The Osmonds Ride "Crazy Horses" Into Hard Rock Territory in 1972

(Image credit: Michael Putland/Getty Images)

OK, we're gonna make you watch a video of the Osmonds performing a little something called "Crazy Horses."

What's so special about this bizarre late-1972 single? Well, it sort of represents the (albeit brief) moment that the clean-cut band of singing Osmond brothers went heavy metal. Or sort of hard rock. Or heavy rock-ish.

Come on, it certainly can be considered one of those—at least by late-1972 standards. If nothing else, it sounds like a combination of Deep Purple and Sly and the Family Stone.

For two albums—1972’s Crazy Horses and 1973's The Plan—the religious (they were Mormons, if you're too young to remember this once-incredibly popular band) brothers transformed themselves into rockers, unleashing thunderous riffs, smoking grooves, tasty guitar solos and sheer sonic firepower.

“Crazy Horses,” which you can check out below, is a total rave-up driven by crushing guitar wails and screamin' vocals that contain an anti-fossil-fuel message (“there they go/what a show/smokin’ up the sky!” [the "horses" are cars in this case]). Because we really can't decide which version is more, um, awesome, we've included two versions. The top video is the harder-rocking version, and the clothes they're wearing are really just ... perfect.

The bottom video is just as enjoyable—and just as awesomely weird. Enjoy!


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Damian Fanelli
Editor-in-Chief, Guitar World

Damian is Editor-in-Chief of Guitar World magazine. In past lives, he was GW’s managing editor and online managing editor. He's written liner notes for major-label releases, including Stevie Ray Vaughan's 'The Complete Epic Recordings Collection' (Sony Legacy) and has interviewed everyone from Yngwie Malmsteen to Kevin Bacon (with a few memorable Eric Clapton chats thrown into the mix). Damian, a former member of Brooklyn's The Gas House Gorillas, was the sole guitarist in Mister Neutron, a trio that toured the U.S. and released three albums. He now plays in two NYC-area bands.