Lucky Number (song)

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"Lucky Number"
Lene Lovich Lucky Number 1979.jpg
The 7" single cover of "Lucky Number" (1979)
Single by Lene Lovich
from the album Stateless
B-side "Home"
Released January 26, 1979 (1979-01-26)
Recorded 1978
Length 2:47
Label Stiff
Producer(s) Les Chappell
Lene Lovich singles chronology
"I Think We're Alone Now"
"Lucky Number"
"Say When"
Alternative cover
The 7" single cover of the 1982 re-release of "Lucky Number".

"Lucky Number" is a song by American recording artist Lene Lovich. Originally released as a B-side for Lovich's cover of "I Think We're Alone Now", the song was re-released on January 26, 1979, by Stiff Records as an A-side and became the lead single of her debut studio album Stateless (1978). The song was written by Lovich and Les Chappell, who produced the song.

It received very positive reviews from music critics, peaked at number 3 on the UK Singles Chart and became a defining song of the new wave genre.

"Lucky Number" was covered by German punk artist Nina Hagen. The German version "Wie Leben Immer... Noch" ("We are living… still") was released on the album Unbehagen (1979).

Background and recording[edit]

After the break-up of the band the Diversions in December 1976, Lovich started searching for another band. She contacted a radio presenter Charlie Gillett and advertised herself as a sax player looking for a band. Gillett gave out her number but nobody called. Later, Lovich wrote him a letter providing more information about herself. This encouraged him to get her to record a demo of Tommy James and the Shondells' song "I Think We're Alone Now". He took the tape to Dave Robinson of Stiff Records, who liked it and decided to sign Lovich. He immediately proposed the song to be released as a single and wanted Lovich and Les Chappell to write and record a B-side.[1]

In July 1978, Stiff released the first limited quantities of "I Think We're Alone Now" with an early version of "Lucky Number". Lovich and Chappell went on to record her first album Stateless, which was released in October of the same year. "Lucky Number" gained recognition and was later re-released as a lead single from the album.


The song is composed in D major at 120 beats per minute. The chorus, perhaps unpredictably, consists of four dissonant chords sung in rapid succession. According to Lovich, she "didn't know anything about writing a song, so [the producer] just threw together a vocal line that sounded like a synthesizer." The chorus, coupled with the memorable guitar ostinato and rapid vocal shouts from backup singers gave the song and Lovich her distinctive sound that would define her next several records and, according to Rovi, "the hundreds of bands that followed."[2]

Track listings and formats[edit]

  • 7" single (UK)[3]
  1. "Lucky Number" – 2:47
  2. "Home" – 3:45
  • 12" single (UK)[4]
  1. "Lucky Number" – 2:47
  2. "Home" – 3:45
  3. "Lucky Number" (Version)
  • 7" single (US)[5]
  1. "Lucky Number" (Slavic Dance Version) – 4:32
  2. "Lucky Number" - 2:47
  • 7" single (UK)[6]
  1. "Lucky Number"
  2. "New Toy"


  1. ^ Juneau, Jason. "Innovation in New Wave:Lene Lovich", Perfect Sound Forever, September, 2001.
  2. ^ ROVI. "Lene Lovich- "Stateless" Review". Retrieved 7 September 2013. 
  3. ^ Lucky Number (UK 7-inch Single liner notes). Lene Lovich. Stiff Records. 1979. BUY 42. 
  4. ^ Lucky Number (UK 12-inch Single liner notes). Lene Lovich. Stiff Records. 1979. 12 BUY 42. 
  5. ^ Lucky Number (US 7-inch Single liner notes). Lene Lovich. Stiff Records. 1979. 9-50725. 
  6. ^ Lucky Number (UK 7-inch Single liner notes). Lene Lovich. Stiff Records. 1982. BUY 149. 

External links[edit]