AC/DC - Back In Black - Meaning of the song
This was released five months after lead singer Bon Scott died. The song is a tribute to Scott, and the lyrics, "Forget the hearse 'cause I never die" imply that he will live on forever through his music. With Brian Johnson on lead vocals, the Back In Black album proved that AC/DC could indeed carry on without Scott.
Bon Scott had several lyrical ideas for the album, but those were abandoned by the band in favor of new lyrics by Brian, Malcolm and Angus. Former AC/DC manager Ian Jeffrey claims to still have a folder that contains lyrics of 15 songs written for Back In Black by Bon, but Angus insists that all of Bon's notebooks were given to his family.
Back in black was recorded in The Bahamas and produced in New York by Mutt Lange. This song was one of the first big albums Lange produced. He went on to work with Def Leppard, Celine Dion, and Shania Twain (who he married in 1993). In the late-'70s, he produced two albums for the band Clover, which featured Huey Lewis on harmonica and Alex Call on lead vocals.
Alex Call explains Lange's production style: "Mutt is a real studio rat. He is Mr. Endurance in the studio. When we were making the records with him, he'd start working at 10:30, 11 in the morning and go until 3 at night, night after night. He is one of the guys that really developed that whole multi-multi-multi track recording. We'd do 8 tracks of background vocals going, "Oooooh" and bounce those down to one track and then do another 8, he was doing a lot of that. A lot of the things you hear on Def Leppard and that kind of stuff, he was developing that when he worked with us. We were the last record he did that wasn't enormous, and that's not his fault, he did a really good job with us. Mutt is famous for working long hours. The story I heard about one of the Shania sessions, he had Rob Hajakos, who's one of the famous fiddle session men down here (Nashville). Rob was playing violin parts for like seven or eight hours and finally he said, 'Can I take a break,' and Mutt says, 'What do you mean take a break?' Rob goes, 'Have you ever held one of these for eight hours under your chin?' Mutt really loves to record, he loves music and he's a real perfectionist and an innovator. An unbelievable commercial hook writer."
Back In Black - Lyrics
Back in black I hit the sack I've been too long I'm glad to be back Yes I am Let loose from the noose That's kept me hanging about I kept looking at the sky cause it's gettin' me high Forget the hearse cause I'll never die I got nine lives cat's eyes Abusin' every one of them and runnin' wild Cause I'm back Yes I'm back Well I'm back Yes I'm back Well I'm back back Well I'm back in black Yes I'm back in black Back in the back of a Cadillac Number one with a bullet I'm a power pack Yes I am In a bang with the gang They've got to catch me if they want me to hang Cause I'm back on the track and I'm beatin' the flack Nobody's gonna get me on another rap So look at me now I'm just makin' my play Don't try to push your luck just get out of my way Cause I'm back Yes I'm back Well I'm back Yes I'm back Well I'm back back Well I'm back in black Yes I'm back in black Well I'm back yes I'm back Well I'm back yes I'm back Well I'm back back Well I'm back in black Yes I'm back in black Ho yeah Oh yeah Yes I am Oh yeah, yeah oh yeah Back in now Well I'm back, I'm back Back, (I'm back) Back, (I'm back) Back, (I'm back) Back, (I'm back) Back Back in black Yes I'm back in black Outta sight