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Song Stories

“Eight Days a Week”

The Beatles | 1964

Originally released on the U.K. album Beatles for Sale, this song was issued as a U.S.-only single, as well as on the American LP Beatles VI, in 1965. And although its reaching Number One marks its classic status, co-writer John Lennon did not share that assessment of the track. "We struggled to record it and struggled to make it into a song," he said in 1980. "It was [Paul McCartney's] original effort, but I think we both worked on it. But it was lousy anyway." McCartney has given two explanations for the title at different times: The first is that it was an overworked chauffeur’s response to Paul's question about how many days he'd been driving; the second is that it was one of the many elliptical "Ringo-isms" Ringo Starr would come up with, alongside "a hard day's night" and "tomorrow never knows."

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Song Stories

“Santa Monica”

Everclear | 1996

After his brother and girlfriend both died of drug overdoses, Art Alexakis -- depressed and hooked on drugs himself -- jumped off the Santa Monica Pier in California, determined to die. "It was really stupid," said the Everclear frontman, who would further explore his personal emotional journey in the song "Father of Mine." "I went under the water. Then I said, 'I don't wanna die.'" The song, declaring "Let's swim out past the breakers/and watch the world die," was intended as a manifesto for change, Alexakis said. "Let the world do what it's gonna do and just live on our own."

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