Song Stories

“Purple Rain”

Prince and the Revolution | 1984

This iconic song – the title track from the album and movie of the same name – solidified Prince as one of the biggest musical powerhouses of the 1980s, causing him to be unofficially nicknamed The Purple One. As one of his signature songs, the singer initially worried it sounded too much like Journey's "Faithfully," even going so far as asking "Faithfully" songwriter Jonathan Cain for his blessing before its release. Each verse addresses a different storyline in the film – about his father, love interest and band, respectively. "He envisioned the film as he made the album," Alan Leeds, one-time executive at Paisley Park Records, told Rolling Stone at the 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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