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Song Stories

“I Say a Little Prayer”

Dionne Warwick | 1967

The wistful verses in which Dionne Warwick asks for a blessing for someone close to her glide into a jubilant chorus pledging eternal love on this 1967 hit. Warwick later revealed in the liner notes to The Look of Love: The Burt Bacharach Collection that she "approached the song from the point of view that it was written, that we were sending a message to our kids in Vietnam." Burt Bacharach, who co-wrote "I Say a Little Prayer" with Hal David, worried, "I thought I blew it. The tempo seemed too fast."

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Song Stories

“Vicious”

Lou Reed | 1972

Opening Lou Reed's 1972 solo album, the hard-riffing "Vicious" actually traces its origin back to Reed's days with the Velvet Underground. Picking up bits and pieces of songs from the people and places around him, and filing his notes for later use, Reed said it was Andy Warhol who provided fuel for the song. "He said, 'Why don't you write a song called 'Vicious,'" Reed told Rolling Stone in 1989. "And I said, 'What kind of vicious?' 'Oh, you know, vicious like I hit you with a flower.' And I wrote it down literally."

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