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Song Stories

“Oh Boy”

Cam'ron feat. Juelz Santana | 2002

Harlem resident Cam'ron's 2002 single "Oh Boy" featured an instantly recognizable beat courtesy of producer Just Blaze, who used a repeating, high-pitched Rose Royce vocal sample to anchor the song. Released during the heigh of the infamous Nas vs. Jay-Z feud, "Oh Boy" might have gone down in history as a Nas dis, if a planned Jay-Z verse made it onto a remix. Juelz Santana, who made a guest appearance on the original track, explained "[Cam'ron] made [engineer Young Guru] erase the verse," about the rapper's reluctance to include the insulting lyrics. "Cam told Guru, 'You better erase that, I don't ever want to hear that.'"

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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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