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Song Stories

“In the Air Tonight”

Phil Collins | 1981

Through the years, an urban legend -- repeated in the Eminem song "Stan" -- maintained that this moody number was about a preventable drowning Collins had witnessed at sea. But in reality, this song, along with his entire debut album, was inspired by a split with his wife. "If I hadn't gotten divorced, I never would have written it," he told Rolling Stone. Known for its drum outburst, which was suggested by Atlantic Records founder Ahmet Ertegun, it established the Genesis frontman as a solo act. In adition, the song got a significant bump from appearing on the Miami Vice premiere.

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Song Stories

“Stillness Is the Move”

Dirty Projectors | 2009

A Wim Wenders film and a rapper inspired the Dirty Projectors duo David Longstreth and Amber Coffmanto write "sort of a love song." "We rented the movie Wings of Desire from Dave's brother's recommendation, and he had me go through it and just write down some things that I found interesting, and they made it into the song," Coffman said. As for the hip-hop connection, Longstreth explained, "The beat is based on T-Pain. We commissioned a radio mix of the song by the guy who mixes all of Timbaland's records, but the mix we made sounded way better, so we didn't use it."

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