Pete: "This one I’ve had for quite a long time as a lyric written on a piece of paper…I was imagining myself as a kind of Johnny Cash figure and talking about bravado and angst and, you know, it’s easy to complain and it’s easy to bluff. It’s very hard to do." This started as a demo called "Popular" written near the end of the sessions for Face Dances. Pete: "The band reaction was lukewarm; we were close to ending the album and were all unsure of what was happening. I later removed the ‘Popular’ chorus, replaced it with ‘It’s Hard’ and managed to sell another song!"
The demo is available on Pete’s album Scoop. "It’s Hard" was released as The Who’s last commercial single of new studio material in the U.S. to date on February 1983. The b-side was "Dangerous". It failed to chart. Footage of the band playing the song backstage at the Capital Center in Largo Maryland September 22, 1982 was used in the tour advertisement for Schlitz Beer. The 1997 CD version lacks a guitar "fix up" in Pete’s opening solo that was in the original. Click here to see the original lyric sheet: It’s Hard.