Last of the English Roses

Album: Grace/Wastelands (2009)
Charted: 67
  • songfacts ®
  • Lyrics
  • This was the lead single from Grace/Wastelands.
  • Blur's Graham Coxon plays guitar on this song and the rest of the album apart from "Broken Love Song." Doherty told the NME January 17, 2009: "I don't know how Graham ended up on the album. I suppose it was jobs for the boys." Producer Stephen Street has also helmed some of Blur's material.
  • Lyrically this song transports the listener to a romanticized world of English roses who "could charm the bees' knees off the bees." However, musically it is an un-Doherty-like take on reggae. Doherty told the NME March 21, 2009: "I never thought people would like this. Stephen (Street) just took a loop from a demo where I had my mobile phone in the vocal booth."
  • This contains the line: "With your famous Auntie Arthur's trousers on." Doherty told Clash Magazine Issue 34 that characters such as the one in this song are based on real people. He explained: "This is the one thing about this album; it's not a fairy story, you know? It's quite descriptive and it's quite honest in its descriptions, even down to "Auntie Arthur's trousers" - the whole thing is dead personal and dead true to life. Maybe we should have a little clause at the front: 'Any resemblance to persons living, past or present, is intentional'."
  • At the end of this song, Doherty recites in French lines from Jean Genet's 1943 poetic novel Our Lady of the Flowers. Other tunes that refer to Genet's novel include The Pogues' 1990 song "Hell's Ditch" and Placebo's 1996 number "Lady of the Flowers."
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