As a red-blooded Canadian rock fan and Fender Stratocaster enthusiast, the music of Bryan Adams has had a lasting influence on me. For me, Adams hit a perfect storm when he did a duet with Tina Turner entitled “It’s Only Love”.
The songwriter behind Adam’s early (and best) hits is the inimitable Jim Vallance. I strongly suggest that every songwriter visit his web site. Jim has painstakingly listed details for all the songs that have been covered by mainstream artists. What makes it extra-special is the inclusion of sound clips of demos, early versions as well as interesting anecdotes surrounding the creation of a particular song. This makes the site into a gold mine for anybody curious about the songwriting process.
The biggest thing I have learned reading though his site was the intense work ethic required to generate that many hit songs. Him and Adams would write songs for 12-hours a days, everyday for long periods of time. Despite their huge success together, their intense work schedule negatively affected their friendship and led Adams to collaborate with other such as Mutt Lange (“Everything I do, I do it For You”).
Jim also wrote hits for Aerosmith, Ozzy Osbourne, Alice Cooper, Kiss and Heart. His recounting of the making of “Rag Doll” is quite interesting. Who knew Steven Tyler worked so hard? That’s what truly gifted people do: they make it look so easy.