Friday, March 5, 2010

Unsolved Song Meanings

Ann Althouse recently blogged about the "mystery solved" with reference to Carly Simon's song You're So Vain: Link.

There are two other songs that I'm curious about:. The first is Fleetwood Mac's Sara:

According to a GQ interview with The Eagles's Don Henley, "Sara" refers to an aborted child belonging to Stevie Nicks and Henley:
I believe to the best of my knowledge [Nicks] became pregnant by me. And she named the [unborn] kid Sara, and she had an abortion and then wrote the song of the same name to the spirit of the aborted baby. I was building my house at the time, and there's a line in the song that says ‘And when you build your house, call me.

To me, the really heartbreaking line in the song with this knowledge in mind has always been the first line:
Wait a minute baby, stay with me a while,
Said you'd give me light [life?] but you never told me about the fire...
Now I admit that I had always heard the word "life" where the word "light" could be. But still, the entire meaning of the song changes somewhat doesn't it?  And Don Henley comes off as a callous cad.

The second song is Talk Of The Town by the Pretenders:

The Pretenders - Talk Of The Town


MySpace Video
Chrissie Hynde has said in interviews that the song was just about some punk kid who was hanging around their recording studio.  But I listen to it and I'm convinced that she wrote the song for/about Ray Davies of The Kinks with whom she had a relationship (and a kid).
What do you think?


  1. I think your right about both. Very interesting stuff! Sad, though.

  2. And that would be 'you're' not 'your'. Ugh. :)

  3. I don't know about the Chrissie Hynde story at all. I am, however included to believe the story about Stevie Nicks if for no other reason than she was (and continues to be) a cocaine-addled new-age jerk.

    Stevie Nicks drove Christine McVie out of the reconstituted Fleetwood Mac,effectively ruining a great comeback.