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Song Stories

“Handle With Care”

The Traveling Wilburys | 1988

The Traveling Wilburys formed spontaneously one day at Bob Dylan’s house in Malibu, California, where George Harrison had invited his pals Tom Petty and Roy Orbison to help him and producer Jeff Lynne record a B side for his just-released Cloud Nine. “Jeff and George roughed out the music in the afternoon, and Bob actually barbecued chicken for us,” Petty remembered. “While we ate, we all sat around throwing lines out, got the lyric done, sang it and cut the track. And that became ‘Handle With Care.’ George came up with the title from a road case.” They hadn’t recorded a B side, they’d cut a hit – and become a band.

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Song Stories

“Long Walk Home”

Bruce Springsteen | 2007

When the subject of this mournful song returns home, he hardly recognizes his town. Springsteen told Rolling Stone the alienation the man feels is a metaphor for life in a politically altered post-9/11 America. “Who would have ever thought we’d live in a country without habeas corpus?” he said. “That’s Orwellian. That’s what political hysteria is about and how effective it is. I felt it in myself. You get frightened for your family, for your home. And you realize how countries can move way off course, very far from democratic ideals.”

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