Song of the Week

EHSDA Song of the Week: Making Plans for Nigel

Part of being prepared for a workplace fire is to have an emergency action plan in place, as EHS Daily Advisor wrote about earlier this week. With this in mind, the Song of the Week is a 1979 new wave gem from XTC called “Making Plans for Nigel.”

The song was the lead single on the English band’s third album Drums and Wires. Written by bassist Colin Moulding, the song is told from the point of view of parents who are mapping out their son’s life.

“We’re only making plans for Nigel/We only want what’s best for him/We’re only making plans for Nigel/Nigel just needs that helping hand.”

“Making Plans for Nigel” was XTC’s commercial breakthrough in the U.K., spending 11 weeks on the singles chart there and going to #17. It reached #12 on the Canadian singles chart, where it spent 22 weeks. But it didn’t chart in the U.S.

XTC went on to bigger and better things, releasing 11 more albums over the next 20 years. Even as the band’s popularity grew, it dealt with financial issues, a lack of touring after singer Andy Partridge developed stage fright, and the usual conflicts between band members. Still, XTC developed a devoted following and remains beloved by fans to this day.

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