Joan of Arc

 Written by S. Nicks

 They wanted images when images weren't spoken They depended upon illusions Calling the illusion gold and glitter And they came in tired And they said "Tired was the end of the line" Well, I can't save you Joan of Arc...this time Turn to the wall, baby Turn it to the wall, now Turn it to the wall Joan of Arc Turn to the wall, baby Turn it to the wall, now Woah, no, there's really nothing that you can do for me To make me better Well, there's a few martyrs in a century They take a limousine Because everything else is taken care of And they don't even know what they died for Turn to the wall Turn it to the wall Joan of Arc Ooh, turn to the wall Turn to the wall Turn it to the wall, baby Turn it to the wall, child Gone like the wind Like the stars in the dust Well, her little toy soldier Is covered with rust and Your beautiful eyes, woah, well, they look sad to me now And I don't even know why you left me She saw it all, it was a tiresome ending He stormed out, hearing the door slamming Behind him Ooh, she didn't even know why he left her He said, "Turn it to the wall, baby Turn to the wall Turn to the wall, baby You go up against the wall, now Turn it to the wall, Joan Ooh....turn it to the wall, baby Turn to the wall, now Ooh...up against the wall, baby Well, I can't save you this time Turn it to the wall, baby Turn to the wall Oh, no, oh, no, oh, no.... So turn it to the wall Get up against the wall, baby She says, "Is there anything that I can do for you To make you better?" So, just turn it to the wall, baby Turn to the wall Oh, no, there's really nothing that you can do Turn to the wall, Joan Ooh, turn to the wall Turn it to the wall, now Up against the wall Joan of Arc Oh, no....

WEBMISTRESS speculates:

This song has a different feel from most of Stevie's songs, it's almost spooky (don't you love my technical music terms). This was written after Stevie got back from her stint at Betty Ford, and I think the mood and lyrics reflect that. I think she's talking about herself and celebrities in general when she speaks of depending on illusions, gold and glitter, deceiving themselves that they can live and party as hard as they like and never have to pay any consequences. However, eventually, even rock stars get tired and "reach the end of the line."

I think here Stevie is using Joan of Arc as a name for herself, a kind of alter ego, a device she likes to use a lot (in Cecelia for instance). So she has to go shut herself up in a clinic; nobody can make her better but herself. Again, Stevie uses Joan of Arc as a representation of herself because she feels like she's a "martyr." I assume she means this ironically - she's a "martyr" in a limousine who was killing herself in order to continue her destructive lifestyle and she doesn't even understand why. Now all that is "gone with the wind" (she also uses a Gone With the Wind reference in Welcome to the Room...Sara which was written about the same time and about this same subject).

As for the "little toy soldier", I'm unsure what that represents... perhaps she is referring to her drug paraphenalia that she used as toys? With the reference to the breakup, I'd like to say that she's talking about Lindsey, but we all know he didn't leave least not originally. So, my take on it is that she is indeed referring to Lindsey, but not about their romantic breakup. Instead she's talking about their musical "breakup." They really had almost no contact after Mirage. During Tango in the Night Stevie was hardly around, still dealing with her demons. Lindsey and the rest of the band grew very frustrated with this; Lindsey also at that point was grumbling about leaving the band. He wasn't even sure he had wanted to do Tango in the Night, and of course after that he blew town. So, he did leave her. And I think she sensed that and that's what she's referring to here.


MIKE speculates:

(Actually, "Joan of Arc" was written well before Betty Ford; there are demos of it from Early 1986. In August 1986, before Red Rocks, Stevie announced that the new FM album was completed and would be out "soon". At that time, Stevie had recorded "Seven Wonders", "Juliet", "When I See You Again", "Joan of Arc" and "What Has Rock and Roll Ever Done For You?" for the album. The only song recorded after Betty Ford was "Welcome To The Room...Sara". Just pointing this out for history).

I think this song is about Joe Walsh. People seem to dismiss his presence in Stevie's life, but go re-listen to that BBC interview from 1991, where Stevie says, of ALL her men, Joe was the one she could have spent the rest of her life with. And they did NOT have a good break-up. And, again, Stevie was the one dumped this time. I think Stevie was so heartbroken from 1984-86 after their break-up, and so many songs reflect this.


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