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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

“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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