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Bachman-Turner Overdrive Biography

Last updated: 04/27/2012 12:00:00 PM

After leaving The Guess Who in 1970, Randy Bachman Decided to start a new band with The gues Who's original singer, Chad Allen. To Play bass he hired his old freind C.F. Turner and for drums, his brother Robin who was still in high school. The four eventually becam known as BraveBelt and released two albums, BraveBelt and BraveBelt II.

After mild sucess the band wanted a heavier sound, so they they asked Chad Allen to leave and replaced him with the middle Bachman brother, Tim. All but one aspect of the band had the sound they wanted, the name. BraveBelt just didn't sound like the name of a hard rocking band, but that soon changed. In 1971 the band had stopped at a truck stop in Windsor Ontairio where they happened to notice an issue of the trucking magazine "Overdrive". It was then that C.F. Turner wrote down "Bachman-Turner Overdrive" and the initials, B.T.O. on a napkin.

In 1972 Mercury released the debut self titled album. The album featured some great songs such as "Gimme Your Money Please", "Hold Back the Water" and "Thank You For the Feelin'" which all made it to the anthology, but the big hit was "Blue Collar". With a successful debut all there was to do for B.T.O. was release an even more successful follow up which they did in 1973. "Bachman-Turner Overdrive II" was a hit featuring two song which are still incredibly famous, "Let it Ride" and "Takin' Care of Business". B.T.O. was now on the charts but before they could release a third album they lost a member, Tim. Tim Bachman had started a career selling real estate in Vancouver which he is still doing today. Despite losing Tim the band moved on, recruiting a Blair Thornton as their new rhythm guitarist and having Randy doing lead vocals as well as C.F. Turner

In 1974 B.T.O. released their master, "Not Fragile" was #1 in America and #2 in the U.K. "Not Fragile Feature the songs "Rock is My Life and This is My Song", "Free Wheelin'", "Blue Moanin'" and the #1 "You Ain't Seen Nothin' Yet". After this sucess Mercury pushed them for a follow up which they released in 1975 using mostly song that they rejected for "Not Fragile". The only hit on their new album "Four Wheel Drive" was "Hey You" nevertheless Mercury still wanted more.

1976 saw the release of the over worked album "Head On" which featured the songs "It's Over" and "Take it Like a Man" neither of which were sucessful, all that came from the album was "Lookin' Out for #1"

In 1977 "Freeways" was released. Nothing on the album was sucessful and B.T.O. was on the verge of death when their Singer/Songwriter/Guitarist, Randy lost interest in the group.

Even without Randy the band went on putting C.F. Turner on guitar and recruiting former April Wine Bassist, Jim Clench. They Released two unsucessful albums, "street Action" in 1978 and Rock n' Roll Nights" in 1979. B.T.O. was put on hiatus.

In 1984 Randy rejoined the Band to release another album simply called "B.T.O." it wasn't sucessful and was the last studio album they ever made.

To this day nine best ofs and two live abums have been released.

-Warren Srigley

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