Before becoming a widely lauded songwriter, Jimmy Webb was just another aspiring musician living in a dingy Los Angeles apartment.
The Oklahoma transplant would wander from his low-rent flat in Silver Lake to a place that would inspire one of his most indelible hits, MacArthur Park. There, between Wilshire and 7th, he'd wait for his girlfriend to get off work from her job nearby.
"I used to eat lunch in the park," said Webb, 66. "It was a place you could be away from the dreariness of a really bottom-scale apartment."
The scenes he saw there day after day inspired him to write "MacArthur Park," the unlikely 1968 hit single sung by actor...