Nobody's Fool (Slade song)

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"Nobody's Fool"
Single by Slade
from the album Nobody's Fools
B-side L. A. Jinx
Released 9 April 1976
Format 7" Single
Genre Rock
Length 3:50
Label Polydor Records
Writer(s) Noddy Holder; Jim Lea
Producer(s) Chas Chandler
Slade singles chronology
"Let's Call It Quits"
"Nobody's Fool"
"Gypsy Roadhog"
Audio sample
file info · help

"Nobody's Fool" is a single from rock band Slade which appeared on the album Nobody's Fools. It was written by lead singer Noddy Holder and bassist Jim Lea. The single was released in 1976 and did not enter the UK Top 50 Singles chart. This was unusual for Slade whose previous 17 singles entered the top 20.[1] However it did reach #3 on the BMRB's UK Breakers chart on 24 April 1976 (which would be equal to #53 on the UK Singles Chart (at a time when the national singles chart only ran to the Top 50).[2]

From this single, the band found themselves in a commercial decline after UK fans accused the band of 'selling out' and forgetting about their fanbase in the UK, as the band had been in the States for most of 1975, trying to crack the market. The single featured Tasha Thomas doing backing vocals - the first time a Slade single featured any female backing.[3]

The single A-side features an edited piano introduction, compared to the album version.

The b-side, "L.A. Jinx", tells of the bad luck that Slade always seemed to accompany the band whenever they played L.A.[3]

"Nobody's Fool" has been covered by Light Fantastic and The Dummies, the latter being a project of Slade's bassist Jim Lea.[4]


Upon recording the song in 1976, bassist/co-writer Jim Lea was really into Queen's music, with all the harmonies, solo piano breaks etc. Therefore, it was intended that "Nobody's Fool" would be some twenty-minute extravaganza, with everything thrown in. Later, when it was discussed, it was obvious that this type of number wouldn't appeal to the stomping Slade fan of the day. Thus the band only recorded a short version of the piece - but even that, which featured the unheard of act of female backing vocalists show what an adventurous number it was. It was true that this wouldn't have appealed to Slade fans at the time, as when a single version of the number was released, it flopped (reaching #53) - breaking Slade's run of seventeen hit singles.[5][6]


A music video was created for the single however no UK TV performances were recorded. The song was performed once on American TV although this broadcast has never been seen since the original airing.[7]

Music Video[edit]

A monumental video for this single was filmed at St. Johns Wood Studios. It featured Slade on stage with two black singers who shared the microphones with Hill and Lea. The ladies in question were from New York and Lea found out at a later date that one of them wasn’t even a singer at all. The production company for this film was Trilion Video and the director Bruce Gowers was the same bloke that did Queen’s Bohemian Rhapsody. Nobody’s Fool’s lyrics featured ‘lions roaring’, ‘heavens thundering’, ‘flamingos flying out’ etc., and as these were sung, film was projected behind Slade of the appropriate situations happening.

This video was the most complex one made to date, but unfortunately it only received one U.K. television showing, that being on Sally James’s LWT show ‘Saturday Scene’.[8]


7" Single
  1. "Nobody's Fool" - 3:50
  2. "L.A. Jinx" - 3:57
7" Single (Alternate 7" version)
  1. "Nobody's Fool" - 4:20
  2. "L.A. Jinx" - 3:57
7" Single (US 7" version)
  1. "Nobody's Fool (Edit)" - 3:15
  2. "When the Chips are Down" - 4:16

Critical reception[edit]

Upon release, Record Mirror magazine gave a thumbs up, symbolising a hit. The magazine reviewed the single, "Title track from their latest album, and released to coincide with Slade's celebrations of ten years in the business, this is one of the best singles Slade have released for ages. Very catchy, from the first hearing. Bright and bouncy, and Slade at their best. Instant hit."[9]

Chart performance[edit]

Chart (1976) Peak
Irish Singles Chart[10] 21
UK Singles Chart[2] 53


  • Noddy Holder: Lead vocals and guitar
  • Jim Lea: Bass guitar and piano
  • Dave Hill: Lead guitar
  • Don Powell: Drums

Additional personnel[edit]

  • Tasha Thomas - Backing vocals
  • Producer on "Nobody's Fool" - Chas Chandler
  • Writers of "Nobody's Fool" - Noddy Holder; Jim Lea
  • Producer on "L.A. Jinx" - Chas Chandler
  • Writers of "L.A. Jinx" - Noddy Holder; Jim Lea
  • Producer on "When the Chips Are Down" - Chas Chandler
  • Writers of "When the Chips Are Down" - Noddy Holder; Jim Lea


  1. ^ "UK Singles & Albums Chart Archive". Chart Stats. Archived from the original on 3 June 2009. Retrieved 2011-08-10. 
  2. ^ a b Chartwatch magazine (Issue 35). Chartwatch. December 1990. pp. Breakers 1976 section. 
  3. ^ a b Slade's remastered album Nobody's Fools booklet
  4. ^ "SLADE @". Retrieved 2011-08-10. 
  5. ^ [1][permanent dead link]
  6. ^ Slade Supporters Club Newsletter May - June 1981
  7. ^ "SLADE @". Archived from the original on 15 July 2011. Retrieved 2011-08-10. 
  8. ^ [2]
  9. ^ Record Mirror magazine 10 April 1976
  10. ^ "The Irish Charts - All there is to know". Archived from the original on 3 June 2009. Retrieved 2011-08-10.