Song Stories

“Rebel Rebel”

David Bowie | 1974

A hypnotic buzzing circular guitar riff is the inescapable hook of "Rebel Rebel," whose protagonist's flirtation with glam rock androgyny mirrored David Bowie's own persona in the early-to-mid-'70s. It's been speculated that transsexual rock singer Wayne (aka Jane) County, whose song "Queenage Baby" also includes a line wondering if someone's a boy or a girl, might have been an influence on the composition. "Rebel Rebel"'s lead guitar was played by Bowie himself, who later declared, "It's a fabulous riff! Just fabulous! When I stumbled onto it, it was 'Oh, thank you!'"

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Song Stories

“Whoomp! (There It Is)”

Tag Team | 1993

Cecil Glenn — a.k.a., "D.C." — was a cook at Magic City, a nude dance club in Atlanta, when he first heard women shout "Whoomp — there it is!" Inspired by the party chant, he and partner Steve "Roll'n" Gibson wrote a song around it. Undaunted by label rejections, they borrowed $2,500 from Glenn's parents and pressed 800 singles, which quickly sold out in the Atlanta area. A record deal came soon after. Glenn said the song was meant for positive partying. "If you're going to say 'Whoomp there it is,' and you're doing something negative, we'd rather it not have come out of your mouth."

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