Song Stories

“You Keep Me Hangin' On”

The Supremes | 1966

Yet another Holland-Dozier-Holland hit single with Motown, "You Keep Me Hangin' On" was The Supremes eighth song to top the pop charts. It was recorded at Motown's Hitsville studio over the course of eight sessions before the label deemed it ready for release. Its opening stuttering guitar figure was actually inspired by Morse code. "'You Keep Me Hanging On' was about a girl complaining about the guys fooling around and we knew all about that because that was what we did," Lamont Dozier said. "We considered ourselves to be playboys."

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Song Stories


Lou Reed | 1972

Opening Lou Reed's 1972 solo album, the hard-riffing "Vicious" actually traces its origin back to Reed's days with the Velvet Underground. Picking up bits and pieces of songs from the people and places around him, and filing his notes for later use, Reed said it was Andy Warhol who provided fuel for the song. "He said, 'Why don't you write a song called 'Vicious,'" Reed told Rolling Stone in 1989. "And I said, 'What kind of vicious?' 'Oh, you know, vicious like I hit you with a flower.' And I wrote it down literally."

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