Where The Wild Roses Grow

Album: Murder Ballads (1996)
Charted: 11

Songfacts®:

  • Kylie Minogue sings on this. The tale of a man courting a woman and killing her while they're out together is Cave's biggest commercial success to date. It reached the #2 in Australia and the Top 20 in the United Kingdom, Germany and New Zealand. It also topped the charts in Croatia and Israel.
  • This won an Aria Award for Song Of The Year.
  • This was inspired by the traditional number "The Willow Garden," another song wherein the protagonist murders a beautiful young girl down by a river.
  • Cave explained to Q magazine June 2008 about his collaboration with Kylie Minogue: "I wrote Where The Wild Roses Grow because I wanted to see if I could get her to fit my world. I sent a sinister demo with (former Bad Seeds guitarist) Blixa Bargeld singing her part and her management went into meltdown. They told her it was madness. But she heard it and said yes."
  • As the album title suggests, the Murder Ballads album is a collection of narrative songs that each tells the tale of a murder.
  • Nick Cave and Kylie appeared live on various music shows performing the song and also made a video together. The disparate pair bonded during their time promoting the single and became friends. "It was a miracle that she agreed to do that song," Cave recalled to The Daily Telegraph in 2014. "I think her management wasn't that happy about it – I mean we were just a bunch of junkies sitting in the studio, and she walked in full of life and love and goodwill."

    "It was so different to have somebody like that around for a few months, and we had this hit, we became defined by Kylie and Kylie's presence – so that little slice of life is Kylie's, in a way," he added. "We really liked each other."

Comments: 3

  • Andrea from Australia ANOTHER brilliant song that leaves you with goose bumps. Nick and Kylie REALLY make this work; so proud I'm an aussie: )
    The electricity between these two leaves you on the edge of your seat! He also sets off the same vibe with P.J Harvey; Hail to you girls; AMAZING talent. I think if I actually stood next to Nick I'd faint lol
  • Teresa from Mechelen, BelgiumI love this song very much. Nick Cave has a wonderful voice and this duo with Kylie Minogue is top.
  • Erika from Vernon, CtI love this song! Nick Cave is one of the few artists who can make something so disturbing so beautiful. "Henry Lee", "Lovely Creature," and "Nobody's Baby Now" have that same feel. A very Gothic/Victorian vibe, actually. His piano playing alone brings tears to my eyes.
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