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'What Have I Done To Deserve This was the second track on Actually, and the second single from the album, released one month prior to the album.

Production and RecordingEdit

This song was co-written with Allee Willis in 1985, and was originally intended for the Please album. Allee's writing and co-writing credits include the Pointer Sisters' 'Neutron Dance', Earth, Wind & Fire's "Boogie Wonderland", and the theme from the TV show Friends.

At the time of writing, the Boys had wanted to do a duet with Dusty Springfield (who had removed herself from show business for some time). After approaching her, they heard nothing, and the song was postponed. While recording Actually, they caught word that she wanted to do it. The song and single release led to a resurrection of her career and a 1989 album, Reputation that the Pet Shop Boys themselves produced a portion of.

LyricsEdit

Neil says he wrote the words to the song while riding the bus home from Smash Hits.

The story of the song is that two people have broken up, and they're both in different places regretting that they've split up, and at the end of the song they get back together again. The man is a pathetic feeble wreck and the woman is meant to be this major capitalist.

You always wanted a lover
I only wanted a job
I’ve always worked for my living
How’m I gonna get through?
How’m I gonna get through?

I come here looking for money
(Got to have it)
and end up leaving with love
Now you’ve left me with nothing
(Can’t take it)
How’m I gonna get through?
How’m I gonna get through?

I bought you drinks, I brought you flowers
I read your books and talked for hours
Every day so many drinks
such pretty flowers, so tell me
What have I, what have I, what have I done to deserve this?
What have I, what have I, what have I done to deserve this?
What have I, what have I, what have I…

Since you went away I’ve been hanging around
I’ve been wondering why I’m feeling down
You went away, it should make me feel better
but I don’t know how I’m gonna get through
How I’m gonna get through

You always wanted me to be something I wasn’t
You always wanted too much
Now I can do what I want to forever
How’m I gonna get through?
How’m I gonna get through?

At night, the people come and go
They talk too fast and walk too slow
Chasing time from hour to hour
I pour the drinks and crush the flowers
What have I, what have I, what have I done to deserve this?
What have I, what have I, what have I done to deserve this?
What have I, what have I, what have I...

Since you went away I’ve been hanging around
I’ve been wondering why I’m feeling down
You went away, it should make me feel better
but I don’t know how I’m gonna get through
How I’m gonna get through

We don’t have to fall apart, we don’t have to fight
We don’t need to go to hell and back every night
We could make a deal

What have I done to deserve this?