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Song Stories

“Toe Jam”

The BPA featuring David Byrne and Dizzee Rascal | 2008

“Toe Jam” was the debut single for Brighton Port Authority, which was a collaboration between David Byrne and Dizzee Rascal. Producer Norman Cooke, a.k.a. Fatboy Slim, said that while the ex-Talking Heads frontman and the London-based rapper were listed as co-writers on the tune, they never worked on it together. “[Byrne and I] finished it and Dizzee heard it,” he told Rolling Stone. “I bumped into him at a photo session and he went, ‘I wanna be on that record. It's gonna be a hit and I wanna be on it. Find me 16 bars and put me on it.’ So we kind of glued him onto it."

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Song Stories

“Nightshift”

The Commodores | 1984

The year after soul legends Marvin Gaye and Jackie Wilson died, songwriter Dennis Lambert asked members of the Commodores to give him a tape of ideas. "And the one from Walter Orange has this wonderful bass line," said co-writer Franne Golde. "Plus the lyric, 'Marvin, he was a friend of mine' ... Within 10 minutes, we had decided it should be something like a modern R&B version of 'Rock 'n' Roll Heaven,' and I just said, 'Nightshift.'" This tribute to the recently deceased musicians was the band's only hit without Lionel Richie, who had left for a solo career.

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