John Illsley Says Dire Straits’ ‘Love Over Gold’ Freaked The Record Company Out


Dire Straits bassist John Illsley recently joined The Mitch Lafon And Jeremy White Show for an interview during which he claimed their record company freaked out when they heard about the single ‘Love Over Gold.’

Love Over Gold‘ was Dire Straits’ fourth studio album, released on September 24, 1982. Produced by Mark Knopfler, the album ‘Love Over Gold’ featured two singles titled ‘Private Investigations’ and ‘Industrial Disease.’ The former became the band’s main chart hit, while the latter also achieved great chart success.

Two years after the album’s release, Dire Straits also released the title song ‘Love Over Gold’ as a single in its live version, ‘Alchemy: Dire Straits Live.’ In 1998, the song’s live version also appeared on the compilation album ‘Sultans Of Swing: The Very Best Of Dire Straits.’

In a recent interview with Mitch Lafon and Jeremy White, John Illsley touched upon why Dire Straits wasn’t in favor of making singles. He then revealed that their record company freaked out upon seeing ‘Love Over Gold’ as a single as they thought there were only five songs on the album with no singles.

According to Illsley, Dire Straits only said they were sorry about that. The bassist then stated they wanted singles because this is how the music industry works. However, there were also other bands who decided not to put out any singles, such as Led Zeppelin.

Speaking about why Dire Straits didn’t like releasing singles, John Illsley said the following in the interview:

“Well, that’s why we left five years between the albums, so the people would slightly forget about ‘Brothers in Arms.’ But you see, the thing about ‘Brothers in Arms,’ people forget that the first four albums had already done very well. ‘Love Over Gold’ freaked the record company, as I said in the book, because they said, ‘There are only five songs on this record. There’s no single on it.’ And we went, ‘No, sorry about that.’

Anyway, somebody managed to make a five-minute version of ‘Telegraph Road,’ and I didn’t even bother to listen to it. I just said, ‘Please don’t play that.’ They want singles because that’s the way that system works. Led Zeppelin didn’t put any singles out. Okay, you can say ‘Stairway to Heaven’ was a single, but they just made albums.”

You can listen to Dire Straits’ ‘Love Over Gold’ below.