Squeeze – Tempted

Paul Carrack sang lead on this. He also sang with the bands Ace (“How Long”) and Mike And The Mechanics (“The Living Years”). In 1987, he had a solo hit with “Don’t Shed a Tear.”

This was the first Squeeze song to crack the charts in America. Squeeze was already a big deal in their native England, where they had 7 Top-40 hits to this point. They managed just 2 more US hits: “Hourglass” and “853-5937,” but “Tempted” remains their only top ten hit. It peaked at #8 in the Billboard 100.

From Songfacts

Squeeze singer and guitarist Chris Difford wrote the lyrics to this song. He explains: “Tempted was written in a cab on the way to Heathrow, I just wrote down what I saw and how I felt as we wormed our way through the traffic. I also must have anticipated a good time on tour as the chorus suggests.”
Carrack was with Squeeze for their East Side Story album, replacing Jools Holland on keyboards and also contributing vocals. He rejoined Squeeze in 1993 for their album Some Fantastic Place, and sang on a new version of “Tempted” that the band recorded for the soundtrack of the 1994 movie Reality Bites.

Elvis Costello produced this track. You can hear him singing on the second verse.

Glenn Tilbrook, who writes the music for Squeeze, considers this one of his favorites. Says Tilbrook: “It was a sort of breakthrough song for us, in spite of the fact that it wasn’t a hit, it was our first song. It was when we grew up, really, as a band. When we finished it I couldn’t quite believe it was us.” (Read more in our interview with Glenn Tilbrook and Chris Difford of Squeeze.)

In the US, this was used in a commercial for Burger King, and another for Heineken. It’s a good fit for advertisements where someone is “tempted” by their product.

At many Squeeze shows, fans would throw toothbrushes (Rocky Horror-style) on stage at the opening line: “I bought a toothbrush…”

Tempted

I bought a toothbrush, some toothpaste
A flannel for my face
Pajamas, a hairbrush
New shoes and a case
I said to my reflection
Let’s get out of this place

Passed the church and the steeple
The laundry on the hill
Billboards and the buildings
Memories of it still
Keep calling and calling
But forget it all, I know I will

Tempted by the fruit of another
Tempted but the truth is discovered
What’s been going on
Now that you have gone

There’s no other
Tempted by the fruit of another
Tempted but the truth is discovered

I’m at the car park, the airport
The baggage carousel
The people keep on [Incomprehensible]
Ain’t wishing I was well
I said it’s no occasion
It’s no story I could tell

At my bedside empty pocket
A foot without a sock
Your body gets much closer
I fumble for the clock
Alarmed by the seduction
I wish that it would stop

Tempted by the fruit of another
Tempted but the truth is discovered
What’s been going on
Now that you have gone

There’s no other
Tempted by the fruit of another
Tempted but the truth is discovered

I bought a novel, some perfume
A fortune all for you
But it’s not my conscience
That hates to be untrue
I asked of my reflection
Tell me what is there to do?

Tempted by the fruit of another
Tempted but the truth is discovered
What’s been going on
Now that you have gone

There’s no other
Tempted by the fruit of another
Tempted but the truth is discovered

Tempted by the fruit of another
Tempted but the truth is discovered
Tempted by the fruit of another
Tempted but the truth is discovered

Tempted by the fruit of another
Tempted but the truth is discovered
Tempted by the fruit of another
Tempted but the truth is discovered