Top 10 Songs Inspired by True Events

The Top Ten

The Trooper - Iron Maiden The Trooper - Iron Maiden Cover Art

Inspired by the Battle of Balaclava (1854), which took place during the Crimean War.

Smoke On the Water - Deep Purple Smoke On the Water - Deep Purple Cover Art

Lyrics tell a true story - in 1971 Deep Purple were in Montreux, Switzerland, to record an album in a studio located in Montreux Casino ("the gambling house" in the song lyric).
Yes, Frank Zappa and The Mothers of Invention were also there for a live show. During their concert the place suddenly caught fire when somebody in the audience fired a flare gun toward the rattan covered ceiling ("some stupid with a flare gun").
There were no major injuries but the fire destroyed the entire casino complex, along with all the Zappa equipment. Deep Purple bassist Roger Glover saw the smoke from the fire spreading over Lake Geneva and came up with this song title.

Great song, probably the best song ever written

Tears In Heaven - Eric Clapton Tears In Heaven - Eric Clapton Cover Art

It's about the death of his 4-year-old son who fell from a window of a 53rd-floor New York apartment.

Wind of Change - Scorpions Wind of Change - Scorpions Cover Art

Inspired by the Fall of The Berlin Wall. This was a big historical event.

Fade to Black - Metallica Fade to Black - Metallica Cover Art

poor guitar

The Ballroom Blitz - The Sweet The Ballroom Blitz - The Sweet Cover Art

It was inspired by an incident in 1973 when the band was performing live and the band members were driven offstage by a barrage of bottles.

Candle in the Wind - Elton John Candle in the Wind - Elton John Cover Art

Is based upon the life and death of Marilyn Monroe.

Fiddler on the Green - Demons & Wizards Fiddler on the Green - Demons & Wizards Cover Art

Singer and lyricist saw 2 car accidents in one week - he saw how 2 kids were killed at the same intersection.

Pumped Up Kicks - Foster the People Pumped Up Kicks - Foster the People Cover Art
Candle in the Wind 1997 - Elton John Candle in the Wind 1997 - Elton John Cover Art

Is based upon the life and death of Princess Diana.

The Contenders

Out In the Fields - Gary Moore & Phil Lynott Out In the Fields - Gary Moore & Phil Lynott Cover Art

It's about the Troubles in Northern Ireland.

Sleeping Sun - Nightwish Sleeping Sun - Nightwish Cover Art

This song is about the solar eclipse of 1999.

Hurricane - Bob Dylan Hurricane - Bob Dylan Cover Art

About the false imprisonment of Rubin "Hurricane" Carter.

Mein Teil - Rammstein Mein Teil - Rammstein Cover Art

While lyrically the song is only about cannibalism in general (told from the victim's perspective in a very sexualized and then kind of religious way) it was inspired by the Cannibal of Rotenburg.

Watching Over Me - Iced Earth Watching Over Me - Iced Earth Cover Art
New York Mining Disaster 1941 - Bee Gees New York Mining Disaster 1941 - Bee Gees Cover Art
Sunday Bloody Sunday - U2 Sunday Bloody Sunday - U2 Cover Art

It's about the Troubles in Northern Ireland and the Bloody Sunday incident in Derry where British troops shot and killed unarmed civil rights protesters and bystanders.

Tag des J├╝ngsten Gerichts - Kay One

In this epic more than 20 minutes long rap epic Kay One's reflects on his entire career and on his feuds with other rappers.
Kay One has an infamous feud with Germany's most successful rapper Bushido who once was his friend, but then Kay One left the label, according to him due to his mafia ties and because he exploited him. When this song was released, there was a huge media coverage of the feud because Kay One also wanted to expose the mafia-like Abou Chaka clan and was under protection from police.

The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald - Gordon Lightfoot The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald - Gordon Lightfoot Cover Art

About the sinking of the ship, 'The Edmund Fitzgerald.'

The Empire of the Clouds - Iron Maiden The Empire of the Clouds - Iron Maiden Cover Art

Based around the R101 airship disaster of 1930. Like with a lot of Maiden songs Bruce Dickinson really has a way of telling a tale through song.

Shock Me - Kiss Shock Me - Kiss Cover Art

Ace Frehley suffered electric shock right before a live show.

Double Vision - Foreigner Double Vision - Foreigner Cover Art

Vocalist Lou Gramm explained: "...A lot of people think it's about being intoxicated or being high. When we were recording that song before we had the title, the New York Rangers hockey team was playing the Philadelphia Flyers and one of the big Flyers guys bumped into the Rangers' all-star goalie [ John Davidson ] and knocked him down and they had to take him out of the game because he was experiencing double vision."

Jeremy - Pearl Jam Jeremy - Pearl Jam Cover Art

Based on the suicide of Jeremy Wade Delle, who shot himself in front of his class mates.

Darkness - Eminem Darkness - Eminem Cover Art

Based off of the Las Vegas shooting.

Stagger Lee - Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds Stagger Lee - Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds Cover Art

Stagger Lee was a real person who murdered his best friend. Even though this version takes a few liberties with the story.

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