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Song Stories

“The Pretender”

Foo Fighters | 2007

This song wasn't part of the planned track listing for 2007's Echoes, Silence, Patience & Grace, and was put together in a day. "It happened after we recorded a lot of stuff," said Dave Grohl. Yet it ended up as the album opener and the lead single. Grohl called it "a stomping Foo Fighters uptempo song with a little bit of Chuck Berry in it." The singer hinted at the lyrics' political overtones: "Everyone's been f---ed over before and I think a lot of people feel f---ed over right now and they're not getting what they were promised."

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Song Stories

“Santa Monica”

Everclear | 1996

After his brother and girlfriend both died of drug overdoses, Art Alexakis -- depressed and hooked on drugs himself -- jumped off the Santa Monica Pier in California, determined to die. "It was really stupid," said the Everclear frontman, who would further explore his personal emotional journey in the song "Father of Mine." "I went under the water. Then I said, 'I don't wanna die.'" The song, declaring "Let's swim out past the breakers/and watch the world die," was intended as a manifesto for change, Alexakis said. "Let the world do what it's gonna do and just live on our own."

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