Surrender (Cheap Trick song)

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Single by Cheap Trick
from the album Heaven Tonight
B-side"Auf Wiedersehen"
ReleasedJune 1978
Format7-inch single
GenrePower pop[1]
Songwriter(s)Rick Nielsen
Producer(s)Tom Werman
Cheap Trick singles chronology
"So Good to See You"
"California Man"

"Surrender" is a single by Cheap Trick released in June 1978 from the album Heaven Tonight. It was the first Cheap Trick single to enter the Billboard Hot 100 chart, peaking at number 62. Its success in Japan, as well as the success of its preceding singles "Clock Strikes Ten" and "I Want You to Want Me", paved the way for Cheap Trick's famous concerts at Nippon Budokan in Tokyo in April 1978 that were recorded for the group's most popular album Cheap Trick at Budokan.[2][3] The song originates from 1976, as like many other Cheap Trick songs it was played in concert before its release.

Rolling Stone deemed it "the ultimate Seventies teen anthem" and ranked it #471 on its list of "the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time".[4] In the 2003 film Daddy Day Care, Cheap Trick make an appearance performing the song. The song is part of the soundtrack to the PS2 and Xbox 360 game Guitar Hero 2. In 2017, it was used in the closing credits of the film Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 and included on the soundtrack. It also appeared at the beginning and end of the 2015 film Pixels.


"Surrender" is composed in B-flat major, with a key change to B major following the instrumental intro, and a key change to C major after the second time of the chorus.[5]


"Surrender" is a late 1970s teen anthem, describing the relations between the baby boomer narrator and his G.I. Generation parents. His mother frequently warns him about the girls he will meet, as he will never know what diseases he will catch from them, as exemplified by a rumor about "a soldier's falling off" as a result of "some Indonesian junk that's going around". The mother's expertise on such matters is endorsed by the father, who states that she served with the WACS in the Philippines, a claim disputed by the narrator. The narrator then describes how his parents are weirder and hipper than many teens would believe. For example, the narrator describes how he discovers his "mom and dad are rolling on the couch" and listening to his Kiss records late at night ("rolling numbers, rock-and-rolling, got my Kiss records out").[6]

In the 2007 book Shake Some Action: The Ultimate Power Pop Guide, a section on Cheap Trick featured reviews on the top 20 stand-out tracks from the band. One track included was "Surrender", where the author John M. Borack wrote "A no-brainer selection, to be sure, but since I believe that it's clinically impossible to get tired of this rock and roll funhouse, it belongs here. A stone classic for the ages."[7]


Chart performance[edit]

Chart (1978) Peak
Australia (KMR)[8] 32
Belgium (VRT Top 30 Flanders)[9] 5
Canada (RPM) 79
Netherlands (Dutch Top 40)[10] 12
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 62
U.S. Cash Box Top 100 83


  1. ^ Runtagh, Jordan (April 8, 2014). "Catchy, Loud and Proud: 20 Essential Power Pop Tracks That Will Be Stuck In Your Head Forever". VH1. Retrieved July 11, 2019.
  2. ^ "BUDOKAN! (30th Anniversary DVD+3CDs) insert booklet". Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  3. ^ McLane, D. (June 14, 1979). "Cheap Trick Finds Heaven". Rolling Stone. p. 49.
  4. ^ "500 Greatest Songs of All Time". Rolling Stone. April 7, 2011. Retrieved October 22, 2018.
  5. ^ "Cheap Trick "Surrender" Sheet Music in Bb Major - Download & Print - SKU: MN0065464". Retrieved October 13, 2016.
  6. ^ "Surrender". AllMusic. Archived from the original on June 3, 2009. Retrieved September 29, 2007.
  7. ^ Borack, John M. (2007). Shake Some Action - The Ultimate Guide To Power Pop. Shake Some Action - PowerPop. p. 41. ISBN 978-0-97977-140-8.
  8. ^ "Australian Chart Book". Archived from the original on March 5, 2016. Retrieved October 13, 2016.
  9. ^ "Radio2 top 30: 8 oktober 2016 | Radio2". Archived from the original on April 9, 2012. Retrieved October 13, 2016.
  10. ^ "Nederlandse Top 40 – Cheap Trick" (in Dutch). Dutch Top 40.

External links[edit]