Let There Be Rock

Album: Let There Be Rock (1977)
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  • "Let There Be Rock" was co-written by brothers Angus and Malcolm Young, and lyricist Bon Scott.

    The title track of and the third track on the band's fourth album, it was released as a CD single in October 1977 backed by "Problem Child."

    Running to a shade over 6 minutes, it was produced by Harry Vanda and George Young.
  • In spite of its appearing to be nothing more than a typically mindless rock anthem, this is actually quite a sophisticated track:

    In the beginning
    Back in 1955
    The white man had the schmaltz
    The black man had the blues


    is an allusion to the birth of rock 'n' roll. The genre developed from boogie woogie; the first rock 'n' roll song is generally acknowledged to be "Rocket 88", to which Ike Turner was a very unlikely contributor considering the way his music was to develop, but then the two men who gave rock 'n' roll to the world in the first instance were if anything even more unlikely. There was the white man - who had performed as Yodelling Bill Haley - and the black man, an ex-jailbird and qualified beautician named Chuck Berry. Both Haley's "Rock Around The Clock" and Berry's "Maybellene" were released in 1955, and as they say, the rest is history. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Alexander Baron - London, England, for above 2
  • An anthem for the band, AC/DC has played this song at every concert since 1978. They often play it very fast and the solo can be extended all the way to 20 minutes as Angus rises above the stage and does the "spasm." >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Joe - Saugus, MA
  • Angus Young said of this song: "I remember the amp literally exploded during the recording session. My brother watched it with crazed eyes, and he told me 'Come on! Keep on playing!' while the stuff was steaming." >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Bertrand - Paris, France
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Comments: 14

  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyPer: http://www.oldiesmusic.com/news.htm {10-23-2017}
    George Young, guitarist with the Easybeats and co-writer of their hit, “Friday On My Mind” (#16 in 1967), died Sunday (October 22nd, 2017) at the age of 70...
    George was the brother of Angus and Malcolm Young of AC/DC and produced the group’s early albums such as 'Let There Be Rock' and 'Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap'*...
    George also wrote the John Paul Young tune, “Love Is In The Air” (#7 in 1977)...
    May he R.I.P.
  • Zero from Nowhere, NjOn Metallica's "Live At Grimey's" CD, after "Seek and Destroy" they burst into the main riff of this song before ending the set.
  • Yasin from Marietta, Ganear the end of the song, are they talking about themselves when Bon sings about some band at a club
  • Barry from Dublin, IrelandBuilding on a line from the Chuck Berry song "Roll Over Beethoven": "...tell Tchaikovsky the news", "Let There Be Rock" reveals that Tchaikovsky did in fact receive the message and subsequently shared it with the masses, resulting in the rise of rock 'n' roll. God bless Wiki!
  • Homer from Springfield, KyI thought it was "The white man had the smokes/The black man had the booze." Whatever. Awesome song
  • John from North Lauderdale, FlYeah, I signed up just for the purpose of correcting this lyric. "Smoltz" is a baseball player (John Smoltz). The word is "schmaltz", which means an overly-sentimental, sappy song. Like the crooners of the 40's such as Sinatra, etc. Why almost every lyric site says it's "smoltz" I have no idea.
  • Greg from Waterford, CtThe line is "The white man had the schmaltz" Schmaltz means highly sentimental and banal music, or overly sentimental esp. in music.
  • Austin from Bristow, VaLove in in studio and love it live. Psalm 3:16 said, "And the Lord said 'Let There Be Rock'".
  • Nick from Vancouver, Wa"Anyone know what "smoltz" means, if that really is what Bon's saying? I also find it interesting that Bon used Tchaikovsky when the composer had nothing to do with rock at all. I wonder why he did that?
    - Bess, San Diego, CA"

    The "Smoltz" question is the same reason I came here. But as for Tchaikovsky, it would refer to the Chuck Berry Song "Roll over Beethoven" where he says: Roll over Beethoven, and tell Tchaikovsky the news. Instead of telling him the news, in this song he would already have gotten it.
  • Bess from San Diego, CaAnyone know what "smoltz" means, if that really is what Bon's saying? I also find it interesting that Bon used Tchaikovsky when the composer had nothing to do with rock at all. I wonder why he did that?
  • Mike from Ponoka, AbAngus Is The Greatest Guitarist That Ever Lived!!!!!!! This Song It Really Makes Me Want To Party! This Band Is My Favorite And Always Will Be Because They Never Stop Rockin' Out!!!!! Definetly One Of My Fav Songs By AC/DC!!!! :)
  • Selina from Perth, AustraliaHe slices the ligaments in his ankle actually....... Such a great song, great idea using words from the opening of the Bible and shaping them into anthemic lyrics :) ! Great riff too, love the sound of Malcolm playing the A chord and then hitting it muted- gives it such a great rythmic sound
  • Aussie from Fffff, Australiabertrand - Paris, France is correct Angus smoked the JTM 45 Marshall & was sh*tting bricks. It was his brother George Young of Easybeats fame who urged him on whilst the amp was smoking. In the film clip where Bon Leaps of the pulpit he actually badly damaged his leg. If you watch closely you will see him hit the pews in the front row
  • Ev from Tuscaloosa, AlThis song is on the family jewels DVD with Bon Scott in Priests robes at an alter,and several times during the video it zooms in on his face smiling and he looks very creepy. About halfway thruogh the video he takes off the robes and jumps over the drums and falls off the stage
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