The Warrior

Album: The Warrior (1984)
Charted: 7
Play Video

Songfacts®:

  • This was written by Holly Knight along with Nick Gilder of "Hot Child In The City" fame. With the battle/love theme, the song is similar to Pat Benatar's "Love Is A Battlefield," which Knight also wrote. She told Songfacts: "Rather than a love song or a fighting song, it was more empowerment. I never realized before I wrote that song how much the warrior spirit is inside of me, and it means a lot to me - which I'm writing about in my memoirs - to stand up for the things that you believe in and to follow through believing that those dreams can come true. Basically not taking s--t from people but still trying to have some class and be open-minded and listen. It's all part and parcel for me."
  • This was the biggest hit for Scandal, whose lead singer Patty Smyth had a #2 US hit in 1992 with "Sometimes Love Just Ain't Enough," a duet with Don Henley. Smyth married tennis star John McEnroe in 1997.
  • This song deals with the animal energy that both fuels and destroys so many relationships. Co-writer Holly Knight told Songfacts: "There's a fine line that you walk between trying to get somebody to behave and tame them for the right things, and not breaking their wild spirit. So 'I don't wanna tame your animal style,' when you're young and you're innocent you don't really have any regard for rules, but it's a double-edged sword. You want to retain that, but once you lose innocence, it's a fine line that you walk."
  • There are some intriguing lines in this song that don't necessarily make sense, notably, "Follow me stereo jungle child." Chock full of vowels, these are great lines to sing, which is why they're there.
  • By 1984, some record companies, including Scandal's label, Columbia, had departments dedicated to music videos, since MTV was such a powerful promotional tool. The clip was deliriously bizarre. Instead of the band, we see a guy who looks like one of the Thundercats dance-fighting around various other costumed creatures. Smyth appears in body paint and a short haircut, making the appropriately cheesy finger pistol gestures during the "bang bang" parts, a bit that Scandal's concert goers would imitate whenever they played the song live.

    "When I saw the video, I was crestfallen," Smyth said in the book I Want My MTV. "I had no idea it would look like an off-Broadway production of Cats."
  • The song had staying power - it appears in the video game Guitar Hero Encore: Rocks the '80s, and it was the theme song for the Wigan Warriors, a popular British rugby team. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Mike - Santa Barbara, CA
  • This is the theme song for the Netflix series GLOW, a fictional rendering of a real TV show about female professional wrestlers set in 1985. Patty Smyth told Spin that she didn't get notice that it was being used for the show because she didn't write the song - she heard about it through friends.

    Holly Knight told Songfacts why it's such a good fit: "That show was literally about fighting, but also fighting for identity. It is also about individuality, because all the girls had to take on an alter ego persona and dress a certain way, and they all picked people that to them were empowering."

Comments: 6

  • Seventhmist from 7th HeavenThat album certainly had one of the more memorable covers I ever saw.
  • Royden from Columbus Ohio 43213-2416I first hear this song at fort Dix in in 1984.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn September 8th 1984, Scandal performed "The Warrior” on the ABC-TV program 'American Bandstand'...
    At the time it was at #8 on Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart; and two weeks later it would peak at #7 {for 2 weeks} and spent 21 weeks on the Top 100...
    And on July 22nd, 1984 it reached #1 {for 1 week} on Billboard's Mainstream Rock Tracks chart...
    As already stated, in 1992 Patty Smyth reached #2 {for 6 weeks} with "Sometimes Love Just Ain't Enough"; and for those 6 weeks it was at #2, the #1 record for all those weeks was "End of the Road" by Boyz II Men...
    Ms. Smyth celebrated her 57th birthday three months ago on June 26th {2014} and since April of 1997 she has been married to four-time U.S. Open tennis champion, John McEnroe.
  • Marlenín from La Vega, Dominican RepublicSounds kind of sexy!!!!
  • Ron from Tyler, TxSexy video; 'nuf said.
  • Sam from Seattle, WaThis was used in the Family Guy episode "Petarded", as music for Stewie's I-pod commerical.
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Director Paul Rachman on "Hunger Strike," "Man in the Box," Kiss

Director Paul Rachman on "Hunger Strike," "Man in the Box," KissSong Writing

After cutting his teeth on hardcore punk videos, Paul defined the grunge look with his work on "Hunger Strike" and "Man in the Box."

Steely Dan

Steely DanFact or Fiction

Did they really trade their guitarist to The Doobie Brothers? Are they named after something naughty? And what's up with the band name?

Ian Anderson: "The delight in making music is that you don't have a formula"

Ian Anderson: "The delight in making music is that you don't have a formula"Songwriter Interviews

Ian talks about his 3 or 4 blatant attempts to write a pop song, and also the ones he most connected with, including "Locomotive Breath."

Angelo Moore of Fishbone

Angelo Moore of FishboneSongwriter Interviews

Fishbone has always enjoyed much more acclaim than popularity - Angelo might know why.

Trans Soul Rebels: Songs About Transgenderism

Trans Soul Rebels: Songs About TransgenderismSong Writing

A history of songs dealing with transgender issues, featuring Pink Floyd, David Bowie, Morrissey and Green Day.

Maxi Priest

Maxi PriestSongwriter Interviews

The British reggae legend tells the story of his #1 hit "Close To You," talks about his groundbreaking Shabba Ranks collaboration "Housecall," and discusses his latest project with Robin Trower.