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Rise Against on Mixing Politics and Mosh Pits at Lollapalooza

August 9, 2009 12:34 PM ET

Rise Against's fiery Saturday afternoon set at Lollapalooza looked like it could have gone down during one of the great Lollas of the '90s — mosh pit and all. Frontman Tim McIlrath tells Rolling Stone the show had special significance for the band, not only because it was their first hometown gig in a while (they skipped Chicago on tour with Rancid), but because Grant Park has so much historical weight: "To play the same place where Obama gave his speech, the same place where the riots of 1968 were, during the Democratic National Convention — this park has a lot of history to it." Catch some of the band's killer set and the rest of the interview, above.

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Song Stories

“Nightshift”

The Commodores | 1984

The year after soul legends Marvin Gaye and Jackie Wilson died, songwriter Dennis Lambert asked members of the Commodores to give him a tape of ideas. "And the one from Walter Orange has this wonderful bass line," said co-writer Franne Golde. "Plus the lyric, 'Marvin, he was a friend of mine' ... Within 10 minutes, we had decided it should be something like a modern R&B version of 'Rock 'n' Roll Heaven,' and I just said, 'Nightshift.'" This tribute to the recently deceased musicians was the band's only hit without Lionel Richie, who had left for a solo career.

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