CSX Classic Cuts

WCSX Classic Cuts

Styx: “Renegade”

The Hook: A dark song that might’ve been a lot darker.

Album: Pieces of Eight

Year: 1978

Writer: Tommy Shaw

Stats: Peaked at number-16 on Billboard’s Hot 100.

Background: “Renegade” is a song with dark lyrical subject matter, but it could have sounded a lot darker than it does. The song’s writer, guitarist Tommy Shaw, explains.

Styx guitarist Tommy Shaw on how “Renegade” evolved in the studio from how he originally wrote it. OC:…it happened. :21

“It started out kind of dark, ‘cause I was really into Alan Parsons in those days – that dark thing with the triads. You know how the opening is, with just the three voices? I was kind of like picturing doing it like that all through the verses. Fortunately, the other guys knocked me upside in the head and they were, ‘Don’t do that, raise the energy. Hello, we’re a rock band.’ And that’s how it happened.”