The song was originally released by Seger in 1973 on his Back in '72 album. Seger's version never made the charts, but an evocative live performance on his 1976 Live Bullet album became a mainstay of album-oriented rock radio stations, and still gets significant airplay to this day on classic rock stations. He revealed at his concert in Milwaukee, Wisconsin durring his 2006 tour that he had written the song in a hotel room in Eau Claire Wisconsin.
"Turn the Page" is about the emotional and social ups and downs of a rock musician's life on the road, against a slow tempo and a mournful saxophone part. It is generally considered one of the best of many such songs, on a par with Jackson Browne's "Load Out/Stay" and Journey's "Faithfully".