is, “to be a rockstar”. 

But singing out loud, all by myself, with all of the attention centred on me? That’s always been too vulnerable of a situation for me to venture out on. Thus, that is why I punished pushed myself to share my singing voice with the people of the internet for a solid 100 days.

I established a few ground rules for my 100 Days of Love Songs. First of all, to narrow down the playing field of the endless love songs out there, the selected songs had to have the word ‘love’ (singular) in the title. And due to Instagram’s video length restrictions, the song has to be condensed to 15 seconds without losing its meaning or impact. With these rules in mind, I went through my iPod library and picked out the 100 love songs, and on each day, I paired handwritten song titles (written on a piece of paper) with the recorded song snippet layered on top. If you follow the 100 Days of Love Songs journey from the beginning, you’ll notice how I experimented with the production. I started off with a shaky video camera method until I finally figured out how to integrate a photo with audio (thank you, Flipagram!) for a steadier end result. So, as much as an amateur as you may be when you first start off (#lowbudgetproduction), with practice and persistence, you’ll soon find new and improved tricks along the way.

The act of serenading my friends (and better yet, strangers) on a daily basis was quite terrifying. At first, I felt embarrassed to do it. There were many days when I thought my voice sounded like total crap and many times when I thought this was the stupidest thing I’d ever done, but in those moments, I told myself to shut up, carry on, and just do it. As the weeks went by, I grew more and more comfortable with hearing the sound of my voice and sharing it with others, even receiving nice compliments from friends (Thank you for listening! I really appreciate it). This whole challenge was a confidence builder for sure.

As for the songs themselves, I tried to tackle a diverse mix of classic staples and contemporary hits from different genres, tempos, and ranges. I made sure to spotlight some of my favourite indie artists, such as Tyler Hilton, Brooke White, and Tim Halperin, too. From the 100 covers I did, my favourite one to do was easily “How Deep Is Your Love” by Bee Gees (the Saturday Night Fever soundtrack is a music masterpiece), and the most difficult ones to do were the Kelly Clarkson, Celine Dion, and Whitney Houston covers (their insane ranges are waaay out of my little league).

People have asked me, Why love songs? Why this theme? I choose love because love, in all of its forms, is universal. Love is romance, love is heartbreak, love is happy, love is sad, love is excitement, love is pain, love is family, love is friends, love is community, love is humanity… really, love is everything, everyone, and everywhere. Love is something I believe we could use a little more of in this chaotic world of ours, and that’s exactly the message I wish to share with you all.

Love is all we need and what the world needs now.

100 Days of Love Songs:

All You Need Is Love (The Beatles)
Addicted To Love (Robert Palmer)
Always Love (Nada Surf)
And I Love Her (The Beatles)
April Love (Pat Boone)
Baby Love (The Supremes)
Be Be Your Love (Rachael Yamagata)
Bleeding Love (Leona Lewis)
Bold As Love (Jimi Hendrix)
Burning Love (Elvis Presley)
Bye Bye Love (The Everly Brothers)
Can You Feel The Love Tonight (Elton John)
Can’t Buy Me Love (The Beatles)
Can’t Help Falling In Love (Elvis Presley)
Chapel Of Love (The Dixie Cups)
Come And Get Your Love (Redbone)
Could It Be I’m Falling In Love (The Spinners)
Could You Be Loved (Bob Marley)
Crazy In Love (Beyoncé)
Crazy Little Thing Called Love (Queen)
Crazy Love (Van Morrison)
DJ Got Us Fallin’ In Love (Usher)
Do You Love Me? (The Contours)
Does He Love You? (Rilo Kiley)
Down With Love (Judy Garland)
Find Your Love (Drake)
Give Me Love (Ed Sheeran)
Good Love Is On The Way (John Mayer)
The Greatest Love Of All (Whitney Houston)
Hallelujah I Love Her So (Ray Charles)
Hard To Love (Tyler Hilton)
Have I Told You Lately That I Love You (Eddie Cochran)
A Heart Full Of Love (Les Misérables)
Hello, I Love You (The Doors)
How Deep Is Your Love (Bee Gees)
How Long Will I Love You (Ellie Goulding version)
I Believe In A Thing Called Love (The Darkness)
I Can’t Make You Love Me (Bonnie Raitt)
I Love You Always Forever (Donna Lewis)
I Need Your Love (Calvin Harris feat. Ellie Goulding)
I Wanna Fall In Love (Tim Halperin)
I Will Always Love You (Whitney Houston)
I Wish You Love (Rachael Yamagata)
If It Hadn’t Been For Love (Adele)
I’m Gonna Make You Love Me (The Supremes)
I’m Through With Love (Marilyn Monroe)
I’ve Got My Love To Keep Me Warm (Kay Starr)
L-O-V-E (Nat King Cole)
Let Me Love You (Ne-Yo)
Let’s Just Fall In Love Again (Jason Castro)
The Look Of Love (Dusty Springfield)
Love Is A Battlefield (Pat Benatar)
Love Is A Many Splendored Thing (The Four Aces)
Love Is Blindness (Jack White version)
Love Me Like You Do (Ellie Goulding)
Love Me Tender (Elvis Presley)
Love On The Rocks (Sara Bareilles)
Love On Top (Beyoncé)
Love Potion No. 9 (The Clovers)
Love Runs Out (OneRepublic)
Love Sneakin’ Up On You (Bonnie Raitt)
Love Song (Sara Bareilles)
Love The Way You Lie (Skylar Grey)
Love You I Do (Jennifer Hudson / Dreamgirls)
Love You Like A Love Song (Selena Gomez)
Lovefool (The Cardigans)
Lovesong (Adele version)
Make You Feel My Love (Adele version)
Miss You Love (The Rising)
My Love Is Your Love (Whitney Houston)
Nobody Love (Tori Kelly)
One Love (Bob Marley)
The Power Of Love (Celine Dion)
Put A Little Love In Your Heart (Jackie DeShannon)
Same Love / She Keeps Me Warm (Mary Lambert)
Sea Of Love (Phil Phillips)
Seasons Of Love (RENT)
Silly Love Songs (Paul McCartney & Wings)
Skinny Love (Bon Iver)
Somebody To Love (Jefferson Airplane)
Somebody To Love (Queen)
Sometimes Love (Brooke White)
This Love (Maroon 5)
This Love (Taylor Swift)
To Love Somebody (Bee Gees)
The Trouble With Love Is (Kelly Clarkson)
Wanted Is Love (Phillip Phillips)
We Found Love (Rihanna)
What About Love (Heart)
When I Fall In Love (Nat King Cole)
Where Is The Love? (Black Eyed Peas feat. Justin Timberlake)
Whole Lotta Love (Led Zeppelin)
Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow? (The Shirelles)
Without Love (Hairspray)
You Can’t Hurry Love (The Supremes)
You Don’t Have To Say You Love Me (Dusty Springfield)
You Give Love A Bad Name (Bon Jovi)
You Must Love Me (Madonna / Evita)
You’ve Got To Hide Your Love Away (The Beatles)
What The World Needs Now Is Love (Jackie DeShannon)

Illustration by Elle Luna from The Crossroads of Should and Must.

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