He is a guitarist and songwriter born Randolph Charles Bachman in Winnipeg, Canada, who started his life in music early by winning a singing competition on the CKY King of the Saddle program when he was 3 years old. From there he entered the Royal Toronto Conservatory when he was only 5 years old to study violin. He took up the guitar when he was in 9th grade of school and from then on in he didn’t concentrate too much on his other studies and was expelled from one Collegiate only to go on to another and then attend college to study business law but failed to graduate.
In 1960 he and his friend founded Al and the Silvertones in Winnipeg, which then became Chad Allan & The Expressions by 1962 and within a further couple of years renamed themselved The Guess Who. He was the lead guitarist with the band and they had their first No. 1 hit in Canada with a remake of “Shakin’ All Over”. They went on and achieved US chart success that included the No. 1 hits “American Woman” and “No Sugar Tonight”.
With his brothers, Robbie and Tim, and his friend Fred Turner, he formed Bachman-Turner Overdrive who saw major success with the US No. 1 hit songs “You Ain’t Seen Nothin’ Yet”, which also hit No. 2 in the UK, and “Free Wheelin'”. He also formed the band Brave Belt with Chad Allan as well as having a successful solo career.
He has recorded 10 solo albums and recorded Prairie Town in 1992 with Neil Young. He and Fred Turner appeared on The Simpsons as themselves in an episode in 2000. He and the other members of The Guess Who have received an honorary Doctorate of Music from Brandon University, Manitoba as well as receiving The Governer General’s Performing Arts Award which is Canada’s top award for the performing arts. He was awarded the Order of Manitoba which is the highest award in that Province. In 2008 he was made an Officer of the Order of Canada and he has been inducted into the Canadian Walk of Fame twice – once as a solo artist and once with The Guess Who.
He currently hosts the show Vinyl Tap on CBC Radio One and is involved with his current band the Bachman-Cummings Band with Burton Cummings. He is married to the singer-songwriter Denise McCann and they regularly travel to collaborate with European songwriters such as Doug Carr who is the producer of Ace of Base.
Beach Boys Recordings
Livin’ With a Heartache (Carl Wilson/Randy Bachman)