Roxanne
The Police Lyrics


Jump to: Overall Meaning ↴  Line by Line Meaning ↴

Roxanne
You don't have to put on the red light
Those days are over
You don't have to sell your body to the night
Roxanne
You don't have to wear that dress tonight
Walk the streets for money
You don't care if it's wrong or if it's right

Roxanne
You don't have to put on the red light
Roxanne
You don't have to put on the red light

(Roxanne) Put on the red light
(Roxanne) Put on the red light
(Roxanne) Put on the red light
(Roxanne) Put on the red light
(Roxanne) Put on the red light
Oh

I loved you since I knew ya
I wouldn't talk down to ya
I have to tell you just how I feel
I won't share you with another boy
I know my mind is made up
So put away your make-up
Told you once, I won't tell you again it's a bad way

Roxanne
You don't have to put on the red light
Roxanne
You don't have to put on the red light

You don't (Roxanne) have to put on the red light
(Roxanne) Put on the red light
(Roxanne) Put on the red light
(Roxanne) Put on the red light
(Roxanne) Put on the red light
(Roxanne) Put on the red light
(Roxanne) Put on the red light
(Roxanne) Put on the red light
(Roxanne) Put on the red light
(Roxanne) Put on the red light
You don't (Roxanne) have to put on the red light
(Roxanne) Put on the red light
You don't (Roxanne) have to put on the red light




(Roxanne) Put on the red light
(Roxanne) Put on the red light

Overall Meaning

"Roxanne" by The Police is a classic song about a man pleading with a prostitute to leave her difficult lifestyle and embrace a better life with him. It encourages her to stop putting on the red light, to stop walking the streets for money and selling her body for sex. The first verse focuses on the idea that the days of prostitution are over, and she does not have to sell herself in that way. The second verse is the man professing his love for Roxanne, saying he knows his mind is made up, and she does not have to share herself with other men.


The song conveys the message that prostitution is not a good way to live one's life and that anyone in that lifestyle can choose to leave it and pursue something better. The lyrics suggest that Roxanne is trapped in this lifestyle that she may not want to be in, and this man loves her enough to want her to leave it behind.


"Roxanne" was inspired by Sting, the band's lead singer, seeing a Parisian prostitute in 1977 who was soliciting outside the band's hotel. Sting later referred to the song as more complicated than just an anti-prostitution song, with the second verse being about either the jealousy of a lover or Satan’s obsession with a woman's soul.


Line by Line Meaning

Roxanne
Directly addressing a woman named Roxanne


You don't have to put on the red light
You don't need to engage in sex work and advertise with a red light


Those days are over
The past era of needing to do sex work to survive is no longer necessary


You don't have to sell your body to the night
You don't have to engage in prostitution and give up your physical body to the night


You don't have to wear that dress tonight
You don't have to wear revealing clothing to attract clients tonight


Walk the streets for money
You don't have to walk the streets and solicit clients for money


You don't care if it's wrong or if it's right
You don't care about the moral implications of engaging in sex work


(Roxanne) Put on the red light
Repeatedly questioning why Roxanne continues to advertise her services with a red light


Oh
Expression of frustration or sadness


I loved you since I knew ya
Expressing long-lasting romantic feelings for Roxanne


I wouldn't talk down to ya
Asserting that he wouldn't treat Roxanne with condescension or disrespect


I have to tell you just how I feel
Expressing the need to be honest about feelings towards Roxanne


I won't share you with another boy
Asserting the desire to have exclusive romantic relations with Roxanne


I know my mind is made up
Confident that the decision to pursue Roxanne romantically is final


So put away your make-up
Not wanting Roxanne to have to advertise her services anymore


Told you once, I won't tell you again it's a bad way
Stating that he has expressed his opinion on sex work and won't repeat himself




Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group
Written by: Gordon Sumner

Lyrics Licensed & Provided by LyricFind
To comment on or correct specific content, highlight it

Genre not found
Artist not found
Album not found
Song not found

Daniel

Algum leitor sabe a letra de Saludos Caballeros ?
Até agora não conseguí !
daprendiz1@gmail.com

Comments from YouTube:

@usedtampon_

Can we just have a moment of silence for the ones that searched “Rock Sand”

@josecarlosalbarracinsato9504

its a horse btw

@lansalotmailys6495

Omg do people really do that🤦

@meisuke9026

this me 6 years ago

@chloestarae

"Rock saaaaaand, you dont have to wear that dress tonightttt" yes. I pictured a grain of sand in a dress

@nightskyshowers

I'm dying 😂😂

510 More Replies...

@SeymourWadeMcHailer

The day my baby girl named Roxane was born, I drove home to get some clothing for staying in hospital with my wife, and the second I started the car, this song played on the radio. Greatest chills in my whole life :)

@janetwebster5099

Congratulations! What a beautiful name for your daughter! One of My Electric Blue Acaras is named Roxanne - The other 2 are Sting and Busy. Interestingly Sting chose Busy (older female) as his mate rather then Roxanne - am thinking he has not heard the song lol

@morbidcorpse5954

That is scary.

More Comments

More Versions