Song Stories

“Live and Let Die”

Paul McCartney | 1973

Switching between a lush ballad, passages suitable for chase scenes in thrillers, and a snatch of reggae, "Live and Let Die" was the hit theme to the 1973 James Bond movie of the same name. Paul McCartney wrote the song the day after reading the Ian Fleming book on which the film was based. As he commented in the liner notes to an expanded edition of Band on the Run, the song "has various parts stitched together, and that probably encouraged me to think about Band on the Run in the same way, as a kind of epic adventure album."

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Song Stories

“Long Walk Home”

Bruce Springsteen | 2007

When the subject of this mournful song returns home, he hardly recognizes his town. Springsteen told Rolling Stone the alienation the man feels is a metaphor for life in a politically altered post-9/11 America. “Who would have ever thought we’d live in a country without habeas corpus?” he said. “That’s Orwellian. That’s what political hysteria is about and how effective it is. I felt it in myself. You get frightened for your family, for your home. And you realize how countries can move way off course, very far from democratic ideals.”

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