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Song Stories

“V.T.T.L.O.T.F.D.G.F.”

Fishbone | 1985

Quite a few musicians have utilized initials for song titles -- Michael Jackson's "P.Y.T.," Abba's "S.O.S.," Donald Fagen's "I.G.Y.," etc. But the more curiously initialed tune has to be "V.T.T.L.O.T.F.D.G.F.," short for "Voyage to the Land of the Freeze-Dried Godzilla Farts." Fishbone's original guitarist, Kendall Jones, explained to Rolling Stone, "When Norwood [Fisher] wrote it, he introduced it to the band saying, 'Man, I've been hearing about all these Nazi right-wing groups on the news saying the Holocaust was staged. So what if America said it never dropped two atom bombs on Japan, that it was actually Godzilla popping a couple off?' Only Norwood would come up with something that out." The same year "V.T.T.L.O.T.F.D.G.F." was released, the film Godzilla 1985 appeared in North America.

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Song Stories

“Bird on a Wire”

Leonard Cohen | 1969

While living on the Greek island of Hydra, Cohen was battling a lingering depression when his girlfriend handed him a guitar and suggested he play something. After spotting a bird on a telephone wire, Cohen wrote this prayer-like song of guilt. First recorded by Judy Collins, it would be performed numerous times by artists incuding Johnny Cash, Joe Cocker and Rita Coolidge. "I'm always knocked out when I hear my songs covered or used in some situation," Cohen told Rolling Stone. "I've never gotten over the fact that people out there like my music."

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