Young Turks (song)

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"Young Turks"
Young Turks single.jpg
Single by Rod Stewart
from the album Tonight I'm Yours
B-side"Tora, Tora, Tora (Out With the Boys)"
ReleasedOctober 1981
Format7", 12"
GenreSynth-pop,[1] new wave[2]
LabelWarner Bros.
Songwriter(s)Rod Stewart, Carmine Appice, Duane Hitchings, Kevin Savigar
Producer(s)Jim Cregan, Rod Stewart
Rod Stewart singles chronology
"Tonight I'm Yours (Don't Hurt Me)"
"Young Turks"
"How Long?"
Music video
"Young Turks" on YouTube
"Young Turks" on YouTube

"Young Turks" is a song by Rod Stewart that first appeared in 1981 on his album Tonight I'm Yours. The track presented Stewart backed by a new synth-pop and new wave sound.[1] The term young Turk, which originates from the early 20th-century secular nationalist reform party of the same name, is slang for a rebellious youth who acts contrary to what is deemed normal by society.[3] The phrase "Young Turks" is never heard in the actual song, the chorus instead centering on the phrase "young hearts be free tonight", leading to the song frequently being misidentified as "Young Hearts" or "Young Hearts Be Free".

The music for the song was composed by Carmine Appice, Duane Hitchings, and Kevin Savigar, with lyrics written by Stewart.[4] The song, which was released as the first US single (second in the UK) from Tonight I’m Yours, was produced with synthesizers and a hi-hat played over a drum machine. On the Billboard Hot 100, "Young Turks" debuted at no. 61 on 17 October 1981 and peaked at no. 5 on 19 December 1981 – 9 January 1982. The song peaked at no. 11 on the UK Singles Chart and also was a top 5 hit in Australia, Belgium, Israel (no. 1) and Canada. Released a few months after MTV went on the air, it was the first video containing breakdancing to be played by that station.[5]


Music videos[edit]

The video, directed by Russell Mulcahy and choreographed by Kenny Ortega, was filmed in the central downtown area of Los Angeles in the summer of 1981. The runaway couple ("Billy", played by Dale Pauley,[6] and "Patti", played by Elizabeth Daily) mentioned in the song is juxtaposed by a group of dancers who seemingly intermix with them throughout the video. About 14 seconds after the start of the video, Billy emerges from one floor above the now long abandoned Licha's Santa Fe Grill, in reality at the northwest corner of 7th and Santa Fe Streets in Los Angeles, and descends a ladder before dropping the last few feet down to the street. A little more than one-third of the way through the song, Billy and Patti are shoved toward the entrance of the Hotel Hayward, in reality at the west corner of 6th and Spring Streets, again in Los Angeles, between a mile and a half and two miles to the northwest. The dancers eventually end up in a railway yard just to the east of the grill, to where the couple has returned and Rod Stewart is singing the last half of the song.

Stewart's videotaped rooftop performance of the song in Los Angeles (different from the aforementioned music video) appeared about one-third of the way through Dick Clark's three-hour American Bandstand 30th Anniversary Special Episode on 30 October 1981.[7]

Chart performance[edit]

In popular culture[edit]

The song is featured on the in-game radio station K-DST in the video game Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas.


  1. ^ a b "Rod Stewart – Tonight I'm Yours". Allmusic. All Media Network. Retrieved 10 June 2013.
  2. ^ Lamb, Bill. "Top 10 Rod Stewart Hit Songs". The New York Times Company. Retrieved 24 June 2013.
  3. ^ "Young Turk". The Free Dictionary. Farlex. Retrieved 17 January 2012.
  4. ^ "Young turks / words by Rod Stewart; music by Carmine Appice, Kevin Savigar, and Duane Hitchings.[music]". National Library of Australia. Retrieved 25 May 2014.
  5. ^ "Young Turks".
  6. ^ Cary Darling (28 August 1982). "Music Monitor: Penfield Passion". Billboard. p. 32.
  7. ^
  8. ^ "Billboard – Hits Of The World". Billboard. Nielsen Business Media. 94 (13): 63. 3 April 1982. ISSN 0006-2510.
  9. ^ " – Rod Stewart – Young Turks" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50. Retrieved 24 July 2013.
  10. ^ "Young Turks – ROD STEWART". VRT (in Dutch). Retrieved 26 July 2013. Hoogste notering in de top 30: 4
  11. ^ "CHART NUMBER 1301 – Saturday, December 26, 1981". CHUM. Archived from the original on 7 November 2006. Retrieved 6 May 2014.
  12. ^ "Top RPM Singles: Issue 0435." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved 6 June 2013.
  13. ^ "The Irish Charts – All there is to know". IRMA. Retrieved 24 July 2013.
  14. ^ "Billboard – Hits Of The World". Billboard. Nielsen Business Media. 94 (5): 42. 6 February 1982. ISSN 0006-2510.
  15. ^ a b "I singoli più venduti del 1981". HitParadeItalia (in Italian). Creative Commons. Retrieved 24 July 2013.
  16. ^ "Nederlandse Top 40 – Rod Stewart - Young Turks" (in Dutch). Dutch Top 40. Retrieved 24 July 2013.
  17. ^ " – Rod Stewart – Young Turks" (in Dutch). Single Top 100. Retrieved 24 July 2013.
  18. ^ " – Rod Stewart – Young Turks". Top 40 Singles. Retrieved 24 July 2013.
  19. ^ "South African Rock Lists Website SA Charts 1969 – 1989 Acts (S)". John Samson. Retrieved 24 July 2013.
  20. ^ "Official Singles Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 24 July 2013.
  21. ^ a b c "Tonight I'm Yours – Awards". Allmusic. All Media Network. Retrieved 6 June 2013.
  22. ^ "CASH BOX Top 100 Singles – Week ending DECEMBER 26, 1981". Cash Box magazine. Archived from the original on 18 September 2012. Retrieved 6 May 2014.
  23. ^ " – Rod Stewart – Young Turks". GfK Entertainment Charts. Retrieved 22 February 2019.
  24. ^ The 1981 Top 100 Singles chart is identified by the RPM Year-End article "Top 100 Singles (1981)". RPM. Retrieved 5 January 2018.
  25. ^ BigKev. "Forum – ARIA Charts: Special Occasion Charts – Top 100 End of Year AMR Charts – 1980s". Hung Medien. Retrieved 6 May 2014.
  26. ^ "Jaaroverzichten 1982" (in Dutch). ULTRATOP & Hung Medien / Retrieved 6 May 2014.
  27. ^ "Top Singles – Volume 37, No. 19, December 25 1982". RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved 6 May 2014.
  28. ^ "Top 20 Hit Singles of 1982". John Samson. Retrieved 6 May 2014.
  29. ^ "Top 100 Hits for 1982". The Longbored Surfer. Retrieved 6 May 2014.
  30. ^ "The CASH BOX Year-End Charts: 1982". Cash Box magazine. Archived from the original on 18 September 2012. Retrieved 6 May 2014.

External links[edit]