Romeo Is Bleeding

Album: Blue Valentine (1978)
Play Video


  • Waits liked to snatch stories from the street. Like the time he and this then-girlfriend, Rickie Lee Jones, were flagged down by a group of Mexican gang members. "Because of how Tom looked at the time - the tattoos, the hat - I guess these guys felt safe to talk to him," recalled Jones to the July 2011 edition of Mojo magazine. "One of them asked him where the hospital was. He glanced into the back seat, and there was a kid back there bleeding. A lot of blood. He wrote 'Romeo Is Bleeding' soon after."
  • This is the song that provided the title for the Gary Oldman movie about a crooked cop.
  • The album cover features Waits' then girlfriend Rickie Lee Jones. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    John - Los Angeles, CA, for above 2

Comments: 2

  • Kittie from Boston, MaTom Waits and Gary Oldman both starred in Bram Stoker's Dracula.
  • Sharyn from Bathurst, AustraliaJust wondered if the first line of Bon Jovi's 'Always' was inspired by this song... "This romeo is bleeding..." Possible, I guess.
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Stand By Me: The Perfect Song-Movie Combination

Stand By Me: The Perfect Song-Movie CombinationSong Writing

In 1986, a Stephen King novella was made into a movie, with a classic song serving as title, soundtrack and tone.

Van Dyke Parks

Van Dyke ParksSongwriter Interviews

U2, Carly Simon, Joanna Newsom, Brian Wilson and Fiona Apple have all gone to Van Dyke Parks to make their songs exceptional.

Lou Gramm - "Waiting For A Girl Like You"

Lou Gramm - "Waiting For A Girl Like You"They're Playing My Song

Gramm co-wrote this gorgeous ballad and delivered an inspired vocal, but the song was the beginning of the end of his time with Foreigner.

Dan Reed

Dan ReedSongwriter Interviews

Dan cracked the Top 40 with "Ritual," then went to India and spent 2 hours with the Dalai Lama.

Country Song Titles

Country Song TitlesFact or Fiction

Country songs with titles so bizarre they can't possibly be real... or can they?

Rupert Hine

Rupert HineSongwriter Interviews

Producer Rupert Hine talks about crafting hits for Tina Turner, Howard Jones and The Fixx.