Song Stories

“Killing the Blues”

Robert Plant and Alison Krauss | 2007

Popularized by John Prine and also recorded by Shawn Colvin, as well as its original writer, Rowland Salley, "Kiling the Blues," with its laid-back melody and poetic verse, was cherry-picked by Robert Plant and Alison Krauss to be the linchpin of their collaborative project. "When you combine a melody that lifts you up with a lyric like that, it's a twisted thing," said Krauss. "When you get that combination that is really something."

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Song Stories


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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