Bad English

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This article is about the band. For other uses, see Broken English (disambiguation).
Bad English
Bad English.jpg
Bad English, clockwise L-to-R: Neal Schon, Deen Castronovo, Ricky Phillips, Jonathan Cain, and John Waite
Background information
Origin Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Genres Hard rock, glam metal[1]
Years active 1987–1991
Labels Epic
Associated acts Journey, The Babys, Styx, Santana, Hardline
Past members John Waite
Neal Schon
Jonathan Cain
Ricky Phillips
Deen Castronovo

Bad English was an American/British hard rock/glam metal supergroup formed in 1987, reuniting keyboardist Jonathan Cain from Journey with singer John Waite and bassist Ricky Phillips, his former bandmates in The Babys.


The members decided on a name for the band while playing pool. John Waite missed a shot and Jonathan Cain made a comment on how bad his "english" was (referring to the spin a player puts on the cue ball) and the band decided to use the phrase.[2] The name is also thought to be a reference to The Babys, since the name was misspelled and an example of bad English.

Jonathan Cain and guitarist Neal Schon, who had enjoyed enormous success in Journey, formed Bad English with Waite after Journey disbanded.[3] The first album, eponymously titled, was a big seller containing three hit singles: the number one hit "When I See You Smile" written by Diane Warren, the top 10 hit "Price of Love," and "Possession." Another track from the debut album, "Best of What I Got", was featured in the soundtrack to the 1989 feature film Tango and Cash.[4]

The band's second album, Backlash (1991), came and went without any fanfare. The only single, "Straight To Your Heart," just missed the Top 40, peaking at No. 42. Ricky Phillips writes on his website that the group had parted company before the second album had been mixed. Both Phillips and guitarist Neal Schon expressed frustration with the "pop" side of the band's songs and wanted a harder edge. In the end, it proved to be the band's undoing as everyone left to pursue other projects.

In later interviews Waite revealed that although he loved playing to stadium-sized audiences, he was uncomfortable with the corporate rock image that he felt the band had presented and has been a solo artist ever since.

Schon, Cain and Castronovo went on to a reformed Journey, while Phillips joined Styx.

Band members[edit]


Studio albums[edit]

Year Album details Peak chart positions Certifications
(sales threshold)
1989 Bad English 21 12 34 39 74
1991 Backlash
  • Release date: August 1991
  • Label: Epic Records
72 34 21 30 64
"—" denotes releases that did not chart

Compilation albums[edit]

Year Album details
1995 Greatest Hits


Year Single Peak chart positions Certifications
(sales threshold)
US Main
1989 "Forget Me Not" 45 2 Bad English
"When I See You Smile" 1 11 10 4 61
1990 "Price of Love" 5 30 44 80
"Heaven Is a 4 Letter Word" 66 12
"Possession" 21
1991 "Straight to Your Heart" 42 9 41 Backlash
"Time Stood Still"
(Bad English featuring John Waite)
"—" denotes releases that did not chart or not released to that country

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Popoff, Martin (2014). The Big Book of Hair Metal: The Illustrated Oral History of Heavy Metal's Debauched Decade. Voyageur Press. pp. 171, 209. ISBN 978-0-76034-546-7. 
  2. ^ Rock Band Name Origins at WHAT'S IN A NAME
  3. ^ A ROUSING RECEPTION FOR BAD ENGLISH, Daily News of Los Angeles, January 29, 1990
  4. ^ Tango & Cash (1989), Yahoo Movies
  5. ^ "Bad English Album & Song Chart History - Billboard 200". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved December 5, 2010. 
  6. ^ " - Australian charts portal". Retrieved 2010-01-23. 
  7. ^ "Results - RPM - Library and Archives Canada: Top Albums/CDs". RPM. Retrieved 2010-08-11. 
  8. ^ " - Swedish charts portal". Retrieved 2010-01-23. 
  9. ^ " - Swiss charts portal". Retrieved 2010-01-23. 
  10. ^ a b "Bad English - Full Official Chart History". Official Charts Company. Official Charts Company. Retrieved 20 January 2016. 
  11. ^ "RIAA - Gold & Platinum - August 11, 2010: Bad English certified albums". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved 2010-08-11. 
  12. ^ "Canadian Recording Industry Association (CRIA): Gold & Platinum". Music Canada. Retrieved 2013-07-21. 
  13. ^ "Bad English Album & Song Chart History - Hot 100". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Archived from the original on 5 December 2010. Retrieved December 5, 2010. 
  14. ^ "Bad English Album & Song Chart History - Adult Contemporary". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Archived from the original on 5 December 2010. Retrieved December 5, 2010. 
  15. ^ "Bad English - Allmusic - Billboard Singles". AllMusic. Retrieved December 5, 2010. 
  16. ^ " - Australian charts portal". Retrieved December 5, 2010. 
  17. ^ " - Dutch charts portal". Hung Medien. Retrieved February 24, 2011. 
  18. ^ "RIAA - Gold & Platinum - December 5, 2010: Bad English certified singles". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved December 5, 2010. 

External links[edit]