Road to Nowhere

"Road to Nowhere" is a rock song written by David Byrne for the 1985 Talking Heads album Little Creatures. It also appeared on Best of Talking Heads, Sand in the Vaseline: Popular Favorites, the Once in a Lifetime box set and the Brick box set. The song was released as a single in 1985 and reached No. 25 on the Billboard Mainstream Rock Tracks chart and No. 6 in the British, German and South African[1] singles charts. It also made No. 8 on the Dutch Top 40.[2]

"Road to Nowhere"
Talking Heads - Road to Nowhere.jpg
Single by Talking Heads
from the album Little Creatures
B-side"Television Man"
ReleasedSeptember 1985
Format7" single
RecordedOctober 1984 – March 1985
GenrePop rock, new wave
Songwriter(s)David Byrne
Producer(s)Talking Heads
Talking Heads singles chronology
"The Lady Don't Mind"
"Road to Nowhere"
"And She Was"


"I wanted to write a song that presented a resigned, even joyful look at doom," recalls David Byrne in the liner notes of Once in a Lifetime: The Best of Talking Heads. "At our deaths and at the apocalypse… (always looming, folks). I think it succeeded. The front bit, the white gospel choir, is kind of tacked on, 'cause I didn't think the rest of the song was enough… I mean, it was only two chords. So, out of embarrassment, or shame, I wrote an intro section that had a couple more in it."

The video for the song was directed by Byrne and Stephen R. Johnson and features the band and various objects revolving, as if in their own "road to nowhere". It was nominated for "Best Video of the Year" at the MTV Video Music Awards 1986. Some parts were shot in the back yard and pool of actor Stephen Tobolowsky, who was co-writing Byrne's film True Stories at the time.[3] Director Johnson re-used some of the effects techniques in award-winning videos for Peter Gabriel the following year: "Sledgehammer" and "Big Time".


Talking Heads

Additional Musicians

  • Andrew Cader – washboard
  • Erin Dickens – backing vocals
  • Diva Gray – backing vocals
  • Gordon Grody – backing vocals
  • Lani Groves – backing vocals
  • Jimmy Macdonell – accordion
  • Lenny Pickettsaxophones
  • Steve Scales – percussion
  • Kurt Yahijian – backing vocals

Cover versions and other usesEdit


  1. ^ "SA Charts 1965 – 1989". Retrieved 8 April 2014
  2. ^ Talking Heads: Road To Nowhere
  3. ^ "The Tobolowsky Files Episode 44: The Voice from Another Room". Retrieved 2011-02-19.
  4. ^ Riles, Cortney (December 17, 2012). ""Gossip Girl" Music Recap: No Greater Goodbye". Neon Tommy. Retrieved December 28, 2012.

External linksEdit