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Song Stories

“Little Black Submarines”

The Black Keys | 2011

Though the song may sound a little “Stairway to Heaven”-ish, this Akron, Ohio, duo has stolen from the best from the beginning, in particular old blues. Rolling Stone picked this song from El Camino as Number 18 in the 50 Best Singles list of 2011, partially on the strength of Dan Auerbach’s wailing guitar solo. “That was my jock-rock moment,” Auerbach said. “We actually did that song in two versions, an acoustic one and an electric one and spliced them together. I think that the electric half of that song is the closest representation of our live show than anything we’ve done before.”

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Song Stories

“Santa Monica”

Everclear | 1996

After his brother and girlfriend both died of drug overdoses, Art Alexakis -- depressed and hooked on drugs himself -- jumped off the Santa Monica Pier in California, determined to die. "It was really stupid," said the Everclear frontman, who would further explore his personal emotional journey in the song "Father of Mine." "I went under the water. Then I said, 'I don't wanna die.'" The song, declaring "Let's swim out past the breakers/and watch the world die," was intended as a manifesto for change, Alexakis said. "Let the world do what it's gonna do and just live on our own."

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