The band's third single was their first success, scoring number one on the UK Singles Chart for two weeks in January 1980 (making it the first number-one single of the 1980s), number one in Australia during May 1980, and number 14 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in the United States. The song takes its title from an expression Hynde heard from a member of Strangeways a Yorkshire-based support band who was looking for his money ("brass", meaning money).
During an interview with The Observer in 2004, Hynde revealed that she was initially reluctant to have the song released: "When we recorded the song I wasn't very happy with it and told my producer that he could release it over my dead body, but they eventually persuaded me."
|Belgium (Ultratop 50 Flanders)||5|
|Canadian RPM Top Singles||5|
|Irish Singles Chart||1|
|Netherlands (Dutch Top 40)||7|
|Netherlands (Mega Single Top 100)||11|
|New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ)||2|
|South African Chart||1|
|UK (Official Charts Company)||1|
|U.S. Billboard Hot 100||14|
|U.S. BillboardHot Dance Club Play||28|
In the accompanying music video for the single, Hynde portrays a waitress working in a greasy spoon who encounters a sleepy customer. She suddenly sees three men (her band members) approaching in a car outside. Hynde attempts to look elegant upon their entrance and flirts with one of the men (Pete Farndon) after they have been seated. Pete does not respond to her overtures. Suddenly, three seductively dressed women (the men's girlfriends) enter the greasy spoon, sit at the men's table and begin to kiss their boyfriends. Farndon's girlfriend is not impressed when he appears to respond to Chrissie's flirting. Suddenly, the couples decide to leave the café without eating. Hynde is saddened and watches them outside leaving in their car.
It was the seventh video played during MTV's launch on 1 August 1981.
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The song has been covered by artists including Nazareth, Suede (for NME's charity compilation Ruby Trax),[dead link] Kelis (for the soundtrack to the 2005 film Just Like Heaven), Ashlee Simpson (during concert performances) and Ultra Naté.