On Dec. 19, 1981, Joan Jett and the Blackhearts’ I Love Rock ‘n’ Roll debuted on the Billboard Top LP’s & Tape chart at #166. This was Jett’s second solo album after the all-girl rock band she co-founded, The Runaways, disbanded in 1979.
I Love Rock “n’ Roll was Jett’s first recording with her new band, The Blackhearts. She and her boys brought a stripped-down rock simplicity to the album, with healthy portions of post-punk power and ’60s psychedelia. The LP featured covers of songs by Tommy James and the Shondells, The Dave Clark Five, The Halos and even The Runaways.
The title track, a three-chord classic, was originally recorded by The Arrows in 1975. While on tour with The Runaways in England, Jett had watched the group perform the song on television and loved it.
“I Love Rock ‘n’ Roll” would be released as a single in January of ’82. It’s anthem chorus, crunching guitar licks and heavy airplay on MTV helped to make it a success.
The song would soon sit at #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 (for seven weeks).