Released in September 1976, “Jailbreak” is the final track of AC/DC’s third Australian album Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap.
Written by Angus Young, Malcolm Young, and Bon Scott, at the Grafton Basketball stadium in the northern New South Wales town of Grafton during a soundcheck in 1975.
It was first released as a single in Australia and the UK in mid-1976, with the non-album track “Fling Thing” as its B-side. The single was re-issued in the UK in 1980 with a picture sleeve. As “Jailbreak” was only included on the Australian version of Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap, and not on its international counterpart, it did not see a release in the United States, Canada, and Japan until October 1984 as part of the international ’74 Jailbreak EP. A promo-only single, with “Show Business” as its B-side, was released to radio stations in the US at the time.
The music video for “Jailbreak” was filmed in March 1976 for the Australian music programme Countdown, and was directed by Paul Drane. It was filmed in a quarry in the Melbourne suburb of Footscray and featured the band’s then-current lineup. Phil Rudd and Bon Scott dressed as prisoners (blue uniform covered with typical Australian Broad Arrow), Mark Evans and Malcolm Young as guards, and Angus Young dressed in what he later described as “little convict pajamas”. The Young brothers, Evans and Rudd all appeared while playing their instruments, while Scott sang. This video was featured on AC/DC’s Family Jewels DVD.
“Jailbreak” is one of the first videos to make the use of explosives and fake blood. Paul Drane, the director of the video, is quoted saying, “We didn’t really know how much [explosive] we were going to need to make the doors fly open, and I had a couple of guys from props with sticks, trying to push the doors apart, so the hinges are not really there …” “It was the first time we’d had access to anything like this, these exploding blood packs.”
Additionally, the band acts out the section of the song that details the protagonist’s escape from prison. The film shows the prisoners (Scott, Angus and Rudd) doing hard labour under watch of the prison guards (Malcolm and Evans). Later it shows the prisoners manage to blow open the gates to the prison. Rudd and Angus are able to escape. Scott, portraying the protagonist, is shot by Malcolm Young and Evans as he attempts to escape. The video is dubbed with the studio track from the Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap album.
Edited Extracts from Wikipedia®