Lucky Number

Album: Stateless (1978)
Charted: 3

Songfacts®:

  • Lene Lovich was born Lili-Marlene Premilovich in Detroit to an English mother and a Yugoslavian father. She moved to Hull, England when she was 13 and met there the guitarist/songwriter Les Chappell, who became her longtime collaborator and longtime partner.

    Before signing to Stiff Records in 1978, Lovich was an art student, worked as a go-go dancer, busked around the London Underground and overdubbed screams for horror films. In 1975, Lovich joined The Diversions, a funk group that put out three singles and an album without success. She enjoyed her first chart success three years later when she penned the lyrics for French disco singer Cerrone's sci-fi dance hit "Supernature," which peaked at #8 in the UK.

    In 1978, Stiff Records agreed on short notice to release Lovich's cover of Tommy James & The Shondells' "I Think We're Alone Now." Lovich and Les Chappell had to quickly write and record a B-side. The song they came up with was "Lucky Number."
  • The single didn't chart, but was re-released in January 1979 by Stiff Records, this time with "Lucky Number" as an A-side. It was a huge hit, peaking at #2 in Australia, #3 in the Netherlands, New Zealand and the UK, and #5 in Belgium. "Lucky Number" is now considered a defining song of the new wave genre.
  • Lyrically, the song describes how Lovich used to be happy enjoying the single life on her own - her "lucky number" was one. However, her attitude changes when a guy sweeps he off her feet. She never wants to be apart from him, so now her "lucky number" is two.
  • Lovich released three albums on Stiff Records: Stateless (1978), Flex (1979) and No Man's Land (1982). They spawned several other minor chart entries in the UK; one of them was "New Toy," which was the first hit song penned by Thomas Dolby, who played keyboards in her band.
  • Fun Fact: Lene Lovich was one of thousands of people in the audience at the Lancaster Arts Festival when Chuck Berry recorded his #1 hit "My Ding-a-Ling."

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