The reggae vibe of Suzanne Cook’s new single, “Red Wine and Red Roses,” evokes sunshine, warm weather, and falling in love on the beach. It’s a fusion of Britpop and Reggae, the London sound shaking hands with the Caribbean.
Written by the British singer’s guitarist and regular collaborator Tim Devereaux, it’s the second single from Cook’s upcoming album, Waking Dream.
Cook says “Red Wine and Red Roses” was originally written to be a heavy rock song, but inspiration struck as the crack band she and Devereaux had assembled in a London studio began talking about their mutual love of Bob Marley.
The new direction for the number took shape around a simple reggae rhythm on the guitar, and the new melody followed naturally. The rhythm is such a perfect match for the romantic lyrics that it’s nearly impossible to imagine the song done in any other style.
Over a masterful beat set by drummer Howard Tibble (Paul McCartney, Little Richard), percussionist Everett Bradley (Bon Jovi, Bruce Springsteen) and bassist Winston Blissett (Massive Attack, Boy George), Cook delivers a sultry performance, singing of a friendship turning into something more, something exciting, something fresh and new.
There’s a sense of anticipation, a yearning for that first kiss, that first embrace. Punctuated by a horn section, guitars from Devereaux and Pascal Glanville, and organ and keys from Charlie Giordano and producer Mark Plati, Cook paints a picture of days of easy-going frolic, turning into evenings filled with romance and, of course, red wine and red roses.
It’s a playful, joyous song, as Cook sings of the “promises when love is new”, waking up to “autumn’s sun in morning’s dew.”
You’ll want to uncork a bottle of red of your own, and enjoy the tune with someone special, perhaps in a room strewn with red rose petals.