.

Song Stories

“Sexual Healing”

Marvin Gaye | 1982

After dealing with depression, financial troubles and drug abuse, Gaye went to Belgium to regroup. While there, he hung out with friend and biographer David Ritz, who sensed the inner conflict Gaye faced between his spiritual upbringing and his sex-and-drugs lifestyle. "When I suggested he needed sexual healing, he laughed and quickly agreed," Ritz wrote in Rolling Stone. A rhythm track written by sideman Odell Brown, Ritz continued, would help spark this major comeback hit. "Lyrics came pouring out of me while he sang the melody over Odell's chords. We jammed for a half-hour, and 'Sexual Healing' was written."

prev
Song Stories Main Next

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."

More Song Stories entries »
www.expandtheroom.com