Savage is a track from the Stained Class album by Judas Priest, released on 10 February 1978.
Savage written by Rob Halford & KK Downing.
Stained Class is the only Judas Priest album to feature songwriting by all five members of the band. Newly added drummer Les Binks earned a songwriting credit for “Beyond The Realms Of Death”, and bassist Ian Hill received his first songwriting credit for co-writing “Invader” with vocalist Rob Halford and lead guitarist Glenn Tipton.
In 2005, Stained Class was ranked number 307 in Rock Hard magazine’s book of The 500 Greatest Rock & Metal Albums of All Time. In 2017, it was ranked 43rd in Rolling Stone‘s “100 Greatest Metal Albums of All Time”.
After the success of subsequent Judas Priest albums in the US, Stained Class would eventually be certified Gold.
The song “Saints in Hell” was finally added to the band’s setlists in 2018, making “Invader” and “Heroes End” the only songs off the album that have never been performed live.
Twelve years after its release, Stained Class was the subject of a 1990 civil action brought against the band by the family of a teenager, James Vance, who entered into a suicide pact with his friend Ray Belknap after allegedly listening to “Better by You, Better than Me” on 23 December 1985. Belknap succeeded in killing himself, and Vance was left critically injured after surviving a self-inflicted gunshot to the facial area, eventually dying of a methadone overdose three years later. The suit alleged that Judas Priest recorded subliminal messages on the song that said “do it”. The suit was eventually dismissed. The song was originally written and performed by the band Spooky Tooth.
Three weeks after the lawsuit wrapped up, the band kicked off their Painkiller Tour by playing “Better by You, Better than Me” on the first concert in Burbank, California on 13 September. It constitutes Judas Priest’s only live performance of the song since 1979.
KK Downing Tablature:Judas Priest - Savage - KK Downing
Glen Tipton Tablature:Judas Priest - Savage - Glen Tipton