It was 40 years ago today (January 18th, 1983) that British-born, Canadian rocker Bryan Adams released his breakthrough third album, Cuts Like A Knife. The album was co-produced by Adams and the soon-to-be legendary Bob Clearmountain.

The platinum-selling Cuts Like A Knife album peaked at Number Eight on the Billboard 200 and spurred three major Top 40 hits, starting with the power ballad “Straight From The Heart” which hit Number 10; the album’s title track, a massive MTV video hit that peaked at Number 15 on the Hot 100 and Number Six on Billboard’s Mainstream Rock Tracks list; and “This Time,” which topped out at Number 24.

One of the highlights of every Bryan Adams show is “Straight From The Heart” — a tune he had written half-a-decade before its release on the Cuts Like A Knife album: “I think about a song like ‘Straight From The Heart,” which I wrote in 1978 and didn’t record it on my own until Cuts Like A Knife in 1983. In that five years of gestation, it was recorded by a few different artists — Bonnie Tyler and all kinds of people recorded it. And then I took it to the studio; I’d rehearsed it, I’d played it, and I took all that stuff that I’d heard other people had done with it and thought ‘Nah, that’s not workin” — so, I was able to (laughs) learn from those recordings of what I didn’t wanna do to make the record that I did wanna do.”

The “Cuts Like A Knife” video may have impressed the girls with Bryan Adams’ cute, tough-guy image — but for the budding male rockers watching it was all about Adams’ Rickenbacker 360 12-string electric guitar: “I bought that guitar in 1981. That’s a really good question — I bought it at a shop. It was 12-string. I bought that guitar here in New York City at Sam Ash Music.”

Photo Gallery