“Queen of Hearts” was listed by Rolling Stone as one of the greatest country songs of all time. The version they have rendered was by Juice Newton, an American country and pop singer. Newton made the song popular when she released her version in 1981, but it wasn’t her who recorded it first.

Black and white photo of Juice Newton
Photo Credit: Charles Bush/ AllMusic

First Version of “Queen of Hearts”

Hank DeVito wrote this chart-topper in 1979. It was first recorded by Welsh singer Dave Edmunds for his album Repeat. When Edmunds released it as a single, the song entered the UK and Irish charts.

Juice Newton’s Recording

Before Newton recorded the song, she performed it live in her shows until she finally decided to include it on her first album Juice. Her producer was against it when she wanted the song to be part of her album. But,eventually, Richard Landis, the producer, let Newton record the song.


Chart Performance and Award of “Queen of Hearts”

“Queen of Hearts” became Newton’s signature song, and it is known internationally. It entered various charts inside and outside the US. It placed at number fourteen on the Hot Country Songs chart, and number two on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart. Furthermore, Newton was nominated for Best Female Country Vocal Performance during the 1982 Grammy Awards.

Other Covers

Aside from Juice Newton other artists such as Rodney Crowell, Shelly Jones Band, and many more covered the song.

About the Song

The song “Queen of Hearts” is about falling in love with someone who can’t fully commit. The narrator in the song is aware that being with her lover is not a good idea, but she is tempted to be with him.

Playing with the Queen of Hearts

Knowing it ain’t really smart

The Joker ain’t the only fool

Who’ll do anything for you

Juice Newton’s Album

Newton’s song was not the only one that was internationally known. She also gained recognition with her album “Juice”. Her album reached number four on the Country Albums chart, and it was Platinum-certified by RIAA in 1982. Three songs were released from the album as a single, and it has entered the chart (“Angel of the Morning,” “Queen of Hearts,” and “The Sweetest Thing (I’ve Ever Known)”).