the late 80's and early 90's his hit songs helped him become the first
male solo artist in history to have 7 singles reach the top 5 on
billboard's singles chart. But these days he finds himself spending a
lot of time writing a genre different than what his fans are used to.
Marx has been teaming up with country artists like Keith Urban. Writing
hits like "Better Life", "Everybody" and their most recent number one -
"Long Hot Summer"
When the two sat down to write the song, they
literally didn't have anything to work with. Their writing session was
scheduled just after the May flood, where all of Keith's guitars were
"We rented a room an SAR to write but I didn't have a
guitar and so I remembered I borrowed a guitar at there and we went in
and wrote song there" says Keith Urban.
The idea for the song was actually from a couple years back.
called out of the blue and said I ran across a work tape of this song
we need to finish it, it's so cool" says Richard Marx.
As with all songs Urban writes, it started with a drum beat.
"Keith always wants to have a drum groove going and sometimes that helps the vibe and take you in a direction" says Marx.
Musically the rest fell into place rather quickly. But the lyrics took some time.
music comes that fast and then we want to kill each other over the
lyrics. We want the lyrics to sing well. Its one thing if they are
poetic, but if they don't sing well they won't work" says Marx.
wasn't until another writing session on Keith's tour bus in Chicago,
that the lyrics were finished.But the song still wasn't done. Final
touches were actually made via skype!
"We had everything but
bridge and I went to Brazil and came up with these chord changes, so I
skyped him. He was getting ready to go on stage and said love it put it
down" says Marx.
Both Urban and Marx enjoy writing commercially
catchy songs and used memories of their own long hot summers to paint a
picture of the anticipation of summer!
"It's not hard for me to
close my eyes and pic her in the Bahamas or driving with her feet on the
dash. It's such a perfect summertime image" says Marx.
As upbeat of a song it is, the story behind writing it goes much deeper.
"We had had an issue with each other, that is all I'm going to say" says Urban.
It marks a significant turning point in their relationship as friends.
ran into a personal conflict and this was the end result of that, of
coming back together, working it out, talking it through, solidifying
what i think now is a closer friendship" says Marx.
Marx says he
doesn't really remember who is responsible for specific lyrics, but
knows he's grateful for "Long Hot Summer" for bringing him another
milestone in his career, but more importantly a mended friendship,
allowing them to write together for years to come.
because of that i hear great joy in this song, not sure if it's because
of that, but i love this song, I freaking love this song" exclaims Marx.
Friday, February 10 2012, 08:44 PM CST
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