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Song Stories

“(Everything I Do) I Do It for You”

Bryan Adams | 1991

The early candidates included Kate Bush, Annie Lennox and Lisa Stansfield. But, ultimately, two artists competed for the opportunity to write lyrics for Maid Marian's song in the movie Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves: Peter Cetera and Bryan Adams. "In all honesty, Cetera's was too pretty," said Michael Kamen, the film's composer. "I write sweet melodies, and sometimes they need someone to deliver them with enough authority to make sure that you don't fall asleep." Adams, who hadn't released an album in four years, won thanks to his rough voice and heart-tugging lyrics about Marian and Robin's romance.

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Song Stories

“San Francisco Mabel Joy”

Mickey Newbury | 1969

A country-folk song of epic proportions, "San Francisco Mabel Joy" tells the tale of a poor Georgia farmboy who wound up in prison after a move to the Bay Area found love turning into tragedy. First released by Mickey Newbury in 1969, it might be more familiar through covers by Waylon Jennings, Joan Baez and Kenny Rogers. "It was a five-minute song written in a two-minute world," Newbury said. "I was told it would never be cut by any artist ... I was told you could not use the term 'redneck' in a song and get it recorded."

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