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Song Stories

“Tell 'Em”

Sleigh Bells | 2010

The firestorm of a song saw the Brooklyn-based duo experiencing two moods simultaneously. “So something like “Tell ‘Em” is preach-y without being righteous,” Derek Miller, one half of Sleigh Bells, said. “It’s like we’re disappointed but optimistic. I love that in vocalists.” Miller decided to go for a heavier sound on this particular song. “It has this intense melody on it. I was afraid to do it for so long because I had abandoned heavy drone for a few years. But it was just there, always in the background and I was just craving it.”

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Song Stories

“Bleeding Love”

Leona Lewis | 2007

In 2008, The X Factor winner Leona Lewis backed up her U.K. singing competition victory with an R&B anthem for the ages: "Bleeding Love," an international hit that became the best-selling song of the year. The track was co-penned by OneRepublic's Ryan Tedder (whose radio dominance would continue with songs such as Beyonce's "Halo" and Adele's "Rumour Has It") and solo artist Jesse McCartney, who was inspired by a former girlfriend, Gossip Girl actress Katie Cassidy. Given the song's success, McCartney didn't regret handing over such a personal track: "No, no," he said. "I'm so happy for Leona. She deserves it. There are really no bad feelings."

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