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Song Stories

“Caught in a Mosh”

Anthrax | 1987

It wasn't until the arrival of thrash metal in the early-to-mid-Eighties that slam dancing — or "moshing" — crossed over from skinheads to longhairs. And one of the bands that embraced this stylistic shift the most was Anthrax, who went as far as titling a song "Caught in a Mosh." The song's initial idea can be traced to a particular show in Denver, when the group's guitar tech, Art Ring, tried to clear a fan from the stage, who in turn pulled him into the audience. "Art fell underneath the kid and f---ed up his back really bad," Anthrax drummer Charlie Benante recalled. "Afterward, when the paramedics were looking at him, the one thing he said was, 'Oh, dude, I got caught in a mosh.'"

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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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