The eerie percussion and guitar for Portsihead's "Sour Times was sampled from Lalo Schifrin's "Danube Incident," music composed by the Argentine composer for an episode of Mission Impossible.
Sweet's hit "Ballroom Blitz" was inspired by an incident in 1973 when the band were performing in Scotland and driven offstage by a barrage of bottles.
Buck Dharma of Blue Oyster Cult wrote "(Don't Fear) The Reaper" after he was diagnosed with a heart condition and started thinking about his own mortality.
Pete Townshend wrote the lyrics for "My Generation" during a train ride from London to Southampton on his 20th birthday.
"Whole Lotta Love" was Led Zeppelin's only US Top 10 hit, charting at #4. Many of their songs, including "Stairway To Heaven," were not released as singles, as it was considered bad form in England to make people pay for singles that were on albums.
Baseball Hall-of-Famer Phil Rizzuto is the announcer on Meat Loaf's "Paradise By the Dashboard Light." Rizzuto used to broadcast games for his former team, the Yankees.
Tom stopped performing Thompson Twins songs in 1987, in part because of their personal nature: "Hold Me Now" came after an argument with his bandmate/girlfriend Alannah Currie.
Brenda talks about the inspiration that drove her to write hit songs like "Get Here" and "Piano in the Dark," and why a lack of formal music training can be a songwriter's best asset.
Billy Joel and Hall & Oates hated making videos, so they chose a director with similar contempt for the medium. That was Jay Dubin, and he has a lot to say on the subject.
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.
Kristian talks songwriting technique, like how the chorus should redefine the story, and how to write a song backwards.
The top Contemporary Christian artist of all time on song inspirations and what she learned from Johnny Carson.
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