Welcome to our “Psychedelic Lunch” series, “Valentines Day” Edition where we find out how deep the rabbit hole really goes and explore psychedelic tunes from the 60’s to today. Weekdays At Noon EST. Enjoy the trip!
Happy ❤️Valentines Day ❤️From Vinyl Lair
10 Romantic Rock, Blues & Metal Love Songs
1. Peter Frampton, Im In You, Album: Im In You 1977
I’m in You” was written by Peter Frampton after returning to New York City from touring to record his live album Frampton Comes Alive! in 1976. The song is about Frampton being recently separated from his first wife, the model Mary Lovett.
Despite what one might at first think from the title, Frampton meant being “in” somebody in the spiritual sense. Sort of like the “I am he as you are he as you are me…” part from “I Am The Walrus.”
2. Pig Destroyer, The Girl in The Slayer Jacket. Album: Phantom Limb 2007
We know what you’re thinking: “Is Pig Destroyer really appropriate for Valentine’s Day?” This track recounts the “Girl in the Slayer Jacket” giving someone their first kiss in seventh grade, but after the opening lines, it all goes south, describing the girl’s eventual suicide and how Slayer nearly took the blame. But it was a beautiful relationship… while it lasted.
“Her parents / Tried to sue Slayer / They blamed her boyfriend and PCP / But the truth is her eyes / Had been dead since she was five / She just hadn’t disposed of her body“
3. The Beatles, Something. Album: Abbey Road 1969.
This seemed to be inspired by Harrison’s wife, Pattie, but he claimed he did not have anyone in mind when he wrote it. George was really into his studies of Krishna Consciousness when he wrote the song, and its original intent was as a devotion to Lord Krishna. In fact, the lyric was “something in the way HE moves,” but George ended up changing it because he didn’t want to be perceived as a “poof.”
Pattie did inspire “Layla” when Eric Clapton realized he loved her a few years later. She and Clapton were married from 1979-1988 (he also wrote “Wonderful Tonight” for her).
In her 2007 book Wonderful Tonight: George Harrison, Eric Clapton, and Me, Pattie Boyd wrote: “George wrote a song called ‘Something.’ He told me in a matter-of-fact way that he had written it for me. I thought it was beautiful and it turned out to be the most successful song he ever wrote, with more than 150 cover versions. George’s favorite version was the one by James Brown. Mine was the one by George Harrison, which he played to me in our kitchen. But, in fact, by then our relationship was in trouble. Since a trip to the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi’s ashram in India in 1968, George had become obsessive about meditation. He was also sometimes withdrawn and depressed.”
4. Etta James, At Last. Album: At Last! 1960.
The songwriting team of Mack Gordon and Harry Warren wrote this in 1941 for the film musical Sun Valley Serenade. The following year it was rearranged and re-recorded and used in the film Orchestra Wives. It was performed in both movies by Glenn Miller and his Orchestra with vocals by Ray Eberle, and the song became a major big band hit in October 1942. Gordon and Warren composed other hits together, including “Chattanooga Choo Choo,” “Serenade in Blue,” “You’ll Never Know,” and “There Will Never Be Another You.” Many of their songs were for musical motion pictures, including at least one written for Shirley Temple. Before teaming up, they were successful composers on their own and wrote numerous other songs with other partners. Gordon wrote the lyrics and Warren wrote the music.
Etta James recorded this in 1961 shortly after signing with Chess records. Leonard Chess thought James was a classy ballad singer and saw pop crossover potential in her; it was his decision to back her with violin orchestrations for the song. Her version went to #2 on the R&B chart.
With lyrics about finding that one true love and a classical feel, this is a very popular wedding song.
5. Pantera, This Love. Album: Vulgar Display Of Power 1992.
This moody rocker seems to explore the turbulent dynamics of love, with the singer making a painful detachment from the relationship for his own good. The inspiration was far more primitive, however: It is a message to what lead singer Phil Anselmo calls “clingy women.”
“I was young, and thought, ‘Let’s not make more of this relationship than need be,'” Anselmo said in an interview.
6. Journey, Faithfully. Album: Frontiers 1983.
Journey keyboard player Jonathan Cain wrote this song about the challenges of being a married man on the road in a rock band:
Always another show
Wondering where I am
Lost without you
At the time, he was married to his first wife, Tané, a singer who had a #37 hit in 1982 called “Holdin’ On,” which Jonathan co-wrote and produced. He and Tané divorced a few years later, despite him pledging in this song to be “forever yours… faithfully.”
In an interview Jonathan Cain said, “God gave me that song,” as he wrote it so quickly. “I started it on the bus heading to Saratoga Springs,” he said. “I woke up the next day with a napkin on the side of my nightstand and I looked at the lyrics, ‘Highway run into the midnight sun.’ Then I got this supernatural download: This is the rest of the song.
I wrote rest of it down, almost frantically. I’d never had a song come to me so quickly that it was anointed, supernatural. Literally, in 30 minutes I had written that song. I had the napkin in my pocket and I put it on the piano. I had a big grand piano there by the orchestra. I played through it and I thought, ‘Man, this is good.’
The Lord gave me permission to finish it. Normally I would go to Steve Perry or somebody and say, ‘Help me finish this song.’ No. God gave me the mind to finish it, and the rest is history. That would be a love song to God, absolutely.”
7. Prince And The Revolution, Purple Rain.
The album was actually the soundtrack to the first movie Prince made. He went on to make three more: Under The Cherry Moon, Sign O’ The Times, and Graffiti Bridge. Purple Rain won Prince an Oscar for Best Original Song Score (not to be confused with the Best Original Score category, won that year by A Passage to India).
The song “Purple Rain” was the centerpiece of the film and a key plot point. In the movie, the female members in Prince’s band, Wendy Melvoin and Lisa Coleman, write a song that Prince ignores, prompting a tirade from Wendy (“Every time we give you a song you say you’re going to use it but you never do. You’re being paranoid as usual…”). At the end of the film, Prince’s crew is in a heated rivalry with another band (The Time), who do a blistering set that Prince must follow. When Prince takes the stage, he introduces “Purple Rain” as being written by Wendy and Lisa, then tears down the house with it.
Wendy and Lisa were real members of Prince’s band until 1987 when they left to record as a duo. This song, however, was composed solely by Prince. It’s a love song, with Prince singing about his devotion to a girl, but it also serves as a catharsis, releasing the pent-up frustrations that had been building throughout the movie. The “Purple Rain” is a place to be free.
8. The Pretenders, I’ll Stand By You. Album: Last Of The Independents 1994.
Chrissie Hynde wrote this with Tom Kelly and Billy Steinberg, who have written many hit songs, including “True Colors,” “Eternal Flame” and “Like A Virgin.” Steinberg told us how they met:
“Tom and I never had a publisher, we both published ourselves. Jason Dauman was somebody who, for a commission, was willing to provide some of the service that a publisher would. He once said to me, ‘Who would you like to collaborate with?’ and it was sort of an annoyance to me. I didn’t take him all that seriously, but almost facetiously I said, ‘Prince, Bruce Springsteen and Chrissie Hynde.’
I said those names because they were three of my favorite songwriters and he sort of took it seriously. He went off and I just thought, ‘Well I got rid of him, didn’t I.’ Then a little while later he called me up and he said, ‘Chrissie Hynde wants to write with you and Tom,’ and I thought, ‘Right.’ So anyway, I get a phone call and this woman said, ‘Billy, this is Chrissie Hynde,’ and I thought somebody was playing with me or something. I couldn’t imagine it, but then in a minute it was quite clear that Chrissie was on the other end of the telephone.
Chrissie is a very complicated person, a very no-nonsense person especially when she doesn’t know you. She was a little intimidating on the phone. The butterflies in my stomach were fluttering so much I could barely speak because I love The Pretenders. She said she’d like to get together and write some songs with Tom and me, and I went, ‘Woo Hoo!’ She came to Los Angeles and she was so determined. She said, ‘I want to write a hit.’ Over a period of about two weeks Tom and I wrote a handful of songs with her. The first one we wrote together was called ‘Love Colors Everything.’ Then we wrote ‘Night In My Veins’ which was also a hit single, and we wrote ‘977,’ ‘Hollywood Perfume’ and ‘I’ll Stand By You.'”
9. Deftones, Change (In The House Of Flies) Album: White Pony 2000.
There aren’t too many songs that send chills through your body, but “Change” by the Deftones is hauntingly atmospheric and breathtaking and gets you there. Though it’s a little darker than some of the ballads on this list, but it’s a song you need to listen to when you’re vulnerable and intimate with your partner.
10. Elton John, Your Song. Album: Elton John 1970.
This was one of the first songs John wrote with Bernie Taupin. They met after a record company gave John some of Taupin’s lyrics to work with. Eventually, they both moved into John’s parents’ house, where they started working together.
The song was written in 1967, when Bernie Taupin was 17 (“hence the extraordinarily virginal sentiments,” he has said). Elton has said that this song is not about anyone in particular, so Taupin has refused to reveal the identity of the person – if such person exists – who inspired this song. He explained in a 1989 interview with Music Connection: “It’s like the perennial ballad ‘Your Song,’ which has got to be one of the most naïve and childish lyrics in the entire repertoire of music, but I think the reason it still stands up is because it was real at the time. That was exactly what I was feeling. I was 17 years old and it was coming from someone whose outlook on love or experience with love was totally new and naïve.