This is a review of the song All I Wanna Do Is Make Love To You, by Heart, a 90s hit.


The woman in the '90s hit song, All I wanna do is make love to you, is that all she wants? It's a great song and a sad song.

It caught my attention properly for the first time only the other day, after randomly tuning in to Q102's Love Zone. I was intrigued by the love story this song seemed to tell. I thought, I must listen to this more closely.

Without further ado, I took myself down the rabbit hole and into the internet to listen to the song repeatedly, as you do, on Youtube, along with a healthy dose of the fact and fairytale surrounding the song from the old reliable Wikipedia, the world's friendliest, most approachable history book.

I'm sure you're familiar with how the song goes. A woman is driving through the night, in the dark and the rain. She has her own man at home, apparently the love of her life, but he can't give her a child. She picks up a man on the roadside; there is chemistry, like a flash of lightening in the downpour; these two lonely people speechlessly hit it off.

They spend the night together in a hotel. The lady makes a quick departure early that morning, leaving a note saying they shared a beautiful, meaningful experience, but that contact must be broken.

That is one half of the story of the song. The other half is a fast-forward to years later and the two lovers bump into each other, but this time the woman is with the child of their passionate, brief union. The true father can see from his child's eyes, the first time he sees him, that they are his own eyes: the night the two lovers spent together proved to be very meaningful indeed.

The woman makes a plea to her lover of that night to please understand, that all along she was in love with another man, only he couldn't give her a child. There is the song. Such an outline may read like a farce - and Benny Hill may have grinned his way through the whole song - but it wrenches the heart.

The problem is, when the song starts, and the woman is driving, she is actually on the prowl for a man who can give her a child. But it's a desperate measure, since, at the early part of the song, she also genuinely does wish to stay and make her life with the man at home who can't give her a child. It is a dilemma and we can but listen to the song with bated breath.

Though this lady is having to resort to desperate measures for her fair share of happiness, she won't pick any man. The song leaves us in no doubt: the man accepts her lift with a smile, he is polite. The woman likes him. She's wondering if it's love at first sight, asking fate to make it right.

She is frantically concerned that it not be just any man, even though it is just that, someone who is a stranger to her, after all. But the opportunity isn't hers to get to know this man; time is short; she accepts she has to be rash in her impossible position and trust to luck.

The hotel they decide to spend the night in, the lady knows it well. That is a stark detail. It can only mean she has been with other strangers before this night in her quest for motherhood. We can see this woman is putting up a fight for what she wants, a happiness the rest of us feel so entitled to we take it for granted, namely the love of the opposite sex and 2.5 children.

The upshot of the night, and the birth of the whole song, is that it went far too well for this good woman. Because the chorus throughout the song, if you get a chance to listen, is that all she wants to do is make love to this man.

On the first night, the first half of the song, that simply means she wants physical union so she can bear a child. In the second half of the song, after the memories of that fateful night remain, not just in her loins, but stay in her heart and wreak havoc in her head - the second half of the song, when she sees her lover in her child's eyes, and he sees it too when he bumps into them on the street, it can truly and poignantly be then said that all she wants to do is make love to that man, true love. It was love at first sight on that first night, in the rain, she driving, he standing drenched on the roadside, both strangers in the storm.

Happiness is clearly not this woman's lot. Now there is a child at stake who has the love of a father who is not its biological Dad. It makes me think of another song, Joan Armatrading's The Weakness In Me, where she loves two men, but how can she break the heart of the one she has spent her time with for the new one? But that's another song.