Some of the great rock legends are actually URBAN legends. Or, as our president might call them MALARKEY. MentalFloss.com put together a list of 11 wild urban legends about popular songs. Here are some of the most interesting!
1. The Legend: John Lennon says “I buried Paul” at the end of “Strawberry Fields Forever”.
The Truth: This was supposedly evidence to support the rumor that Paul McCartney was dead. But what John actually says is “cranberry sauce”.
2. The Legend: Billy Idol’s “Dancing with Myself” is about masturbation.
The Truth: He wrote it after going to a Japanese disco in 1978, and seeing kids dancing with their own reflections in a mirror.
3. The Legend: The scream in the song “Love Rollercoaster” by the Ohio Players was an actual recording of a woman being murdered.
The Truth: It was really keyboard player Billy Beck.
4. The Legend: “Hotel California” by the Eagles is about Satanism.
The Truth: Don Henley says it’s about, quote, “the excesses of American culture and certain girls we knew. But it was also about the uneasy balance between art and commerce.”
5. The Legend: “Winds of Change” by the Scorpions was written by the CIA to promote a pro-Western agenda during the Cold War.
The Truth: I think we can just say “nope” without any further explanation on this one.
6. The Legend: Phil Collins wrote “In the Air Tonight” after seeing a man fail to save another person who was drowning, and used the song to call the guy out. Supposedly, Phil invited the guy to a concert, and shone a spotlight on him during the song’s infamous drum break.
The Truth: Yeah, none of that ever happened. The song was inspired by the, quote, “anger, bitterness, and hurt” Phil was feeling after his wife left him.
7. The Legend: Tom Petty’s “American Girl” was about a University of Florida student who took her own life.
The Truth: He wrote it while living in Encino, California, and thinking about how the nearby freeway sounded like the ocean.