Bryan Adams explained why he wasn’t able to enjoy the “surreal” success of the 1991 hit “(Everything I Do) I Do It for You,” which holds the U.K. chart record for most weeks at No. 1.

The Grammy-winning track’s 16-week reign was accompanied by impressive sales all around the world and it’s currently the 21st best-selling single of all time on the Billboard Hot 100. The achievement had the effect of extending Adams’ touring duties through the first half of the ‘90s.

“People were always saying, ‘You’re No. 1 in England,’ but I wasn’t around to witness it,” he told the Independent in a new interview. “I was playing gigs, nonstop. I was on tour, literally, for four years. So the way it changed was suddenly, I was playing a lot more places, to much bigger crowds. And for a lot longer tours. I don’t suppose I ever really got to enjoy the surreal aspect of being No. 1 for four months. I was only told about it.”

Get our free mobile app

Adams said “Everything I Do” was so successful because it was “one of those songs [that] appealed to people who never buy records. … Though some people didn’t understand what was being said in the song – people from other languages and cultures – they got the emotion of the song. The lyric is quite simple in its sentiment, but it was a sentiment that went around the globe. It was all-pervasive.”

Watch Bryan Adams' '(Everything I Do) I Do It for You' Video

A similar thing could be said of another of his big hits, “Summer of ’69,” which he's admitted he wrote because the title "made me laugh." "[It] was not a big hit in Europe when it was released as a single in 1985," he noted.

"Even though the song had a little bit of a life in North America, it took 10 years for it to become well known. It never even hit the charts in the U.K. And so perhaps there’s something about the songs that we write that just don’t necessarily have that instant appeal. But in the long term, they climb out of the wreckage.”

Elsewhere in the interview, Adams denied he endured a difficult period later in the ‘90s, except for a time when his record contract was bought out and he was forcibly moved to the Interscope label, and an exec told him there were plans to "make him big in America all over again." "And he goes, 'We’re gonna do MTV Unplugged!'" Adams recalled. "I said, 'Ah, yeah, that’s a really good idea. Except my last album was MTV Unplugged. I think the next time you come around, man, you should do your research.'"

Adams releases a new album, So Happy It Hurts, tomorrow.

Top 100 '80s Rock Albums

UCR takes a chronological look at the 100 best rock albums of the '80s.

Did You Know Bryan Adams Wrote That Song?