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No. 95: Styx, ‘Renegade’ – Top 100 Classic Rock Songs

Styx Pieces of Eight

The jig is up, the news is out, you’ve finally found Styx on our big countdown. If you guessed ‘Renegade,’ you’ve got it made, you’ve earned a big bounty!

The third single from the band’s 1978 smash album ‘Pieces of Eight’ tells the tale of a captured law-breaker who realizes that his crimes and karma are about to catch up with him.

It was written by guitarist Tommy Shaw, who told us in a recent interview that he’s delighted with the long life the song has enjoyed thanks to constant radio play, as well as placement on movie and TV soundtracks including ‘Billy Madison’ and ‘Freaks and Geeks.’

If this list was strictly about the Top 100 Classic Rock Songs performed at football games, it would undoubtedly rank much higher. As Shaw explains, the NFL’s six-time Super Bowl champion Pittsburgh Steelers “have been using ‘Renegade’ as their defensive rally song for 12 years now.”

Although he’s quick to admit he’s not the biggest sports fan, Shaw marvels at the impact the song has on the massive crowds: “I have stood there in one of the boxes and looked out and seen 80,000 people waving the “Terrible Towels” while ‘Renegade’ is playing on the big screen… it’s a very welcoming environment for me.”

Next Song: Clapton and Winwood Get Lost

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Watch Styx Perform ‘Renegade’

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