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Tereza Šnajdrová
September 10, 2022, 11:00am
Reading time: 3:46

Sex Pistols, Slowthai Or The Beatles. These Are Songs Inspired By Queen Elizabeth II.

Some musicians criticised Queen Elizabeth II., others wanted to marry her. Remember the Queen with these songs.

Tereza Šnajdrová
September 10, 2022, 11:00am
Reading time: 3:46
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Sex Pistols, Slowthai Or The Beatles. These Are Songs Inspired By Queen Elizabeth II.
Zdroj: Flickr/Arlington Public Library
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In light of the world-shaking death of Queen Elizabeth II, we're going to present you with songs written during her lifetime that are dedicated to the British royal family (for better or for worse). Listen to the Sex Pistols, The Beatles or a young rapper who calls himself Slowthai.

Sex Pistols – God Save The Queen


In 1977, when Queen Elizabeth II. was celebrating her silver jubilee, the British punk band Sex Pistols released a song called God Save The Queen. It was only their second single, which was originally to be called No Future and which later appeared on Never Mind the Bollocks, Here's the Sex Pistols.

On a first listen, it might seem that the song serves as a criticism of Elizabeth II herself, which is reflected by its cover with the Queen's portrait. However, the band's former singer Johnny Rotten later explained that the band used the song to express an opinion about the monarchy and criticise the institution. “God save the queen, she's not a human being, and there's no future, and England's dreaming, don't be told what you want, don't be told what you need, there's no future, no future, no future for you" sing the Sex Pistols in God Save The Queen.


The Beatles – Her Majesty

Another song that is directly dedicated to Elizabeth II is Her Majesty by The Beatles. Paul McCartney wrote this back in 1969, and although it originally had a normal length, only 25 seconds were left in the end. McCartney didn't like the song, he wanted to cut it from the Abbey Road Medley album, but its part remained and the band was satisfied with it.

Her Majesty is one of the sweetest pop songs dedicated to the Queen. “Her Majesty is a pretty nice girl, but she doesn't have a lot to say, her Majesty is a pretty nice girl, but she changes from day to day," McCartney describes Elizabeth II. "I wanna tell her that I love her a lot, but I gotta get a belly full of wine, her Majesty is a pretty nice girl, someday I'm gonna make her mine, oh yeah, someday I'm gonna make her mine, her majesty is a beautiful girl, one day she'll be mine,” he sings at the end before the track abruptly ends.

Pet Shop Boys – Dreaming of the Queen

In 1993, a British synth-pop band Pet Shop Boys composed a song with the theme of Queen Elizabeth II. Dreaming of the Queen appeared on the album Very. "Dreaming of the Queen, visiting for tea, you and her and I and Lady Di, the Queen said, "I'm aghast, love never seems to last, however hard you try" sings the band's lead singer, Neil Tennant, who finds himself naked at a tea party with Queen Elizabeth II.

Dreaming of the Queen serves as an exploration of romantic loss, drawing on the marital problems of the Prince and Princess of Wales while drawing attention to the problems caused by the AIDS epidemic. "And Di replied, that there are no more lovers left alive, no one has survived, so there are no more lovers left alive, and that's why love has died" are the lyrics of the song, which takes on an emotional intensity after Diana's death in 1997.

Slowthai – Nothing Great About Britain

The combination of monarchy and hip hop is hard to see, but the talented British rapper Slowthai made it happen. In 2019, he sang the song Nothing Great About Britain, which you can find on the album of the same name. In the song, Slowthai confides to his listeners his opinion on the British queen, the monarchy and he talks about Elizabeth II. like a "cunt".

But despite it all, the rapper says he's proud to be British and will treat the Queen with the utmost respect if she respects him too. "Kate Middleton now, (I'd wifey her I would), I wouldn't lie, you're an English rose, I wouldn't lie to you, I tell you how it is, I will treat you with the utmost respect, Only if you respect me a little bit Elizabeth, You cunt" reads the end of the song.

The Smiths – The Queen Is Dead

In 1986, the British rock band The Smiths released a song dedicated to the royal family. In The Queen Is Dead, singer Morrissey comments with insight on the potential decline of the monarchy and the British press's fascination with the royal family. “I say Charles don't you ever crave, To appear on the front of the Daily Mail, Dressed in your mother's bridal veil?"

"I didn't want to attack the monarchy as some kind of monster. But I find that as time goes on, the happiness we had slowly fades away and is replaced by something that is completely gray and sad. The very idea of the monarchy and the Queen of England is reinforced and made to seem more useful than it actually is," Morrissey later commented on the song.


Amyl and The Sniffers – Gacked On Anger

The song Gacked On Anger by the Australian punk rock group Amyl and The Sniffers is definitely worth mentioning. In her clip, singer Amy Taylor is looking for a wealthy member of the royal family, to whom she wants to tell what she thinks about him.

"I'm working off my ass, every single day. For the minimum wage and I don't get paid. I'm stressed on tick, I'm stressed about money I wanna help out the people on the street, But how can I help them when I can't afford to eat? How do I survive? How do I get by?” he sings angrily. Punk's not dead.


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Thumbnail: Flickr/Arlington Public Library
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