Don't Cry

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This article is about the song by Guns N' Roses. For other uses, see Don't Cry (disambiguation).
"Don't Cry"
Don't Cry by Guns N' Roses US cassette.jpg
U.S. commercial cassette single
Single by Guns N' Roses
from the album Use Your Illusion I & II
A-side "Don't Cry" (Original) (LP Version)
B-side "Don't Cry" (Alt. Lyrics) (LP Version)
Released September 17, 1991
Format CD Single, 7", 12"
Recorded A&M Studios, Record Plant Studios, Studio 56, Image Recording, Conway Studios & Metalworks Recording Studios
Genre Hard rock
Length 4:45
Label Geffen
Writer(s) Axl Rose, Izzy Stradlin
Producer(s) Mike Clink, Guns N' Roses
Guns N' Roses singles chronology
"You Could Be Mine"
"Don't Cry"
"Live and Let Die"

"Don't Cry" is a power ballad by the hard rock band Guns N' Roses, two versions of which were released simultaneously on different albums. The version with the original lyrics is the fourth track on Use Your Illusion I, while the version with the alternate lyrics is the 13th track on Use Your Illusion II. Only the vocal tracks differ, and even then only in the verses; however, in those verses, not only are the words entirely different, but the meter and melody are also slightly different. There is also a third version, officially released only on the single for the song, which was recorded during Appetite for Destruction sessions in 1986. The song reached the top 10 in many countries, including number 8 in the UK Singles Chart and number 10 in the U.S. on the Billboard Hot 100.


"Don't Cry" features Shannon Hoon of Blind Melon as a co-lead vocalist. Along with "Estranged" and "November Rain," it forms a narrative inspired in part by the short story "Without You" by Del James.[1] The song peaked at #10 on the Billboard Hot 100, becoming the band's fifth Top 10 hit there.

Track listing[edit]

CD single Geffen 21651
  1. "Don't cry (original)" - 4:42
  2. "Don't cry (alt. lyrics)" - 4:42
  3. "Don't cry (demo)" - 4:42

Music video[edit]

The official music video for the song was directed by Andy Morahan and Mark Racco.[2] John Linson was the producer of the video.[3]

Rose commented on the difficulty of filming the video and how certain scenes inspired by the relationship with Erin Everly affected him emotionally:

With our video for "Don't Cry," and the fight that Stephanie Seymour, (Axl's then-current girlfriend) and I had over the gun, you don't necessarily know what's going on. But in real life that happened with Erin Everly (Axl's ex-wife) and myself. I was going to shoot myself. We fought over the gun and I finally let her win. I was kind of mentally crippled after that. Before shooting our documentary, I said, "This seems really hard, 'cause it really happened." And the night we wrote the scene, my friend Josh said, "Okay, how are you going to play that?" He wanted to rehearse and I was like, "Look, leave me alone." But he kept pushing until, finally, I stood up. I had this cigarette lighter that looked like a real gun and I said, "Look, I'm gonna do it like this." And I just went over and slammed around in the hallway a bit and threw the gun and said, "Is that good enough for you?"[4]


Additional musicians

Live performances[edit]

"Don't Cry" was performed quite frequently during the early tours and the Use Your Illusion Tour. It was absent from the early legs (i.e. 2001–02) of the Chinese Democracy Tour but reappeared to an extent in 2006, as guitarist Bumblefoot began using an instrumental version of the song as a guitar solo spot. In 2007, during the Bumblefoot solo spot, Axl came on stage to sing along to the solo on two occasions, marking the first times since 1993 that Axl had sung it live.

"Don't Cry" made another return during the 2009/2010 World Tour, with Axl singing along with the solo spot on each occasion that it has been played.

A recording of the song from the Tokyo Dome was released on the album Live Era '87–'93 and a VHS/DVD.

Cover versions[edit]

A chill out cover of the song by Sao Vincente featuring Ituana was included on the 2006 tribute compilation Bossa n' Roses.

Marina V covers the song on her 2010 album My Star.

A version of Don’t Cry was recorded by Murder By Death and released on their 2011 “Skeletons in the Closet” album.

Chart positions[edit]

Chart (1991) Peak
Australia (ARIA)[5] 5
Belgium (Ultratop 50 Flanders)[6] 10
Finland (Suomen virallinen lista)[7] 1
France (SNEP)[8] 25
Germany (Official German Charts)[9] 22
Irish Singles Chart[10] 1
Netherlands (Single Top 100)[11] 7
New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ)[12] 2
Norway (VG-lista)[13] 2
Sweden (Sverigetopplistan)[14] 9
Switzerland (Schweizer Hitparade)[15] 3
U.S Billboard Hot 100[16] 10
UK Singles Chart[17] 8


Region Certification
Italy (FIMI)[18] Gold
United States (RIAA)[19] Gold


  1. ^ Wall, Mick (2008). W.A.R.: The Unauthorized Biography of William Axl Rose. St. Martin's Press. p. 368. ISBN 978-0-312-37767-0. 
  2. ^ Garcia, Alex S. " - Guns 'n' Roses - "Don't cry"". Music Video DataBase. Retrieved November 2, 2015. 
  3. ^ "Guns N' Roses: Makin' F@*!ing Videos Part I - Don't Cry (Video 1993) - Full Cast & Crew - IMDb". Retrieved November 9, 2016. 
  4. ^ "Articles > Axl gets in the ring". Here Today... Gone To Hell!. Retrieved July 28, 2011. 
  5. ^ " – Guns N' Roses – Don't Cry". ARIA Top 50 Singles.
  6. ^ " – Guns N' Roses – Don't Cry" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50.
  7. ^ Nyman, Jake (2005). Suomi soi 4: Suuri suomalainen listakirja (in Finnish) (1st ed.). Helsinki: Tammi. ISBN 951-31-2503-3. 
  8. ^ " – Guns N' Roses – Don't Cry" (in French). Les classement single.
  9. ^ " – Guns N' Roses – Don't Cry". GfK Entertainment Charts.
  10. ^ Jaclyn Ward. "The Irish Charts - All there is to know". Archived from the original on June 3, 2009. Retrieved July 28, 2011. 
  11. ^ " – Guns N' Roses – Don't Cry" (in Dutch). Single Top 100.
  12. ^ " – Guns N' Roses – Don't Cry". Top 40 Singles.
  13. ^ " – Guns N' Roses – Don't Cry". VG-lista.
  14. ^ " – Guns N' Roses – Don't Cry". Singles Top 100.
  15. ^ " – Guns N' Roses – Don't Cry". Swiss Singles Chart.
  16. ^
  17. ^ "GUNS N' ROSES - The Official Charts Company". Retrieved July 28, 2011. 
  18. ^ "Italian single certifications – Guns N' Roses – Don't Cry" (in Italian). Federazione Industria Musicale Italiana. Retrieved July 4, 2014.  Select Online in the field Sezione. Enter Guns N' Roses in the field Filtra. The certification will load automatically
  19. ^ "American single certifications – Guns N' Roses – Don't Cry". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved July 4, 2014.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH

External links[edit]