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Song Stories

“Still Not a Player”

Big Punisher feat. Joe | 1998

Big Punisher combined his "I'm Not a Player" single with Joe's "Don't Wanna Be a Player" and the result was 1998's "Still Not a Player." The single features Big Pun's claim that "I'm not a player, I just crush a lot" as Joe imitates Earth Wind & Fire's vocal arrangement from "Beijo," and producer Knobody speeds up Brenda Russell's "A Little Bit of Love." "In 1997, my production partner Sean became A&R at Loud [Records], and he played one of my tracks to Big Pun, who was just getting in the game then," Knobody explained. "We recorded Pun's first hit, "Still Not a Player" and that became huge — my biggest record. The album sold 5 million copies."

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Song Stories

“San Francisco Mabel Joy”

Mickey Newbury | 1969

A country-folk song of epic proportions, "San Francisco Mabel Joy" tells the tale of a poor Georgia farmboy who wound up in prison after a move to the Bay Area found love turning into tragedy. First released by Mickey Newbury in 1969, it might be more familiar through covers by Waylon Jennings, Joan Baez and Kenny Rogers. "It was a five-minute song written in a two-minute world," Newbury said. "I was told it would never be cut by any artist ... I was told you could not use the term 'redneck' in a song and get it recorded."

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