“Ain’t No Sunshine (When She’s Gone)” by Bill Withers
The Story Of The Song: “Ain’t No Sunshine” is a fairly straightforward break up song that details the anguish of a guy who can’t enjoy life now that his younger lover is gone from his life.
The Story Behind the Song: Bill Withers got the idea for the song after watching the Jack Lemmon movie, The Days of Wine and Roses. He was captivated by the love story of two destructive alcoholics.
The third verse is famous because of the repetition of the phrase, “I know.” In fact, Withers sings it 26 times. Initially, Withers planned to write a more verbose third verse, but the musicians he shared the song with encouraged him to keep it as is. At the time, Withers was a nobody who worked in a toilet seat factory, so he went along with it.
“Before He Cheats” by Carrie Underwood
The Story Of The Song: A vengeful woman details how she is destroying her wandering lover’s car in retribution for getting drunk and hooking up with another woman.
The Story Behind the Song: Even though the song is about a woman taking sweet revenge on her boyfriend, it was written by two guys!
Nashville songwriting superstars Chris Thompkins and Josh Kear (who was also behind Lady Antebellum‘s “Need You Now”) co-wrote the song. So, even though it’s possible Underwood has felt the sting of being cheated on, the song is a complete fantasy written by two men who crank out hits for a living.