Cherry Pie (Warrant song)

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For other uses, see Cherry pie (disambiguation).
"Cherry Pie"
Single by Warrant
from the album Cherry Pie
B-side "Thin Disguise"
Released September 8, 1990
Recorded 1989
Genre Glam metal
Length 3:18
Label Columbia
Writer(s) Jani Lane
Warrant singles chronology
"Sometimes She Cries"
(1989)
"Cherry Pie"
(1990)
"I Saw Red"
(1990)

"Cherry Pie" is a song by the American heavy metal band Warrant. It was released in September 1990 as the lead single from the album of the same name. The song became a Top Ten hit on the Billboard Hot 100, reaching number 10 and also reached number 19 on the Mainstream Rock Tracks.[1] The song has been cited by many as a "rock anthem".[2] In 2009, it was named the 56th best hard rock song of all time by VH1.[3]

Despite its success, a daylong MTV special on the best and worst music videos of all time, MTV's Triumphs and Tragedies, listed the song's video as one of the worst. Matthew Wilkening also ranked the song at No. 89 on the list of the 100 Worst Songs Ever, commenting that "A lot of people missed this song's subtle commentary on outdated gender roles. Well, that's because there weren't any."[4]

Background and writing[edit]

"Cherry Pie" was not originally planned to be put on the album. Joey Allen of Warrant has stated that the album was originally going to be called Quality You Can Taste (frontman Jani Lane recalled this differently, stating that the title was supposed to be Uncle Tom's Cabin[5]), but the president of Columbia Records, Don Ienner, wanted a rock anthem, so he called Jani Lane. (According to Lane, he wanted a "Love in an Elevator" type song.) Lane wrote the song in about fifteen minutes. Allen stated that "... the whole marketing and everything for that record changed. It was definitely driven by the label and not the band.[6] The song was written down on a pizza box which is now on display in the Hard Rock Cafe in Destin, Florida, part of the Destin Commons. The guitar solo was played by C.C. DeVille as a favor to Lane, who was a long-time friend.

Many of the band members felt that "Cherry Pie" is not one of the better songs on the album, and see the song as a double-edged sword: it brought them fame, but many of their other songs are overshadowed by the major hit. On VH1's HEAVY: The Story Of Metal – Episode 3: Looks That Kill, Lane expressed his regret for writing the song, stating that "I could shoot myself in the fucking head for writing that song." However, he later clarified that he had been under personal stress at the time of the VH1 interview, and had no ill feelings towards his association with the song.[7]

Content[edit]

The lyrics contain many metaphorical and blatant references to sex: "Well, swingin' on the front porch/Swingin' on the lawn/Swingin' where we want/'Cause there ain't nobody home", "Swingin' in there/'cause she wanted me to feed her/So I mixed up the batter/And she licked the beater", etc.

The lyrics are generally about a man bragging about his sexual exploits (swingin') with a woman who is very attractive and who is the object of desire of many men. However, near the end of the song, the woman's father accidentally walks in on the pair having sex in the bathroom and immediately puts a stop to their relationship: "Swing in the bathroom/Swingin' on the floor/Swingin' so hard/We forgot to lock the door/In walks her daddy/Standin' six foot four/He said you ain't gonna swing/With my daughter no more."

The song title itself may be another blatant reference to sex. Here, both "cherry" and "pie" may be used sexually, as "cherry" can mean a virgin (as used in the context "pop her cherry" or to take her virginity, specifically when breaking the hymen during sex), and "pie" is slang for vulva.

Music video[edit]

The video for "Cherry Pie" received heavy airplay on MTV and other music video stations. It featured the members of Warrant and a scantily clad woman (model Bobbie Brown) who is seen dancing throughout the video while the band members perform and make tongue-in-cheek references to the song's lyrics (for example, when the above-quoted line referencing baseball is sung, Bobbie appears in a form-fitting baseball uniform, complete with a bat), all against a white background.[8]

However, Canadian cable-TV music network, MuchMusic refused to air the "Cherry Pie" video on the grounds that it was "offensively sexist".[9]

Bobbie became involved with Jani Lane soon after the video was shot, and married him in 1991.[9]

Alternate version[edit]

"Cherry Pie" was re-visited by the band in 1999 on their Greatest & Latest album and was released as a promo and later iTunes single[10] and was also released on several mixed compilation albums. In 2004 Jani Lane re-recorded an acoustic version of "Cherry Pie" which featured on the second "VH1 Classic Metal Mania: Stripped" compilation.

Chart positions[edit]

Chart (1990-91) Peak
position
Australia (ARIA)[11] 6
Canada Top Singles (RPM)[12] 57
New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ)[13] 37
UK Singles (The Official Charts Company) 35
US Billboard Hot 100[1] 10
US Billboard Top Tracks[1] 19

References[edit]