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Ten Songs About Stealing Something Other Than a Heart


The Wilburys Got Rejected and Robbed On the Same Night


To have your heart stolen has served as a basis for myriads of popular songs, a metaphorical theft that has grown stale because of overuse. Decades ago Van Morrison used it in the hit “Steal My Heart Away,” and more recently One Direction cashed in on the metaphor with “Stole My Heart.”

Rarely have artists ever actually written songs about a literal theft, even though that crime happens much more frequently than someone falling in love. Here are ten of the instances when songs actually feature stealing, be it a car or a musical instrument or a sum of money.

1. Grand Larceny by John Gorka

When the folk singer's van gets robbed after a show near what used to be Three Rivers Stadium, he quips “Pittsburgh has the Steelers, the Pirates and the thieves.”

2. Alice Childress by Ben Folds Five

The title character is being made fun of for her naivitee on this track from the self-titled debut, so getting beaten up and robbed makes for an appropriate final verse.

3. Take the Money and Run by the Steve Miller Band

Billy Joe and Bobby Sue had nothing better to do, according to the first single from Fly Like an Eagle, leading to the shooting of a man and the looting of his home.

4. Look Sharp by Joe Jackson

“They rob you blind on every street” says a man to the singer, who right then was helping himself to the former's watch and wallet during this title track.

5. Did You Steal My Money by the Who

Vocalist Roger Daltrey asks this question in every verse of this Face Dances track, which covers several different instances of theft and even battery.

6. Magneto and Titanium Man by Paul McCartney and Wings

Banks are on the hit list of these two characters from the Venus and Mars album, whose single “Listen What the Man Said” overshadowed this delight as well as “Medicine Jar.”

7. Lil Cal's Big Mistake by the Knack

Round Trip, the quartet's third and best album, offered this catchy tale of a criminal's patsy.

8. Dreadlock Holiday by 10cc

Vacationing in Jamaica cost the singer of this Bloody Tourists single to lose his silver chain, but his fortunes changed when he met the babe drinking pina colada in the next verse.

9. Last Night by Traveling Wilburys

Tom Petty and Roy Orbison share lead vocals on this lament of a one night stand that ended with a robbery, immediately after an impromptu marriage proposal.

10. One Piece at a Time by Johnny Cash

Over the span of a many months, the auto worker here steals a part each day until he has enough to build his own car.

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