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Song Stories

“(We're Not) The Jet Set”

George Jones and Tammy Wynette | 1973

George Jones and Tammy Wynette were still married when they recorded the tongue-in-cheek "(We're Not) The Jet Set." The lyrics, written by Nashville songwriter Bobby Braddock, who also penned Wynette's "D-I-V-O-R-C-E" and Jones' "He Stopped Loving Her Today," make fun of the good life by declaring, "We're not the Jet Set/We're the old Chevrolet set." Braddock recalled that while writing the song, he needed the name of a city that evened out the rhyme he had with "Riviera" and "Missourah." “I got out a Rand McNally atlas," he said. "In the first part are the maps. The last part is an alphabetical listing of cities. I wanted a rustic, small-time sound. I went to the listing for Missouri. And I found 'Festus.' I loved the sound of it."

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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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