Thunderstruck (song)

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For the 2004 film, see Thunderstruck (2004 film).
Single by AC/DC
from the album The Razors Edge
B-side "Fire Your Guns"
Released 10 September 1990
Format 7 inch, 12 inch, CD, cassette single
Recorded January 1990
Genre Hard rock[1]
Length 4:52
Label ATCO
Writer(s) Angus Young, Malcolm Young
Producer(s) Bruce Fairbairn
AC/DC singles chronology
"That's the Way I Wanna Rock 'n' Roll"
Music video
"Thunderstruck" on YouTube

"Thunderstruck" is the lead single on the 1990 album The Razors Edge by Australian hard rock band AC/DC.

The song was released as a single in Germany, Australia, and Japan, and peaked at No. 5 on U.S. the Billboard Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks. In 2010, "Thunderstruck" topped Triple M's Ultimate 500 Rock Countdown in Melbourne, Australia. The top five were all AC/DC songs.[2]

With the exception of new material from an album they are touring behind, this is one of the only two songs released after For Those About to Rock (We Salute You) that the band still performs live in concert, the other being "Rock 'N' Roll Train".


Angus Young stated in the liner notes of the 2003 re-release of The Razors Edge:

"It started off from a little trick I had on guitar. I played it to Mal and he said 'Oh, I've got a good rhythm idea that will sit well in the back.' We built the song up from that. We fiddled about with it for a few months before everything fell into place. Lyrically, it was really just a case of finding a good title ... We came up with this thunder thing and it seemed to have a good ring to it. AC/DC = Power. That's the basic idea."[3]

The video which accompanied the single was filmed at London's Brixton Academy on 17 August 1990. The audience members were given free T-shirts with the words 'AC/DC – I was Thunderstruck' on the front and the date on the back, and these T-shirts were worn by the entire audience throughout the filming of the video.

The song has sold over a million digital copies since it became available for digital download.[4]


The song is composed in the key of B major. The main riff is built of notes in the mixolydian mode.

Charts and certifications[edit]


Cover versions[edit]


  • The song is played at Pittsburgh Steelers home football games, generally during the fourth quarter when the Steelers defense is on the field to pump up the team and crowd when the defense is in need of a big stop.
  • The song is used by St Helens RLFC when the players take to the pitch during Super League matches.
  • The song has been the official entrance music for North Dakota State University Bison athletics for much of the last three decades.[when?]
  • The song is used by Juventus F.C. at Juventus Stadium as an intro when Juventus players taking the field for pre-game warming up.
  • The song is played by Swansea City A.F.C. at the Liberty Stadium as part of a pre-match intro when the players enter the pitch.
  • The song was used as the background track for the N.C. State baseball team's introductory video for the 2013 season.
  • The song will appear in the soundtrack of the upcoming[when?] Disney video game Disney INFINITY.
  • The song is the official entrance music for the national-ranked Bergen Catholic High School wrestling team.
  • The song used to play at Six Flags Great Adventure on the ride Sky Screamer while the ride was in motion during the 2013 and 2014 seasons. It was removed during the 2014 season.
  • It was used in a baseball scene in the show The Crazy Ones.
  • The song is used before first or second-half kickoffs of many United States men's national soccer team home matches.
  • The song was used in the pilot episode of the 2014 FOX television series Enlisted.
  • The song is the official entrance for the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders pre-game performance. They also performed the song at Wrestlemania 32.
  • The song was used in the fireworks display of New Year in Sydney 2014.
  • The song is the official introduction of the Naptown Roller Girls A-Team, the Tornado Sirens.
  • The Angry Birds Toons episode "Thunder Chuck" is a reference to this.
  • The song has been used to showcase a proud parent's video editing and guitar skills accompanied by a children's choir.
  • In Annoying Orange, "Monster Truck" is a parody of this.
  • A popular drinking game played in Northeastern US colleges involves a circle of participants alternating chugs of beer every time the word "thunder" is sung or chanted.
  • The song is also featured in the 2014 Disney movie Planes: Fire & Rescue, just before the smokejumpers battle a fire, and also in several trailers.
  • The song is often heard before third downs and after touchdowns at the National Football League's New England Patriots' home games.
  • The song is used by the Virginia Cavaliers football and men's basketball teams to open games at Scott Stadium and John Paul Jones Arena, respectively. Students chant "Wahoos!" over the song's "Thunder" chant.
  • The song is played before Alabama Crimson Tide football home games as the team takes the field.
  • The song is often played by members of the British Army's 16th Airborne Brigade Pathfinder Platoon before they conduct a HALO jump[37]
  • The song is played 10 seconds before kickoff for Middlesbrough Football Club at the Riverside Stadium.
  • The song is used as the theme tune to Monster Jam's Blue Thunder.
  • Part of the song is used right before the tip-off of Maryland Terrapins basketball games. The line "I was shakin' at the knees!" is repeated multiple times just before the start of the game.
  • The song is played on Microsoft's Surface Pro 4 advertisement.
  • The song appeared in the film Daddy's Home.
  • The song is played on a 2016 TV commercial for the iPhone 7.


  1. ^ Jake Brown (16 July 2013). AC/DC in the Studio - The Stories Behind Every Album. John Blake Publishing, Limited. p. 11. ISBN 978-1-78219-677-8. 
  2. ^ Triple M's Ultimate Rock 500 at the Wayback Machine (archived 29 February 2012). Triple M. Retrieved 12 April 2015.
  3. ^ Young, Angus (2003). The Razors Edge (booklet). AC/DC. Epic Records. 
  4. ^ Grein, Paul (January 14, 2015). "Nick Jonas's 'Jealous' Hits a New Pea". Chart Watch. Yahoo! Music. Retrieved January 14, 2015. 
  5. ^ " – AC/DC – Thunderstruck". ARIA Top 50 Singles. Retrieved 25 December 2014.
  6. ^ " – AC/DC – Thunderstruck" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40. Retrieved 25 December 2014.
  7. ^ " – AC/DC – Thunderstruck" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50. Retrieved 25 December 2014.
  8. ^ "Top Singles - Volume 53, No. 3 Dec 01, 1990". RPM. Retrieved January 8, 2016. 
  9. ^ " – AC/DC – Thunderstruck". Tracklisten. Retrieved 25 December 2014.
  10. ^ Nyman, Jake (2005). Suomi soi 4: Suuri suomalainen listakirja (in Finnish) (1st ed.). Helsinki: Tammi. ISBN 951-31-2503-3. 
  11. ^ " – AC/DC – Thunderstruck" (in French). Les classement single. Retrieved 25 December 2014.
  12. ^ "The Irish Charts – Search Results – Thunderstruck". Irish Singles Chart. Retrieved January 8, 2016.
  13. ^ " – AC/DC Single-Chartverfolgung" (in German). Media Control Charts. PhonoNet GmbH. Retrieved 25 December 2014.
  14. ^ "Nederlandse Top 40 – AC/DC search results" (in Dutch) Dutch Top 40. Retrieved 22 December 2015.
  15. ^ " – AC/DC – Thunderstruck" (in Dutch). Single Top 100. Retrieved 25 December 2014.
  16. ^ " – AC/DC – Thunderstruck". Top 40 Singles. Retrieved 25 December 2014.
  17. ^ " – AC/DC – Thunderstruck" Canciones Top 50. Retrieved 25 December 2014.
  18. ^ " – AC/DC – Thunderstruck". Singles Top 100. Retrieved 21 December 2015.
  19. ^ " – AC/DC – Thunderstruck". Swiss Singles Chart. Retrieved 25 December 2014.
  20. ^ "Archive Chart: 1990-09-29" UK Singles Chart. Retrieved 25 December 2014.
  21. ^ "AC/DC – Chart history" Billboard Digital Songs for AC/DC. Retrieved January 8, 2016.
  22. ^ "AC/DC – Chart history" Billboard Mainstream Rock Songs for AC/DC. Retrieved January 8, 2016.
  23. ^ "AC/DC – Chart history". Billboard Rock Digital Songs for AC/DC. Retrieved June 25, 2015. 
  24. ^ "ARIA Charts - End Of Year Charts - Top 50 Singles 1990". Australian Recording Industry Association. Retrieved December 21, 2015. 
  25. ^ "Top 100-Jaaroverzicht van 1990". Dutch Top 40. Retrieved December 21, 2015. 
  26. ^ "Jaaroverzichten - Single 1990". Single Top 100. Retrieved December 21, 2015. 
  27. ^ "Jaaroverzichten 1991". Ultratop. Retrieved December 21, 2015. 
  28. ^ "Top 100 Single-Jahrescharts". GfK Entertainment. Retrieved December 21, 2015. 
  29. ^ "ARIA Charts – Accreditations – 2014 Singles". Australian Recording Industry Association. Retrieved December 31, 2015. 
  30. ^ "Italian single certifications – AC/DC – Thunderstruck" (in Italian). Federazione Industria Musicale Italiana. Retrieved December 31, 2015.  Select Online in the field Sezione. Enter AC/DC in the field Filtra. Select 2015 in the field Anno. The certification will load automatically
  31. ^ "British single certifications – AC/DC – Thunderstruck". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved September 7, 2015.  Enter Thunderstruck in the field Keywords. Select Title in the field Search by. Select single in the field By Format. Select Silver in the field By Award. Click Search
  32. ^ "Canadian single certifications – AC/DC – Thunderstruck". Music Canada. Retrieved February 24, 2016. 
  33. ^ "American single certifications – AC/DC – Thunderstruck". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved December 31, 2015.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH
  34. ^ "Gordon Duncan Renowned musician and composer". The Herald (Glasgow). 22 December 2005. Retrieved 2010-03-06. 
  35. ^ [1], F-Secure Labs Jul 23, 2012
  36. ^ Kuper, Simon. "Inside Atlético Madrid: can the club go global?". FT Magazine. Retrieved 16 November 2015. 
  37. ^ David Blakely: Pathfinder: A Special Forces Mission Behind Enemy Lines (ISBN 9781409129028 )

External links[edit]