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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

“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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