Blow Up Your Video

During the 1996 Ballbreaker European tour, AC/DC did not only play concerts. They indeed took part in three different projects, namely long-form videotape, a television broadcast, and an American movie.

In the beginning of July AC/DC played two nights at the Palau Sant Jordi in Barcelona, Spain. The day after the second show the band took the plane and flew to London for a single day. They were asked by the British commercial television channel VH-1 to record some songs live in the studio for a special TV broadcast.

For the occasion the band listened to old material they hadn't played for a very long time. As Brian had never sung some of the songs originally recorded with Bon Scott, he had to read the lyrics while he was singing. But they also recorded other songs during the breaks just for fun. In total 14 songs were recorded during the session. In addition to the songs played on stage during the Ballbreaker tour, the band recorded two songs they hadn't played since 1978, namely “Riff Raff” and “Gone Shootin”, a song they never played on stage neither with Bon Scott nor with Brian Johnson, “Go Down”, and two cover songs, namely “Mary Superstitious” from Stevie Wonder and “I Feel Good” from James Brown.

The first 30 minute broadcast, “Take It To The Bridge”, took place on August 4, 1996 in an “AC/DC Special” program. The set included four songs, namely “Riff Raff”, “Down Payment Blues”, “Gone Shootin” and “Go Down” and some short interviews with Malcolm and Angus Young.

On September 21 & 22, VH-1 broadcasted the "AC/DC Uncut" show. The set list of the show was made of “Riff Raff”, “Go Down”, “You Shook Me All Night Long”, “Shoot To Thrill”, “Rock And Roll Ain’t Noise Pollution”, “Down Payment Blues”, “The Jack”, and “Whole Lotta Rosie”. The show ended with the “For Those About To Rock (We Salute You)” video clip.

After the recording at VH-1 Studios, AC/DC flew back to Portugal in order to perform in Lisbon on July 6. The next shows were to take place in Madrid, Spain. When the tickets were first put on sale, only one show was planed on July 4. Only two weeks after, no tickets were to be found on the market; this first Madrid show was then postponed to July 9 and a second show was added on July 10. Some weeks later tickets for a third show were put on sale.

Being in the same town for three concerts, AC/DC decided to record the second show at the Plaza de Toros de Las Ventas in Madrid for a long-form videotape. During the first concert on July 9, recorded by a Manor Mobile studio, director David Mallet came to see the show and to make lightning checks. The video was shot the day after using 14 cameras.

The video tape, entitled “No Bull”, was released through Warner Home Video on November 18, 1996. It features the 20 songs played during the concert. A limited edition single CD was joined to the first copies of the video tape including three songs recorded on July 9, namely “Hard As A Rock”, “Hail Caesar” and “Dog Eat Dog”.

After the end of the European leg of the Ballbreaker tour, AC/DC went to New York to meet Howard Stern. On July 27, AC/DC filmed three songs onstage for the movie, “You Shook Me All Night Long”, “Highway To Hell” and “The Jack”. The shooting took place in Bryant Park in New York in front of thousands of Stern fans.

The movie is based on Stern's first book, called "Private Parts", which describes how Howard Stern became a radio personality and worked for many different stations before he made it big. It follows his whole career from meeting his wife to finding his radio partner, Robin Quivers.

On July 29, Brian Johnson came on Howard Stern's radio show. He said that the whole band had a lot of fun there on the movie set. The movie was released in the United States in 1997. AC/DC only appears very quickly at the end of the movie playing “You Shook Me All Night Long” on stage.