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Song Stories

“I'll Be There”

The Jackson 5 | 1970

Although the Jackson 5 had already scored three Number One hits in 1969 ("I Want You Back," "ABC" and "The Love You Save"), it wasn't until "I'll Be There" that Michael Jackson felt he and his brothers had cemented their standing as pop hitmakers. As the King of Pop explained, "'I'll Be There' was our real breakthrough song; it was the one that said, 'We're here to stay.' It was Number One for five weeks, which is very unusual. That's a long time for a song and the song was one of my favorites of all the songs we've ever done. How I loved the words: 'You and I must make a pact/We must bring salvation back.'"

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Song Stories

“Bleeding Love”

Leona Lewis | 2007

In 2008, The X Factor winner Leona Lewis backed up her U.K. singing competition victory with an R&B anthem for the ages: "Bleeding Love," an international hit that became the best-selling song of the year. The track was co-penned by OneRepublic's Ryan Tedder (whose radio dominance would continue with songs such as Beyonce's "Halo" and Adele's "Rumour Has It") and solo artist Jesse McCartney, who was inspired by a former girlfriend, Gossip Girl actress Katie Cassidy. Given the song's success, McCartney didn't regret handing over such a personal track: "No, no," he said. "I'm so happy for Leona. She deserves it. There are really no bad feelings."

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