Alicia Keys recorded this spare piano ballad for the soundtrack album of the film 12 Years a Slave. While the movie was inspired by the true story of Solomon Northrup, an African American freeman from the North who's kidnapped into slavery, Keys sings of the struggle and pain endured by black women during the pre-Civil War period in the US. She focuses in particular on Patsey, a slave girl on the plantation where Northup is taken who endures a series of tragedies. She sings:
"Queen of the field Born among cotton Life wasted picking Ignore the screaming."
Keys highlights that Patsey is the best cotton picker on the plantation.
The Naughty by Nature hit "O.P.P." doesn't have any curse words, but many oversensitive radio stations played a "clean" version with the word "kitten" edited out, surely the first time that word was censured.
"Bittersweet Symphony" by The Verve samples an obscure orchestral arrangement of the 1965 Rolling Stones song "The Last Time." The Verve had to sign away most of the royalties before they could release the song.