I shot a lot of hoops in the backyard of my pal Robert Debelius on Eastern Avenue and this was on the corner boom box whenever Cheap Trick “In Color” or Tom Petty “Hard Promises” wasn’t playing.
The first time I ever heard “Highway To Hell” was on DC101 in the parking lot of the Capital Centre seeing ZZ Top on the “Expect No Quarter” tour in March 1980 (my second concert after seeing Styx a month early at the Baltimore Civic Center). Everybody in the tailgate lot in Largo was singing it at full voice and knew every word. Bon Scott had been dead a month and four months later “Back in Black” arrived in that plain black embossed album cover with Brian Johnson and that screech.
Every kid in my neighborhood had “Back In Black” on cassette – because it was portable – and Angus Young became the new Eddie Van Halen of my neighborhood on every bike. And for the next 18 months, “Hells Bells” was the anthem of Colgate long before my dude Trevor Hoffman ever came outta the San Diego bullpen. Crazy Rich. Snoball Joe. Chuck Piercey. Pudgie. The temperatures were high…
Every word. Every song. In order.
Hey, man, these were cassettes! And who the hell would fast forward through “Giving The Dog A Bone” or “What Do You Do For Money Honey”?
These were NOT lyrics designed for 12-year old boys! (And, babe, you can insert your love for Tipper Gore here, shaking a leg the whole way).
There has never been a finer rock song written than “Shoot To Thrill.”
My parents camped out all morning at the Hecht’s downtown so me and seven of my friends could go to see AC/DC on the “For Those About To Rock Tour.” Saw them several times and have a few “Money Talks” bills that fell from the sky once. And, yes, I’ve seen the derriere of Angus Young on a few occasions as well…
Never interviewed any of the AC/DC lads. Bummed about that…
Even after all of these years, rock and roll ain’t no riddle – it just makes good, good sense.