Album: Million Mile Reflections (1979)
  • In this heartfelt tune, Daniels eulogizes three music legends who died too soon. The first verse is about Elvis Presley, the second verse is about Janis Joplin, and the third verse is about Ronnie Van Zant from Lynyrd Skynyrd. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Aaron - Twin Cities, MN
  • Although he never met The King personally, Daniels got his boot in the door of the music industry when Elvis recorded the aspiring musician's "It Hurts Me" in 1964. It was a Top 40 hit and prompted Daniels to move to Nashville, where he became a session player for the likes of Bob Dylan and Leonard Cohen before forming his eponymous band in 1972. Daniels recalled in a 2007 Songfacts interview: "He recorded it, and it was by far the biggest thing that had ever happened to me in my life."

    Elvis died in 1977 of a heart attack caused by a prescription drug overdose.
  • It's unclear whether Daniels ever met Janis Joplin, but he was clearly a fan of the psychedelic rocker, who died of a heroin overdose in 1970 at age 27. He sings:

    And when it seemed this whole world was falling apart
    The house lights would fall and the music would start
    She'd be givin' us all a piece of her heart
  • Daniels was close friends with members of Lynyrd Skynyrd, including Ronnie Van Zant and Steve Gaines, who died in a plane crash in 1977. He recalled hearing news of the tragedy in the lyrics, "It was October in St. Louis town, when we heard that the Free Bird had fell to the ground."

    He elaborated in a 2017 Billboard interview: "It was a strange night. We had a sold-out show in St. Louis, and it was the first night of a tour, and everything was just wonderful. Somebody - I don't even know if I knew the person or not - walked in and told me that Lynyrd Skynyrd's plane had crashed, and some people had been killed. To be honest, I thought it was just some rock n' roll rumor, and I didn't believe it. So, I had it checked out. I found out it was true about 30 seconds before we went on stage, but they hadn't released the names of those killed yet. So, we went out on stage night that night knowing we had some friends that were killed, but not knowing who they were. We just took it out on the music, and did our thing, and worked through it. It was definitely a sad night."

Comments: 1

  • Dave from Pomeroy, OhA GREAT meaningful song
see more comments

Gary Brooker of Procol HarumSongwriter Interviews

The lead singer and pianist for Procol Harum, Gary talks about finding the musical ideas to match the words.

Jesus In Pop Hits: The Gospel Songs That Went MainstreamSong Writing

These overtly religious songs crossed over to the pop charts, despite resistance from fans, and in many cases, churches.

Jesus Christ Superstar: Ted Neeley Tells the Inside StorySong Writing

The in-depth discussion about the making of Jesus Christ Superstar with Ted Neeley, who played Jesus in the 1973 film.

Tony Banks of GenesisSongwriter Interviews

Genesis' key-man re-examines his solo career and the early days of music video.

John ParrSongwriter Interviews

John tells the "St. Elmo's Fire (Man In Motion)" story and explains why he disappeared for so long.

Petula ClarkSongwriter Interviews

Petula talks about her hits "Downtown" and "Don't Sleep In The Subway," and explains her Michael Jackson connection.