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"Highwire"
Highwire.jpg
Single by The Rolling Stones
from the album Flashpoint
Released 1 March 1991
Format CD, 7"
Recorded January 1991
Genre Rock
Length 3:41
Label Rolling Stones
Songwriter(s) Jagger/Richards
Producer(s) Chris Kimsey, The Glimmer Twins
The Rolling Stones singles chronology
"Terrifying"
(1990)
"Highwire"
(1991)
"String Module Error: Match not found"
(1991)
"Terrifying"
(1990)
"Highwire"
(1991)
"Ruby Tuesday" (live)
(1991)

"Highwire" is an anti-war song by The Rolling Stones featured on their 1991 live album Flashpoint.[1]

Written by Mick Jagger and Keith Richards, "Highwire" is one of the rare examples of the Stones taking on political issues - in this case, the fall-out from Persian Gulf War. On the song, Jagger said at the time of its release, "It's not about the war. It's about how it started."[2] Richards continued, saying, "This is not about the war. It's about how you build up some shaky dictator. You can't build them up, 'cause then you've got to slam them down."[2]

The song's lyrics deconstructed the build-up to the war, and criticized the politics behind it:

"Highwire" was released as Flashpoint's first single on 1 March 1991. It reached #29 in the UK, #57 in the US, #28 on the Modern Rock Tracks chart, and #1 on the Mainstream Rock Tracks chart. An accompanying video directed by Julien Temple was released and depicted the Stones in an industrial set performing the song.

Charts[edit]

Weekly charts[edit]

Chart (1991) Peak
position
Austria (Ö3 Austria Top 40)[3] 23
Belgium (Ultratop 50 Flanders)[4] 13
France (SNEP)[5] 28
Germany (Official German Charts)[6] 27
Ireland (IRMA)[7] 16
Netherlands (Single Top 100)[8] 6
New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ)[9] 32
Norway (VG-lista)[10] 4
Sweden (Sverigetopplistan)[11] 14
Switzerland (Schweizer Hitparade)[12] 14
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[13] 29
US Billboard Hot 100[14] 57
US Alternative Songs (Billboard)[15] 28
US Mainstream Rock (Billboard)[16] 1

Year-end charts[edit]

Chart (1991) Position
Canada Top Singles (RPM)[17] 89

Mick Jagger - vocals Keith Richards - guitar Ron Wood - guitar, pedal steel guitar Bill Wyman - bass guitar Charlie Watts - drums

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ John Stewart Bowman Facts about the American wars -- 1998 p716 "But neither that nor another antiwar song, "Highwire," by the Rolling Stones, received much attention. Nor did "Die for Oil, Sucker," by Jello Biafra, formerly of the Dead Kennedys. "
  2. ^ a b "Highwire". Time Is On Our Side. Retrieved 2006-07-18. 
  3. ^ "Austriancharts.at – The Rolling Stones – Highwire" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
  4. ^ "Ultratop.be – The Rolling Stones – Highwire" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
  5. ^ "Lescharts.com – The Rolling Stones – Highwire" (in French). Les classement single. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
  6. ^ "Offiziellecharts.de – The Rolling Stones – Highwire". GfK Entertainment Charts. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
  7. ^ "The Irish Charts – Search Results – High Wire". Irish Singles Chart. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
  8. ^ "Dutchcharts.nl – The Rolling Stones – Highwire" (in Dutch). Single Top 100. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
  9. ^ "Charts.org.nz – The Rolling Stones – Highwire". Top 40 Singles. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
  10. ^ "Norwegiancharts.com – The Rolling Stones – Highwire". VG-lista. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
  11. ^ "Swedishcharts.com – The Rolling Stones – Highwire". Singles Top 100. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
  12. ^ "Swisscharts.com – The Rolling Stones – Highwire". Swiss Singles Chart. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
  13. ^ "Rolling Stones: Artist Chart History". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
  14. ^ "The Rolling Stones Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
  15. ^ "The Rolling Stones Chart History (Alternative Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
  16. ^ "The Rolling Stones Chart History (Mainstream Rock)". Billboard. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
  17. ^ "RPM 100 Hit Tracks of 1991". RPM. Retrieved November 23, 2017. 

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