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Song Stories

“Danny's Song”

Loggins & Messina | 1971

Kenny Loggins had set out to write about ordinary people in typical situations when he wrote this song about his brother Dan. "A lot of the lyric is taken, rephrased, from a letter he wrote me when he and [his wife,] Sheila were deciding to move to Berkeley just after their son, Colin, was born," he told Rolling Stone. "He talked about the baby, and that they were going to Berkeley with no money at all, starting fresh." The line "Even though we ain't got money/I'm so in love with you, honey," sealed its inclusion on Best Love Songs lists for years to come.

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Song Stories

“Bleeding Love”

Leona Lewis | 2007

In 2008, The X Factor winner Leona Lewis backed up her U.K. singing competition victory with an R&B anthem for the ages: "Bleeding Love," an international hit that became the best-selling song of the year. The track was co-penned by OneRepublic's Ryan Tedder (whose radio dominance would continue with songs such as Beyonce's "Halo" and Adele's "Rumour Has It") and solo artist Jesse McCartney, who was inspired by a former girlfriend, Gossip Girl actress Katie Cassidy. Given the song's success, McCartney didn't regret handing over such a personal track: "No, no," he said. "I'm so happy for Leona. She deserves it. There are really no bad feelings."

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