Song Stories

“Love Is All Around”

The Troggs | 1967

Since they were famed for the punky raunch of "Wild Thing," it was a shock when the Troggs plugged into the peace-and-love sentiments of the hippy era on "Love Is All Around," complete with string quartet. About a quarter of a century later, it topped the UK charts for Wet Wet Wet, bolstered by its use on the soundtrack of Four Weddings and a Funeral. "It's not really psychedelic, or a hippy love song," admitted singer Reg Presley in NME. "I wrote one along those lines, all about 'purple flamingoes dancing on a cellophane moon.' But it wasn't us really."

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Song Stories

“San Francisco Mabel Joy”

Mickey Newbury | 1969

A country-folk song of epic proportions, "San Francisco Mabel Joy" tells the tale of a poor Georgia farmboy who wound up in prison after a move to the Bay Area found love turning into tragedy. First released by Mickey Newbury in 1969, it might be more familiar through covers by Waylon Jennings, Joan Baez and Kenny Rogers. "It was a five-minute song written in a two-minute world," Newbury said. "I was told it would never be cut by any artist ... I was told you could not use the term 'redneck' in a song and get it recorded."

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