Finally getting around to Cheap Trick

I’m 40 years late. So?

I’ve always really liked the Cheap Trick songs I heard on the radio, up to and including The Flame. I know a lot of hard rock bands consider CT to be an influence, so I thought I’d give it a go.

  1. Cheap Trick - really enjoyed it. Pretty darn good for a first album.
  2. In Color - not nearly as good. Southern Girls is definitely the standout. Now I know why you never hear the studio version of I Want You To Want Me on the radio. :eek:
  3. Just starting Heaven Tonight. Sure Surrender is overplayed on classic rock radio, but man, such a good song.

A great Cheap Trick song rocks so hard and is so full of hooks that other bands can only sit on the sidelines and weep at their own incompetence.

Unfortunately, most Cheap Songs aren’t great; they’re merely adequate.

BUT… as a live band, they were once better, louder and more fun than almost anyone else on the planet. At Budokan remains one of the seminal live rock albums and is a perfect 10/10 example of what arena rock should be all about.

I’ve got a ticket to a show in August where they’re playing alongside Heart and Joan Jett, and I’ve gotta admit I don’t know any of their songs besides “Surrender” and “I Want You To Want Me”.

What’re the essential cuts I should familiarize myself with?

Yep, Cheap Trick were a band that was hindered by the heavy control the labels placed on the studio back in the day. At Budokan redeems the previous couple of records by being pretty much a perfect rock record.

It’s another one of those “what if” questions where we’re left to wonder what might have become of that band if they weren’t pressured by the people who they needed to make a living.

Ain’t That A Shame (live cover - fantastic version)

Gonna Raise Hell

Hello There

Dream Police

She’s Tight

If You Want My Love

California Man

Tonight It’s You

Budokan is the greatest live record ever recorded and one of my favorite things ever. I wore the grooves off it in 79.

I had their first few albums; their debut and “Budokan” were the only ones where the songs you heard on the radio were great and the rest of the songs were filler. BTW, the studio version of “Surrender” isn’t that great either.

And the one time I saw them - let’s just say it wasn’t their night. :frowning:

Yep. Absolutely great album. Dream Police and She’s Tight are two of my favorite non-Budokan songs. Also, their covers of Beatles songs are great:

Magical Mystery Tour

Day Tripper

And on the other side of the coin, Dwight Yoakam’s cover of Cheap Trick’s I Want You To Want Me is sublime.

“Hello There” was one of the first songs to make me go ‘WOW’.

In Color is a classic album.

We saw them a couple of years ago. What a great show! I would totally see them again.

Let me clarify that. They WEREN’T the only albums with 2 good songs and the rest was filler.


IMHO some of their more recent albums (Woke Up With a Monster, Cheap Trick '97, Rockford) are well worth a listen.

It’s special if you go to a Cheap Trick show and don’t get a guitar pick.

Great band!

I saw Cheap Trick in '76 when they were a warm up band for KISS. Great show! I mostly remember Rick Neilson with like 17 guitars around his neck.

The time that I saw Cheap Trick, Joan Jett was one of the opening acts (this was 1990 or so. The other band, who I’m sure no one else remembers, was House of Lords). One of the best concerts I’ve seen.

Is Bun E. Carlos back with the band? I heard there’s been a huge falling-out between them where he doesn’t play/write/record with them, but still has a stake in ownership.

In “Surrender”, they mention “losers of the year”, and then a couple lines later “got my Kiss records out”, which always made me speculate hmmm methinks the two bands probably didn’t hang out a whole lot on the road.

I also always wondered if Rick’s axes went out of tune getting stacked together like that.

aw man…“The Flame”…they must have been haaaard up (and possibly spent) by then.

always liked “He’s a Whore” (and there’s a nifty Big Black version) and “Auf Wiedersehen”…(“SUI-CIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII-DUH!!!”)

A few years ago, Cheap Trick performed (and released a CD of) Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band that sounded great, giving a pulse to some great old songs. If you like the Beatles and are just discovering Cheap Trick, you won’t be disappointed.

As far as their more recent work goes, Cheap Trick’s 2009 album The Latest is really good – some very Beatles-esque songs, along with a terrific cover of Slade’s When the Lights Are Out (YouTube video featuring old footage of the band).

A few of their albums, including The Latest and Authorized Greatest Hits (which, of course, has many of the songs mentioned in this thread, including the absolutely fantastic live version of Ain’t That A Shame mentioned by SykoSkotty), are available for streaming for those of you with Amazon Prime. A great many Cheap Trick fans might argue with the songs included (or not) on Authorized …., but it does have some great tunes.

I like Cheap Trick a lot – their original songs are a ton of fun, but they can sure do killer cover songs.

The Kiss reference in that song was a positive one. He wakes up to find his square, by the book parents having sex, smoking weed, and listening to his Kiss records. That’s certainly not a diss of Kiss.

Bun in not back with the band; there are lawsuits pending. The current drummer (his name eludes me at the moment) is none other than Rick Nielsen’s nephew.