In my quest to find good homes for 7″ Singles with picture sleeve covers, I came across another Bon Jovi single. This time around it is for the song “You Give Love a Bad Name” off their mega-selling album “Slipper When Wet”. It was the first single off the album and was the band’s first #1 single and wouldn’t be their last. The song was written by Desmond Child, Jon Bon Jovi and Richie Sambora and is about a woman who has done her lover wrong. So wrong that she gives love a bad name.
An interesting note about the song is Desmond had written this song for Bonnie Tyler, but it was called “If You Were a Woman (And I Was a Man)” which had completely different lyrics. The song did poorly so he brought it to his writing session with Jon and Richie and pitched it. They completely re-wrote the lyrics and turned it in to the big hit it is today.
The single I have is the standard U.S Release which was released on July 23, 1986. The B-Side is also off ‘Slippery When Wet’ and is the song “Raise Your Hands”. The picture sleeve I have is in great shape and the vinyl is clean and sounds great. For being 36 years old, I would say it is in pretty great shape.
This version of “You Give Love A Bad Name” is about 10 seconds longer than the album version due to a slight mixed ending with a better fade out then what you get on the album version. This song is a full on walking cliche of 80’s music. But that is not a bad thing. It is anthemic as it sounds so huge. With a killer into, lyrics that are memorable and sugary sweet, a bombastic guitar solo, earth pounding drum beats and a chorus that is huge with layers of vocals is like sweet and tasty ear candy. Plus, that chorus break towards the end is almost a sing-along war chant to the masses and is huge in a live setting. It is just begging you to join in, clap your hands and sing-along.
The B-Side is “Raise Your Hands” is straight off the album and has some fantastic Richie Sambora riffs that bring this head banging, anthemic rock party song to life. The song’s lyrics are cheesy by naming all these different cities, but it is still a well-crafted hard rock / pop song that gets stuck in your brain. Jon Bon Jovi’s vocals are energetic and contagious and bring the song to life complimented beautifully with Richie on the backing vocals in the chorus. The band knew how to write stadium sized songs that would get a crowd in a frenzy.
And that is it. I hope you enjoyed the trek through this single. There are more singles coming so we will see you next time. Thanks for stopping by!!