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Song Stories

“Nuthin' but a 'G' Thang”

Dr. Dre | 1992

Against a sample of the bass line of Leon Haywood's "I Want'a Do Something Freaky to You," this 1992 smash united the rival SoCal cities Long Beach and Compton and, in the process, cemented Dre's status as a major player in music -- and also made Snoop Dogg a household name. The song's impact on pop culture was so massive that it spawned an academic tome of the same name and inspired a Glee spoof on Funny or Die 20 years after its release. "The mastermind on his working methods: 'I sit around by myself in the studio at home, push buttons and see what happens,'" Rolling Stone reported Dre as saying in naming the track one of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.

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Song Stories

“Bird on a Wire”

Leonard Cohen | 1969

While living on the Greek island of Hydra, Cohen was battling a lingering depression when his girlfriend handed him a guitar and suggested he play something. After spotting a bird on a telephone wire, Cohen wrote this prayer-like song of guilt. First recorded by Judy Collins, it would be performed numerous times by artists incuding Johnny Cash, Joe Cocker and Rita Coolidge. "I'm always knocked out when I hear my songs covered or used in some situation," Cohen told Rolling Stone. "I've never gotten over the fact that people out there like my music."

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