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Song Stories

“Louisiana Fairytale”

Jim James and the Preservation Hall Jazz Band | 2010

My Morning Jacket singer Jim James sat in with these traditional New Orleans old-time jazz legends for a song on a benefit effort to support the group. First recorded by early jazz great Fats Waller, this version hews closer to that than anything written by MMJ. For authenticity, it was recorded at Preservation Hall's hallowed French Quarter home base, where fans can see the band nightly. "What a thrill," recalls James. "We did it old-school: all live with no electricity, and the garbage trucks even played along!"

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Song Stories

“Nightshift”

The Commodores | 1984

The year after soul legends Marvin Gaye and Jackie Wilson died, songwriter Dennis Lambert asked members of the Commodores to give him a tape of ideas. "And the one from Walter Orange has this wonderful bass line," said co-writer Franne Golde. "Plus the lyric, 'Marvin, he was a friend of mine' ... Within 10 minutes, we had decided it should be something like a modern R&B version of 'Rock 'n' Roll Heaven,' and I just said, 'Nightshift.'" This tribute to the recently deceased musicians was the band's only hit without Lionel Richie, who had left for a solo career.

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