Kiss from a Rose

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"Kiss from a Rose"
Seal - Kiss From A Rose (single).jpg
Single by Seal
from the album Seal II and Batman Forever: Music from the Motion Picture
  • 18 July 1994 (UK)
  • 6 June 1995 (US)
  • 3 July 1995 (UK re-release)
Format CD single
Recorded 1994
  • 4:47 (album version)
  • 3:38 (Batman Forever film edit)
Songwriter(s) Seal
Producer(s) Trevor Horn
Seal singles chronology
"Prayer for the Dying"
"String Module Error: Match not found" / "I'm Alive"
"String Module Error: Match not found" / "Prayer for the Dying"
"Prayer for the Dying"
(May 1994)

"Newborn Friend"
(Oct 1994)
"Kiss from a Rose"
(Jul 1994)

"Kiss from a Rose"/"I'm Alive"
(Jul 1995)
"Newborn Friend"
(Oct 1994)

"Don't Cry"/"Prayer for the Dying"
(Nov 1995)
1995 re-release
Batman Forever soundtrack single
Batman Forever soundtrack single

"Kiss from a Rose" is a song from Seal's second eponymous album. The song was first released as a single in July 1994. Re-released in 1995, it was included on the Batman Forever film soundtrack, helping it top the charts in the US and Australia. At the 1996 Grammy Awards, it won awards for Record of the Year, Song of the Year, and Best Male Pop Vocal Performance.[1]


"Kiss from a Rose" was written in 1987, several years prior to the release of Seal's eponymous debut album from 1991. After writing the song Seal felt "embarrassed by it" and "threw the tape in the corner". Seal did not present it to producer Trevor Horn until the recording sessions for Seal II. In 2015, Seal said of the song: "To be honest, I was never really that proud of it, though I like what Trevor did with the recording. He turned that tape from my corner into another 8 million record sales and my name became a household name."[2]

"Kiss from a Rose" was the second single taken from the Batman Forever film soundtrack, and topped the US Billboard Hot 100 for one week in August 1995. It also went to number four on the UK Singles Chart. The single originally made it to number 20 in 1994, but upon being re-released after being featured in the film, it reached the top position. It also won the MTV Movie Award for Best Song from a Movie in the 1996 edition.[3] Seal talked about the long, strange journey that the song went through on The Brian McKnight Show season finale that aired 30 May 2010. He described how the song initially dropped out of the charts shortly after its release. Joel Schumacher subsequently called Seal, and requested use of the song to play over a love scene between the characters played by Nicole Kidman and Val Kilmer in Batman Forever. Although the song was eventually not incorporated into this scene, it was instead used to play over the end credits; Seal believes this change contributed to the song's eventual popularity.

Music video[edit]

Two versions of the music video were produced:

  • The original version is set in a photographic studio and was co-directed by Matthew Rolston and William Levin. The 1966 film Blowup was heavily referenced in the video.
  • The second version was directed by Joel Schumacher and has Seal performing the song beside the Bat-Signal, interspersed with clips from the film Batman Forever, with one clip from Batman Returns. This is the more popular video of the song. The director of photography of this version of the music video was Neil Abramson.

Track listing[edit]

Between all the formats of the single release, bonus tracks include the non-album tracks "The Wind Cries Mary" (a Jimi Hendrix cover) and "Blues in 'E'"; remixes of "Kiss from a Rose" by Adamski (who produced the original version of "Killer"); and remixes of album track "I'm Alive" by Steve Fitzmaurice and Sasha with BT.

  • "Kiss from a Rose" (radio edit) – 3:38
  • "Kiss from a Rose" (album version) – 4:47

Cover versions[edit]

  • Guitarist John Williams performed an instrumental version for his 1996 album John Williams Plays The Movies.
  • The King's Singers recorded a version of the song on their 1999 album Circle of Life.
  • Hank Marvin covered the song on his 2000 album Marvin at the Movies.
  • Irish vocal trio Trinití recorded a cover version for their first self-titled album.[4]
  • Katherine Jenkins recorded her version of the track in her 2007 album Rejoice.
  • Jack Black performed a cover version on an American Idol charity special in 2007.[5] The judges (Randy Jackson, Paula Abdul, and Simon Cowell) each gave joke reviews of the performance (Randy said he wasn't feeling it, but that it would help if Black got better pants; Paula gave a negative review, while Simon said that Black sounded better than Sanjaya Malakar). However, Seal had stood up for Black and said it was "the best rendition of "Kiss from a Rose" [he] ever heard".
  • The Finnish band Northern Kings covered the song on their second album Rethroned.[6]
  • French-Canadian singer Bruno Pelletier covered the song for his 2007 tour of Bruno Pelletier et le GrosZorchestre.
  • Idina Menzel covered the song during her 2008 Fall tour promoting her album I Stand.[7]
  • Welsh male voice choir Only Men Aloud! also sang an arrangement by Tim Rhys-Evans and Jeffrey Howard on the BBC 1 Show Last Choir Standing in 2008. They subsequently released it on their self-titled début album.
  • A jazz interpretation is performed by Julia Hülsmann Trio on their album The End of a Summer.
  • US soul singer Jazmine Sullivan covered the song for French TV show Taratata. Her performance first aired on 15 May 2009 on French TV and is also available online on Taratata's official website.[8]
  • Lee DeWyze performed a cover version as his "Songs from the Movies" category entry in the ninth season of American Idol. DeWyze went on to become the winner in the competition.
  • Swedish rock band April Divine have also a cover of this, and it was released upon their album Redemption (2010).
  • Vocalist Darlene Koldenhoven recorded her arrangement of Kiss from a Rose on her 2011 CD, Solitary Treasures.
  • Folk rock band The Becca Stevens Band, featuring bassist Chris Tordini, released a cover of this in 2011 on their album Weightless.
  • A hard rock version of the song can be found on the 2012 record Beautiful Alien by Atom Smash.
  • 12 Stones released a cover of the song online in 2012.
  • Head Control System released a cover version of the song on their official MySpace.
  • Japanese artist Angela Aki's rendition included Japanese lyrics on her fourth single "This Love".
  • A karaoke version of the song was featured in an episode of the third season of the NBC television series Community titled "Studies in Modern Movement", performed by Jim Rash as Dean Pelton and Joel McHale as Jeff Winger.
  • The song appears on Hallelujah – Live by Espen Lind, Askil Holm, Kurt Nilsen, and Alejandro Fuentes.
  • In 2009 Jazz artist Joe McBride did a jazz cover version for his album Lookin' for a Change[9][10]
  • In 2010 New York City’s leading post post-feminist feminist all-female pop French horn quartet Genghis Barbie, used Evan Kuhlmann's Bassoon quartet arrangement adapted for French horn on their debut CD.
  • In 2013, Straight No Chaser covered the song with Seal on their Under the Influence album.[11]
  • In 2014, Filipino pop and R&B band South Border released a cover video on YouTube.
  • In 2016, the NFL and Seal brought together football fans who were conceived by Super Bowl winning teams' fans to recreate this classic love song with a commercial entitled, "Super Bowl Babies Choir".[12]
  • In 2017 on the British TV Show Pitch Battle, contestants covered the song with Seal joining towards the end.[13]

In popular culture[edit]

In season 2, episode 7 ("A Bottle of Jean Nate") of Shameless, "Kiss from a Rose" is revealed as Jody's go-to love-making song; he's first seen having sex with Karen while listening to the song, and later to Sheila, Karen's mother.[14]

In season 5, episode 7 ("The Gang Wrestles for the Troops") of It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Dee plans to greet a returning US soldier she's been chatting with online with her alias "Desert Rose" by bringing roses, dressing up in a red dress with green stockings, and playing Seal's "Kiss from a Rose". When Dee runs away because he's in a wheelchair, Frank ends up playing the song and giving the soldier a gift of jean shorts for his services and salutes him, making the moment awkward for the soldier.[15]

In season 3, episode 7 of Community, Jeff Winger (Joel McHale) and dean Craig Pelton (Jim Rash) are seen singing "Kiss from a Rose". Later in the episode the rest of the characters make fun of Jeff since the dean has tweeted their duet.[16]

In season 5, episode 17 ("The Death Of The Queen Bee") of Bones, the song is featured in Temperance's reunion where she and Booth do a slow dance to the song. As the song starts in the background, Brennan eagerly requests Booth to dance with her, saying "Can we dance, Booth? It's Seal!"

In the 2015 film, Vacation (fifth entry in National Lampoon's Vacation franchise), the song is a favorite of Rusty Griswold (played by Ed Helms).

The song played at the 2009 Wodonga Senior Secondary College debutante ball.

In season 1, episode 6 ("Marcia, Marcia, Marcia") of American Crime Story, the song plays when Marcia Clark (Sarah Paulson) is getting her hair done at a salon, and again as she walks into the courtroom with her new look, the next day.

In the Ugandan action movie Who Killed Captain Alex?, a panpipes cover of "Kiss from a Rose" can be heard in multiple scenes, especially around the second half of the film.

The song was also featured in the 1994 film The NeverEnding Story III.

In 2017 in an ad promoting Discovery Channel's Shark Week, depicts Seal performing the song at a small beachside concert only to be swallowed mid-performance by a Great White Shark, leading to the humorous tagline "It is still a bad week to be a Seal."

Video games[edit]

Charts and sales[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Past Winners Search". Retrieved 18 June 2013. 
  2. ^ "Seal – Kiss From a Rose Lyrics". Genius. 18 November 2015. Retrieved 20 November 2015. 
  3. ^ "Kiss From A Rose by Seal Songfacts". Retrieved 2 January 2011. 
  4. ^ Sullivan, Caroline (16 June 2006). "Trinití, Trinití". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 15 June 2013. 
  5. ^ Jack Black performing "Kiss from a Rose" on an American Idol charity special in 2007 on YouTube
  6. ^ "Northern Kings - Kiss From A Rose". Youtube. 
  7. ^ "IDINA MENZEL- Kiss From A Rose". YouTube. 9 November 2008. Retrieved 2 January 2011. 
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^
  11. ^ Collar, Matt. "Under the Influence - Straight No Chaser". Allmusic. Retrieved 2 November 2014. 
  12. ^
  13. ^ Hughes, Roxanne (2017-07-08). "Pitch Battle plunged into chaos over massive judges BLUNDER". Retrieved 2017-07-10. 
  14. ^ Sullivan, Patrick. "Shameless: I'm on a Boat!". Retrieved 18 June 2013. 
  15. ^ Sims, David. "The Gang Wrestles for the Troops". The A.V. Club. Retrieved 18 June 2013. 
  16. ^ VanDerWerff, Todd. "Studies in Modern Movement". The A.V. Club. Retrieved 18 June 2013. 
  17. ^ "The ARIA Australian Top 100 Singles Chart – Week Ending 16 Oct 1994". ARIA. Retrieved 22 March 2016. 
  18. ^ a b Kiss From A Rose in NZ Singles Chart (1994-1995). Retrieved 25 November 2011.
  19. ^ a b "Official Charts > Seal". The Official UK Charts Company. Retrieved 22 March 2016. 
  20. ^ a b " > Seal – Kiss from a Rose (song)". Hung Medien. Retrieved 22 March 2016. 
  21. ^ a b c d e f g h "Kiss from a Rose", in various singles charts . Retrieved 10 April 2008.
  22. ^ a b "Single top 100 over 1995" (PDF) (in Dutch). Top40. Retrieved 19 April 2010. 
  23. ^ "Seal singles, German Singles Chart" (in German). musicline. Retrieved 19 April 2010. 
  24. ^ Irish Single Chart . Retrieved 10 April 2008.
  25. ^ a b c d e f g Billboard . Retrieved 10 April 2008.
  26. ^ "Seal". Official Charts Company. 2009. Retrieved 4 November 2013. 
  27. ^ "Official Singles Chart UK Top 100 - 9th November 2013". Official Charts Company. 2 November 2013. Archived from the original on 4 November 2013. Retrieved 4 November 2013. 
  28. ^ a b "The ARIA Australian Top 100 Singles 1995". ARIA. Retrieved 22 March 2016. 
  29. ^ 1995 Austrian Singles Chart Archived 24 September 2010 at the Wayback Machine. . Retrieved 19 August 2008.
  30. ^ 1995 Belgian (Wallonia) Singles Chart . Retrieved 19 August 2008.
  31. ^ 1995 French Singles Chart Archived 14 February 2009 at the Wayback Machine. . Retrieved 30 January 2009.
  32. ^ 1995 Swiss Singles Chart Archived 23 March 2012 at the Wayback Machine. . Retrieved 1 August 2008.
  33. ^ "Billboard Top 100 - 1995". Archived from the original on 15 August 2009. Retrieved 27 August 2010. 
  34. ^ Geoff Mayfield (25 December 1999). 1999 The Year in Music Totally '90s: Diary of a Decade - The listing of Top Pop Albums of the '90s & Hot 100 Singles of the '90s. Billboard. Retrieved 15 October 2010. 
  35. ^ "French single certifications – Seal – Kiss from a Rose" (in French). Syndicat National de l'Édition Phonographique. 
  36. ^ "British single certifications – Seal – Kiss from a Rose". British Phonographic Industry.  Enter Kiss from a Rose in the field Keywords. Select Title in the field Search by. Select single in the field By Format. Select Gold in the field By Award. Click Search
  37. ^ a b "American single certifications – Seal – Kiss from a Rose". Recording Industry Association of America.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH
  38. ^ "Best-Selling Records of 1995". Billboard. BPI Communications. 108 (3): 56. January 20, 1996. ISSN 0006-2510. Retrieved May 5, 2015. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
"Waterfalls" by TLC
Billboard Hot 100 number-one single
26 August 1995
Succeeded by
"You Are Not Alone" by Michael Jackson
Preceded by
"I'll Be There For You" by The Rembrandts
Billboard Adult Contemporary number-one single
26 August 1995 – 11 November 1995
Succeeded by
"As I Lay Me Down" by Sophie B. Hawkins
Preceded by
"Insensitive" by Jann Arden
Australian ARIA number-one single
21 August 1995 – 1 October 1995
Succeeded by
"Fantasy" by Mariah Carey