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© PETER KOLLANYI/epa/Corbis
“I had started to write the words to this one before the music, which is something I don’t do too often. I was sitting in my car, waiting to pick up my daughter at school, and while I looking out the window I got hit by that term “along for the ride.”
“I went home, picked up the guitar and pretty much wrote the themes, the choruses and the bridge to the song. So it was the only song that really existed prior to going into the studio – in a way that I could play it and sing it for the guys.
“Having said that, it really wasn’t complete until we got in there and worked out an intro and a bridge. But my idea all along was, 'Guys, I want a song that’s anthemic.' I wanted something that people could sing along to, waiving their phones and lighters in the air – that whole feel-good vibe.
“It partially has that loose, flowing, kind of hippie-ish Grateful Dead feel. At the same time, as a contrast, I had completed the lyrics after the Boston bombings, which happened while we were in the studio. The whole bridge about not living our lives afraid and not being shattered – that tied in with the overall theme.
“And no guitar solo. You know, there’s a lot of guitar solos on the record, so I can’t hog all the space. [Laughs] Even when I was writing it at home and it went into where the keyboard solo starts, I thought it was more ELP. Jordan did a great job of pulling off an improvised solo. It’s Lucky Man-esque, the sounds that he gets. It’s really something.”