It’s the fortieth anniversary of the terrific melodic rock Get Lucky, the second album by Loverboy. In 1980, the Canadian rockers Loverboy went from the throwaway pile outside my office door to the #13-selling album on Billboard Album Chart, no thanks to one of the all-time worst album covers ever. Reportedly a self-portrait Polaroid of the graphic artist hired to lay out the album cover, it could be the least representative of the straight ahead rock music inside since John Hiatt‘s debut where he looked like a cadaver. Simply titled Loverboy , their debut in early Summer 1980 suffered from an almost fatal album cover and virtually no promotion, but working late one night in my ROCK 103 Memphis office, I found that first Loverboy album in a throwaway pile and stumbled onto “Turn Me Loose” and “The Kid is Hot Tonight”, easy one-listen obvious hits. So when their sophomore effort Get Lucky came out in Fall 1981, these Canadian rockers were the right band at the right time.The first time we saw them around Thanksgiving ’81 live at the Memphis Orpheum Theater opening for Point Blank, Loverboy started their tightly rehearsed set with a great song about “…everybody’s workin’ for the weekend…”, but it had not appeared on that first release. I rushed backstage immediately after their set to inquire,”What was that great song you opened with?” And who then could have possibly imagined that, over thirty years and 4,000,000 copies later, “Working for the Weekend” would be the soundtrack to the popular Radio Shack Super Bowl tv ads a few years back, seen and heard by over 100 million? North American rock radio was waiting in anticipation for it, along with “When It’s Over”, “Jump” co-written by fellow countryman Bryan Adams, “Gangs in the Street”, and “Take Me to the Top”.
Get Lucky by Loverboy also was highly significant for its produced sound, which had a huge presence that really cut through on the radio, and it wasn’t long before the bands who would define Eighties rock including Bon Jovi, Aerosmith, and Metallica were all making the pilgrimmage to Vancouver’s Little Mountain Studio to work with Loverboy’s studio brain trust, producer the late Bruce Fairbairn and engineer Bob Rock, who themselves had been musicians in Prism and The Payolas, respectively. Lead singer Mike Reno and guitarist Paul Dean recall how nice guys don’t finish last in this In The Studio classic rock interview. –Redbeard