Song Stories

“Ice Ice Baby”

Vanilla Ice | 1990

Ice's flat-top hairdo, shoulder pads and phony past made it easy to mock this hip-hop tune that samples "Under Pressure" by Queen and David Bowie. But it was the first hip-hop tune to hit No. 1 on the U.S. mainstream charts. Just 16 when he co-wrote the song, years later Ice stood by his big hit. "If someone comes up to me and starts doing 'Ice Ice Baby,' 10 times out of 10 I'm going to join in," he said. Rap Mogul Suge Knight allegedly "persuaded" Ice to sign over millions of royalties from the song to him.

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Song Stories

“Money For Nothing”

Dire Straits | 1984

Mark Knopfler wrote this song with Sting, and it wasn’t without controversy. The Dire Straits frontman's original lyric used the word “faggot” to describe a singer who got their “money for nothing and their chicks for free.” Even though the slur was edited out in many versions, the band, and Knopfler, still took plenty of criticism for the term. “I got an objection from the editor of a gay newspaper in London--he actually said it was below the belt,” Knopfler told Rolling Stone. Still, "Money For Nothing," undoubtedly augmented by its innovative early computer-animated video, stayed at Number One for three weeks.

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