Song by Cheap Trick from the album In Color
In Color track listing
“Hello There” is a song written by Rick Nielsen and first released on Cheap Trick’s 1977 album In Color. The song was also often used as the first song of Cheap Trick concerts, and as a result was the first song on the band’s seminal live album Cheap Trick at Budokan.
“Hello There” is a frantic, energetic, raucous hard rock song. As performed on In Color, the song starts with Nielsen playing a frenzied, fuzzy guitar part for two and a half bars, then Bun E. Carlos’ strong drum beat appears, and finally Tom Petersson’s bass and Robin Zander’s vocal join in. The entire song lasts 1 minute and 41 seconds. Annie Zaleski of Ultimate Classic ROck described it as having “razor-edge riffs, a frenzied drum solo and ragged exhortations of “Would you like to do a number with me?” Cheap Trick also released the song on its compilation albums Sex, America, Cheap Trick and The Essential Cheap Trick. A live video of Cheap Trick performing “Hello There” at the Budokan concert was shown on the DVD included with the 30th anniversary collector’s edition release of Cheap Trick at Budokan album.
Critic Dave Marsh of Rolling Stone Magazine detected echoes in the song of the “manic verve” of The Beatles’ song “Birthday”. Ed Masley of The Arizona Republic described “Hello There” as “Cheap Trick’s ‘Helter Skelter.'” Denise Sullivan of Allmusic describes the song as being “all about the good-time/partying spirit, asking the proverbial question, ‘Are you ready to rock?'” John M. Borack listed the song one of 20 Cheap Trick songs to die for and said of the song that “it’s quick, it’s kick ass and it’s a perfect set opener.” Zaleski rated it as the #8 all-time Cheap Trick song and described the live version from Cheap Trick at Budokan as “the sound of a band exploding into its own” and “that it “perfectly captures the band’s transformation from a cult act into rock superstars.”
Nielsen has stated that he wrote the song because in its early days the band did not always get a soundcheck before it played live. Rather than use one of their more melodic songs to experiment with the sound coming out of the PA system, they could use this song, which Nielsen called a “perfect welcome to the show intro piece.” Nielse