“One Love” by The Stone Roses

It has been put forth that a certain line in The Stone Roses’ “One Love” was inspired by one from the New Testament. But if so, this piece in its entirety doesn’t particularly read as if it is Biblically based.

The “one love” the vocalist is referring to, as explained, is “one heart and one soul”. Of course that is an ambiguous definition and one that isn’t necessarily expounded on despite the relative lengthiness of this track. But at the end of the day, what it appears Ian is referencing is the rapport between himself and the addressee, as idealized. 

It is also apparent that said individual is a loved one along the lines of a significant other or bestie, i.e. someone whom the vocalist can’t really perceive doing without.

So on one hand we find Brown advertising his friendship, if you will, as in letting the addressee know that he is committed enough to always be on call to lend assistance if need be. On the other, he is also making this person aware of the positive effect his or her presence is having on his life. And on top of that, as alluded to earlier, he is celebrating the connection that exists between the two of them.

So putting all of this together and going back to how the term “one love” is defined, the vocalist feels as if their love is strong enough that they “don’t need another”.

Going back to the spiritual dimensions of what’s being put forth, as the song progresses, the lyrics do get increasingly esoteric, in a manner of speaking.

Who is the Addressee of “One Love”?

It’s not clear who Ian is singing to. Obviously The Stone Roses did not want to go as far as to openly reveal such to us listeners, i.e. the nature of the relationship between the vocalist and addressee. But what is safely discernible is that he values his interpersonal relationship with this person more than with anyone else he’s associated with. 

And by the time all is said and done, “One Love” does sorta come off as what we refer to as an us-against-the-world song, i.e. the singer’s being noticeably more confident if he has the addressee by his side.

Lyrics of The Stone Roses' "One Love"

The Stone Roses

The Stone Roses is a rock band, hailing from Manchester, that was around during the latter part of the 20th century and also throughout most of the 2010s. 

They proved to be wildly successful from the onset of their discography, but the above-mentioned broken timeline is indicative of the fact there was some internal strife between the quartet which defined this act –

  • Ian Brown
  • John Squire
  • Mani
  • Reni 

For instance, even though “One Love” marks the second highest they ever scored on the UK Singles Chart, frontman Ian Brown is on record as basically dissing the song and the effort the crew put behind it.

So as fate would have, The Stone Roses only got around to dropping two studio albums – 1989’s “The Stone Roses” and 1994’s “Second Coming”. And they were successful enough to release a compilation LP between the two, that being “Turns into Stone”. 

And despite being released only a month beforehand, “One Love” did go on to be featured on the aforementioned compilation project. 

When was “One Love” released?

Silvertone Records released it in June of 1990. This song was first issued as a standalone single before being included on the abovementioned compilation. 

On its own, it peaked at number 4 on the UK Singles Chart, in addition to reaching 9th place on Billboard’s Alternative Airplay list stateside.


“One Love” was written by Ian Brown and the track’s guitarist, John Squire. Its official producer is the tenured John Leckie.

One Love

The “Turns into Stone” Project

The album, “Turns into Stone” was released on the 20th of July, 1992 by The Stone Roses.

It is a compilation album with a total of 11 songs. The songs are mainly singles which the band had released earlier but didn’t have them featured on their debut album, “The Stone Roses”. “Turns into Stone” has a total runtime of 53 minutes and 43 seconds.

It was produced through the joint efforts of English sound engineer/record producer John Leckie and Peter Hook, a renowned record producer. Peter is mainly recognized as a co-founder of British rock bands, New Order and Joy Division.

“Turns into Stone” was officially released through Sony Music’s Silvertone Records. It was released at a time when The Stone Roses wanted to abrogate their contract with Silvertone Records and were in court as a result.

Despite the legal tussle surrounding The Stone Roses and their label at the time of the album’s release, “Turns into Stone” was warmly received by music lovers. It peaked at an impressive No. 32 in their home country, UK.

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