“A Girl Named Laura” ~ Nick and Laura Zannis ~ The Story Behind the Song

Mountain Laurel

“Laura was named after the Mountain Laurel flowers of North Carolina.”

Listen to “A Girl Named Laura”: 

Congratulations to Nick and Laura Zannis – recently wed just a few months ago! Nick actually contacted me back in June and asked me to play and sing at his wedding. He and his bride were planning to get married in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina on October 22, and he wanted to do a custom song for her. He also wanted me to play and sing during the ceremony and reception, as it was a small event – only about 15 people. I happily accepted. Unfortunately, they ended up having to cancel the wedding due to some financial setbacks. (Who doesn’t have those these days?) They eloped instead and he decided to do the custom song as his gift to her since they were unable to do a traditional ceremony and reception. It’s a really sweet story.

I conducted my interview with Nick via e-mail. He told me about some of the special moments that he and Laura had shared. Every couple has an inside joke – often it’s a nickname or a phrase they say to each other over and over. For Nick, it was:

There’s a beautiful girl named Laura,
And we’ll still be in love tomorra

Before they got married, he would ask her all the time if she would marry him tomorrow. (Obviously she said yes!) The phrase already rhymed so I thought it was too perfect to pass up as a repeating moment in the song. He also told me about the feeling he gets when he glances at her in the mirror and sees the smile that comes over her face:

Oh, the way she smiles at me when our eyes meet in the mirror
Nothing could be sweeter

Laura was named after the Mountain Laurel flowers of North Carolina, which is where her family is from. Nick told me that (like many couples) they have their differences, but they balance each other out – he is more adventurous, while she is more conservative. In his words: “I love her more with each passing day … Each day I think she’s more beautiful than the day before … She keeps me grounded and I help her soar to new heights.” Originally, Nick wanted the song to be sung as part of his vows to her, so with that in mind, I wrote the chorus as his promise to be a faithful husband in good times and bad – and of course incorporated the flower for which she was named – just to give it an original spin.

You keep me grounded and I’ll help you soar
Each day you’re prettier than the day before and everyday
I will love you more and more
I promise you that come sun or come rain,
We will blossom like the flowers that bear your name

He told me that they met later in life – in their 30’s – but that it was worth the wait to find each other. That was just too sweet to neglect, so I worked it into the second verse, which, like the first verse, begins with Nick’s signature rhyme:

There’s a beautiful girl named Laura,
And we’ll still be in love tomorra
Though it took us years to find each other,
It was all worth waiting for

According to Nick, he is a man of few words and is usually quiet in group settings. (It appears that the two of us have a lot in common. I’m definitely more of a writer than a speaker, so I understood what he meant right away.) He told me that when he and Laura are sitting quietly with each other, sometimes he draws an “I” and a “heart” and a “you” on her leg or arm. She understands instantly, and smiles and says “I love you back,” every time. In Nick’s words: “It’s a little thing that even if we are in a busy, loud place, the meaning and sentiment is there.”

And even though I’m a man of few words,
When I trace my thoughts upon your skin,
You know exactly what I’m feelin’
I heart you…

Nick told me that Laura really wants to move home to the mountains of North Carolina to be closer to her family. Before they got married, he promised her that they would move there next year to start their family and the rest of their lives together. He said, “I look forward to creating a lifetime of memories and new family traditions together. I’m a man of my word, and will never let her down.” I thought that promise was too important to leave out, so I referenced it in the last verse of the song.

There’s a beautiful girl named Laura
And we’ll still be in love tomorra
I can’t wait to spend our life among the mountaintops
Making memories together
That will last forever.

Now I just wish I had a picture of these two! I feel like that’s the only thing missing from this beautiful story. For now, I’ll have to settle for a North Carolina Mountain Laurel, since that’s the best representation that I have of Laura. But Nick, Laura, if you’re reading this and you have a minute, I’d still love to post a picture of you as a couple, so please send me one whenever you can. Thank you so much for giving me the opportunity to write this song for you. I wish you a lifetime of happiness together. Maybe one day soon, when you move to North Carolina, we can finally meet in person. Until then … many blessings.


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  2. I know this song was written for someone else but I recently started dating a girl named Laura…..she is the most amazing, beautiful, person I’ve ever met and this song couldn’t describe the way I feel any better…you are amazing….are you on Facebook…..email me….okcarlos405@gmail.com…I would love to have a copy of it…your voice is beautiful

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