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Song Stories

“Hunger Strike”

Temple of the Dog | 1991

When Eddie Vedder eavesdropped in on a Temple of the Dog rehearsal, he was taken by the tune "Hunger Strike," with its lyrics about a modern-day Robin Hood. But it was a unique vocal idea that Vedder had that was the song's missing ingredient. "I was sitting in the corner, putting duct tape on a little African drum," Vedder recalled. "About two-thirds of the way through, [Chris Cornell] was having to cut off the one line, and start the other. I'm not now, and certainly wasn't then, self-assured or cocky, but I could hear what he was trying to do, so I walked up to the mic -- which I'm really surprised I did -- and sang that other part, 'Going hungry, going hungry.'" Pearl Jam has performed the song onstage sporadically -- whenever Cornell guests.

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Song Stories

“Vans”

The Pack | 2006

Berkeley, California rappers the Pack made their footwear choice clear in 2006 with the song "Vans." The track caught the attention of Too $hort, who signed them to his imprint. MTV refused to play the video for the song, though, claiming it was essentially a commercial for the product. Rapper Lil' B disagreed. "I didn’t know nobody [at] Vans," he said. "I was just a rapper who wore Vans." Even without MTV's support, Lil' B recognized the impact of the track. "God blessed me with such a revolutionary song… People around my age know who really started a lot of the dressing people are into now."

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