Elton John's songwriting partner Bernie Taupin wrote the original lyrics for Starship's "We Built This City." It was the first Hot 100 Top 10 hit Taupin wrote without John.
"Cult of Personality" by Living Colour incorporates speeches by John F. Kennedy, Malcolm X and Franklin D. Roosevelt.
The first release of "The Sound Of Silence" was acoustic, and went nowhere. It became Simon & Garfunkel's first hit when a producer at their label overdubbed it with electric instruments.
Joni Mitchell's "Big Yellow Taxi" is about the commercialization of Hawaii. On her first trip to the islands, she looked out of her hotel window and saw a parking lot as far as the eye could see.
Cee-Lo Green sang backup on the 1994 TLC hit "Waterfalls."
The lyric to "Hold On" by Wilson Phillips was inspired by Chynna Phillips' struggles with addiction. "Hold on for one more day" is something she heard in AA meetings.
A scholarly analysis of yacht rock favorites ("Steal Away," "Baker Street"...) with a member of the leading YR cover band.
In the name of song explanation, Al talks about scoring heroin for William Burroughs, and that's not even the most shocking story in this one.
The powerhouse producer behind Janet Jackson's hits talks about his Boyz II Men ballads and regrouping The Time.
Bowie's "activist" days of 1964 led to Ziggy Stardust.
John tells the "St. Elmo's Fire (Man In Motion)" story and explains why he disappeared for so long.
The drummer for Anthrax is also a key songwriter. He explains how the group puts their songs together and tells the stories behind some of their classics.