Lady Writer

Album: Communiqué (1979)
Charted: 51 45
Play Video

Songfacts®:

  • According to the 1984 biography of the band, "Lady Writer" was inspired by Marina Warner, who songwriter Mark Knopfler saw on a TV program, hence the opening line "Lady Writer on the TV..." In 1976, Warner, a highly educated polyglot, published a scholarly book about the cult of the Virgin Mary. For some reason her appearance struck a chord with Knopfler, bringing back painful memories of a love that was no more. There's real venom in the song, and it is evident that any resemblance the talented Miss Warner bore to his former lover was strictly physical.
  • "Lady Writer" was released on the Vertigo label; it was the band's second single, and runs to 3 minutes 45 seconds. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Alexander Baron - London, England, for above 2

Comments: 5

  • Joe from Grants Pass, OrAin't exactly like "Tangled Up In Blue", but it was never intended to be... Love it !!!
  • Jasper from Nieuwegein, NetherlandsThe real music critics hated this song at first... They said it was too much like "Sultans of Swing", and it was not original...
  • Barry from New York, NcDire Straits had a great sound on their first two LPs, which can be heard in full on LADY WRITER. By the time of their third album and the departure of David Knophler, the sound started to change a bit.
  • Paul from Northampton, United KingdomI remember seeing the Marina Warner interview in question and discussing it with others on the college course I was on. I have a feeling it was Melvyn Bragg doing the interviewing. We were all impressed by the Ms Warner's combination of razor sharp intellect and fantastic looks, the latter of which did nothing to diminish her academic and feminist credibility (why should it?). A few months later, the song came out and I immediately recognised what it was about. Needless to say, I bought it. One of Knopfler's best, and that's saying something.
  • Jim from Long Beach, CaI love this song. Great lyrics,very Dylanesque..Thanks Dire Straits
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Jesus In Pop Hits: The Gospel Songs That Went Mainstream

Jesus In Pop Hits: The Gospel Songs That Went MainstreamSong Writing

These overtly religious songs crossed over to the pop charts, despite resistance from fans, and in many cases, churches.

Sam Hollander

Sam HollanderSongwriter Interviews

The hitmaking songwriter/producer Sam Hollander with stories about songs for Weezer, Panic! At The Disco, Train, Pentatonix, and Fitz And The Tantrums.

Brandi Carlile

Brandi CarlileSongwriter Interviews

As a 5-year-old, Brandi was writing lyrics to instrumental versions lullabies. She still puts her heart into her songs, including the one Elton John sings on.

Grateful Dead Characters

Grateful Dead CharactersMusic Quiz

Many unusual folks appear in Grateful Dead songs. Can you identify them?

Paul Stanley of Kiss, Soul Station

Paul Stanley of Kiss, Soul StationSongwriter Interviews

Paul Stanley on his soul music project, the Kiss songs with the biggest soul influence, and the non-make-up era of the band.

Justin Hayward of The Moody Blues

Justin Hayward of The Moody BluesSongwriter Interviews

Justin wrote the classic "Nights In White Satin," but his fondest musical memories are from a different decade.