an important part of the power of pop songs is in their ability to evoke an emotional response that is both personal and universal. As a result, there are a vast number of songs about love, especially failed or lost love. Many of the most successful of these songs were written in the 1960s and marketed to emotional teenage consumers whose lives they seemed to describe so perfectly. In among these songs of first love and heartbreak are songs in which the agony of lost love is made the worse by the death of the lover. These songs include several in which death occurs as the result of a crash—a common tragedy among reckless teenage drivers—and the death is detailed with an explicitness largely unimaginable in most pop lyrics. The following is a tip-of-the-iceberg exploration of pop-song crashes: three cars and one motorcycle. It is not a chronology so much as an examination of a small number of 1960s pop songs.1
KeywordsFolk Tradition True Love Crash Scene Young Lover Music Career
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