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Songwriting For Dummies by Cathy Lynn Austin, Jim Peterik, Dave Austin

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Chapter 20

Ten Songs You Should Know

In This Chapter

Looking at some of the best songs ever written

Knowing songs from different genres

There are endless lists of “Best Songs,” and new lists are being formed every day. Some of these are based on the opinions of the authors; some are gauged by chart positions and sales figures. Whichever way you tally it, the greatest songs of any generation are the ones that matter the most to the listening public. Here’s a list of our favorites and reasons why they’ve resonated throughout the years.

“Hey Jude”

This song not only had the longest run at the top of the charts for any Beatles single, it is also more than seven minutes in length — breaking one of the many rules of writing a radio-friendly hit! Although there are varied opinions as to whom this song was really written for (among those were Jane Asher, with whom Paul McCartney had a long-term relationship, and also John Lennon, who believed the song was written about him), it was Paul who confirmed what inspired him to pen this tune. Being particularly close to Lennon’s first wife, Cynthia, and their son, Julian, “Hey Jules” (the original title to the song) was intended to comfort Julian during his parents’ divorce. The original lyrics “Hey Jules, don’t make it bad, take a sad song and make it better” take on a whole new perspective when thought of in terms of helping a kid dealing with his parents split. Later the “Jules” changed to “Jude” simply because it sounded better — apparently ...

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