Queen of Denmark

Album: Queen of Denmark (2010)

Songfacts®:

  • John Grant is a Denver-born solo artist and former lead vocalist of Denver cult band The Czars. This is the title track of Grant's solo debut album, on which he is backed by American folk rock band Midlake.
  • Grant explained to The Sun April 16, 2010 that this emotionally wringing ballad was inspired by his time in Denmark: "When I first went to Copenhagen, I fell in love with the country, the people and especially the language. That was sort of ironic, because I had always found the language to be quite ugly, but there I was in Denmark, meeting great people and falling in love with their 'ugly' language.
    I enjoy incorporating all sorts of things into my songs that I like, and in addition to that I wanted to express at the end of the song 'The Queen of Denmark' that I have absolutely no idea what I am going to become. It could be anything and the Queen of Denmark is about as random as anything I could think of."
  • Grant told Mojo magazine that this track summed up the album's theme of exposing his soul. He explained: "That's my personality in a nutshell. It's about having a love-hate relationship with yourself, like, 'Yeah, sometimes I really do suck but so do you so f--k off if you don't like it.' I'm partly addressing myself but also the people that would say to me. 'You don't deserve to have the same rights as others, to be treated as a human being.'"
  • Queen of Denmark was Mojo magazine's Album of the Year for 2010.
  • Sinead O'Connor covered this on her 2012 album How About I Be Me (and You Be You)? Asked by The Sun what he thought of her version, John Grant replied:

    "I've loved her work since hearing 'Mandinka' on the dance floor in Boulder, Colorado. I love her version. It's quite something to hear 'that' voice singing your words."

    Grant recruited O'Connor the following year to provide guest vocals for three Pale Green Ghost tracks.

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