The song is opened with a prominent, high-pitched guitar riff played by John Fogerty. The song's lyrics have Fogerty telling of a big happening, perhaps a party or festival, that's right "around the bend" on the highway and urging the listener to join him.
Released as a single, along with "Run Through the Jungle" on the flipside, the double sided single (counted as one entry by the methodology used by Billboard Magazine at the time) eventually climbed to number four on the Billboard chart in the spring of 1970 and eventually was certified gold by the RIAA, for sales of over one million copies. It was also a major hit in the UK , reaching number three on their pop singles chart.
The song has been covered by a few artists, including Elton John who recorded a cover of the song early in his career, and Finnish rock band Hanoi Rocks who covered it on their 1984 album Two Steps from the Move, and still regularly perform it live.
The song was featured in the Kurt Cobain documentary Kurt Cobain About a Son and is also available on the soundtrack. Cobain's band, Nirvana, were known to cover "Bad Moon Rising" early in their career.