♫ Band of Gold ♫

It may be the case that I have no imagination.  I tend to take things at face value, and song lyrics (when I can hear them at all) are no exception.  So, imagine my jaw-dropping moment when I read the following from Songfacts …

“There is some mystery to this song. Some people think it is about an impotent man, while others think it is about a frigid woman.”

I thought it was about a woman whose husband had left her!  My tendency toward the literal is why my college Literature professor pulled his hair out every Monday, Wednesday and Friday, and he bought me a lovely lunch at the end of the term, begging me not to take another class under him!

Now, according to Lamont Dozier who co-wrote the song …

“The story was, the girl found out this guy was not all there. He had his own feelings about giving his all. He wanted to love this girl, he married the girl, but he couldn’t perform on his wedding night because he had other issues about his sexuality. I’ll put it that way.  It was about this guy that was basically gay, and he couldn’t perform. He loved her, but he couldn’t do what he was supposed to do as a groom, as her new husband.”

Oh well … so much for my interpretive skills, eh?  In my defense, I only ever knew the first six lines, which, when I sing this song get repeated over and over.  In a very bad, non-existent key with warbles.  And now you see why my girls almost constantly wear headphones.  ♫  🎧

Because of the subject matter, Freda Payne did not want to record this at first. She thought the song was about a woman who was a virgin or sexually naïve, and felt it was more suitable for a teenager.  When Payne objected to this song, Ron Dunbar (co-writer of the song) said to her, “Don’t worry. You don’t have to like them! Just sing it,” and she did. Little did she know that this song would become her biggest hit and would give her her first record of gold.

Released in April 1970, the song hit #1 in the UK and #3 in the U.S.

Band Of Gold
Freda Payne

Now that you’re gone
All that’s left is a band of gold
All that’s left of the dreams I hold
Is a band of gold
And the memories of what love could be
If you were still here with me

You took me from the shelter of my mother, I had never known
Or loved any other
We kissed after taking vows
But that night on our honeymoon
We stayed in separate rooms

I wait in the darkness of my lonely room
Filled with sadness, filled with gloom
Hoping soon
That you’ll walk back through that door
And love me like you tried before

Since you’ve been gone
All that’s left is a band of gold
All that’s left of the dreams I hold
Is a band of gold
And the dream of what love could be
If you were still here with me

Oh, don’t you know that I wait
In the darkness of my lonely room
Filled with sadness, filled with gloom
Hoping soon
That you’ll walk back through that door
And love me like you tried before

Since you’ve been gone
All that’s left is a band of gold
All that’s left of the dreams I hold
Is a band of gold
And the dream of what love could be
If you were still here with me

Since you’ve been gone
All that’s left is a band of gold

Songwriters: Edythe Wayne / Ronald Dunbar
Band Of Gold lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

24 thoughts on “♫ Band of Gold ♫

  1. I think that this one percolating into my early adolescent consciousness was very bad for my expectations of what was to come! I thought (also not knowing anything of homosexuality or indeed impotence) that the guy was somehow turned off the woman or it had been an arranged marriage and he just wasn’t interested enough in her. Whatever, it was the woman’s fault. Oh dear…

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hello, JoHanna, I would love to hear what story you heard when you first listened to this song. I have just finished reading (looking at) some of the fine tours you take part in. You live in a beautiful area of the world, one rich in pre-white history. And you appreciate what you have, and what you could have had if humans were not so greedy as to deny to everyone what they took for only themselves. Maybe one day you or your children will bring such “objets” back where they belong. May you long sing the praises of the people who came before.

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    • I was very surprised how many people, like myself, did not realize the meaning of the lyrics! I’m with you … half the fun of these music posts is learning some of the stories that surround the song. I’m glad you liked this one! Thank YOU!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I was nowhere close. I heard it as a huge argument having taken place, and it was about something she or he had found out about the other “after” the ceremony had taken place. Just goes to show you, we all hear according to our hopes, dreams, fears, and our experiences.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I don’t even know this song. I was in Australia then, so maybe it never got there! My mother’s best friend told her that her husband ‘wasn’t interested in that sort of thing’ – though they managed to produce two children… Perhaps the song writer was thinking of unhappy marriages that should never have taken place.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I always thought that the repeated phrase “and love me like you TRIED before” said it all…impotent! Of course, back in the day, it was probably more acceptable than gay. I always liked the song. Thank-you!

    Liked by 3 people

    • I’m happy to see that I was not the only one who didn’t get the meaning of the lyrics. But then, I think music is one of the few things that we can each interpret as we wish. Big hugs, Jack!!! ❤ ❤ ❤

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