Cheap Trick were a power pop rock band that had mediocre success in the United States, but were huge in Japan. Really really huge, in fact. But after issuing their seminal live album Cheap Trick at Budokan, recorded in Japan, they became superstars. The album was recorded in early 1978 and released in the fall, becoming the band’s first big stateside success. The adoring Japanese fans allowed American fans to understand the “magnetism of (lead singer) Robin Zander and the charisma of (guitarist/songwriter/goofball) Rick Nielsen” (a quote from Fast Times at Ridgemont High). Cheap Trick was here to stay, thank to Live at Budokan.

Their hit single from the album was “I Want You To Want Me” which had been ignored as a single the year earlier (except in Japan, where it went to number one). The live version was issued in early 1979 and became a top 10 hit, paving the way for a following single “Ain’t That a Shame” (Fats Domino cover) and the band’s next studio album, Dream Police. The band’s popularity declined at a slow but steady rate in the 1980s until 1988 when their song “The Flame” became an unexpected number one hit. ┬áIn recent years the band has continued touring and embraced their Beatles-influenced sound by performing Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band in Las Vegas.