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Song Stories

“Seven and Seven Is”

Love | 1966

Driven by ominous fuzz chord riffs and nonstop drum rolls, Arthur Lee's surrealistic rant "Seven and Seven Is" was capped off by an atomic explosion, a brief country blues tag ending the song like dust settling over a demolished building. More than 30 takes were recorded, mainly because the song's drum part was so exhausting that Lee and Love drummer Snoopy Pfisterer had to take turns playing it. "It was about a lady named Anita," disclosed Lee. "She's born on the seventh, and I'm born on the seventh, and that's 'seven and seven is.'"

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Song Stories

“Madame George”

Van Morrison | 1968

One of the first stream-of-consciousness epics to make it onto a Van Morrison record, his drawn-out farewell to the eccentric "Madame George" lasted nearly 10 minutes, combining ingredients from folk, jazz and classical music. The character that gave the song its title provoked speculation that it was about a drag queen, though Morrison denied this in Rolling Stone. "If you see it as a male or a female or whatever, it's your trip," he remarked. "I see it as a ... a Swiss cheese sandwich. Something like that."

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