Cheap Trick At The Movies!

Today, of course, it is commonplace for even the most trivial movie (of which there are many) to come with its own movie soundtrack. Keep in mind, however, that there is a big difference between a movie score (comprised of background music directly from the movie) and a movie soundtrack album (a group of songs that may or may not even appear in the movie). While Cheap Trick haven't so much been involved in the scoring process like a Danny Elfman or Jon Brion, they are a pioneering band when it comes to movie soundtracks, being one of the first bands to utilize the promotional power of soundtrack albums.

We at The Shit have taken it upon ourselves to chronicle, and critique Cheap Trick's Top 5 most notable soundtrack appearances, beginning with Matt Dillon's theatrical debut.

Over The Edge (1979)

Set in motion long before the fluke success of At Budokan, this little-known film featured a soundtrack that included hits by the likes of The Cars ("My Best Friend's Girl" and "Just What I Needed"), Van Halen ("You Really Got Me"), and the Ramones ("Teenage Lobotomy"). Most notable is that there are not one, not two, not three, but four Cheap Trick songs on the soundtrack: "Surrender", "Speak Now or Forever Hold Your Peace", "Hello There", and "Downed". All of these songs are available on previous Trick studio albums, of course, but for those unfamiliar with the band at that time, this would have been a great introduction to the band.

Roadie (1980)

Whereas "Over The Edge" had featured previously-available Trick tunes, what's most notable about their appearance here was that Cheap Trick were contributing a song specifically for the movie. The tune, "Everything Works If You let It" had been recorded during the band's All Shook Up sessions with George Martin.  Upon first hearing the tune, one couldn't help wonder why the song wasn't included on All Shook Up, as it wound up scoring higher on the Singles chart (#44) than any single from the album.

Heavy Metal (1981)

Cheap Trick's creative high-point in regard to their contributions to movie soundtracks came in '81 with their appearance on the "Heavy Metal" film's double-album soundtrack. "Reach Out", a song co-written by then-new bassist Pete Comita, remains one of the album's best songs and a Cheap Trick fan favorite. "I Must be Dreamin", written by Rick Nielsen, also appeared on the album and was the B-side to "Reach Out" when it was released as a single.

Both songs were produced by Roy Thomas Baker (The Cars, Queen), giving Trick fans much hope when it was later announced that Baker would also be producing the next Cheap Trick album (One On One).

Spring Break (1983)

Sadly, the band's contribution to this movie's soundtrack was the most notable thing about the film, which enjoyed a very brief theatrical run before disappearing altogether. That's not to say that the song, also called "Spring Break", is one of Cheap Trick's best, but those of us who were eager to get our hands on any and all new Trick tunes, when we finally got our hands on the single, we were treated to yet another new song called "Get Ready", which did not appear on the soundtrack.

Rock & Rule (1983)

The first we Trick fans had heard of this film, which would also feature music by Debbie Harry, Iggy Pop and Lou Reed, was 1981 and then...nothing. If the film had any sort of theatrical run, we didn't see it, nor was a soundtrack album ever made commercially available. As a result, the bands contribution of three songs "Ohm Sweet Ohm", "Born To Raise Hell" and "I'm The Man" remained unheard until Cheap Trick's career-spanning box set "Sex, America, Cheap Trick" in 1996. Also recorded for the film, but omitted from the box set was Zander's duet with Blondie's Debbie Harry.

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