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Song Stories

“Party in the U.S.A.”

Miley Cyrus | 2009

Originally co-written by English artist Jessie J for her own use, "Party in the U.S.A." was repurposed for Miley Cyrus to reflect her intimidating move from Nashville to Hollywood. The dance-pop song peaked at Number Two on the Billboard Hot 100, becoming the former Disney star's biggest hit to date. Her performance of "Party" at the 2009 Teen Choice Awards was met with controversy when a scantily clad then-16-year-old Cyrus did a suggestive pole dance. She once described the track, whose accompanying music video riffs off the 1978 film Grease, as "an all-American song … about my roots."

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Song Stories

“Vans”

The Pack | 2006

Berkeley, California rappers the Pack made their footwear choice clear in 2006 with the song "Vans." The track caught the attention of Too $hort, who signed them to his imprint. MTV refused to play the video for the song, though, claiming it was essentially a commercial for the product. Rapper Lil' B disagreed. "I didn’t know nobody [at] Vans," he said. "I was just a rapper who wore Vans." Even without MTV's support, Lil' B recognized the impact of the track. "God blessed me with such a revolutionary song… People around my age know who really started a lot of the dressing people are into now."

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