Night Ranger, ‘(You Can Still) Rock In America’ (Live & Acoustic) – Video Premiere
Today, we’re pleased to bring you the exclusive world premiere of a brand new and very unique live performance of Night Ranger’s classic anthem ‘(You Can Still) Rock In America.’ It’s taken from the band’s upcoming acoustic live CD and DVD, ‘24 Strings & A Drummer – Live & Acoustic,’ which will be released on Oct. 22.
Guitarist Brad Gillis tells Ultimate Classic Rock that the new live release came about very naturally for the group. Performing acoustically, he says, was “pretty familiar for us,” thanks to years of playing stripped down versions of many of their hits during radio interviews and occasionally, in the middle of their own headlining performances.
With the big hits already in their acoustic arsenal, Gillis says that they just had to look at the rest of their catalog to pull out some additional songs to have enough for a full show. With a couple of days of rehearsal, he says that they reworked some of the songs “to make things a little bit different, and it turned out great.”
Gillis recalls that back in the ’80s, ‘(You Can Still) Rock In America’ came about as a result of frontman Jack Blades, who heard people saying that “rock is dead.” With Night Ranger selling out 15,000 seat venues at the time, Blades figured that the terminal diagnosis was perhaps a bit premature. He got with Gillis and shared his idea of a possible song idea. For Gillis, it was a no-brainer and he and Blades quickly knocked out the framework for the song and took it to the rest of the band.
From there, it was smooth sailing (or should we say, “motorin’,” to borrow from the band’s other future smash ‘Sister Christian’) and in his words, the “next thing you know, we had a nice rock anthem that’s been one of the highlights of our set for the past 30 years!”