Song Stories

“Black Dog”

Led Zeppelin | 1971

Robert Plant once told Rolling Stone that the early 1970s were a very sexual and wild period, which were reflected in the lyrics of such Led Zeppelin tunes as "Black Dog." "That era, the whole thing of the G.T.O.'s and - what was that Zappa album? 10,000 Hotels? 'I've Been to Bed with Robert Planet.'…Yeah, shoving the Plaster Casters' cast of Jimi Hendrix's penis up one of the girls in Detroit was…quite fun, actually." The song's mysterious title was inspired by a dog that would roam around the grounds of Headley Grange, in Headley, East Hampshire, England - the location of the recording sessions for Led Zeppelin IV.

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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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