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CSX Classic Cuts

NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 13: Joe Perry and Steven Tyler of Aerosmith perform at the Songwriters Hall of Fame 44th Annual Induction and Awards Dinner at the New York Marriott Marquis on June 13, 2013 in New York City. (Photo by Larry Busacca/Getty Images for Songwriters Hall Of Fame)

WCSX Classic Cuts

Aerosmith: “Train Kept a-Rollin'”

The Hook: A song Aerosmith played before the band started writing its own music — and one performed by both Steven Tyler’s pre-Aerosmith band and the group that Joe Perry and Tom Hamilton were in before they hooked up with Tyler.

Album: Get Your Wings

Year: 1974

Writers: Tiny Bradshaw and Lois Mann (AKA Syd Nathan)

Stats: Although issued as a single, it didn’t chart, but it got plenty of FM rock radio play in the days before rock radio airplay was charted.

Background: “Train Kept a-Rollin'” is a song that actually dates back to 1951 and had been recorded by at least three different artists before Aerosmith put it on its second album, Get Your Wings. Guitarist Joe Perry talks about his fondness for the song and the group he first heard doing it, The Yardbirds.

Aerosmith guitarist Joe Perry on “Train Kept a-Rollin’” and the group he first heard doing the song, The Yardbirds. OC:…distorted guitars. :26

“’Train Kept a-Rollin’’ is still to this day a lot of fun to play for me, ‘cause we played that even before we started writing our own music. That was something you’d listen to like huddled in a corner. While everyone was dancing to The Beatles and The Beach Boys, I’d be in the corner listening to a Yardbirds song or talking about, ‘How did they get that sound out of those guitars?’ There was something so raw and primal about it, there was just so much tension that came out of those feedback guitars and distorted guitars.”