Song Stories

“Guitars, Cadillacs”

Dwight Yoakam | 1986

When Yoakam first saw the scene that used this song in "Terminator 2: Judgment Day," he noticed an odd coincidence. The redneck bar that Arnold Schwarzenegger's cyborg character enters while naked was a San Fernando Valley cop-cowboy club called the Corral, where Yoakam had once performed regularly for a year. That era of playing traditional country music in L.A. -- Nashville thought he was too country -- inspired this song. "I was in L.A., wandering around," he said. "I'd been here nine years, driving air-freight trucks, furniture-moving trucks, trying to get somebody to notice the music." Eventually, he found fans among punk crowds.

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Song Stories

“Bird on a Wire”

Leonard Cohen | 1969

While living on the Greek island of Hydra, Cohen was battling a lingering depression when his girlfriend handed him a guitar and suggested he play something. After spotting a bird on a telephone wire, Cohen wrote this prayer-like song of guilt. First recorded by Judy Collins, it would be performed numerous times by artists incuding Johnny Cash, Joe Cocker and Rita Coolidge. "I'm always knocked out when I hear my songs covered or used in some situation," Cohen told Rolling Stone. "I've never gotten over the fact that people out there like my music."

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