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Song Stories

“Hands All Over”

Soundgarden | 1989

When "Hands All Over" was released, Soundgarden were met with some resistance, concerning the lyrics "You're gonna kill your mother." But as Kim Thayil explained to Rolling Stone, the words were taken completely out of context. "I think there was a minor protest about [the lyric] — of course, 'your mother' being a metaphor for the environment or the Earth. People flipped out about that," the Soundgarden guitarist recalled. "But I am going to go on the record now to tell everyone, 'Kill your f---ing mother!'" he added, laughing.

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Song Stories

“Money For Nothing”

Dire Straits | 1984

Mark Knopfler wrote this song with Sting, and it wasn’t without controversy. The Dire Straits frontman's original lyric used the word “faggot” to describe a singer who got their “money for nothing and their chicks for free.” Even though the slur was edited out in many versions, the band, and Knopfler, still took plenty of criticism for the term. “I got an objection from the editor of a gay newspaper in London--he actually said it was below the belt,” Knopfler told Rolling Stone. Still, "Money For Nothing," undoubtedly augmented by its innovative early computer-animated video, stayed at Number One for three weeks.

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