Skip to content

A Rose Is Still A Rose by Aretha Franklin

Aretha Franklin A Rose is Still a Rose

For some reason I never found Aretha Franklin’s original studio albums in second-hand bins, and for years the only album I owned from her was a double disc retrospective. The second disc dabbles in her 1980s work, with star power duets with Elton John and Annie Lennox that sound dated next to her timeless hits from the 1960s and 1970s, and the compilation inevitably returns to the mother-lode of her early work.

But tucked away on the second disc is an improbably strong late period highlight. Written by Lauryn Hill, at the peak of her powers in 1998, ‘A Rose is Still a Rose’ sees Franklin taking the role of the older, wiser woman giving advice to one younger and inexperienced. Maybe its production ties it to its era, but ‘A Rose is Still a Rose’ is hooky and memorable in a way that Franklin hadn’t been since the early 1970s.

There was a rose I knew, I met her once or twice before
She was a pretty sweet thing, not the least bit insecure
Then you came with your slick game and played with her youth
Ashamed of the way you lied, played with the truth, hey, hey

Mmm, she never knew what hit her
Steal her honey, then forget her
A rose
She wears a flower
Tryin’ to forget about you

Cause a rose is still a rose
Baby, girl, you’re still a flower
He can’t lead you and then take you
Make you and then break you
Darlin’, you hold the power

Now believe me when I tell you that I’ve been hurt myself
When he tells you that he loves you and sees nobody else
And now you’re so tough tryin’ to wear tight clothes and things
Tossin’ and flossin’, tryin’ to fill the void heartbreak brings

Oh, oh, yeah
When she faces the mirror, yeah
She’s cryin’, you can’t hear her
Now the rose is still a rose
She wears a flower, tryin’ to forget about you

Cause a rose is still a rose
Baby, girl, you’re still a flower
He can’t lead you and then take you
Make you and then break you
Baby, girl, you hold the power

See a rose is still a rose
Baby, girl, you’re still a flower
He can’t lead you and then take you
Make you and then break you
Darlin’, you hold the power

Let your life be in the sunshine
Not the darkness of your sorrow
You may see your all today
When you know it’ll come tomorrow

Tough to be, but life ain’t over
Just because your man is gone
Girl, love yourself and love to love
Cause without him your life goes on
Without him your life goes on
Without him your life goes on

Cause a rose is still a rose
Baby, girl, you’re still a flower
He can’t lead you and then take you
Make you and then break you
Baby, girl, you hold the power

See a rose is still a rose
Baby, girl, you’re still a flower
He can’t lead you and then take you
Make you and then break you
Darlin’, you hold the power

9 thoughts on “A Rose Is Still A Rose by Aretha Franklin Leave a comment

      • Fair enough, though I have to say while it’s very mainstream pop, the “Who’s Zoomin’ Who” album does include at least a few tunes I still like. I’m thinking of “Freeway of Love” and “Sisters Are Doin’ It for Themselves” (featuring the Eurythmics). Even if these songs aren’t as great as “Natural Woman”, “Respect” or “I Say a Little Prayer”, it’s still Aretha and her incredible voice!:-)

        Liked by 1 person

    • Lauryn Hill’s definitely an unfulfilled talent – she’s only made one studio album to date. Pretty generous to give away that tune, although it makes more sense coming from Franklin.

      Like

  1. Good song, good message. Never heard it before. I was trying to place that ‘Rose is still a rose’ melody and realized it sounded like ‘When the eagle flies with the dove’ from ‘Love the one you’re with. ‘

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Why oh why didn’t Lauryn Hill become a major star , it still baffles me. I like this record a lot, and should really check the album out. Given that I lost touch with Aretha’s music after the 80s it seems like I missed out.

    Liked by 1 person

    • The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill was #1 in the U.S. and Canada, and #2 in the U.K. and Australia, she just never released another studio album. It’s really down to her personal life (six children, time in prison etc), not to public tastes.

      I’m pretty sceptical that the parent album is any good – I assume that it’s a one-off success that’s mainly due to Hill’s input. But let me know if I’m wrong.

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

PowerPop... An Eclectic Collection of Pop Culture

An Eclectic Collection of Pop Culture

Soundtrack To My Year

Fandom Scrapbook

rockrollain.com/

Official website for bassist Rock Rollain

LOST IN THE NOISE

PART JOURNAL. PART MIX-TAPE. PART COMMENTARY.

My Vinyl Hunt

Vinyl Enthusiast from Suffolk

Mike and Paul's Music Blog

Two Guys In Search of Great Music

The Doesn't Suck

9,000 billion recordings are released on the internet each month. Roughly 5 of them will not suck.

Simone: By The River

Hey! I'm writing about travel, books, nature, music, art, food, gardening, things that inspire me, with a little bit of creative writing thrown in for good luck (if I'm feeling brave enough). Australian (Geelong, Victoria). Instagram: sima78 & trackrecordsrecords

Brendon's Beats

Album Reviews & Music Discussion

%d bloggers like this: