Aren’t songs the most amazing things? Songs, they work like timestamps, they sings the words right out of our mouths, their melodies convey what words cannot, and for many people, they contain memories.

Whether you’re a partygoer, or a self-professed member of the #TranceFamily, a true blue #PLUR believer, or a DJ/producer, there’s one thing you all share in common – your love for great tracks with real-life backstories.

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Now, we know that to each his or her own but we’ve picked out some of our personal favourites that we’d like to share with you. If you have any that you’d like us to listen to, by all means drop the links in the comments box below. We’d love to check ’em out 🙂

Here are our personal favourites:

1. Above & Beyond – Sun & Moon

For Above & Beyond and their loyal following, one song off their second studio album, “Group Therapy”, quickly became an evergreen hit from the moment it was released in 2011 right until today. If you’re a fan of Tony, Jono, and Paavo yourself, then you’d know the track, “Sun & Moon”.

Heck, you’d even know the words by heart.

Above & Beyond Group Therapy
Source: Anjunabeats

But what you probably didn’t know was the story behind “Sun & Moon”.

Tony gave a little insight into the story behind the track when he revealed:

It was written about the same girl (Katy) that a lot of our early songs were written about. I think everybody that you spend time with in your life, you learn from and grow through that period, and certainly that was true with Katy. So, she’s in my past, she’s a “failed relationship”, but to me it was anything but a failure. And that’s what this song’s really trying to say, you know, whatever experiences you have, romantic or otherwise with people, there’s always a part of that relationship that lives on in your memory, hence the line, “You’ll never get over me, I’ll never get over you.” I think those things are important. We’re still friends. I’m not sure how she feels about me writing about the darker parts of our relationship all the time, but, you know, I think that’s part of the inspiration that you get from other people.

Aww, Tony.

Listen to it here:

2. Ferry Corsten – Twice In A Blue Moon

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From what we know, the album was inspired by many goings on in Ferry Corsten’s life, including the birth of his daughter, Gabriella. The album got its title from a TV program about roses he was watching, which featured a rose called “Twice in a Blue Moon”, with Corsten knowing that “once in a blue moon” is a saying about something that only seldom happens.

He also stated that he felt the title was fitting because of the birth of his new daughter, and also having his wife’s love

Source: Ferry Corsten's Twitter
Source: Ferry Corsten’s Twitter

The love of these 2 people was considered so special by Ferry Corsten that “Twice in a Blue Moon” was considered as an appropriate title. Simply heartwarming 🙂

Oh, we must add that he’s a father of 2 now, having recently welcomed the latest addition to his little family, a boy named Seb.

Listen to it here:

3. Orjan Nilsen – La Guitarra

Orjan Nilsen dedicated his track, “La Guitarra”, to the passing of his brother on 16th December 2007. In years to come, it was evident that the DJ/producer was still struggling to cope with the reality of losing someone he held so dear and so close to his heart.

Orjan would often tweet in memory of his late brother:

Upon the release of the track, he revealed on his website (as at time of writing under construction):

I’m sad to announce that on the 16th of December ’07, I lost my big brother (Ernst Ove Nilsen, may you rest in peace…) to a disease more scary then war, cancer… He was in many ways an inspiration to me and the biggest support one man can have. He NEVER lost faith in my music nor my dreams and is probably the reason why I always worked so hard for this. He was more then a brother to me, he was also my best friend and the one i could trust my life to. Some of you might have heard my new track “La Guitarra” that’s recently signed to Armada. This I dedicate to Ernst Ove Nilsen, my late brother, as it’s a direct result of his death. I made the melody as I closed my eyes and thought of the good times we had. So this melody has both a piece of me and him in it.

Our hearts go out to you, Orjan. Stay strong <3

Listen to it here:

4. DJ’s United – Remember Love

Paul Oakenfold, Armin van Buuren, and Paul van Dyk joined forces to pay an homage to the victims and visitors of the 19th edition of the Loveparade.

On July 24th 2010, more than 500 people were injured and 21 people were killed after panic broke out due to overcrowding in the tunnel entrance of the Loveparade festival terrain. A tragedy, not only for those involved, but for the entire dance scene.

Source: www.taringa.net
Source: www.taringa.net

To help support the victims family members, persons injured and remember the spirit of the famed dance event, 3 world-famous DJs united. UK, The Netherlands, and Germany are represented by Paul Oakenfold, Armin van Buuren, and Paul van Dyk respectively, coming together on powerful trance anthem “Remember Love”.

According to Oakenfold, the track is a true mix of the sound of the 3 producers. He said:

“Remember Love” has the melodic feel which represents my sound, the emotion and movement which I love of Armin’s sound and the energy and uplifting touch that no one does better than Paul van Dyk. I think it’ll be interesting for people to hear how 3 artistes come together making one song.

All proceeds of “Remember Love” will be donated to the Association of Non-statutory Welfare in North Rhine-Westphalia Germany, which started an appeal to support the victims family-members and persons injured.

Listen to it here:

5. Robert Miles – Children

Robert Miles stated 2 motives for the writing of “Children”. One was as a response to photographs of child war victims his father had brought home from a humanitarian mission in the former Yugoslavia.

The other, inspired by his career as a DJ, was to create a track to end DJ sets, intended to calm rave attendants prior to their driving home as a means to reduce car accident deaths.

Source: fanart.tv
Source: fanart.tv

“Children” is one of the pioneering tracks of dream house, a genre of electronic dance music characterized by dream-like piano melodies, and a steady four-on-the-floor bass drum. The creation of dream house was a response to social pressures in Italy during the early 1990s: the growth of rave culture among young adults, and the ensuing popularity of nightclub attendance, had created a weekly trend of deaths due to car accidents as clubbers drove across the country overnight, falling asleep at the wheel from strenuous dancing as well as alcohol and drug use.

In mid-1996, deaths due to this phenomenon, called strage del sabato sera (Saturday night slaughter) in Italy, were being estimated at around 2000 since the start of the decade. The move by DJs such as Miles to play slower, calming music to conclude a night’s set, as a means to counteract the fast-paced, repetitive tracks that preceded, was met with approval by authorities and parents of car crash victims.

Listen to it here:

6. Andrew Bayer – From The Earth

“For those who left this earth too soon”

Andrew Bayer’s experimental debut artist album “It’s Artificial” broke new ground for Anjunabeats – hailed as an “incredible album of sophisticated electronica” by global dance bible Mixmag. One of its most popular tracks, “From The Earth” saw a full single release – including the much sought-after Breakfast remix and a new interpretation from Oliver Smith.

Source: www.amplifiedradio.com
Source: www.amplifiedradio.com

A heavenly blend of intricate production prowess and soaring melodic textures, the original “From The Earth” is a perfect example of Bayer’s unique talents. Blending a deeply electronic sound with classically informed musical motifs, Bayer’s music manages to sound both timeless and futuristic at once.

But the real story behind it? “From The Earth” was inspired by Andrew Bayer’s brother’s passing. Word has it that he wrote the track in his late brother’s final weeks, hence the title.

Listen to it here:

7. Armin van Buuren ft. Trevor Guthrie – This Is What It Feels Like

“And I don’t even know how I survive, I won’t make it to the shore without your light. No I don’t even know if I’m alive. Oh, without you now, This is what it feels like.”

“This Is What It Feels Like” is a song by Dutch DJ/producer Armin van Buuren. It features vocals from Canadian singer Trevor Guthrie. The song was released in the Netherlands by Armada Music as a digital download on 29th April 2013 as the second single from van Buuren’s 5th studio album “Intense”.

It became a top 10 hit in 10 countries. Yes, imagine that!

2013 Much Music Video Awards
Source: aceshowbiz.com

In the Netherlands, the song peaked at #2 on the Dutch Top 40. “This Is What It Feels Like” became Armin van Buuren’s first top 10 hit in the UK, peaking at #6 on the UK Singles Chart.

The song was written by Armin van Buuren, Benno de Goeij, Jenson Vaughan, Trevor Guthrie, and John Ewbank. Armin wrote the instrumental with de Goeij and Ewbank in 2012. Trevor Guthrie wrote the lyrics with Jenson Vaughan, and it was inspired by Trevor Guthrie’s neighbour who was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor and notwithstanding survived for two and a half years despite being given 17 weeks to live.

This was also mentioned in Armin’s “Armin Only Intense Road Movie Episode 12: Vancouver“.

Listen to it here:

“This Is What It Feels Like” went on to get nominated for the 2014 Grammy Award for “Best Dance Recording” and a 2014 JUNO “Dance Recording of the Year” award.

When told of the JUNO nomination, Trevor Guthrie said:

Robert was thrilled with the Grammy nomination and would have been so proud of this one as well, though it’s unfortunate that he isn’t here to see this. I wrote this song from the heart and it is amazing to see how it has moved everyone in Canada and around the world.

Aww 🙂

8. RAM & Susana – RAMelia (Tribute to Amelia)

Last but not least, and we saved the best for last by the way, “RAMelia”.

To honour his wife Amelia who suddenly passed away , RAM joined forces with composer Geert Huinink, Dennis Schimonk, and vocalist Susana. With “RAMelia” as result, RAM’s track made an incredibly huge impact in the world-wide #TranceFamily, so much so that even Armin van Buuren himself handpicked the track to be one of the top 25 tracks of 2014 on his “A State of Trance” radio show.

RAMelia
Source: RAM’s Facebook page

The collaboration between Geert Huinink, Dennis Schimonk, and RAM delivered a very emotional melody which is completely in harmony with RAM’s recognizable uplifting trance sound. Of course, Susana’s beautiful vocals enhanced the emotional heights of this great track even more.

Every single word touches the emotional sense behind such a tragic loss. It couldn’t describe better the person they were written for.

Listen to it here:

We hope you enjoyed the above tracks!

Do you have any personal favourite tracks with great backstories that you’d like to share with us too? Don’t forget to leave the links plus the stories in the comments box below 🙂

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Lainey
Eats, sleeps, & breathes music, but drinks mostly coffee & okay, some wine - sometimes, a little too much. A little too obsessed with the number seven, is deathly afraid of horror movies, believes that she writes better than she speaks, & currently feeling a little strange writing a profile about herself.