Jailbreak

Album: '74 Jailbreak (1984)
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Songfacts®:

  • This is about Mark Brandon Reid, also known as "Chopper." He was sent to jail for murdering a gang leader and he got sentenced to 16 years. Three years into his sentence Chopper became disillusioned with jail life and hated working for the "screws." His friend and crime partner Jimmy Loughnan planned an escape, but because of Jimmy's fear of tight spaces, they were caught and given solitary for two weeks. Bon Scott read about this in a newspaper and started writing lyrics for a song. Everyone in AC/DC loved the idea of a criminal-themed song, and they finished it in about a week. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Kieran - Glasgow, Scotland
  • AC/DC made a reasonably high-end performance video for this song, complete with the boys playing on a bunch of rocks as various explosions go on around them.

Comments: 27

  • Anonymous from Harold The song was not released in 1974. It was first released in Australia in 1976 on the original Dirty Deeds release and was recorded in late 1975 early 1976 at Alberts, Sydney.
  • Xaun from Euskal Herria / Basqueland, EuropeIrene Thornton, ex-wife of Bon Scott, states in one of the last pages (p. 208) of her book on her life with the singer ('Have a drink on me', Red Planet, 2017) that Bon told her about AC/DC having recorded Them band's 'Gloria' song with the idea of releasing it as B-side of the 'Jailbreak' single, but that it ('Gloria'-s cover) had never been released. Bon himself had years before recorded that cover with his first band, The Spektors.
  • Eric from Azthe character in the song sees his lady giving another man head (she was down, and he was UP) and he loses it.
  • Noah Lyons from Columbus Indiana This is that absolute worst song for a lead guitarist. Angus never plays the main riff. In live performances they had to change it so he comes in after the “16 years in hell” so that people wouldn’t think he was having problems with his guitar
  • Jim from Thunder Bay, OnSong is awesome!! Video is hands down best vid of all time!
  • Wally from Sydney, BotswanaRumour has it , that when ACDC were first wrting/rehearsing this song in the studio, they had to stop, as they realised they were playing "Gloria"
  • David from Knoxville, TnI wish they'd have recorded it with Mutt Lange.
  • Ken from Boston, MaDo you notice that Bon (RIP) and Phil Rudd have the same denim shirt on ? is this supposed to be standard issue ?
  • Dave from Crazy Water, Texas, TxThis link will take you to simply the greatest video of this song in existence.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g0Sa8X_ZSPI
  • Vicky from Melbourne, AustraliaI have to say... what a pile of cr*p! How can the song be about Mark Read? If the song was written in '74 and Mark was first imprisoned around '74, and it was about his break out attempt three years later, was Bon Scott a psychic? Whatever.
    AC/DC rocks, but Thunderstruck is the best song, with this a close second!
  • Selina from Perth, AustraliaYeah, greatest pause...............................................................................and if you listen close enough you can hear Bon drinking in the background...ask Angus!
  • Raymond from Winnipeg, CanadaThis is a song that I loved playing over and over. I agree with Derek... greatest pause ever! And Bon rips at the "With a bullet in his back" line... sends chills down my spine
  • Derek from Sarnia, Canadathis song definitely has the greatest pause in rock history
    "But he made it out.....with a bullet in his back!"

    gotta love it
  • Lutan from Macedon Ranges, AustraliaThe Australian Aborginial band, Yothu Yindi, did an amazing cover of this song on an AC/DC tribute album. The use of the didgeridoo (spelling?) is simply amazing and really sets the mood for the song.

    Haven't been able to find a copy of the song since hearing it on the radio many years ago...
  • Scott from Brisbane, Australia'74 Jailbreak was not compiled until the 80's, the other songs were taken from their Australian debut album "High Voltage", but "Jailbreak" was recorded for 1976's "Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap" album. One of the local radio stations recently aired a live gig from around this time, opening with "Jailbreak"... what a cranking rhytym section!!
  • Spence from Smithfield, VaActually, it was recorded and realised in Australia in 1974, while realised in the U.S. in 1984 due to popular demand. Great song, definitly my favorite AC/DC one!
  • Jujee from Marquette, MiGotta love this one!!!
  • Snake from Custer , Sd'74 Jailbreak not Jailbreak '74
  • Oscar from Stockholm, Swedenum, the album was not released in 1984.It was released in 1974. Therefor the name of the album "Jailbreak '74"
  • Paul from Sunnyvale, CaThis song sounds very much like "Gloria" by van morrison. Anyone else notice that.
  • Mleissa from Wasaga Beach, Canadaya it is a friggin awesome jam song lol
  • Sanford from Garland, TxIts a very cool song I thnk the album kicks ass!!!
  • Paulo from India, United StatesMy favorite Bon Scott song.
  • Pete from Nowra, Australiagive it a while Joshy boy, give it a while
  • David Corino from Hawley, Panot the only one....great jam song
  • Chris from London, EnglandIT F***ING ROCKS!!! ALL AC/DC SONGS DO!
  • Josh from Las Vegas, Nvthis song is ncredible and I can't belieive I'm the only commentor
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