For My Sunday Song #102, we explore “Sympathy for the Devil” by the Rolling Stones. Probably not the best day to be visiting a song about the Devil, but then again maybe it is the best day. The song is off their 1968 album ‘Beggar’s Banquet’ and went only to #55 on the Billboard Hot 100, but that doesn’t take away from the fact it is one of my favorite Stones’ song.
The song was very controversial for the time and gave the Stones an image of being bad boys as opposed to the clean cut image of that little known band called The Beatles. The band was accused of being satan worshippers and being into the occult. The problem is that no matter if they were or were not, people don’t like something different and always tend to look for the bad and always blamed rock & roll.
The song isn’t a celebration for the Devil and the song isn’t even asking you to sympathize with him…although the Devil is asking you to do that when you read the lyrics. The song is strictly a march through time and all the evil that has occurred throughout. The person talking in the song is assumed to be the Devil as he travels through time, but is it the devil that was there or just some evil person who the devil is taking the credit?
The song was inspired by the book from Russian author Mikhail Bulgakov and his novel The Master and Margarita. The book was given to Mick Jagger by his then girlfriend Marianne Faithfull. When Mick wrote the song, it was originally written as a folk song and quite different than the final version.
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With Shinedown, when they release a song or an album you know what you are going to get. They have a sound and a style that works and they don’t stray far from that formula. With the new album coming on May 4th, ‘Attention, Attention’, Shinedown is trying to do just that…get your attention.
The album is basically a concept album The songs will take you on a journey of a person who is starting in a very dark, ominous place and take you all the way through to the other side where this person is done battling his mind and his issues and coming out a changed person. I love concept albums so I can’t wait to get ahold of this an take this journey.
The first single is “Devil”, which is the first song on this story through the mind. According to Brent Smith in an interview with Billboard, he states the following:
“‘DEVIL’ is about being afraid, ‘DEVIL’ is about being terrified of not only yourself, in some respects, but the world around you, and understanding that there are so many things and so many different situations and people and places and atmospheres and exposure that human beings are put in front of on a daily basis, [and] the world can be a really difficult place to navigate. So that’s where the story starts.”
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For My Sunday Song #73, I am going with “Let’s Go Crazy by Prince. This is the first one of 2018, so let’s get a little crazy and start the year off with a legend. By the end of the year, I will be 50 so we need to go a little nuts this year in preparation for that milestone. The song came out in 1984 and was off the album ‘Purple Rain’. It was #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 and might be his most recognizable song. I think everyone knows this song and if you don’t, shame on you.
The song opens with Prince giving a eulogy accompanied by an organ and it definitely makes it feel like a funeral. That doesn’t last long and the song kicks in and rocks out. The outro of the song is Prince showing that he was no slouch on the electric guitar. It was one of the best guitar solos you will hear in a song. A freakin’ masterpiece. It was this song that made everyone fall in love with Prince. He crossed over genres and even metal heads thought the man was amazing and damn he could play.
When reading the lyrics, the song seems to be about the battle of good and evil. The devil will try and take you down the elevator, but you need to fight and punch a “higher floor” (God maybe?). It also seems to be about finding that meaning in life and strive for that. It seems to have a lot of different meanings. Now, I am not sure what the “purple banana” is, but sounds like something we should all look for though. I found this article that spoke about the Purple Banana and it was an interesting take on the song. Give it a click and check it out. They basically ask the questions…
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