No One Is to Blame

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
"No One Is to Blame"
Howard Jones - No One Is to Blame.jpg
Single by Howard Jones
from the album Dream Into Action and One to One
Released15 March 1986 (UK)
24 March 1986 (US)
Format7", 12"
GenrePop, soul
Length3:29 (1985 version)
4:13 (1986 version)
LabelWEA (UK)
Elektra Records (US)
Songwriter(s)Howard Jones
Producer(s)Phil Collins & Hugh Padgham
Howard Jones singles chronology
"Life in One Day"
"No One Is to Blame"
"All I Want"

"No One Is to Blame" is a song by British musician Howard Jones. The song, in its original version, can be found on his second studio album, Dream into Action, which was released in 1985. Following the success of the previous singles taken from the album, the original track for "No One Is to Blame" was re-recorded to give the song a more radio-friendly sound. Phil Collins and Hugh Padgham produced the re-recording, with Collins adding his own drum work and mood.[1] This new version of the song was included on the 1986 US EP Action Replay as well as the CD version of Jones's 1986 studio album, One to One.[2]

"No One Is to Blame" was released as a single in March 1986 and became Jones's biggest hit in the United States, peaking at #4 on the Billboard Hot 100.[1] The song also became the first of his two #1 songs on the U.S. adult contemporary chart ("Everlasting Love" would top this chart in 1989).[3] The song was also a top 10 hit in Australia and a #16 hit in the U.K..[4]


The song is about unfulfilled attractions, saying that they're normal and commonplace ("We want everyone – no one ever is to blame"). It uses a number of metaphors, such as "You can look at the menu, but you just can't eat" and "It's the last piece of the puzzle, but you just can't make it fit," to describe the frustration of experiencing attraction but being unable to act on it, for whatever reason. On a deeper level it describes the frustration and pain of unfulfilled desires and dreams inherent in the human condition.

Track list[edit]


  • “No One Is to Blame” – 4:14
  • “The Chase” – 2:53


  • “No One Is to Blame (Extended Mix)” – 5:16
  • “The Chase” – 2:53
  • “No One Is to Blame (The Long Mix)” – 3:07

"The Long Mix" is significantly shorter than the single; it is actually not a remix, but an entirely different piano and vocal-only version of the song recorded in session for the BBC Radio 1 Janice Long show.

Other versions[edit]

Cover versions[edit]

A previously unreleased version of "No One is to Blame" by Neilson Hubbard appears on the 2001 Parasol Records compilation, Parasol's Sweet Sixteen, Volume 4.[1]

In 2007, American singer-songwriter Katrina Carlson recorded a cover version, on which Jones contributed piano and backing vocals. Carlson’s version, which is taken from her album Here and Now, reached #20 on the US Billboard Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks chart.

Emile Millar covered the song for the soundtrack of Waitress in 2007.

"No One Is to Blame" featured on Cindy Alexander's 2007 album, Wobble with the World.

American indie artist Jules Larson features "No One Is To Blame" in her 2010 EP A Lot Like You.

On October 19, 2015, contestants Braiden Sunshine and Lyndsey Elm performed a duet of the song during the "Battle Rounds" on NBC's television program The Voice.

Chart positions[edit]

Year Chart Position
1986 US Adult Contemporary 1
US Mainstream Rock Tracks 20
Billboard Hot 100 4
Australia (Kent Music Report)[6] 9
Italian Singles Chart 21
UK Singles Chart 16

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Dean, Maury (2003). Rock N' Roll Gold Rush. Algora. pp. 180, 453. ISBN 0-87586-207-1.
  2. ^ One to One track listing Retrieved 29 April 2009.
  3. ^ Hyatt, Wesley (1999). The Billboard Book of #1 Adult Contemporary Hits (Billboard Publications), page 307.
  4. ^ UK Singles Chart info Retrieved 29 April 2009.
  5. ^ The Old Grey Whistle Test Vol. 3 (DVD). BBC Video. 2006.
  6. ^ Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992 (Illustrated ed.). St. Ives, N.S.W.: Australian Chart Book. p. 161. ISBN 0-646-11917-6. N.B. the Kent Report chart was licensed by ARIA between mid 1983 and 19 June 1988.

External links[edit]