Muses have always played a powerful role in art. From Da Vinci's Mona Lisa to Kate Moss inspiring entire fashion lines in her heyday, artists have always been able to create memorable works when they come into contact with people who make them feel something.
And it's no different when it comes to music. We've sang so many of these songs out loud, not knowing the folks who inspired them. Here are the real life people who inspired nine of the most popular songs in modern music history.
1. Uptown Girl by Billy Joel
The lyrics to Billy Joel's catchy 1983 hit describes a poor man who is in love with an upper class girl. Chances are you at least know the part of the song which goes, "Uptown girl, she's been living in her uptown world. I bet she's never had a backstreet guy. I bet her momma never told her why."
An interesting fact is that the song was inspired by the real-life Uptown girls in Joel's life. When he started writing the song, he was dating famous model, Elle Macpherson. When the relationship ended, Joel began dating Christine Brinkley, another famous model.
The song talks about him, Joel, dating a hot, upper-class girl, Macpherson, and later, Brinkley. Uptown Girl must have done its magic because Brinkley starred in the music video and married him two years later.
2. Maybe I'm Amazed by Paul McCartney
Paul McCartney was a founding member of The Beatles who remains wildly popular. When the band broke up in 1969, he was hit particularly hard by what he referred to as the band's "divorce." Paul sunk into a deep depression and later credited his wife, Linda, with helping him get through this particularly tough time.
The song Maybe I'm Amazed talks about the bond the two have and his awe at her love for him. It is just one of several songs he wrote for her during the course of their 30 year relationship before she passed away.
3. Sweet Child o' Mine by Guns N Roses
In the 1980s, lead singer Axl Rose was smitten by his model girlfriend, Erin Everly. Like most lovesick young men, he decided to write a poem for her but was struggling with the right words.
One day, he heard Slash, the band's guitarist pay a riff in the upstairs room of the house they were staying in. It immediately inspired him to finish Erin's poem which he later turned into the band's biggest hits and one of the greatest rock love songs in history.