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God Save The Queen
Song

God Save The Queen

Sex Pistols
Album:
Never Mind The Bollocks, Here's The Sex Pistols

Song Meaning and Background of God Save The Queen by The Sex Pistols


"God Save the Queen" is a song by the English punk rock band the Sex Pistols.


It was released as the band's second single and included on their only studio album, Never Mind the Bollocks, Here's the Sex Pistols.


The song was released during Queen Elizabeth II's Silver Jubilee in 1977.

 

The record's lyrics, as well as the cover, were controversial at the time; both the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) and the Independent Broadcasting Authority refused to play the song, including a total ban of its airing by the BBC.


The original title for the song was "No Future", with the lyrics themselves being a general expression of the band's view of the monarchy or any individual or establishment commanding general obligation.

The song's title is taken directly from the British national anthem.


At the time, the song was highly controversial for its equation of Queen Elizabeth with a "fascist regime" and for the lyric "there is no future in England's dreaming".


According to Glen Matlock, who had co-written the song—although he was no longer a member of the band by the time it was released—the bass was inspired by the Move's "Fire Brigade".


Guitarist Steve Jones stated that when Matlock first played him the song it did not sound like 'God Save the Queen': "It was like 'Love Me Do' or something".


Although many believe it was created because of the Silver Jubilee, the band have denied it, with Paul Cook saying that "it wasn't written specifically for the Queen's Jubilee. We weren't aware of it at the time. It wasn't a contrived effort to go out and shock everyone."


Johnny Rotten has explained the lyrics as follows: "You don't write 'God Save the Queen' because you hate the English race. You write a song like that because you love them, and you're fed up with them being mistreated."


He intended to evoke sympathy for the English working class and a general resentment towards the monarchy.


On 7 June 1977, the Jubilee holiday, the band attempted to play the song from a boat named the Queen Elizabeth on the River Thames, near the Palace of Westminster.


After a scuffle involving attendee Jah Wobble and a cameraman, 11 people, including Malcolm McLaren, the man who organised the concert, and several other members of the band's entourage, were arrested when the boat docked.


The single was released on 27 May 1977, and was regarded by many of the general public as an assault on Queen Elizabeth and the monarchy.


During the media furore over the single, Lydon and producers Bill Price and Chris Thomas were subject to a razor attack outside a pub in Highbury, London.


The song reached No. 1 on the NME charts in the United Kingdom, and made it to No. 2 on the official UK Singles Chart as used by the BBC. This led to accusations by some that the charts had been "fixed" to prevent the song from reaching No. 1.


Additionally, the major retailers in the UK all declined to sell the record.


Lyrics of God Save The Queen by The Sex Pistols


God, save the Queen

The fascist regime

They made you a moron

Potential H-bomb

God, save the Queen

She ain't no human being

There is no future

In England's dreaming

 

Don't be told what you want to want to

And don't be told what you want to need

There's no future, no future

No future for you

 

God, save the Queen

We mean it, man

We love our Queen

God, saves

 

God, save the Queen

'Cause tourists are money

And our figurehead

Is not what she seems

Oh, God, save history

God, save your mad parade

Oh, Lord, God, have mercy

All crimes are paid

 

When there's no future how can there be sin?

We're the flowers in the dustbin

We're the poison in your human machine

We're the future, your future

 

God, save the Queen

We mean it, man

We love our Queen

God, saves

 

God, save the Queen

We mean it, man

And there is no future

In England's dreaming

 

No future

No future

No future for you

No future

No future

No future for me

No future

No future

No future for you

No future

No future for you

Release Date

1977

Songwriter/s

Glen Matlock, John Lydon, Paul Cook, Steve Jones

Producer/s

Chris Thomas, Bill Price

Label/s

Virgin, A&m

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