Idol, Billy – Rebel Yell

Billy Idol was a member of the 70’s punk group Generation X.

Rebel Yell was his second solo single. Originally released in 1984, it had failed to make it into the top 60. A year and a half later, after the huge it afforded him by White Wedding, Rebel Yell was released again in the w/e 14th September 1985 and very quickly matched its predecessor’s high mark of number 6 in the UK Singles Chart – I bought my copy on 18th October 1985. In total it spent 12 weeks in the chart.

Co-written with Steve Stevens, Rebel Yell is actually written for a Kentucky whiskey distilled in Louisville. The single was taken from the album of the same name and was backed in the UK with a live recording of (Do Not) Stand In The Shadows. It’s just a great rock and roll blast from start to finish, and knowing that it was Jagger and Richards who in part inspired the writing of the song, I cannot escape the fact that it nods to their song Brown Sugar.

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