"Runaway" is the debut single by American rock band Bon Jovi. It was originally recorded in 1981 for the so-called "Power Station Demos" at the beginning of singer Jon Bon Jovi's career, featuring the vocalist backed by session musicians.
The song became a surprise hit in 1983, leading to the formation of the first proper lineup of Bon Jovi for a short tour.
The track was recorded in 1982 and released to radio in 1983, by Jon Bon Jovi and studio musicians known as "The All Star Review", which included bassist Hugh McDonald (who would join Bon Jovi in 1994 as an unofficial member), guitarist Tim Pierce, drummer Frankie LaRocka and keyboardist Roy Bittan. The keyboard intro was written by Mick Seeley, then of John Bongiovi and the Wild Ones and later with Southside Johnny & The Asbury Jukes, who performed backing vocals on the track with David Grahmme.
In 1983, local radio station WAPP 103.5FM "The Apple" had a contest, held in conjunction with St. John's University, to search for the best unsigned band. After the song won the contest, it became a radio hit in the summer of 1983.
One night after a show, guitarist Richie Sambora found Bon Jovi backstage and told him he should be the guitarist. Bon Jovi wrote him off and did not think much of it but told him to learn the material and show up for rehearsal. Sambora was early and knew the material and Bon Jovi was impressed.