In late-January 2022 a good friend of mine contacted me for some help with concocting a plan to propose to his girlfriend. Straff and Carrera have been dating for 17 months and are a fantastic couple who seem custom-made for each other, they also happen to be big fans of my music! Straff wanted me to write a custom song which he could play before popping the question.
We chatted and discussed ideas before settling on a romantic adaptation of my track Stick Around (You’ll See What I Mean) which is one of their favourite songs, a rap adaptation of Shotgun by George Ezra.
I had approximately five weeks before Straff was due to propose on 4th March, a few days before Carrera’s 30th birthday for which he was whisking her away on a secret trip to the North Yorkshire coast.
I got started immediately – I’m very lucky to be able to call upon my dad Phil Wilkes who is a talented pianist, and he came round one weekend to lay down some tracks. We recorded a couple of tracks of piano music, some romantic strings, bass and drums. I then added some final touches and arranged it ready to start writing.
I quizzed Straff about his relationship with Carrera, her interests, special memories or in-jokes that he’d like me to include and I got to work. When I had a draft set of lyrics I checked them with Straff, made a couple of small tweaks and started practicing, followed by recording four vocal tracks once I was confident with my delivery.
Finally I mixed and mastered the tracks to make sure they were well-balanced and would sound great on any device. When the mix was complete I tested the track in headphones, in the car, on my TV and through my studio monitors before sending the final mp3 and wav files for Straff to keep.
I was finished ahead of schedule so I asked Straff to send me some treasured photos of them both, and I made a video compilation for them with the track playing in the background. This makes a fantastic keepsake for them and they were delighted with my efforts.
The big day arrived and Carrera got the shock of her life as he pressed play and unveiled the song we’d worked so hard on. Carrera was bowled over and of course she said yes! How could she have said no after that?!
I’m absolutely amazed at what Wilko managed to achieve with this. I had a vague idea at first but he helped me come up with something really specific and personal to us both.
At every step of the process he kept me informed and it was exciting seeing the great work he was doing as the song started developing. He had me in tears more than once!
I’m so thankful to Wilko for providing us with this special song which we’ll treasure, he went above and beyond and I knew it’d be good but I couldn’t have imagined it would be this good!Straff – the groom-in-waiting
For what I thought was a quick trip to visit a special place for us both before my birthday weekend away, I was given the most wonderful and unique surprise ever, a song written and performed by our friend Wilko Wilkes detailing our relationship!
I was blown away and it was a beautiful part of a day that will go down as one of the best of my life! Thank you so much Wilko I absolutely love it!!Carrera – the bride-to-be
Straff and Carrera – congratulations to you both!
If you’ve got a special occasion coming up later this year, or if you’d like a custom song to advertise your business or surprise a loved one, let me know with some notice and we can cook something up together!
Discretion and high quality is guaranteed, consultation is free and I won’t take on commissions that don’t fit with my ethics. I have limited capacity so let’s get the ball rolling early! Get in touch here