Carly Simon wrote "Anticipation" while waiting for her first date with Cat Stevens.
The first single from the Thriller album was "The Girl Is Mine," chosen over "Billie Jean" and "Beat It" because it was a duet with Paul McCartney and thus guaranteed airplay.
Tim McGraw recorded "Live Like You Were Dying" just two weeks after his own father passed away.
"Happy Xmas (War Is Over)" is based on billboards John Lennon and Yoko Ono posted two years earlier declaring "War Is Over! If You Want It."
Train wrote the 2011 song "Brand New Book" for the TV show The Biggest Loser - part of the song was used in the opening credits.
Cyndi Lauper's hit "All Through The Night" was written and originally recorded by Jules Shear, who also wrote "If She Knew What She Wants" by the Bangles.
With $50 and a glue stick, Bruce Pavitt created Sub Pop, a fanzine-turned-label that gave the world Nirvana and grunge. He explains how motivated individuals can shift culture.
Since emerging from MySpace with her hit "Bubbly," Colbie has become a top songwriter, even crafting a hit with Taylor Swift.
He's a singer and an actor, but as a songwriter Paul helped make Kermit a cultured frog, turned a bank commercial into a huge hit and made love both "exciting and new" and "soft as an easy chair."
Fishbone has always enjoyed much more acclaim than popularity - Angelo might know why.
Soul music legend Bill Withers on how life experience and the company you keep leads to classic songs like "Lean On Me."
Many unusual folks appear in Grateful Dead songs. Can you identify them?
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