It’s a Long Way to the Top (If You Wanna Rock ‘n’ Roll) – AC/DC – 1975

July 11, 2013

AC-DC It's a Long Way to the Top Single CoverIt’s a long way to the top if you want to rock ‘n’ roll, but these boys made it. Back in 1975 they were still little known Aussie rockers – but they were on their way.

ac/dc on the radio

This week a local station played ten songs in a row from their pick of the top ten rock bands of the seventies. Here’s who they chose:

1. Led Zeppelin

2. Queen

3. Pink Floyd

4. Aerosmith

5. Black Sabbath

6. The Who

7. AC/DC

8. The Rolling Stones

9. Deep Purple

10. Uriah Heep

As I listened to the songs I realised there was only one band who hadn’t featured on seventiesmusic – AC/DC.

ACDC 3beginnings

The history of AC/DC is well chronicled. Formed in Australia by brothers Malcolm and Angus Young—the boys were inspired by their brother George who was a member of iconic Aussie band, The Easybeats.

When lead singer Bon Scott died in 1980 (meaning it’s his voice we hear on this week’s song), the band thought seriously about quitting. It was Bon’s parents who urged them to keep going saying it was what Bon would have wanted.

The rest is history, with Bon’s replacement, Brian Johnson, AC/DC have gone on to become one of the highest-grossing bands of all time.

accolades

ACDC 2As of 2010, AC/DC had sold more than 200 million albums worldwide. That included 71 million albums in the United States.

Back in Black, having sold 50 million units worldwide, is the second-highest-selling album by any artist and the highest-selling album by any band—Michael Jackson’s Thriller claims the #1 spot.

AC/DC rank fourth on VH1’s list of the 100 Greatest Artists of Hard Rock, and seventh on MTV’s list of the Greatest Heavy Metal Bands of All Time.

In 2004, AC/DC were listed at #72 on the Rolling Stone’s 100 Greatest Artists of All Time.

it’s a long way to the top (if you wanna rock ‘n’ roll) fax

  • It’s a Long Way to the Top (If You Wanna Rock ‘n’ Roll) is the first track from AC/DC’s album T.N.T.
  • The song was written by Angus Young, Malcolm Young and Bon Scott and was released in December 1975.
  • It’s a Long Way to the Top (If You Wanna Rock ‘n’ Roll) is known for its use of bagpipes—perhaps the first heavy rock song to use them. The idea to use bagpipes came from George Young. He heard Bon was in a pipe band and encouraged him. What he didn’t know was that Bon was a drummer and had never played the pipes. He rose to the challenge, however, and the rest, as they say, is history.
  • It’s a Long Way to the Top (If You Wanna Rock ‘n’ Roll) also appears on the international version of the album High Voltage.
  • Artists to cover the song include: Jack Black (in the movie, School of Rock), Pat Boone, Dropkick Murphys, John Farnham, Motörhead, Hanson, The Wiggles, and Lucinda Williams
  • Metallica play the song over the PA at every concert just before they perform.
  • It’s a Long Way to the Top (If You Wanna Rock ‘n’ Roll) was Bon’s signature song and so, out of respect for him, AC/DC no longer performs it.
  • It’s a Long Way to the Top (If You Wanna Rock ‘n’ Roll) lyrics.

it’s a long way to the top (if you wanna rock ‘n’ roll) – ac/dc – 1975 – video

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It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue – Graham Bonnet – 1977

October 18, 2012

Great song, great voice, great guitar solo – Graham Bonnet’s 1977 version of Bob Dylan’s, It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue, has it all!!

blast from the past

I was brushing my teeth! The song started up and I remembered it immediately… Graham Bonnet’s 1977 version of Bob Dylan’s, It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue, with that awesome guitar solo and wonderful lead vocal – I love this song and this version.

here, there and everywhere

Graham Bonnet has had an amazing careeer.  He’s performed as a solo artist, in a duet, and as a member of several hard rock and heavy metal bands including Rainbow.

His first efforts were with the 60s one-hit-wonder duet, The Marbles. Joining his cousin Trevor Gordon, they had a #5 UK hit with the Barry, Robin and Maurice Gibb penned, Only One Woman.

When the Marbles split in 1969 Graham started on a lengthy solo career. Then, from 1978 to 1980 he was the lead singer with Ritchie Blackmore’s Rainbow.

bless ya bobby

It was with Bob Dylan’s song, It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue that Graham had his biggest hit. Prior to that, having disbanded The Marbles, he’d been writing advertising jingles.

He followed Baby Blue with another Bee Gees written song, Warm Ride, a song they had left over from the Saturday Night Fever project.

still going strong

And, would you believe it, Graham Bonnet, now living in Los Angeles, is still performing, 45 years after he formed his first band.

it’s all over now, baby blue fax

  • It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue was written by Bob Dylan in 1965. It featured on his Bringing It All Back Home album. At the time there was much discussion about just who Baby Blue was. Dylan’s never divulged the identity, maybe it’s all just made up?!
  • In a 2005 poll Mojo magazine readers rated It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue at #10 on the list of all-time best Bob Dylan songs
  • It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue has been covered by many artists including; Joan Baez, Van Morrison and Them, The Byrds, The Animals, Judy Collins, Joni Mitchell, Marianne Faithfull, Bryan Ferry, Manfred Mann’s Earth Band, Echo & the Bunnymen, Hole, and The Grateful Dead.
  • Graham’s version was released in 1977 and made the top 40 in many countries. It did best in Australia where it peaked at #5.
  • Graham’s version of It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue appears on the soundtrack of the 2009 Peter Jackson film The Lovely Bones.
  • It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue lyrics.

it’s all over now, baby blue – Graham Bonnet – 1977 – video