Music, My Stories


We’ve moved from 2019 to 2020 and it felt like, meh. Time will tell how significant some of the things were, like James entering rehab again in 2019 and Motley reforming again to tour and if Def Leppard made the right move to attach themselves with Motley, and all the court cases involving influences in music.

Anyway, I was comparing 2019 in relation to other years like 2009, 1999, 1989 and 1979.

So let’s start with 1979, the year of transition. While some bands were on their last legs, some were just starting to find their own.

Led Zeppelin were coming to an end while Thin Lizzy was on the ascendancy. The Scorpions had bigger things waiting with “Rock You Like A Hurricane” and “Winds Of Change” while Fleetwood Mac and Bad Company delivered stellar albums that unfortunately got compared to their previous mega gazillion selling albums.

Aerosmith became a shell of the band they were with “Night In The Ruts” and Joe Perry left the band after they played the World Series of Rock concert in Cleveland, with Journey, Ted Nugent, Thin Lizzy, AC/DC and Scorpions, while Motorhead after a few up’s and downs with record label crap, got included with the NWOBHM starting off and started their brief commercial rise. Journey kept telling us they are evolving, while Acca Dacca didn’t care about evolving as they rode that highway to hell to the top.

Uli John Roth left Scorpions and created Electric Sun, but in all honesty he should of stayed with Scorpions. He was replaced by Michael Schenker who was being used by his brother Rudolph to lift the profile of the band, so when Michael figured it out, he left and was replaced by Mattias Jab, which became the line-up that would take Scorpions into the 80’s and platinum success, while a supergroup of “musicians who all had small record deals” got together and called themselves Survivor. “Eye Of The Tiger” was a few years away, but you get to hear a band allowing their influences to shape their sound.

Black Sabbath with Ozzy was at an end, along with the Dio fronted Rainbow version. These small changes, led to two stellar albums, a year later in “Heaven and Hell” and “Blizzard of Ozz”.

The “Blizzard” album had a young guitarist from LA called Randy Rhoads who would cement his legacy over three short years with the help of his song writing partner Bob Daisley. Dio of course would go on to bigger platinum sales with “Holy Diver” and “The Last In Line”.

David Coverdale kept his white snake out of his pants and became a love hunter while his old partner in crime was still having troubles with lead singers, this time looking for a replacement for Ronnie James Dio and his Rainbow project. That replacement proved very interesting when Graham Bonnet got the gig.

Before they had their balls on walls, Accept were just Accept and they dropped their debut album. Kiss created disco rock to platinum glory with “I Was Made For Loving You” and Kansas told all their wayward sons to carry on.

Judas Priest dropped “Unleashed In The East” (an album marketed as a live album, with studio embellishments) which showcased the new progressiveness and heaviness of the band. Even older bluesy cuts sounded huge when sped up and it gave Priest an even larger fan base. Def Leppard released their E.P and a year later, released the very underrated “On Through The Night” album. Of course, we all know how high Def Leppard went in the 80’s with “Pyromania” and “Hysteria”, but their most diverse and grown up album “Slang” is ignored.

Iron Maiden, Samson and Angel Witch share a bill and the concert is watched by Geoff Barton, who then describes the bands as the “New Wave Of British Heavy Metal” in his review of the show for Sounds magazine, otherwise known as “NWOBHM”.

Maiden releases “The Soundhouse Tapes” and also gets signed to EMI, hire Dennis Stratton as their second guitarist and replaced drummer Doug Sampson with Clive Burr from Samson. And Clive Burr wouldn’t be the last member Maiden got from Samson with Bruce Dickinson to follow a few years later.

Van Halen released their second album and kept the LA Sunset Strip alive and rocking while Motley Crue was nowhere at this point in time but Nikki Sixx had formed the band London in 78 and by 79 he was already looking for a way out as keeping committed band members proved to be a problem. Blackie Lawless would move from Sister to London during this period as well (funny that, because Blackie fired Nikki from Sister and now Blackie was joining a band that Nikki formed), while George Lynch was still in The Boyz.

Quiet Riot would go to number 1 in 1983, but by 1979, they were finished because RR left the band to join Ozzy.

Pink Floyd in its current incarnation was also coming to an end, even though “The Wall” hit the streets after so much delay and bickering in its creation to mega sales.

And all the artists just kept on creating, regardless of their status on the record label commercial tree. Because that’s why people get into music, to create. Not because copyright terms are forever or because some label said I will give you money to create.

Finally, the greatest ever invention that was going to make music portable for me went on sale in Japan, the Sony Walkman.

Classic Songs to Be Discovered, Derivative Works, Influenced, Music, My Stories

1979 – Part 6 – The Music Community

Finally I have wrapped up the year that was 1979.

The first post came out in February, 2018. The second post came out in November, 2018. The third post came out before the second post in September, 2018 because I forgot to schedule the second post. The fourth post also came out in November, 2018. The fifth post came out in February, 2019 and here we are.

If you are interested in the previous posts, here they are;

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

Part 5

Here is the playlist for 6.

Dire Straits – Communique

“Money For Nothing” and “Walk Of Life” were the songs that took Dire Straits into the stratosphere. MTV loved em, so they kept playing em. And I was interested. Guitarist and singer Mark Knofler didn’t appear in magazines a lot in the 80’s, maybe because his look was seen as old by the magazine editors and feared that the youth would not buy, but when the guitar mags did get a chance to interview him, he came across as really keen to talk about music, his sound, his finger picking guitar style and I was sold.

And suddenly on the radio, I was hearing songs like “Lady Writer” and “Romeo and Juliet” and I was all in. 

Once Upon A Time In The West

The reggae rhythm, the country/western leads and a subdued vocal line, all come together into a perfect song.

Some people get a cheap laugh breaking up the speed limit
Scaring the pedestrians for a minute
Crossing up progress driving on the grass

Owning a car, keeping it clean and mean was a rite of passage once upon a time in the 80’s. Now the kids are quite happy to drive their parents car, as long as they have all the tech they need. Hell, my 12 year old son is already complaining his iPhone 6 is too old and he needs a new one.

Yes it’s no use saying that you don’t know nothing
It’s still gonna get you if you don’t do something
Sitting on a fence that’s a dangerous course

More so today than ever. You need to exercise your vote, use your voice and own it. But the media companies want to bully you into supporting their viewpoint and the social media companies want you to be liked and suddenly you begin your day to accumulate likes, instead of being who you are. Then again, if likes is what you want to be, then all the best to it. China’s social credit system is looking for people like you.

Oh, you could even catch a bullet from the peace-keeping force
Even the hero gets a bullet in the chest
Oh yeah, once upon a time in the west

Everyone thought Ned Stark would save Westeros, instead he lost his head. Heroes are always written after the fact.

Mother Mary your children are slaughtered
Some of you mothers ought to lock up your daughters
Who’s protecting the innocents
Heap big trouble in the land of plenty
Tell me how we’re gonna do what’s best

Most are pushing their own agendas and are doing what is best for their pockets and lives. And who is protecting the innocents when you have corporations running the government and the media pushing their own agendas to the people.

Lady Writer

I dig the clean tone riff in the verses. It’s why I love music, it places a feel or a memory to a time, to a date or to an era.

And that outro solo from Knofler.

Single Handed Sailor

It’s the groove. I was blown away how a band that plays mostly in clean tone can groove and swing like this.

Ted Nugent – State of Shock

So what do you do when you had a hit with a song called “Stranglehold” a few years before. Well if your Ted, you would just re-write it for all the albums which came after. Case in point, “Paralyzed” is a derivative version of “Stranglehold”. But it has a section from about 2.25 minute mark, which hooks me.

Ian Hunter – You’re Never Alone With A Schizophrenic

I didn’t know who Ian Hunter was before I heard this and I immediately gravitated to a few songs.

When The Daylight Comes

The riff is familiar and the vocal line is also familiar. It’s like all the song writers of the time were listening to the same influences. To me it sounds like something John Cougar Mellencamp would write.

And the familiarity is the big reason why this song is in the list.

But when the daylight comes, I’ll be on my way

The Outsider

The song to me feels like it’s about a cowboy life, however i didn’t pick up on that vibe when I first heard it.

Breath is my witness and roads are my life

When you are alone and travelling, the sound of your own breath becomes your best friend.

When the wind grows cold, when the sun grows old, Nothing holds the outsider

Changes happen because of outsiders. The ones who operate on the fringes, honing their craft and building it day by day, person to person.

Just let me be the outsider
They ain’t far behind, they’re always on my mind

Sometimes, the outsiders can’t handle being on the inside. It gets to them and they want out. So many have taken their own lives because of it, or succumbed to an addiction which would eventually claim their life. And I interpret the “they” as the people in power who don’t want to let the outsider in. They want to crush the outsider because of the change they represent.

For example, you know that Netflix is no longer the outsider when Steven Spielberg speaks out against it. Netflix is the new emperor in tow.

Eagles – The Long Run

To some it is sacrilegious, but I got into “The Eagles” in the 90’s a few years before their “When Hell Freezes Over” reunion.

The Long Run

We can handle some resistance
If our love is a strong one (is a strong one)

Most relationships don’t last the long run. And in some cases, neither does the second one or the third one. Because if the person stays as the same person they were when they got together, well that person hasn’t really grown. And when that happens, resentment sets in and when you introduce financial pressures, kids and time away from each other, suddenly you have a bomb ready to go off.

People talkin’ about us
They got nothin’ else to do

There is no escape from people talking. It’s one of the first things humans did. Get together around a fire and talk. But when your friends talk to your ex, you feel pissed, because they should be on your side.

I Can’t Tell You Why

The Eagles could all sing well and they all took turns. To me, it’s a big reason why they didn’t sound so stale. So many different vocalists, different ideas, different songwriters and when you all put it together, you get an Eagles album.

But it’s the guitar solos in the songs, which always hook me.

In The City

I heard this track for the first time at the end of “The Warriors” movie. A connection is made straight away.

King Of Hollywood

I like the intro licks in this. It’s a lead guitar line, which is like a riff.

And the outro. The emotion in the licks.

Mick Taylor – Mick Taylor

I just heard this album recently, and the song “Leather Jacket” stood out straight away. Maybe it was the familiarity to other songs.

Put your leather jacket on when it’s time to be moving on

When you leave, it’s that piece of clothing that comes with you.

All your leather jackets and your faded jeans is all you have left of your rock and roll dreams

And you started your path with the same clothing you leave it.

REO Speedwagon – Nine Lives

REO knew how to rock but it was a power ballad which broke them to the masses, so they got labeled as a power ballad band.

Heavy On Your Love

When this song started off, I thought of “Do You Like It” from Kingdom Come.

Only The Strong Survive

Another rocker that gets the foot tapping and the head nodding.

Back On The Road Again

The outro, from the 4 minute mark.

The drums and the claps start it and then the vocal line of  “I Am On My Way” comes in.

Then the riff kicks in, and my foot is tapping, and when the outro guitar solo kicks in, its hands in the air and time to play some air guitar.

John Mellencamp – John Cougar

His early career is chock full of good songs.

Small Paradise

How good is the intro in this song?

I’ve always said I need to learn it on the guitar and make it metal/Thin Lizzy like. Even the drums how they come in, its very “Eye OF the Tiger” like, and this is before “Eye of the Tiger”.

And in the Chorus, the guitars come in, exactly how I thought they would. In harmony and with distortion. 

I Need A Lover

For almost 2 minutes we get washed and rolled with music. And then the iconic chorus melody kicks in. So different to what happens today, when beats dominate and music is a distant third. But it’s Pat Benater’s version I remember more.

Pray For Me

How good is that intro guitar lead?

And the lyrics about God giving Moses a few rules, and told him to go and have a good time but humans being humans just took it a little too far.

Sammy Hager – Street Machine

To me, this album is a shrewd marketing move from Sammy and his team to tap into the gear heads of the US.

An album with the title “Street Machine” and an opening song called “Trans Am”.

Plus he couldn’t drive 55 either, but we didn’t know that until 1984. However, if this album bombed I honestly believe there would be no “I Can’t Drive 55”.

Trans Am (Highway Wonderland)

 The syncopated staccato riff kicks it off and Sammy’s Golden tones take over.

She’s American made, you know what I mean?
Red on black, she’s a street machine.
Set’s ten inches off the ground with a custom plate
That says I-E-A-T Z28

For those who don’t know, the Z28 refers to the Chevrolet Camaro, which was in competition to the Trans Am.

Trans Am
Come on, catch me if you can

The challenge is set.

Feels Like Love

The sleazy riff must have been heard by a young Nikki Sixx, because he re-wrote it and called it “City Boy Blues”. Then again, the riff from Sammy is influenced by an artist I can’t remember.

Sammy also re-wrote the lyrical them for “When It’s Love”.

Cause it feels like
It feels like love

Plain Jane

I love “Plain Jane” as it has a plain AC/DC style riff in the intro, then a plain acoustic strummed verse which sounds like an Eagles song crossed with John Cougar.

Never Say Die

How good does this song start off?

Just play that intro riff with the distortion cranked to 10 and you will hear how heavy it sounds.

Pat Benatar – In The Heat Of The Night

How good is Pat Benatar?


One of the best female rock voices period, a wicked riff and lead break as well.

I Need A Lover

While John Cougar delivered a 5 minute song, Pat Benatar delivered a pop rock song in the 3 minute range which made John Cougar a lot of money.

Don’t Let It Show

It’s a ballad, reminding me of The Beatles and Benatar delivers a soulful emotive vocal lead and I love the lead break. So simple, emotive and stylish.

Santana – Marathon

Carlos Santana either had me hooked with albums or he had me trading them. On “Marathon” he brings the rock.

Stand Up

The music is excellent especially the riff in the verses and the lyrics resonate about standing up for something.

And that wah talkbox solo is perfect.


The start of the song reminds me of something else, the verse riff reminds me of something else and the Chorus reminds of something else. All of these reminders makes me press repeat on the song.

And the lyrical message, of all we need is love, is not new, but god damn, it’s what the world needs right now.

For both “Stand Up” and “Love”, co-guitarist, keyboardist and backing vocalist, Chris Solberg was a co-writer with Carlos Santana. And no one would even know who Solberg is, hell I don’t even know. But these songs deserve more.

And vocalist Alex Ligertwood  who wrote the closer “Hard Times” has one of the best voices which is not even known.

Also, how good is “Hard Times”.

Status Quo – Whatever You Want

They wrote songs in the 110 to 120 beats per minute range which is perfect for running to.

Whatever You Want

It’s a jingle now, appearing on TV commercials for places who sell goods, because it’s perfect for the message they want to say, come and buy from us, because we have whatever you want.

Bad Company

It’s not a cover, but an original song with a cool riff to sink your ears into.

April Wine – Harder Faster

I didn’t hear this until well into the 90s.

I Like To Rock

The intro hooks me.

The whole interlude before the solo is perfect and the pentatonic lead break brings it.

And the outro is basically “Satisfaction” from the Rolling Stones, hell it even has the riff in the song towards the end.

Nice touch. Now i feel like listening to “Satisfaction”.

Before The Dawn

The clean town intro arpeggios hook me in. The lyrics don’t connect but the music gets me rocking.

Babes In Arms

The intro riff connects.

Better Do It Well

The intros on all the songs just connect with me straight out from the gate. It’s like all the bands tried to outdo each other with killer intro riffs.

21st Century Schizoid Man

A King Crimson cover and since I’m a fan of the Crimson, I dig it, plus it got me interested to check this album out.

Jefferson Starship – Freedom At Point Zero

From being interested in music, I always searched far and wide for new music. This band came into my radar because of an interview I saw in Guitar World with guitarist Craig Chaquico.


My ears can’t tell what the difference is between “Jane” from Jefferson Starship released in 1979 and “Fantasy” by Aldo Nova released in 1981.


The way it just builds works for me. It has leads in the first two minutes. The vocals come in much later.

At six plus minutes, I like it when artists don’t follow formulas.

Just The Same

It has a section which is influenced by “While My Guitar Gently Weeps” which gets me.

Well that’s a wrap, moving on to 1978 next.

Classic Songs to Be Discovered, Derivative Works, Influenced, Music, My Stories

1979 – The Highway To Hell Begins

I’ve been doing a lot of 80’s reflection on this blog and currently I am up to the year, 1984. As I type up the first blog post for 1984, I also decided to start a 70’s one in tandem. But with a different touch. While the 80’s post ascend yearly, the 70’s posts will descend yearly. So when I start 1985, in tandem I will also start 1978.

So here is the kick off from 1979.

AC/DC – Highway to Hell

Who would have thought that six months after the album release date, Bon Scott would be dead. There is no denying what a massive force he was in the band and since his departure, AC/DC got stuck in recreating the formula of Bon’s intensity with the band. Even down to the lyrics Bon wrote in 1979. Yes, the version of AC/DC post Bon, just wrote songs which had knees rhyming with please and what not.

Mutt Lange is on board to produce at the strong insistence of their U.S record label and it was the start of the holy trinity of albums. Malcolm was less than pleased because it meant older brother George, was no longer involved.

I never purchased this album until the early 2000’s. I just went over to a friends place with a bunch of blank cassettes and I taped every album he had, while we drank beers.

“Highway To Hell” is a rite of passage. It might have been about touring, however timeless songs have lyrics that can be interpreted in many different ways. The riff to kick it off is iconic. Credit Malcolm.

Livin’ easy, Livin’ free

Those words are exactly how we want to live life. Easy living. Free living. But it isn’t so. Nothing is free in life and nothing is easy. The people born between 1948 and 1962 inherited a rich country and bankrupted it. They first got into government by the early 80’s and by the mid 90’s they had the power.

What did they do when they had the power?

Pass laws and regulations to benefit their bank accounts and the bank accounts of their sponsors. If they did something wrong, the taxpayer would bail them out.

I’m on the highway to hell
On the highway to hell

The Satanic panic begins. If this was played backwards, the subliminal message would say, “lleh ot yawhgih eht no”. Ohh, it’s so dangerous.

No stop signs
Speed limit
Nobody’s gonna slow me down

Nobody does this anymore. I tell my kids they go to school to learn, not to get a job. But people I speak to always tell me that schools are there for people to get a job. You see, money is more important than developing yourself and experiencing life.

Payin’ my dues
Playin’ in a rockin’ band
Hey, mamma
Look at me
I’m on the way to the promised land

It’s why music was great. People paid their dues. It didn’t mean they would make it, or be global superstars. Hell, it didn’t mean they would make a living wage. But they could have. Bon’s lyrics are a lifestyle and six months later, Bon Scott, would be on his way to the promised land.

“Girls Got Rhythm”

I been around the world
I’ve seen a million girls
Ain’t one of them got
What my lady she got

Only Bon could get away with confessing his cheating ways to his real love back in Oz via a song and still be in a relationship.

Love me till I’m legless
Achin’ and sore

Is this even possible anymore?

Everyone is too busy parading on social media, joining movements of empowerment. There is no time for loving until the morning light.

“Touch Too Much”

Seems like a touch, a touch too much
Too much for my body
Too much for my brain

Only Bon can put his bedroom ways into a song like this. In this case, the woman is just too much for him. He can’t handle her.

“If You Want Blood (You’ve Got It)”

It’s animal
Livin’ in the human zoo
The shit that they toss to you
Feelin’ like a Christian
Locked in a cage
Thrown to the lions
On the second page

Quick, call in the political correct activists.

Life is like living in a cage that you pay for, your whole life and you never really own it. The crap they toss at us, is the wage we get for building someone else’s dream and we have three options, leave and try to build our dreams, stay and work on the side to build our dreams or just stay and be a slave. Because the system is designed to benefit the companies. If you don’t have a weekly wage, you cannot get a loan.

Pink Floyd – The Wall

“The Wall” is Roger Waters lasting legacy. But the best song on the album to me is “Comfortably Numb” written by Gilmour and Waters. Credit producer Bob Ezrin for persisting to get Gilmour’s music on the record. But it was “Another Brick In The Wall Part 2” that was all over the radio.

“Another Brick In The Wall, Pt 2”

We don’t need no education
We don’t need no thought control

The rally cry against the institutions. Producer Bob Ezrin also produced some of Alice Cooper’s earlier work. On “School’s Out”, Ezrin had children sing on a chorus. On the “Destroyer” album from Kiss, Ezrin used his own kids to tell horror stories, on “God of Thunder”. It worked before and with “Another Brick In The Wall” it worked even better.

All in all you’re just another brick in the wall

More so today than before. We might have had stricter teachers and parents in the past, but we still explored and made our own way. The kids these days are told they need to go to University to get a job. It wasn’t the case when I was young. People went to higher education to expand their minds and walk different paths. Instead today, our universities are factories to produce like-minded individuals.

All I hear today is how education rules, but once upon a time people became self-educated without education, and they had the heart and voice to question authority and all the established norms.

“Goodbye Blue Sky”

It’s the inspiration for “Fade To Black” from Metallica.

Did did did did you see the frightened ones
Did did did did you hear the falling bombs
Did did did did you ever wonder
Why we had to run for shelter
When the promise of a brave new world
Unfurled beneath a clear blue sky

I studied WWII in History, however our focus was more on Australia’s involvement. But we still read the text about the London Bombings. And if we didn’t read the text, we had “Aces High” to listen to and digest, which also covered the London Bombings. And who can forget “Churchill’s Speech”. Only a metal band can take a politicians speech and make it even more legendary.

“Goodbye Cruel World”

You can hear the inspiration for “In the Presence Of My Enemies” by Dream Theater, and lyrically, you can hear similar themes and rhymes appearing in Metallica’s lyrical output on the “Ride The Lightning” album.

Goodbye cruel world
I’m leaving you today
Goodbye all you people
There’s nothing you can say
To make me change
My mind

So many people are checking out these days.

Is it the upbringing?

From the 90’s, every kid was told how perfect they are, how great they are and even when they failed or didn’t succeed, they still got told how great and perfect they are.

How is a child meant to build resilience and a growth mindset if there is no challenge set in front of them?

There are no easy answers.

“Hey You”

Hey you, out there on the road
Always doing what you’re told
Can you help me?
Hey you, out there beyond the wall
Breaking bottles in the hall
Can you help me?
Hey you, don’t tell me there’s no hope at all
Together we stand, divided we fall

So much power in the final verse. It covers obedience, living a life controlled by the state and dreaming of a revolution.

“Comfortably Numb”

It’s written by Dave Gilmour and Roger Waters and my favourite song because of the excellent outro lead break.

Is there anybody in there?
Just nod if you can hear me
Is there anyone home?

The mind, the spirit and the soul are three powerful revolutionaries. They need to be suppressed if governments want to exist.

Just a little pinprick
There’ll be no more aaaaaaaah!
But you may feel a little sick

The injection to numb and control.

I have become comfortably numb

Nothing else needs to be said and then the end lead break from Dave Gilmour kicks in. Just sit back, close your eyes and enjoy.

“I banged out five or six solos. From there I just followed my usual procedure, which is to listen back to each solo and make a chart, noting which bits are good. Then, by following the chart, I create one great composite solo by whipping one fader up, then another fader, jumping from phrase to phrase until everything flows together. That’s the way we did it on ‘Comfortably Numb.’”
David Gilmour

Judas Priest – Hell Bent for Leather/Killing Machine

This album had two different titles depending on the region it was released. “Killing Machine” all around the world and “Hell Bent for Leather” in the U.S. I didn’t get this album until well into the 90’s.

Delivering The Goods

It’s written by the holy trinity song writing team of Rob Halford, K. K. Downing and Glenn Tipton. The first time I heard this song was via Skid Row’s “B-Side Ourselves” EP. I enjoyed the Skid’s live take on it, so I went seeking for the album in the second hand record stores. I actually own both copies, the “Killing Machine” version and the “Hell Bent For Leather” version.

Shake down, rock ’em boys, crack that whip strap mean
Pulse rate, air waves, battle lies in every place we’ve been
Stealing your hearts all across the land
Hot blood doing good, we’re going to load you with our brand

It’s exactly how heavy metal and hard rock took over the world in the 80’s. Place by place, city by city, house by house.

Leaving your heads
Crushed out on the floor
Begging for mercy
Be careful or we’ll do it some more

Quiet Riot might have had a hit song with “Bang Your Head” and Drowning Pool in the late 90’s/early 2000’s hit the mainstream with “Bodies” and the catchcry, “Let the bodies hit the floor” but Judas Priest from day zero always had moshing and head banging in their songs.

You better watch out and hold on tight
We’re heading your way like dynamite
Uhhh, Delivering the goods

And the live show was just that. A band, turning up and delivering the goods. AC/DC’s first U.S show was played to less than ten people. After the first set, those people vacated the building only to return minutes later with many more. And the rest is history.

Hell Bent For Leather

This one is written by Glenn Tipton.

The riff is iconic. If you want to understand how iconic and how many derivative versions this derivative riff spawned, check out my post on it..

Wheels! A glint of steel and a flash of light!
Screams! From a streak of fire as he strikes!

Any fan of “Under The Blade” from Twisted Sister would also know the above lyric.

Hell bent, hell bent for leather

Simple and effective.

Black as night, faster than a shadow
Crimson flare from a raging sun
An exhibition, sheer precision
Yet no one knows from where he comes

The song’s story has been re-written many times by Judas Priest. A few that come to mind are “Screaming For Vengeance”, “The Sentinel” and “Painkiller”.

In relation to guitar playing, Glenn Tipton always kept an eye and ear out for what was hot in guitar circles and he would go away, master these new styles and incorporate those influences and styles into his guitar playing. In this case, he breaks out a tapping lick which was obviously influenced by EVH. On albums from the mid 80’s, Tipton would start to incorporate sweep picking courtesy of Yngwie Malmsteen’s influence.


How can you not like the “Walk This Way” riff merged with the “Superstition” riff from Stevie Wonder merged with the “Play That Funky Music White Boy” riff?

The Green Manalishi (With The Two Pronged Crown)

It’s a Fleetwood Mac cover song written by their original and largely forgotten guitarist Peter Green, and it works pretty cool in the hands of Judas Priest. It’s not out of place at all in the pantheon of songs written by Judas Priest.

I had to Google “manalishi” and the first search item that comes up is a Wikipedia page for the song. This is what Wikipedia tells me;

“The song was written during Green’s final months with the band, at a time when he was struggling with LSD and had withdrawn from other members of the band. While there are several theories about the meaning of the title “Green Manalishi”, Green has always maintained that the song is about money, as represented by the devil. Green was reportedly angered by the other band members’ refusal to give away their financial gains.”

There was something really out there about the late 60’s and early 70’s period. Every songwriter was experimenting with different narcotics so they could tap into some state of the brain, which would help them be even more creative.

Running Wild

The intro riff is another riff to rule them all. You can hear where Iron Maiden took inspiration from for the “The Wicker Man”. Quick call the lawyers. Then again, i am sure someone will. It’s another cut written solely by Glenn Tipton and he covers themes which in the 80’s became the norm.

No chains can hold me down
I always break away
I never hear society
Tell me what to do or say

The idea of being able to live your life the way you want to live it is our greatest invention. It is the bedrock of our culture. And these days more than ever, these ideals and rights have become inconvenient to our leaders who only serve the corporations or come from the corporations. And it’s precisely why we have to work so hard to defend them.

I rebel but I walk tall
And I demand respect

Fitting in seems like a good way to earn trust. How many people sit back and don’t do anything to draw attention to themselves, just in case they are left out. The philosophy is simple, go along with the crowd and you will get ahead. But the truth is, no one can fit in all the way. People can choose to stand out, be respectful and challenge the status quo.

Journey – Evolution

It has “Lovin, Touchin’ Squeezin’” but it’s not my favourite. The three listed songs are for various reasons.

Lovin’ You Is Easy

The music is upbeat and infectious and it’s always good to hear Schon rocking out.

Do You Recall

The melodies in this song appear in a lot of Jovi songs.

Yes, it’s the lovin’ things
That keeps us wondering

Lady Luck

This song grooves, taking its cues from the hard rock stylings of Led Zeppelin.

The Police – Reggatta de Blanc

The Police to me, didn’t really write a perfect album from start to finish, but man could they write classic tracks.

Message In A Bottle

The intro is the first thing that hooks me. And it’s guitarist Andy Summers who saves the day with his add9 chord voicings over a simple bass groove.

I’ll send an SOS to the world

Sending out a message to the world today is easier than ever. We are all hooked up, ready to go.

Is it a good thing or a bad thing?

Who knows, but to participate, we need to give away some of our privacy and people get a look into our lives.

Walked out this morning, I don’t believe what I saw
Hundred billion bottles washed up on the shore
Seems I’m not alone in being alone
Hundred billion castaways looking for a home

Today we live in a social media society. We have friends and likes. For some, this is fulfilling and for others they feel even more isolated and lonely. In the end, we all castaways looking for a home. Sometimes we find it, sometimes it takes a few turns to find it. Eventually we find our home.

Whitesnake – Lovehunter

I didn’t hear this album until very late in the 90’s. Hell, I was buying so many second hand LP’s from record fairs and second hand book shops, I can’t even place a memory as to when I purchased it. I was always a sucker for the $1 bins.

Walking In The Shadow Of The Blues

Written by David Coverdale and the underrated Bernie Marsden.

I love the blues, they tell my story
If you don’t feel it you can never understand

It all started with the blues. Rock was built on the bones of the 30/40’s blues artists. Metal was also built on the bones of those same artists, along with the defiance and rebellion of rock music. Without the blues, the music I listen to, would not be possible.

‘Cause I love the life I live, I’m gonna live the life I choose

My Dad knew what he was talking about, but I was too full of youthful energy to really listen and heed his warnings. You only have one life, so live it the way you want to live it. It’s easier said than done, but achievable and it starts with control.

Do you have control of your life, so you can make the right decisions or is your job and your commitments to banks and credit companies controlling you?

Once you give up control, your life path changes.

All of my life I’ve had the same reputation
I’ve been the black sheep of the family all along
I never know if in my heart I’m really guilty
But I’ve been accused of never knowing right from wrong

The themes are still relevant. When the youth don’t conform to the wishes of the elders, they are always seen as black sheep’s.

Medicine Man

It’s written by David Coverdale who is a pretty cool guitar player in his own singer/songwriter way. Lyrical, he’s the doctor of love, the medicine man who is always there to satisfy. Musically, it’s just a feel good jam song.

Mean Business

Lyrically Coverdale has his love gun loaded and ready to fire if the lady he’s with doesn’t mean business. Musically, it’s very “Ballroom Blitz” like in its pace and feel.

Love Hunter

In “Love Hunter”, DC is needing a woman to treat him good and to give him everything a good woman should, because she would be waiting for her brown eyed boy to come home and treat her right.

Do you reckon these lyrics will work today?

Maybe not.

Then again what about this one?

In my time I’ve been a back door man


I took to the highway,
Chasing my dream down the line

Does anyone do this anymore?

I keep on reading reports of kids staying at home with their parents well into their 30’s. Is this because parents have too much control and have taken away the right for their child to make a decision.

Outlaw – born outside of the law,

All the rockers and metal heads are outlaws.

I’ve always been a dreamer,
Dreamers find it hard to survive

You need to act if you want your dreams to come true.

Rock N Roll Women

About groupies.

I’m looking for the promise of a one night stand
So I’m going looking for those rock ‘n’ roll women tonight

That’s all DC wants, a good time with no strings attached.

KISS – Dynasty

One of the first albums I owned from Kiss and i played it to death, so it’s no surprise I have a few songs from it on my list. Other friends I know hate this album and the debates between albums is always fun. I always saw the debates like this.

“Dynasty” is my first Kiss album, so by default I dropped the needle on it a lot. However, most of friends had “Love Gun” or “Destroyer” as their first Kiss album and they dropped the needle on those albums a lot.

“I Was Made for Loving You”

It was the obvious single, and the unexpected hit, written by Paul Stanley, Vini Poncia and Desmond Child. Stanley also performs bass duties on this one. Seriously, if you were a fan of Kiss before this song, how can you not like the poppy chorus. Some of the best pop songwriters hung up their pens and pads after this. (Maybe not, but you get the point).

For me, the melodies are great, but the lyrics are crap.

Sure Know Something

Written by Stanley and Poncia, this is another song hated by “fans” who cried sell out. To me, it’s a mixture between melodic rock, disco and new wave. In the end, it’s still Kiss. It has all the ingredients of crap lyrics and great melodies. The bass groove is unique and the lead guitar break from Stanley is worth the listen.

Dirty Livin’

This is an excellent track. It could have been on a Steely Dan album or a Doobie Brothers record. Instead it’s on a Kiss record and it rocks. Peter Criss sings, it and he co-wrote it with Stan Penridge and Vini Poncia.  It’s actually the only track that Peter Criss drums on. Anton Fig played drums on all of the other songs.

Magic Touch

Solely written by Paul Stanley this track comes loaded with a melodic riff and a pop melody. Still to this day it’s a favourite, purely for its sense of melody.

Hard Times

Ace Frehley wrote it, he sings it and he plays all the guitars. It’s another Kiss rocker. All the pieces are here.

The hard times are dead and gone
But the hard times have made me strong

Damn right they did.