A huge portion of my music library is dedicated to power ballads of the 80s (and ballads in general). I am sure many of you guys will agree with me when I say that those songs, usually performed by glam rock bands, are so influential, possess such a special aura and are even “magical”. Characterized with sensual lyrics, hard rock sound and a strong vocal delivery, the power ballads of the 80s appealed to many people and turned into a huge and unforgettable trend (that of course brought a lot of money)…
When I think about power ballads of the 80s, probably the first band name that comes out of my mind is Whitesnake. To me personally, they are the kings of power ballads and there’s a reason behind it. The reason is called David Coverdale – who happens to be one of the greatest male vocalists of all time. I’ve listened to many rock ballads, performed by many rock musicians such as Warrant, Poison, Foreigner, etc., however none of those ballad songs have influenced me the way Whitesnake’s ballad songs have. To me, David has the perfect voice for rock ballads and every time I hear him perform those heartbreaking love songs, I get goosebumps. His voice is perfectly designed for a rock ballad and I don’t know, maybe it’s just me, but the moment he starts singing about love, I completely melt down. Of course, being a huge Whitesnake fan, I love pretty much each and every song of theirs. However, among all, the ballads are my ultimate favorites – even after so many years of listening, I always get these feelings and emotions each time I play power ballads such as “Looking for Love” or “Ain’t No Love In The Heart Of The City”. I’m not sure I can find the right adjectives to describe David’s voice but I find his singing very sensual and his voice is definitely one of those “mysterious” and “smoky” voices that captivate your soul immediately.
In order to celebrate my love for Whitesnake’s (power) ballads and David’s brilliant vocal deliveries, I came up with this idea of collecting 5 of my favorite Whitesnake love songs. Also, I hope my readers can be reminded of some of those classics from back in the day. In the spirit of the upcoming Valentine’s Day, I thought it’s a good time to think about love and what better way to do it, than listen to this outstanding artist pouring his soul out into the music…
Looking For Love
I will start things with my favorite Whitesnake song, favorite power ballad from the 80s and one of my top 10 favorite songs of all time (yes, it’s that important to me). The song is part of their self-titled album which also happens to be their most successful album of all time. It was released back in 1987 and later on, the band also introduced a very interesting (?) music video that circulated around MTV. The reason why I adore this song with all my heart is the beautiful lyrics and of course, David’s vocal delivery – it turns from soft and gentle to strong and even a bit aggressive in a matter of seconds. To me, this is just the perfect rock ballad…
“I look in the mirror
Don’t like what I see
In my reflection
A stranger is staring at me
Looking for love”
Ain’t No Love In The Heart Of The City
The next rock ballad by Whitesnake is actually not an original song – it’s a cover version of Bobby “Blue” Bland’s song, written by Michael Price and Dan Walsh back in 1974. The original version is more blues and R&B oriented, rather than hard rock. Whitesnake’s interpretation of this song was included in their debut EP – “Snakebite” in 1978 and it actually became one of their most successful and loved songs. Later on, they also included a live performance of this song in their 1980s Live…in the Heart of the City Live album. Needless to say, I absolutely adore this song and their version of it. Once again, David demonstrates how powerful and yet tender his voice can be.
“Ain’t no love in the heart of the city,
Ain’t no love in the heart of town.
Ain’t no love, sure ’nuff is a pity,
Ain’t no love ‘cos you ain’t around.
Baby, since you been around.”
Is This Love
I just had to include this song which also happens to be one of the perfect examples of 80s power ballads. Not to mention that they owe a lot of their success and public recognition to this breathtaking power ballad. It is indeed probably the first song that comes to everyone’s mind when we think about Whitesnake. The song was released in 1987 from their self-titled album and quickly reached number 2 in the USA charts. It is a beautiful and very well-written song. The music video is also very distinctive and “very 80s”. Interesting fact, David was asked to think of some ideas for a new Tina Turner song and that’s when he came up with “Is This Love”…Anyhow, I’m glad they kept the song for themselves. As much as I love Tina, this song just fits him and the band so perfectly that I just can’t imagine anyone else singing it…
P.S You can check out my previous publication in which the song was also included : – Greatest (Power) Rock Ballads Of The 80s
”I find I spend my time
Waiting on your call,
How can I tell you, baby
My back’s against the wall
I need you by my side
To tell me it’s alright,
‘Cos I don’t think I can take anymore”
Only My Soul
This is also another one of my favorite Whitesnake ballads. One might say that it’s not as powerful, ground-breaking and wall-shaking as some of their other ballads but what appeals to me are the guitar riffs as well as its atmosphere – a bit more relaxed, calming and even exquisite than some of their other ballads. The violins are also a nice touch. “Only My Soul” is featured in “Snakebite” – their first official release back in 1978. This album produced so many fascinating songs.
“Only my soul, stops me crying,
Wondering why I feel alone
And only my love keeps me from
Weeping, so bad,
Giving me strength, to carry on”
The Deeper The Love
The last song from my selection comes from Whitesnake’s 1989 album “Slip of the Tongue” and it’s called “The Deeper the Love”. It’s a very melodic and a bit more dynamic and it happens to be one of my favourite (power) ballads of all time. The song and as a matter of fact the whole album, are a little bit different than their original sound from the early 80s, however I still enjoy listening to it – especially this song. His voice is just so full of soul…it takes my breath away. The lyrics are also very emotional and full of hope – it’s all about how strong a man’s love can be…
“So when the sun goes down
An’ those nights grow colder,
I will be there
Looking over your shoulder
An’ the deeper the love
The stronger the emotion,
An’ the stronger the love
The deeper the devotion”
Well, this is it for now – five beautiful (power) rock ballad songs, coming from Whitesnake – one of the greatest hard rock bands of all time. The selection was very personal and subjective so I apologize if you didn’t see some of your favorite songs. I would like to make part 2 and include other beautiful ballads of Whitesnake and David because there are so much more… His voice is everything – I hope you guys feel the same way I do and truly enjoy those five breath-taking love songs…
9 thoughts on “5 Great Whitesnake Ballads That Taught Us What Love Is…”
Whitesnake certainly have good ballads,(and rock songs). I had to recheck the tracklisting of Whitesnake 1987, such a great album. I have the original cassette tape and the reissued cd. The original album didn’t have Looking for Love on it and it had 9 songs. I have a cd version that does have Looking for Love on it. It is a very good song. Of course Is This Love? must be in their top 5 ballads.
Thank you so much for the nice comment! I hope I brought back some nice memories with these amazing songs…
I envy you so much for having the original cassette tape of 1987 – such a treasure! I bought the self-titled album a few years ago and it had the song…really love playing it! His voice is everything!!!
Cheers! Have a nice day!
Thanks Velina. You too.
Yes, David Coverdale has a great voice and is a gifted vocalist.
Enjoying the articles. I may have to go through your archives and find other interesting posts.
It’s a new personal project I started this past December – the archive is not that big haha …and the first things were very experimental and all over the place – now I finally settled for classic rock and 70s 80s music…in addition though I also have a keen interest in 90s pop and rnb music, as well as jazz, blues, etc…
I’m trying to write something every day as much as I can…Mostly to improve my musical knowledge, analytical and writing skills…
I’m so happy to see that someone is actually reading my things haha – I hope I can develop it into something bigger in the future ^^
See you around!
I have seen a few blog titles of yours I would like to read such as the power ballads and your 5 favourite vocalists. I am sure more people are reading them and just not posting a comment!
Thanks for sharing the background of your project. I hope it improves your writing and analytical skills, which I am sure are already pretty good.
As I alluded to earlier I do like other genres but you do have a wide range of music genres you like. Your enthusiasm for music you enjoy comes through in your writing.
I love WS…..but you already know 🙂
I know heehe ^^