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SoulMonster

Rocket Queen

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Rocket Queen

Post by Soulmonster on Wed Aug 04, 2010 7:57 am


ROCKET QUEEN
Album:
Appetite for Destruction, 1987, track no. 12.

Written by:
Lyrics: Axl Rose.
Music: Duff McKagan and Slash.

Musicians:
Vocals: Axl Rose; lead Guitar: Slash; rhythm guitar: Izzy Stradlin; bass: Duff McKagan; drums: Steven Adler.

Live performances:
The song was played live for the first time on September 20, 1986, at The Troubadour, USA. In total it has, as of {UPDATEDATE}, at least been played {ROCKETSONGS} times.
Lyrics:
If I say I don't need anyone
       I can say these things to you
       'Cause
       I can turn on any one
       Just like I turned on you
       I've got a tongue like a razor
       A sweet switchblade knife
       And I can do you favors
       But then you'll do whatever I like
     
Here I am
       And you're a Rocket Queen
       I might be a little young
       But honey I ain't naive
       Here I am
       And you're a Rocket Queen oh yeah
       I might be too much
       But honey you're a bit obscene

     I've seen everything imaginable
       Pass before these eyes
       I've had everything that's tangible
       Honey you'd be surprised
       I'm a sexual innuendo
       In this burned out paradise
       If you turn me on to anything
       You better turn me on tonight
     
Here I am
       And you're a Rocket Queen
       I might be a little young
       But honey I ain't naive
       Here I am
       And you're a Rocket Queen oh yeah
       I might be too much
       But honey you're a bit obscene

     I see you standing
       Standing on your own
       It's such a lonely place for you
       For you to be
       If you need a shoulder
       Or if you need a friend
       I'll bee here standing
       Until the bitter end
       No one needs the sorrow
       No one needs the pain
       I hate to see you
       Walking out there
       Out in the rain
       So don't chastise me
       Or think I, I mean you harm
       Of those that take you
       Leave you strung out
       Much too far
       Baby-yeah

     Don't ever leave me
       Say you'll always be there
       All I ever wanted
       Was for you
       To know that I care


Quotes:
We got a brand new for you. This isn't much, but it's the best I can do. This song is for Barbie. This is 'Rocket Queen' [The Troubadour, September 20, 1985]
[...] as we developed songs, we put a lot of emphasis on anything that veered away from the main melody - we all felt that diverging from a good tune was only justifiable if the other part was just as good. That meant we rejected cookie-cutter songwriting that demanded bridges for bridges' sake and strictly delineated between verses and choruses. Instead we only went places we really felt strongly about. There's a reason the codas in songs like 'Rocket Queen,' 'Paradise City,' or 'Patience' sound so distinctive - we didn't feel compelled to add them; we were just so excited about certain ideas that, working together, day after day, we found ways to incorporate them [Duff's autobiography, "It's So Easy", 2011, p. 96-97]
I wanna dedicate this song, like I always do, to a person who helps me make it through every time it takes to get to another fucking show. Helps keep me alive. This song is for Barbie, it's called 'Rocket Queen' [The Troubadour, February 28, 1986]
This is basic instruction on how to be a bitch and get away with it in style. This is called ' Rocket Queen' [Gazzarri's, May 31, 1986]
It was a sexual song and it was a wild night in the studio. This girl we know was dancing; everyone was getting real excited. The night could'a gotten really explosive, lots of trouble for everyone, and I thought wait a minute, how can we make this productive. And this is what we got [An Interview With The Gunners, Hit Parader - March 1988]
As we mixed the song 'Rocket Queen,' Axl felt that the bridge needed something; some other element to elevate the drama. He suggested that Adriana Smith, who was with us in the studio that day, fuck him in the live room so that we could record her vocals and layer them on the breakdown. We'd been drinking Jack pretty heavily all day, so it seemed like the most natural think in the world. I was all for it; I knew too well what she was capable of vocally - she had kept me up for the past three nights. So we lit up some candles for atmosphere, then she and Axl went out into the live room, got down on the floor by the drum riser, and we recorded Smith's performance in all of its honest moaning and groaning. Enjoy it - it's all there in the final mix [Bozza, Anthony, & Slash (2007). Slash. Harper Entertainment: New York, pp 180]
I said: "That's cool, who's that?" Slash said: "It's Adriana." She wasn't like my girlfriend exactly...but, we had some good, long nights. Axl came up with this idea to fuck some girl in the studio and record it for Rocket Queen, so he called Adriana. They put up a divider, laid a blanket down, and recorded it. I just felt that out of all the girls around us, he just had to pick the one that I was hanging out with. He knew we were close. But it came out good, it worked [20 Years of Appetite, Classic Rock Magazine, July 2007]
I wrote this song for this girl who was gonna have a band and she was gonna call it Rocket Queen. She kinda kept me alive for a while. The last part of the song is my message to this person, or anybody else who can get something out of it. It's like there's hope and a friendship note at the end of the song. For that song there was also something I tried to work out with various people - a recorded sex act. It was somewhat spontaneous but premeditated; something I wanted to put on the record [An Interview With The Gunners, Hit Parader - March 1988]
I normally don't think about [the creative process]. I go in and sort of adapt. When I'm practising at home, I like to play a lot of chromatic stuff. I stop in between different notes and come up with different ideas and stuff. I'll play however many notes in succession, and all of a sudden I'll catch four and realise there's something there...and I'll start fucking with that. Rocket Queen is indicative of that approach - basically just sitting around and playing, maybe zoning out, watching TV and playing guitar at the same time. All of a sudden, the ear catches something. Welcome To The Jungle has a lot of that, too. It's more or less the same kind of way I've always written; if I'm just tying notes together, not really paying attention, when you catch onto something you start there and begin working on an actual tune [Total Guitar, January 1997]
'Rocket Queen' was inspired by a riff I came up with when I first met Duff. It was one of the more complicated arrangements on what became our album, mostly because we had to integrate the riff with Axl's more melodic chorus. The song is based on our mutual friend Barbie, who even at eighteen had a notorious reputation [Bozza, Anthony, & Slash (2007). Slash. Harper Entertainment: New York]
That was a riff I had when Duff and I first hooked up. We had a band together with Steven way before Guns started. We had that riff, and at some point I brought it back into the band. The chorus was something that Axl had been working on that had nothing to do with the rest of the song, but we somehow managed to incorporate it.

It was a pretty interesting operation because the chorus was in a completely different key. I remember when we played it live I would have my roadie bring me my slide, but by the time that song came up in the set, he'd be drunk. And by the time he got it on my finger, the solo section would be over [laughs]. It was very Spinal Tap
[Back to the Jungle, Guitar Edge Magazine, March 2007]
Talks about the biggest Spinal Tap moment with GN'R: Jeez, I’ve blocked them out of my brain, so I can continue functioning, haha. A true Spinal Tap moment was when we performed at Wembley in London (UK) back in July 2006. We’re doing the intro to 'Rocket Queen' and we suddenly see the crew bringing out these low long platforms on either end of the stage and we’re looking at each other like “What the hell are they doing?”. We head into the main part of the song and the crew comes back out and takes them away.  We were a bit baffled by that. Then we noticed there were about two dozen ‘little people’ dressed up in red and blue outfits hangin’ out along the wall back stage. Turns out that management wanted us to play an extended intro to 'Rocket Queen' and have all the li’l folks get on the mini-stages behind us and dance throughout. Just nobody told us. A little breakdown in communication, so yeah that’s a Spinal Tap moment, haha [Alternative Matter, April 2011]
Oh, but there's a song on the album, a really cool riff-based song called Rocket Queen, and the origins of that came from Road Crew—that was Duff, Steven and me [Leslie West interviews Slash, August 2017]

'Rocket Queen' performed live at The Ritz, February 2, 1988:


'Rocket Queen' performed live in Milan, Italy, September 5, 2010:



Last edited by Soulmonster on Thu Aug 31, 2017 7:49 pm; edited 8 times in total
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Re: Rocket Queen

Post by Soulmonster on Tue Jul 31, 2012 9:03 am

The Spinal Tap song.
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