GQ interviewed everyone directly and tangentially responsible for (Jefferson) Starship's 1985 miasmic megahit, "We Built This City."
Bernie Taupin (lyricist, in 2013): The original song was… a very dark song about how club life in L.A. was being killed off and live acts had no place to go. A producer named Peter Wolf—not the J. Geils Peter Wolf, but a big-time pop guy and Austrian record producer—got ahold of the demo and totally changed it.… If you heard the original demo, you wouldn't even recognize the song.
Grace Slick (in 2002): The Starship, I hated. Our big hit single, "We Built This City," was awful.… I felt like I'd throw up on the front row, but I smiled and did it anyway. The show must go on.
Martin Page (co-writer): About two years ago, I saw an advert in London for the mobile service Three UK with a little girl riding a bicycle and singing the song, and it went viral. I nearly cried. After all these years, the song went back into the Top 20 in the UK. It keeps creeping back. It refuses to die.