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Song Stories

“I Don't Need Society”

D.R.I. | 1983

Bands that fall into the grindcore category seem to abide by a simple guideline: "How fast can you go?" And D.R.I. (short for "Dirty Rotten Imbeciles") are considered one of the genre's godfathers, as heard by their Dirty Rotten LP from 1983, and this, the album's lead-off cut — which barely lasts more than a minute. "I laugh when I listen to those early albums," D.R.I. singer Kurt Brech said. "Sounds like a grinding noise! Someone told me we invented grindcore, could be true but we never planned it that way. We were just experimenting with playing as fast as we could and still stay tight." 

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Song Stories

“Try a Little Tenderness”

Otis Redding | 1966

This pop standard had been previously recorded by dozens of artists, including by Bing Crosby 33 years before Otis Redding, who usually wrote his own songs, cut it. It was actually Sam Cooke’s 1964 take, which Redding’s manager played for Otis, that inspired the initially reluctant singer to take on the song. Isaac Hayes, then working as Stax Records’ in-house producer, handled the arrangement, and Booker T. and the MG’s were the backing band. Redding’s soulful version begins quite slowly and tenderly itself before mounting into a rousing, almost religious “You’ve gotta hold her, squeeze her …” climax. “I did that damn song you told me to do,” Redding told his manager. “It’s a brand new song now.”

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