Calling America

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"Calling America"
Single by Electric Light Orchestra
from the album Balance of Power
B-side "Caught in a Trap"
"Destination Unknown" (12" only) (UK)
Released 24 January 1986 (US)
21 February 1986 (UK)
Format 7" single
Recorded 1985 Compass Point, Nassau, Bahamas and Hartmann Digital Untertrubach, Germany
Genre Pop rock
Length 3:28
Label CBS Associated (US)
Epic (UK)
Writer(s) Jeff Lynne
Producer(s) Jeff Lynne
Electric Light Orchestra singles chronology
"Calling America"
"So Serious"
Music sample

"Calling America" is a song by the rock music group Electric Light Orchestra (ELO) released as a single from their 1986 (see 1986 in music) album Balance of Power. The single reached number 28 in the UK and peaked at number 18 on the Billboard singles chart, making it their final hit single in the United States.


It became the band's first hit in three years. The song is, like most of the songs on Balance of Power, musically upbeat and bright but lyrically darker, concerning a dishonest lover (e.g., part of the lyrics state, "said she'd call when she'd been gone awhile," with the word "awhile" echoing, though when heard a different way it sounds like "liar, liar, liar, liar, liar").

There was also a UK 12 inch EPIC 3 Track version with the "Destination Unknown" on the B-Side.

Track listing[edit]

All songs written by Jeff Lynne.

  1. "Calling America" – 3:28
  2. "Caught in a Trap" – 3:43
US 12"
  1. "Calling America" – 3:28
  2. "Caught in a Trap" – 3:43
  3. "Endless Lies" – 2:54
UK 12"
  1. "Calling America" – 3:28
  2. "Caught in a Trap" – 3:43
  3. "Destination Unknown" – 4:10

Chart positions[edit]

Chart (1986) Peak
Australian Kent Music Report Singles Chart[1] 47
Austrian Ö3 Austria Top 40[2] 22
French SNEP Singles Chart 10
German Media Control Singles Chart[3] 31
Irish Singles Chart[4] 16
Polish Singles Chart[5] 2
UK Singles Chart[6] 28
US Billboard Hot 100[7] 18
US Billboard Mainstream Rock Tracks[7] 22
US Billboard Adult Contemporary[7] 20
US Cash Box Top 100 Singles 26


The video was shot in Paris and contains shots of Centre Georges Pompidou; the band plays in front of Pompidou.


  1. ^ Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992. St Ives, NSW: Australian Chart Book. ISBN 0-646-11917-6. 
  2. ^ "Discographie Electric Light Orchestra". Retrieved 6 March 2013. 
  3. ^ " - Electric Light Orchestra". Retrieved 22 April 2013. 
  4. ^ "The Irish Charts - All there is to know". Retrieved 6 March 2013.  Enter Electric Light Orchestra in the Search by Artist field, then click Search.
  5. ^ Hawtin, Steve. "Song artist 171 - Electric Light Orchestra". Retrieved 2 May 2013. 
  6. ^ "Electric Light Orchestra". Offfical Charts Company. Retrieved 5 March 2013. 
  7. ^ a b c "Electric Light Orchestra - Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 5 March 2013. 

External links[edit]