Lynott wrote the song with Midge Ure, who also directed the video. Ure joined Thin Lizzy as a touring member in 1979 after guitarist Gary Moore left the band. When the group went to Japan in September, Lynott hired another guitarist, Dave Flett, and bumped Ure to keyboards, which were barely audible at their shows. Lynott, however, know that keyboards were the hot sound and that Ure could work with them. "Yellow Pearl" has Ure's distinctive synth sound all over it - something the could be heard in Midge's group Ultravox.
"Phil was a bit like David Bowie in that respect: He was very good at being a bit of a magpie, and he could see that there was something happening that wasn't necessarily in his field of expertise, but he wanted to steal little bits of it and incorporate it," Ure said in our interview
. "It worked better on his solo records than it ever did on Lizzy."