Kiss From A Rose
I remember listening to Kiss From A Rose on repeat on a Sony Walkman cassette player with surround stereo sound. The vocals, the music, the mastering, was on point; I mean the man was his own backing vocals.
There used to be a greying tower alone on the sea...
If I closed my eyes I could almost imagine a choir of Seals singing along in accompaniment. I wondered how much time he spent in the studio to record that song and how many times he must have sang each line, in various tones too, and what the heck was he singing about???
I’ve been kissed by a rose …been kissed by a rose on the
I couldn’t understand the lyrics but I got the goosebumps…
I first heard the song on a 1996 Grammy Nominees album.
A compilation album which also included the following hits:
- One Sweet Day – Mariah Carey & Boyz II Men
- Gangster’s Paradise – Coolio
- One Of Us – Joan Osborne
- Waterfalls – TLC
- I Can Love You Like That – All-For-One
- You Are Not Alone – Michael Jackson
At the 1996 Grammy awards Kiss From A Rose scooped awards for Record Of The Year, Song Of The Year and Best Male Pop Vocal Perfomance.
Written in 1987 during a squatting phase of Seal’s life years before he would release his debut album, Seal says he was “embarrassed by it” and “ threw the tape in corner.”
Yet that tape from a corner made millions of sales and turned Seal into a household name….
Released in 1994 then re-released in 1995 as part of the soundtrack for Batman Forever, Kiss From A Rose plays during the end credits, and has a second music video edition in which Seal performs next to the bat signal with scenes from the motion picture.
25 years later from when I first heard it and I still think this is one of the greatest songs ever, even though up to now I really don’t quite understand what exactly Kiss From A Rose is supposed to mean and maybe that is what Seal wanted or maybe even he did not quite know how to interpret the song and decided its upto the listener to interpret the meaning, only saying “some kind of relationship inspired the song”
Back in the day when you bought a music cassette the sleeve jacket would unfold to reveal song lyrics, but Kiss From A Rose did not have any lyrics included, matter of fact Seal declined to release the official lyrics leaving the world to its own devices and coming up with all sorts of conspiracies
Could it be a relationship with cocaine??? One wonders; I mean cocaine is sometimes known as snow and when you take it, your pupils dilate…
But did you know when it snows, my eyes become larger and the light that you shine can be seen
Love remained a drug that’s the high and not the pill
- Is it a love song?
- A song about a dead older lover?
- Does he say Grave Or Grey/Gray
- A song about drug addiction?
- A love song about a dead older lover written under the influence of drugs??
- A song about the after life?
You became the light on the dark side of me.
Seal whose real name is Henry Olusegun Adeola Samuel and born to a Nigerian mother and Afro-Brazilian mother was raised by a foster family in London.
At some point in his life opted to be homeless while putting himself through an architecture class and roughing it out in the world with music nothing more than a passing fancy, some say he may have “borrowed” the idea and some aspects of Kiss From A Rose from the rumblings of some fellow homeless man which may explain the vagueness on the part of Seal in fully explaining his song
“…the song is always larger in the listener’s mind because in it they will attach imagery which is relative to their own personal experience, so it is your perception of what I am saying…”
The musician has prominent scars on his face and I used to wonder what had caused them, if he had been in some horrific crash that killed his entire family and he wore the loss like a remainder on his face. Turns out the scars are a result of a type of lupus called called lupus discoid erythematosus which affects the skin leaving large scars.
Seal has a musical career sprinkled with discographies but Kiss From The Rose is like that one bright light that leaves everything else in the shadows.
Here’s to one of the most mysterious songs ever…..
Now that your rose is in bloom
A light hits the gloom on the gray