.

Song Stories

“Unchained Melody”

The Righteous Brothers | 1965

Written by famed soundtrack composer Alex North (with Hy Zaret doing lyrics), this evergreen was originally the theme for the prison flick Unchained, but it has gone on to be recorded countless times in more than 100 languages. The Righteous Brothers were not the first to take it to Number One, yet their version, sung by Bobby Hatfield, charted twice, thanks to its appearance in a pivotal scene of the 1990 film Ghost. According to Hatfield, "It was kind of cool because Bill [Medley] was singing lead on all the songs then, so it was like, "Wow, who's that little s--t with the high voice?"

prev
Song Stories Main Next

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."

More Song Stories entries »
www.expandtheroom.com