For musicians, it’s not uncommon to have mixed feelings about certain songs in their repertoire. Sometimes, a song becomes so popular that it dominates their live performances, leading to a sense of weariness. In other instances, artists may feel that a particular song no longer represents them or their musical direction. AC/DC’s Angus Young found himself grappling with such regret over one of the band’s early tracks. Let’s delve into the details of the song that Young considers his most regrettable.
In 1974, Bon Scott joined AC/DC as the replacement for Dave Evans, and the band went on to record their debut studio album, “High Voltage.” The album, released on February 17, 1975, in Australia, featured a single titled “Baby, Please Don’t Go” with the B-side track “Love Song (Oh Jene).” However, it was the B-side that ended up fading into obscurity as “Baby, Please Don’t Go” garnered all the attention and airplay.
“Love Song” had evolved from an unreleased song called “Fell In Love,” written by Malcolm and Dave Evans. Bon Scott modified the lyrics during the recording process. In a 2020 interview with Vulture, Angus Young revealed that “Love Song” is the AC/DC track he regrets the most. Young explained that the song was quite different from their usual style, and he couldn’t even recall its lyrics.
Interestingly, Young shared that someone from their record label suggested they release “Love Song” because local radio stations played softer music, assuming it would receive airplay. However, Young doubted its potential success, feeling that the song didn’t align with AC/DC’s signature sound. Fortunately, radio stations recognized this discrepancy and instead played the B-side, “Baby, Please Don’t Go,” ultimately turning it into a hit.
Reflecting on “Love Song,” Angus Young expressed the following sentiments in the interview with Vulture:
“On our first album, ‘High Voltage,’ we did a love song called ‘Love Song.’ That was very different for us. I didn’t know if we were trying to parody love songs of the time because Bon Scott wrote the lyrics. I don’t even remember what the words are. I remember that song because the guy who worked for us at our record label told us that’s what was on the local radio at the time – very soft music.
He thought we should release that song because it’ll probably get some airplay. I remember thinking, ‘Who in their right mind would want this to go out?’ We were very fortunate, though, because all of the radio stations who had seen us live knew this was not who we were. So these stations started to flip the record over and play the other song, which was a cover of a blues standard called ‘Baby, Please Don’t Go.’ We actually scored a hit from the B-side! That was the one saving grace of the song.”
Angus Young’s candid admission sheds light on the creative journey of AC/DC and the occasional missteps that occur along the way. While “Love Song” may not have aligned with the band’s signature sound, it serves as a reminder of the importance of staying true to one’s artistic vision and the unpredictability of the music industry.