Song Stories

“Love Is Strange”

Mickey & Sylvia | 1956

Spiraling, penetrating blues-rock riffs that inspired countless young guitarists highlighted "Love Is Strange," Mickey & Sylvia playfully dueting and teasing each other in the calypso-flavored verses. The hit was an adaptation of a song the pair heard Bo Diddley guitarist Little Joe Williams playing backstage. "They called it 'Paradise,'" emphasized Diddley in Rolling Stone. "I wrote the words, and I named it 'Love Is Strange.'" Leonard Chess of Chess Records, he added, didn't want Bo to record it, and "that's why Sylvia got the song. I let her record it, and I published it under my first wife's maiden name."

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Song Stories

“Stillness Is the Move”

Dirty Projectors | 2009

A Wim Wenders film and a rapper inspired the Dirty Projectors duo David Longstreth and Amber Coffmanto write "sort of a love song." "We rented the movie Wings of Desire from Dave's brother's recommendation, and he had me go through it and just write down some things that I found interesting, and they made it into the song," Coffman said. As for the hip-hop connection, Longstreth explained, "The beat is based on T-Pain. We commissioned a radio mix of the song by the guy who mixes all of Timbaland's records, but the mix we made sounded way better, so we didn't use it."

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