Wish I Stayed

Album: Lights (2010)
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Songfacts®:

  • Hereford born and raised Ellie Goulding learned to play the guitar and write her own folk-inspired music at the age of fifteen. A few years later, she moved away from rural home to attend the University of Kent to study drama. This was one of the first tunes she ever wrote, which Goulding told the NME is "a song about leaving the countryside, which still pains me."
  • After being exposed to electronic music, Goulding developed this song with the help of electropop artist and producer Frankmusik, whom she emailed via MySpace. She explained to the Guardian December 12, 2009: "I said, 'I've got this acoustic song, and I know I want something good to happen to it but I don't know what – can you help me?" Frankmusik replied instantly to her surprise. "He said, 'Yes, I'd love to, come round on Monday.' So I got a train to Thornton Heath, ended up staying for a week, recorded a couple of songs, and just talked about music."
  • The American release of Lights features a couple of tracks that weren't on the original UK release of the set. To make room for them, "I'll Hold My Breath" and "Wish I'd Stayed," were omitted from the repacked album. Goulding told Chart Rigger: "It was kind of tough, but it was my decision. I feel like I've grown out of them slightly because I wrote them so long ago. 'Wish I'd Stayed' will always be very special to me because that was one of the very first songs I wrote, when I was just really free-writing. I just prefer 'Animal' and 'Human.' They're an example of how I've progressed. And the reason I kept them for the repackage and not the [next] album is because I think I'm going to progress even more. But those other two songs, I kind of felt like they were holding me back a bit and I wanted to have a fresh start in America, and be happy with the tracks."

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