.

Song Stories

“He Will Break Your Heart”

Jerry Butler | 1960

A lightly swinging Latin-influenced, almost cha-cha groove and close harmonies decorated Jerry Butler's early soul hit "He Will Break Your Heart," delivering a stately warning that his rival would never love his girl like he did. The melody came to Butler as he was driving on the highway from Atlantic City, New Jersey, to Philadelphia with Curtis Mayfield, and as Butler told Rolling Stone, "I just sang the melody and Curtis put the chords to it." The song's premise, Butler added, "was something that I'd lived ...The lyric was an experience rather than a revelation. Whereas music is usually a revelation."

prev
Song Stories Main Next

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."

More Song Stories entries »
www.expandtheroom.com