People have been singing tunes about the sun ever since cavemen first learned to hum. As a result, sun songs are almost as plentiful as stars in the night sky.
Songs about solar eclipses, on the other hand, are pretty rare -- just like a total solar eclipse itself.
To celebrate the total solar eclipse taking place Monday, Aug. 21 in parts of the U.S. (and the partial eclipse happening in Texas) here are five memorable songs in which eclipses figure prominently.
"You're So Vain," Carly Simon (1972)
In her most famous song, Simon sneers at an ex-lover who has enough cash to do whatever he pleases: "Then you flew your Learjet up to Nova Scotia to see the total eclipse of the sun" -- a reference, perhaps, to the total eclipse that took place in March 1970 in Nova Scotia. Interestingly, Simon has confirmed she wrote the song's second verse about Warren Beatty, but she's yet to reveal who the "eclipse" verse was about.
"Eclipse," Pink Floyd (1973)
This philosophic anthem was the final track to -- fittingly enough -- Dark Side of the Moon, arguably the band's magnum opus. Written and sung by Roger Waters, it features the lyric "everything under the sun is in tune, but the sun is eclipsed by the moon." Waters once said the song is about humans' willingness to let dark thoughts obscure the joy of living. "Eclipse" ends on a pragmatic note, with a doorman from Abbey Road recording studio saying, "There is no dark side of the moon, really. Matter of fact, it's all dark."
"Total Eclipse," Iron Maiden (1982)
Wailing over hellacious guitars, Bruce Dickinson uses a solar eclipse as a metaphor for one of Iron Maiden's pet topics: the apocalypse. "Around the world, the people stop with terror-stricken eyes /A shadow cast upon them all, to crush them like a fly." Originally released only as the B-side to "Run to the Hills," the song can now be found on re-released versions of The Number of the Beast.
"Total Eclipse of the Heart," Bonnie Tyler (1983)
The Welsh singer's bombastic pop classic isn't about a solar eclipse, per se, but about how her lover's capricious affection "is like a shadow on me all of the time." Fun facts: Songwriter Jim Steinman (Meat Loaf's main man) originally titled his tune "Vampires in Love" and earmarked it for a Dracula-inspired musical; the song features guitarist Rick Derringer of "Rock And Roll, Hoochie Koo" fame, as well as E Street Band members Roy Bittan on piano and Max Weinberg on drums.
"The Marrying Kind," Prince (2004)
Aside from being one of rock's greatest musicians, Prince was a master at the comic double entendre, from the title of "Little Red Corvette" to the line "You're a star and I'm the big dipper" in "Gett Off." In this metal-edged strut from Musicology, Prince unleashes more astronomical innuendo and sings "there might be another solar eclipse" taking place in his bedroom.