by Ash

Album: 1977 (1996)
Charted: 5
  • songfacts ®
  • Lyrics
  • One of the biggest and most enduring hits for Ash, "Goldfinger" was written by lead singer Tim Wheeler when he was still a teenager. In a Songfacts interview with Wheeler, he told the story: "When I was writing that, I was just finishing school and the band was just taking off. So, I was kind of leaving behind my provincial life in Northern Ireland. We were recording that record in Monmouth in Wales, which is quite a similar town to my hometown, Downpatrick. Just a small town with not much going on and not much in the way of escape. Probably the main way people would escape would be smoking hash and stuff like that - drinking.

    That kind of a town was the kind of place I was imagining because, in a way, it's slightly romantic to me because I was leaving it behind. So, I was kind of writing about that.

    As I was writing it my younger brother was going back to school, and I was like, 'S--t, I've left that behind, I'm never going back to that.' So, I just wrote this little romance story in this small, s--tty town. I was maybe imagining like a young drug dealer and his girl in the song."
  • Like many songs by Ash, the title doesn't appear in the lyric. They named this one "Goldfinger" because it uses a bit of the "famous James Bond song, recorded by Shirley Bassey and written by John Barry, in the middle eight. When the band was rehearsing the song, they called it "Goldfinger," and the name stuck. Tim Wheeler regrets that decision, as it led to confusion with the other song.
  • This song was more intricate than anything the band had done to that point, which were mostly three-chord punk numbers. It helped the album go to #1 in the UK.
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