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Lonely Boy (Andrew Gold Song)
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Lonely Boy Andrew Gold Song
"Lonely Boy"
Lonely Boy - Andrew Gold.jpeg
Single by Andrew Gold
from the album What's Wrong with This Picture?
"Must Be Crazy"
Released11 February 1977 (UK)[1]
March 1977 (US)
GenreSoft rock, rock and roll[2][3]
Andrew Gold
Peter Asher
Andrew Gold singles chronology
"That's Why I Love You"
"Lonely Boy"
"Go Back Home Again"

"Lonely Boy" is an international hit song from 1977, written and recorded by Andrew Gold in 1976 for his album What's Wrong with This Picture? It spent five months on the American charts, peaking at number seven in both Canada[4] and the United States,[5] and number 11 in the United Kingdom. While "Lonely Boy" would be Gold's biggest U.S. hit, his "Never Let Her Slip Away" achieved greater success in the U.K.


The song follows the life of a child who feels neglected by his parents after the birth of a younger sister. Many assume this song to be autobiographical, yet Gold denied the implication, despite great similarities between the lyrics and his life. Regarding the verses' first lines: "He was born on a summer day in 1951" matches Andrew's August 2, 1951 birthday, "In the summer of '53 his mother/Brought him a sister" matches his sister Martha's July 22, 1953 birthday, and "He left home on a winter day, 1969" may well match the formation of Bryndle, of which Andrew was a member, in 1969.[6]

The second verse of the song features backing vocals provided by Linda Ronstadt. Gold had previously worked with Ronstadt as a producer and backing musician.[7]

The song was also released as an edited single, eliminating the vocal bridge and shortening the instrumental finale.[]

Uses in media and cover versions

The song was featured in a number of films including Boogie Nights (1997), The Waterboy (1998), and The Nice Guys (2016). It was the final video to be played on the MTV cable channel's first day of broadcast in the United States, on August 1, 1981.[8]

In 1982 Italian singer Ron covered the song adding Italian language lyrics, releasing it as Cosa farò in his album Guarda chi si vede.

In 1997 country music band Blackhawk recorded a cover for their third studio album Love & Gravity.

In February 2000, the Foo Fighters recorded a cover of the song to be used as a B-side for an upcoming single off their 1999 album There Is Nothing Left to Lose; however, it wasn't used as a B-side as planned.

In 2007, the song was covered separately by the bands Farrah and Lazlo Bane.[9]

In 2013, rock band The Almost covered this song for their album Fear Inside Our Bones.

British-American band The Hoosiers often cover this song when they perform live.[10]

Chart performance



  1. ^ http://www.45cat.com/record/k13076
  2. ^ "Explore: Soft Rock | Top Songs | AllMusic". Web.archive.org. 2011-12-13. Archived from the original on December 13, 2011. Retrieved .CS1 maint: Unfit url (link)
  3. ^ "VH1's 40 Most Softsational Soft-Rock Songs". Stereogum. SpinMedia. May 31, 2007. Retrieved 2016.
  4. ^ "Item Display - RPM - Library and Archives Canada". Collectionscanada.gc.ca. Retrieved .
  5. ^ a b Joel Whitburn's Top Pop Singles 1955-1990 - ISBN 0-89820-089-X
  6. ^ After 25 Years, MusicMasters Brings Bryndle Debut. Billboard. 1995-08-12. Retrieved .
  7. ^ "Bio". Andrewgold.com. Retrieved 2012.
  8. ^ Nasatasi, Alison, 25 Things You Didn't Know About MTV's First Broadcast, retrieved
  9. ^ "Lazlo Bane's Guilty Pleasures". cdbaby.com. Retrieved .
  10. ^ Alex Norton (2007-11-15), The Hoosiers - Lonely Boy (Andrew Gold cover), retrieved
  11. ^ Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970-1992. St Ives, N.S.W.: Australian Chart Book. ISBN 0-646-11917-6.
  12. ^ a b c "Song title 460 - Lonely Boy". Tsort.info. Retrieved .
  13. ^ "NZ Top 40 Singles Chart | The Official New Zealand Music Chart". Nztop40.co.nz. 1977-07-10. Retrieved .
  14. ^ Whitburn, Joel (1993). Top Adult Contemporary: 1961-1993. Record Research. p. 98.
  15. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-12-28. Retrieved .CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  16. ^ "Item Display - RPM - Library and Archives Canada". Collectionscanada.gc.ca. Retrieved .
  17. ^ "Top 100 Hits of 1977/Top 100 Songs of 1977". Musicoutfitters.com. Retrieved .
  18. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2016-03-04. Retrieved .CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  19. ^ Andrew Gold- What's Wrong With this Picture? vinyl album liner notes. Accessed 12-16-2011.
  20. ^ Andrew Gold- What's Wrong With this Picture? LP @Discogs.com (fails to list Andrew Gold as having played piano and cowbell on the track, although he is listed as such on the album credits) Retrieved 6-11-2011.

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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