Wishing (If I Had A Photograph Of You)

Album: A Flock Of Seagulls (1982)
Charted: 10 26

Songfacts®:

  • In a Songfacts interview with A Flock Of Seagulls frontman Mike Score, he explained the meaning behind this song. "'Wishing' is about a real person," he said. "It was the eve of the first trip we ever took to America, and I had met a girl. We went out for the night, and I didn't want to forget her, so I said, 'We're going on tour and I'll be back. I'd like to get a photograph of you, if I could get one.' And she said, 'No, because you're going to go on to be famous and you'll forget me.'

    I had this little riff, so when I had some time and I was thinking about that, I just started singing the words I was thinking to that riff, and 'Wishing' was born. And then, as soon as I had the chance, I went and demoed it in the studio. I think it was about two years later that we actually recorded it."

    This all sounds like the first half of a romantic comedy, but it didn't have a movie ending: Score never saw her again.
  • Thanks to MTV, in the US, A Flock Of Seagulls is known almost exclusively for "I Ran (So Far Away)," but they did score two other Top 40 hits in the States, this and "Space Age Love Song." "Wishing" was their biggest hit in their native UK. The group is from Liverpool - home of The Beatles.
  • Def Leppard, Ringo Starr and Nickelback have all recorded songs called "Photograph" where the singer must make do with a photo because he can't get the girl. In this song, the singer wishes he had a photograph of the girl, as somehow this will give him comfort.
  • The look and sound of A Flock Of Seagulls was a very '80s vision of the future. Visually, it was radical hairdos (lead singer Mike Score's quaff represents seagulls in full flight) and metallic clothing, with a space theme for the videos. Musically, the sound was heavy on the synthesizers, accented with echo-laden guitar and electronic drums.
  • Anthony Van Den Ende directed the music video for this song, along with their other hits, "I Ran" and "Wishing." "Space Age Love Song" has by far the most production value of the three, and it's the only one that isn't confined to a band performance. It shows the band wandering a space ship and using a computer to generate an image of the girl.

Comments: 3

  • Clive from LondonThe band took their name from The Stranglers song 'Toiler On The Sea' from the album Black and White.
  • Splat from Williamsville, DeNearly every note in this song is in the F-sharp pentatonic scale (just the black keys on a piano). You can hear some repeating descending 1 1/4-octave scales played with these notes beginning at 3:24 in the song (album version).
  • Howard from Wakefield, United KingdomI remember this haunting song from 1982. It ranks alongside my other 80's favourite singles 'Love Will Tear us Apart' by Joy Divison & 'The Cutter' by Echo & The Bunneymen. They are all classics & never fade with time.
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