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Def Leppard - High 'n' Dry.jpg

Cover art

"Bringin' On the Heartbreak" is a ballad by Def Leppard and is the fourth track on their 1981 album High 'n' Dry. It was also released as the second single from that album, coming out in November 1981. The remix reached No. 61 on the U.S. Billboard Top Tracks chart in 1984.

Recording

Def Leppard recorded the song for their second album, High 'n' Dry. Its working title had been "A Certain Heartache", and the track (along with the others on the album) was produced by Robert John "Mutt" Lange. Lange said he thought the band was intending to make the song's verse "jangley" and "a kind of 'Stairway to Heaven' thing; Steve [Clark] likes that long wrangled guitar jangle." Cliff Burnstein, the manager of Def Leppard and an A&R representative for Mercury Records, later said that Pete Willis was embarrassed to play the song for him because it was a ballad.

At the beginning of the song, after the guitar harmony part, a faint voice is audible. It says "Out of tune ones eh? Pete's ones...". This is studio chatter talking about the fact that to achieve the guitar tone in the verses, guitarists Pete Willis and Steve Clark de-tuned their guitars from each other. According to the audio clip, Willis was the one to de-tune his guitar.

High 'n' Dry was released in the U.S. in summer 1981. "Bringin' On the Heartbreak" was commercially released in the U.S. on 13 November, with "Me & My Wine" (a non-album track) and "You Got Me Runnin'" included as B-sides. It did not appear on the U.S. charts, but its music video was picked up by the recently launched television channel MTV and received heavy rotation. The popularity of the video and the exposure the band received caused a resurgence in sales of High 'n' Dry, which subsequently sold over two million copies. It was released in Mexico as "Llevarlo en la Desilusión" with "Yo y mi Vino" ("Me & My Wine") featuring the cover art from the single of "Too Late for Love".

High 'n' Dry was re-issued in May 1984 with two new tracks, one of which was a synthesizer-heavy remix of "Bringin' On the Heartbreak". Featuring Phil Collen on guitar, the remix was released as a single with a newly filmed video and peaked at 61 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100. The original version of the song was later included on three of their compilation albums: Vault: Def Leppard Greatest Hits (1980–1995), Best of Def Leppard and Rock of Ages: The Definitive Collection. The latter compilation ends with the instrumental "Switch 625", as it does in High 'n' Dry. Steve Huey of Allmusic has characterised the song as an "unabashedly dramatic rock ballad."

Track Listing

7" Mercury / 818 779-7 (U.S.

  1. "Bringin' On the Heartbreak" (remix)
  2. "Me & My Wine" (remix)

Lyrics

Gypsy, sittin' lookin' pretty
The broken rose with laughin' eyes
You're a mystery, always runnin' wild
Like a child without a home
You're always searching, searching for a feelin'
That it's easy come and easy go

Oh, I'm sorry but it's true
You're bringin' on the heartache
Takin' all the best of me
Oh, can't you see
You got the best of me
Whoa, can't you see
You're bringin' on the heartbreak
Bringin' on the heartache
You're bringin' on the heartbreak
Bringin' on the heartache
Can't you see, oh

You're such a secret, misty eyed and shady
Lady how you hold the key
Oh, you're like a candle, your flame slowly fadin'
Burnin' out and burnin' me
Can't you see

Just try and say to you
You're bringin' on the heartache
Takin' all the best of me
Oh, can't you see
You got the best of me
Whoa, can't you see
You're bringin' on the heartbreak
Bringin' on the heartache
You're bringin' on the heartbreak
Bringin' on the heartache
Can't you see, can't you see
No, no, no

You got the best of me
Oh, can't you see
You got the best of me
Whoa, can't you see
You're bringin' on the heartbreak
Bringin' on the heartache
You're bringin' on the heartbreak
Bringin' on the heartache
You're bringin' on the heartbreak
Bringin' on the heartache
You're bringin' on the heartbreak

Length

  • Album version/remix: 4:34
     
  • Live: 6:17
     

Personnel

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