Story of the song: Werewolves of London by Warren Zevon

From The Independent archive: Robert Webb is bitten by this California rock star’s hit

Warren Zevon’s albums swilled with troubling tales of mercenaries, psychopaths and bent lawyers

Warren Zevon was the renegade west coaster. While his mid-Seventies Los Angeles peers were taking it easy and running on empty, Zevon’s albums swilled with troubling tales of mercenaries, psychopaths and bent lawyers.

In 1976, Zevon signed to David Geffen’s Asylum label, on the promise that his friend Jackson Browne would produce his first, self-titled, album. Around this time he began work on a song that would have to wait until the second album, Excitable Boy, for release.

“Werewolves of London” was penned by Zevon, with the songwriter LeRoy Marinell and the session guitarist Waddy Wachtel. Taking a title suggested to Zevon by Phil Everly, the three sat down one hot Californian afternoon.

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