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Song Stories

“Purple Haze”

The Jimi Hendrix Experience | 1967

Although"Purple Haze" is often associated with acid culture, Jimi Hendrix biographer Charles R. Cross explained that the song's basis wasn't drug-related. "Though the tune would forever be linked in the popular imagination with LSD, Jimi said it was inspired by a dream he had that mirrored the novel Night of Light: Day of Dreams, by Philip José Farmer." There has been some talk over the years about an often misunderstod line from the song, in which Hendrix sings, "Excuse me while I kiss the sky." When Frank Zappa's band covered the tune in 1988, they went with "Excuse me while I kiss this guy."

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Song Stories

“Money For Nothing”

Dire Straits | 1984

Mark Knopfler wrote this song with Sting, and it wasn’t without controversy. The Dire Straits frontman's original lyric used the word “faggot” to describe a singer who got their “money for nothing and their chicks for free.” Even though the slur was edited out in many versions, the band, and Knopfler, still took plenty of criticism for the term. “I got an objection from the editor of a gay newspaper in London--he actually said it was below the belt,” Knopfler told Rolling Stone. Still, "Money For Nothing," undoubtedly augmented by its innovative early computer-animated video, stayed at Number One for three weeks.

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