He Wasn't There

Album: It's Not Me, It's You (2009)


  • This torch song pastiche features emotional lyrics about Lily Allen's actor father, Keith Allen. Lily's parents broke up when she was four, and here she forgives her dad for not being around for most of her childhood. The Smile singer told The Sunday Telegraph that she remembers "the day that Dad left, and us all saying good-bye to him in the hall of our flat in Bloomsbury. I just remember there being a thing of 'does that mean Dad's never going to be around?' She was reassured otherwise. "Then of course Dad did go, and didn't come back for a while." However the song praises their adult relationship. Lily explained to The Sun January 30, 2009: "With my dad, we have made a go of our relationship, after years of pain. But we're there now, we're in a good place."
  • For more on Keith Allen on Songfacts, check out "World In Motion," "Jerusalem" and "Country House."

Comments: 1

  • Theresa from Murfreesboro, TnThis song has an old-fashioned feel to it, so cool.
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Rick Astley

Rick AstleySongwriter Interviews

Rick Astley on "Never Gonna Give You Up," "Cry For Help," and his remarkable resurgence that gave him another #1 UK album.

Alan Merrill of The Arrows

Alan Merrill of The ArrowsSongwriter Interviews

In her days with The Runaways, Joan Jett saw The Arrows perform "I Love Rock And Roll," which Alan Merrill co-wrote - that story and much more from this glam rock pioneer.

Tom Bailey of Thompson Twins

Tom Bailey of Thompson TwinsSongwriter Interviews

Tom stopped performing Thompson Twins songs in 1987, in part because of their personal nature: "Hold Me Now" came after an argument with his bandmate/girlfriend Alannah Currie.

Ian Astbury of The Cult

Ian Astbury of The CultSongwriter Interviews

The Cult frontman tells who the "Fire Woman" is, and talks about performing with the new version of The Doors.

Scott Gorham of Thin Lizzy and Black Star Riders

Scott Gorham of Thin Lizzy and Black Star RidersSongwriter Interviews

Writing with Phil Lynott, Scott saw their ill-fated frontman move to a darker place in his life and lyrics.

John Lee Hooker

John Lee HookerSongwriter Interviews

Into the vaults for Bruce Pollock's 1984 conversation with the esteemed bluesman. Hooker talks about transforming a Tony Bennett classic and why you don't have to be sad and lonely to write the blues.