Is This Love (Whitesnake song)

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"Is This Love"
Is This Love (Whitesnake single - cover art).jpg
Artwork for UK and European releases
Single by Whitesnake
from the album Whitesnake
B-side "Standing in the Shadow", "Need Your Love So Bad", "Bad Boys"
Released June 1987 (UK)
December 1987 (US)
Genre Hard rock
Length 4:48
Label Geffen, EMI
Writer(s) David Coverdale, John Sykes
Producer(s) Mike Stone, Keith Olsen
Whitesnake singles chronology
"Here I Go Again 87"
"Is This Love"
"Give Me All Your Love"

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

The single was a hit for Whitesnake, reaching number 9 in the UK Singles Chart[1] and number 2 in the US singles chart,[2] making it their second-biggest US hit after "Here I Go Again" which hit number 1. The number 1 spot at the time was held by "Faith" by George Michael. The single was reissued in 1994 to promote Whitesnake's Greatest Hits, and featured the song "Sweet Lady Luck" (which was previously only available as B-side to "The Deeper the Love" single) and "Now You're Gone". This version reached number 25 on the UK Singles Chart.[3]

"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!).

Background and writing[edit]

The song 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 singer 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.

Music video[edit]

A music video was also made, featuring Coverdale's then-girlfriend actress Tawny Kitaen. The music video 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.

Track listing[edit]

All songs 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.