Jump to content

Is This Love (Whitesnake song)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

"Is This Love"
Artwork for UK and European releases
Single by Whitesnake
from the album Whitesnake
B-side"Standing in the Shadow '87" (UK)
"Bad Boys" (US)
Released26 May 1987 (UK)
Whitesnake singles chronology
"Here I Go Again 87"
"Is This Love"
"Give Me All Your Love"
Music video
"Is This Love" on YouTube

"Is This Love" is a song by British rock band Whitesnake. It was released in 1987 as the second single from their self-titled album.

The single was a hit for Whitesnake, reaching number nine in the UK Singles Chart,[4] and number two on the US Billboard Hot 100 singles chart, making it their second-biggest US hit after "Here I Go Again", which topped the chart. The single was reissued in 1994 to promote Whitesnake's Greatest Hits. This version reached number 25 on the UK Singles Chart.[5]

"Is This Love" has been a mainstay in Whitesnake's live shows since 1987. As such, it is featured on several of their live albums, including Live: In the Shadow of the Blues (2006) and Live at Donington 1990 (2011). John Sykes played it live in 2004 (Bad Boy Live!). In 2015, Classic Rock magazine ranked it as 7th on their Top 40 greatest power ballads list.[6]

Background and writing[edit]

The power ballad[6] was written by vocalist David Coverdale and guitarist John Sykes during the album's early writing process (which took place in the south of France), but it was long rumoured that the song had originally been written for Tina Turner. Coverdale confirmed these rumours in the booklet of Whitesnake's 20th anniversary edition, by saying.

Before I'd left [for the south of France] a friend at EMI had asked me for any ideas that would work for Tina Turner. So that was where the original idea for "Is This Love" came from.

However, according to Coverdale, when David Geffen heard it he was told to keep it and so kept it for Whitesnake.[7]

Music video[edit]

A music video was also made, featuring Coverdale's then-girlfriend actress Tawny Kitaen. The music video, which was directed by Marty Callner, depicts the band playing the song on a misty stage, intercut with scenes of Coverdale singing, Kitaen dancing and the two of them together. Due to Coverdale firing the other members of the band before the album was released, he is the only Whitesnake member present on both the recording and in the music video; this was the case for all music videos released for songs from the 1987 album (except for "Here I Go Again", Vandenberg performed the guitar solo on the recording and later appeared in the music video as well).It achieved heavy rotation on MTV.[8]

Commercial performance[edit]

"Is This Love" reached number 13 on Billboard's Mainstream Rock chart.[9] It also peaked at number 38 on the Adult Contemporary chart in the US;[10] despite this, in the years since, "Here I Go Again", which did not chart on the AC chart at the time of its release, gets more airplay on adult contemporary stations, most notably iHeartRadio-owned stations.

Track listings[edit]

All songs were written by David Coverdale and John Sykes, except where noted.

UK (EMI) single

  1. "Is This Love" – 4:48
  2. "Standing in the Shadow" – 3:53 (Coverdale)*
  3. "Need Your Love So Bad" – 3:21 (Little Willie John)*

US (Geffen) single

  1. "Is This Love" – 4:48
  2. "Bad Boys" – 4:09

*The B-sides that appeared on EMI editions of the single were new 1987 re-recordings of earlier tracks by the band, although they were not advertised as such on the packaging. Both re-recorded versions would later feature on the 1987 Versions EP.




Certifications and sales for "Is This Love"
Region Certification Certified units/sales
United Kingdom (BPI)[25] Silver 200,000

Sales+streaming figures based on certification alone.


  1. ^ "Whitesnake "Is This Love" reissue promo". Twitter/X. Retrieved 19 June 2024.
  2. ^ Bennett, J (13 February 2015). "Cue the Guitar Solos, Here Are Ten Hott Hair Metal Love Ballads for Valentine's Day". Vice. Retrieved 10 December 2020.
  3. ^ a b Engelhart, Kris (15 February 2019). "Top Hair Metal Power Ballads To Celebrate Valentine's Day". Shutter 16 Magazine. Archived from the original on 18 April 2021. Retrieved 7 June 2021.
  4. ^ a b "Official Singles Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 27 June 2018.
  5. ^ "Whitesnake | full Official Chart history". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 27 June 2018.
  6. ^ a b "The 40 Greatest Power Ballads Playlist". Classic Rock. 14 February 2015. Archived from the original on 15 January 2021. Retrieved 6 December 2020 – via Loudersound.
  7. ^ Wardlaw, Matt (19 September 2017). "David Coverdale says 'I Thought I Was Done' Before Whitesnake's Breakthrough: Exclusive Interview". Ultimate Classic Rock. Retrieved 4 December 2020.
  8. ^ Billboard, MTV Programming, December 26, 1987
  9. ^ "Whitesnake". Billboard.com. Retrieved 24 April 2021.
  10. ^ "Whitesnake". Billboard.com. Retrieved 24 April 2021.
  11. ^ Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992. Australian Chart Book. ISBN 0-646-11917-6.
  12. ^ "Top RPM Singles: Issue 8678." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved 23 June 2022.
  13. ^ "European Hot 100 Singles". Music & Media. Vol. 4, no. 26. 4 July 1987. p. 14.
  14. ^ "The Irish Charts – Search Results – Whitesnake". Irish Singles Chart. Retrieved 27 June 2018.
  15. ^ "Nederlandse Top 40 – Whitesnake" (in Dutch). Dutch Top 40. Retrieved 7 April 2022.
  16. ^ "Whitesnake – Is This Love" (in Dutch). Single Top 100. Retrieved 27 June 2018.
  17. ^ "Whitesnake Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard. Retrieved 27 June 2018.
  18. ^ "Whitesnake Chart History (Adult Contemporary)". Billboard. Retrieved 27 June 2018.
  19. ^ "Whitesnake Chart History (Mainstream Rock)". Billboard. Retrieved 27 June 2018.
  20. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2014). Cash Box Pop Hits 1952-1996. Sheridan Books, Inc. ISBN 978-0-89820-209-0.
  21. ^ "Is This Love - Whitesnake". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 16 November 2023.
  22. ^ "Gallup Year End Charts 1987: Singles" (PDF). Record Mirror. 23 January 1988. p. 36. Retrieved 7 April 2022.
  23. ^ "1988 The Year in Music & Video: Top Pop Singles". Billboard. Vol. 100, no. 52. 24 December 1988. p. Y-20.
  24. ^ "Billboard Top 100 – 1988". Longboredsurfer.com. Retrieved 3 October 2016.
  25. ^ "British single certifications – Whitesnake – Is This Love". British Phonographic Industry. Retrieved 3 February 2023.

External links[edit]