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Ida Maria: Live at Rolling Stone

April 29, 2009 5:56 PM ET

Norway's hottest punk-rock export and Breaking artist Ida Maria recently popped by the Rolling Stone studios to perform four songs and tell Rock Daily about the stories behind a handful of tracks off her acclaimed debut, Fortress Round My Heart. In our first installment of Ida, she presents stripped-down, acoustic versions of two of her biggest singles, "I Like You So Much Better When You're Naked" (above) and "Keep Me Warm" (below).

" 'Keep Me Warm' and 'Naked' are both about love," Maria tells Rolling Stone. "But 'Keep Me Warm' is more about friendship." But even love songs sound tough in Maria's Nico-meets-Chrissie Hynde voice, and tales of drunken nights and one-night stands pepper her lyrics. "I had been writing songs for three days and I didn't bother to get dressed or shower, I was just sitting there in my underwear with a guitar. That was how I came up with it," she says of writing "I Like You So Much Better When You're Naked. (Watch the song's official video here.)

Now that she's found success in Europe and is cracking the States, Maria finds it difficult to pen songs in her native tongue. "I've been writing a couple songs in Norwegian, but I've been writing in English most of the time, so it's very hard. I have English rhymes in my head but not rhymes in Norwegian," Maria says.

(Check out part two of Ida Maria's RS set here.)

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Song Stories

“Vicious”

Lou Reed | 1972

Opening Lou Reed's 1972 solo album, the hard-riffing "Vicious" actually traces its origin back to Reed's days with the Velvet Underground. Picking up bits and pieces of songs from the people and places around him, and filing his notes for later use, Reed said it was Andy Warhol who provided fuel for the song. "He said, 'Why don't you write a song called 'Vicious,'" Reed told Rolling Stone in 1989. "And I said, 'What kind of vicious?' 'Oh, you know, vicious like I hit you with a flower.' And I wrote it down literally."

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