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Song Stories

“Loser”

Beck | 1993

In 1992, 22-year-old Beck Hansen was scraping by as a video-store clerk while performing “anti-folk” songs at L.A. coffeehouses. During that year, he cut “Loser” in the kitchen of onetime Geto Boys producer Karl Stephenson. The song became the centerpiece of his major-label debut album, 1994's Mellow Gold, which cost $200 to make. But the downside of creating the quintessential slacker anthem is that people assumed Beck was actually a loser himself. "It didn't seem like people understood what I was doing," Beck told Rolling Stone. "It was like, 'Is this guy for real? Is he making music that's worthy or valuable?' I felt like I was constantly having to prove myself."

Find out the connection between Beck’s grandfather and Yoko Ono.
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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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