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|Bryan Adams "Summer of '69"
This annoying as all get out little ditty from Bryan Adams' Reckless album has been a staple of wedding dances for over two decades now. And it's no wonder, people love to reminisce on days gone by when life was simpler and anything seemed possible. But what exactly is Bryan Adams reminiscing about?
It seems straightforward enough. He bought a guitar, played it until his fingers bled, started a band, the band broke up because Bryan Adams blows, he met a chick, she didn't realize he was going to grow up to be Bryan Adams so she made out with him. Those were the best days of his life, and ours, because we hadn't heard that song from the Robin Hood soundtrack yet.
And as you'll notice in a few of the songs on this list, the dirty, double meaning that sounds like it was thought up by a horny 12 year old often turns out to be true. In an online interview, Adams said: "One thing people never got was that the song isn't about the year 1969. It's about making love, a la '69!" A la '69? What a dork. Then there's the interview with the Binghampton Press Sun Bulletin where Adams confirmed "the title comes from the idea of '69 as a metaphor for sex," confirming he has both a child's sense of humor and understanding of metaphors. Anyway, coming from the source itself, that seems pretty convincing. We're pretty sure Adams himself wouldn't even say that. There's also the fact that Adams didn't turn 10 until November of 1969, and we refuse eagles throwback jerseys cheap to believe Bryan Adams was a cooler 9 year old than us.
Some claim the "Angie" in the song is Angela, the now ex wife of David Bowie. Lending credence to that claim is that the former Mrs. Bowie herself is one of the ones making that claim. According to her, after returning home from a trip, she walked into her bedroom to find Bowie and Jagger in bed together. While their thin white dukes weren't in action at the time, they did just happen to be nude. And probably high, skinny to the point of borderline anorexia and, even in the post coital glow of dude loving, far more attractive to most chicks than any of us ever will be.
Yes, the song you've probably dedicated to your ex girlfriend is about the heartbreak someone else felt upon finding out you boned David Bowie.
While Jagger and Bowie understandably deny the incident ever happened, . Adding fuel to the fire, after she divorced Bowie she wrote a book and made a famous appearance on the Joan Rivers Show in which she reiterated her belief that Jagger and Bowie wholesale jerseys had indeed been having sex shortly before she walked in.
Now, Keith Richards does say he came up with the chord sequence and title a full year before the incident that allegedly inspired the song. It's not known where Richards snorting his father's ashes fits in that timeline, but it is widely speculated that Keith Richards' perception of the time space continuum is utterly fucked, even if he's not just fudging it to protect Jagger's reputation.
For the rest of us, there's the simple fact that around the time he got caught by a woman named Angela in bed with David Bowie, Mick Jagger wrote a song about the haunting, sad eyes of a girl named Angie. And then there's this picture, taken around that time.
L to R: David Bowie, sexual tension, Mick Jagger
Phil Collins "In the Air Tonight"
"In the Air Tonight" stands alone as Phil Collins' sole flirtation with being awesome. With its spooky production and hammering drum patterns, the song pulled off the gargantuan feat of making television viewers believe Philip Michael Thomas and Don Johnson wearing pastel suits amidst mountains of cocaine was a plausible setting in which a crime other than forced sodomy could actually occur. It's no wonder that a song with that much force behind it would have an equally powerful back story attached to it.
It varies wildly depending on who you're talking to, jerseys china wholesale but the most popular story behind the song, and the one awkwardly quoted by Eminem in the almost as popular "Stan," goes like this: As a kid, Collins witnessed a tragic incident in which a man drowned as another man who could have helped stood by and did nothing. Later, presumably through some form of leprechaun magic, Phil tracked the no good Samaritan down and arranged for him to be sitting in the front row of the concert where he debuted "In the Air Tonight," singing the song directly to the man who sat uncomfortably under a spotlight. Were it not for that one Genesis video that starred a Ronald Reagan puppet, this would qualify as the creepiest moment of Phil Collins' career.
Not a damned thing.
On the VH1 Classic series "Classic Albums," Collins explained that he made up the lyrics to "In the Air Tonight" in the studio, based on what he felt was appropriate for the vibe of the song. Yes, after all that, it turns out the song literally has less coherent meaning than "My Humps."
It's an understandable conclusion if you take a look at some of the lyrics. Among the references that draw the attention of suicide song enthusiasts are "old 441" which is the name of the highway in Florida that runs past the dorm where the suicide allegedly occurred and "she stood alone, on the balcony" which is generally what people do shortly before hurling themselves off said balcony. Toss in the fact that Petty is from Gainesville where the University of Florida is located and what you have is one perfectly reasonable theory about the meaning of the song.
It's not true at all. In the book "Conversations With Tom Petty," the ugly stick beaten rocker set the story straight.
In his words, the story is an "urban legend" and was actually written while he was living in Encino, CA. The 441 in question refers to an expressway that ran outside the apartment he lived in at the time. And unlike the Jagger song, Petty has no reason whatsoever to lie since it pretty much makes the lyrics less cool than people want to believe they are.
That's got all the makings of someone sharing every detail of their personal life, ill fated relationships with Don Henley included, and then realizing how bad an idea it was, and scaling it back. At this point, people writing about either musician pretty much take it for granted that the story's true. Plus, 18 minutes is a lot of song to fill. By now, most people understand that a song about a Vietnam Vet who ends up unemployed and in jail isn't exactly an endorsement of trickle down economics. What you might not know is that you probably made the exact same mistake as Reagan about the admittedly less awesome John Mellencamp song "Our Country."
While there's plenty of room for confusion in the lyrics, there is one thing most everyone can agree on. Those fucking Chevy commercials need to stop. Since approximately week three of the 2006 season, NFL fans nationwide have entered into each and every commercial break paralyzed by the fear that, at some point during the break in action, the words "The dream is still alive" will act as the harbinger that signals the beginning of the 30 least pleasurable seconds of their Sunday football watching experience. The least pleasurable, that is, until the whole experience is repeated 15 more times throughout the game. And the game after that.
It's not surprising that Chevy chose the song. Thanks to the ultra patriotic verse from the ad, and the whiff of almost territorial nationalism in declaring the country OURS, you can't help but think of a NASCAR infield full of flag waving hillbillies.
it belongs to folks like me and you."
Yep, sounds like a sentiment even Lou Dobbs could get behind. But anyone who thinks Mellencamp is going to start catering to the Toby Keith set ignores one important fact about the man. Springsteen wasn't the only guy who spurned Reagan in '84. Mellencamp also refused Ronald Reagan when he asked to use his blue collar anthem "Pink Houses" on the '84 campaign trail. In fact, Mellencamp recently asked John McCain to stop playing "Our Country" at his rallies too. The verse we all know and hate from "Our Country" is actually the last verse. Now check out the verses that come before it.
That's right, our country is basically an idealistic American version of John Lennon's "Imagine." Of course Chevy chose not to include all that "end poverty, help the poor" business that reads like an endorsement of the welfare state.
We're not sure whether or not to blame Mellencamp for letting Chevy take the song out of context. Maybe he was being subversive, letting them use the song for an ad campaign aimed at the people who would most hate its real message. If so then it's being subversive in a way that makes him approximately three bajillion dollars in endorsement money. Which in itself is perhaps a meta statement about the state of American popular culture as a means of protest. Or maybe he just really likes money.