Songfacts®: You can leave comments about the song at the bottom of the page.
The song refers to the Wittenoom asbestos mine in Western Australia where blue asbestos was mined between 1947 and 1966. The once-thriving town is now a virtual ghost town. Shops are boarded up, the 2 schools are closed, the local cinema is derelict. In their ignorance, the original settlers used asbestos in gardens, school yards and roads. Wittenoom is without doubt Australia's greatest industrial disaster and it is estimated that 25% of the 20,000 men who mined asbestos there will die from related diseases. (thanks, Darryl - Kitchener, Canada)
Gary Lewis and the Playboys had 7 Top-10 hits despite competition from The Beatles. Gary talks about the hits, his famous father, and getting drafted.
One of the most successful songwriters in the business, Desmond co-wrote "Livin' La Vida Loca," "Dude (Looks Like A Lady)" and "Livin' On A Prayer."
Kristian Bush of Sugarland
Kristian talks songwriting technique, like how the chorus should redefine the story, and how to write a song backwards.