Meaning of “Ruby Tuesday” by The Rolling Stones

Written By Michael Miller

Michael is a music teacher and professional cellist. He loves uncovering the deeper meaning of popular songs.

If you’ve ever wondered about the hidden meaning behind The Rolling Stones’ classic “Ruby Tuesday,” you’re in the right place. This iconic song, released in 1967, has a lot more depth than its catchy melody might suggest.

“Ruby Tuesday” is a song about freedom, change, and the fleeting nature of life. The songwriter, Mick Jagger, seems to be addressing a mysterious and elusive character, Ruby Tuesday. The song reflects on how Ruby is a free spirit, someone who refuses to be tied down or defined by anyone or anything. Ruby constantly changes, and this song is a farewell to her.

“Ruby Tuesday” Lyrics Meaning

Let’s break down the lyrics to uncover their meaning:

“She would never say where she came from, yesterday don’t matter if it’s gone” – Ruby is a mysterious figure who doesn’t dwell on the past. She’s all about living in the present.

“While the sun is bright or in the darkest night, no one knows, she comes and goes” – Ruby is unpredictable, like the changing of day and night.

“Don’t question why she needs to be so free, she’ll tell you it’s the only way to be” – Ruby’s freedom is non-negotiable, and she believes it’s the only way to live.

“There’s no time to lose,” I heard her say, catch your dreams before they slip away” – Ruby encourages living life to the fullest and pursuing your dreams while you can.

“Dying all the time, lose your dreams and you will lose your mind, ain’t life unkind?” – The song’s message becomes somber here, emphasizing the consequences of not embracing change and freedom.

Why Was “Ruby Tuesday” Written?

Mick Jagger wrote this song during a period of cultural and social upheaval in the 1960s. It was a time of rapid change and experimentation, and “Ruby Tuesday” captures the spirit of that era. Jagger himself has mentioned that the song was inspired by a real person he knew, but it’s also a reflection of the broader desire for personal freedom and self-expression.

In a nutshell, “Ruby Tuesday” by The Rolling Stones is a timeless anthem about the need to embrace change, freedom, and the transient nature of life. It encourages us to live in the moment, chase our dreams, and appreciate the people who come and go in our lives. If you’ve never paid close attention to the lyrics, give it another listen – you might discover a deeper appreciation for this classic rock gem.