Rolling Stones: Classic or Dud

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Not much to say on the matter right now, but I'll stick my Classic oar in before people start tearing into them.

Patrick, Thursday, 22 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Neither. They could've been classic because their best songs really are great, but they aren't because they are the ultimate example of stretching it too far. They destroyed their own legacy in my opinion.

Better to burn out than to fade away, as it goes...

Ally, Thursday, 22 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Pffft. In 100 years, people will still be listening to the Rolling Stones and plenty of people will like Steel Wheels more than Exile. The Stones obviously like blues music because they do it very, very well, so I wouldn't call it "ripping off". That's kind of childish and myopic. Out of the tons of records the Stones have released, none are really stinkers. Someone has ownership over a style of music? No others may join? Get real.

They never released an album that was the equivalent of masturbation, as many bands do after a while. I can't think of one self-indulgent turd amongst the whole lot of 'em. They're a good, consistent rock band. Seems kind of ludicrous to deny that.

, Thursday, 22 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

i imagine most who liked them at one point will view it as not so dissimilar from the manics: c or d., i.e. first ten years or what have you are classic, after that dud. with the distinction that it took the manics 5-6 albums to overstay their welcome, whereas it took the stones over 20.

to me, they're classic enough that they've yet to expend all of their credit. i give them 'til 2010 before i may have to call them a dud.

fred solinger, Thursday, 22 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Um. Was there a post deleted from this thread? Because Neuro's response doesn't seem to relate to any of the posts above it, and he's usually not oblique or tangential when responding to something.

Dan Perry, Thursday, 22 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

I know it's all a matter of taste and all, but I would think that even with an attitude of pop = Good and rock (and all rootsy music) = Evil, there'd still be room for The Rolling Stones. They did have more hits, true pop radio hits, than almost anybody else, and they wouldn't have gotten as far as they did without screaming teenage girls. It wasn't just Greil Marcus and self-conscious rock dudes paying attention. I think it's your Smiths-loving side talking, Tom ;). FT folks' commitment to wimp-rock (and experimental art-noise, in certain cases) does seem to run deeper than their supposed allegiance to pop, which often seems like just a convenient position from which to indiscriminately attack classic rock, good or bad, and throw out various babies with several oceans' worth of bathwater.

Patrick, Thursday, 22 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

I thought the whole point of the Stones was that they were self-indulgent turds from day one. Granted, by about day 1200 they started making horrible music, but their shit from the 60s-Exile, they sounded like they were coming from exactly where rock was supposed to be coming from. American 60s punk rock is about 1000 bands trying to be the Stones; the whole adolescent attitude of turning sexual frustration into swagger and violence has always been at the center of punk rock, and yeah it was there in the Sonics and the Raiders and the Wailers and Muddy Waters and Jerry Lee Lewis and Eddie Cochran and Elmore James and Gene Vincent and Ike Turner but the Stones were just bigger and richer and bitchier and more accomplished than all these guys. They showed you didn't have to come from the swamp to be a crocodile. Total classic, but they've definitely done damage to their legacy by continuing on for so long.

Kris, Thursday, 22 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Even if I had a time machine and gained uncontestable evidence that people will be listening to the Stones with pleasure in the year 2101 (if man is still having fun), it wouldn't affect my feelings about the band one way or the other. As it is, I'll say dud for now, and for the pretty much the same reason that Ally gives, but I'll also add that their first couple of albums also do nothing for me.

I'll have to echo neuromancer's disregard for charges that the Stones "ripped off" the blues. Sure, they utilized the blues, played with it, turned it over under sideways down, and made it unspeakably boring as well, but they never made false claims to its invention -- except perhaps when the stole "The Last Time" from the Staple Singers and credited "Love In Vain" to "Woody Payne" instead of Robert Johnson.

Michael Daddino, Thursday, 22 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

patrick has discovered our secret. ;) pop music is pretty much a beard for this whole operation, because if you're using tom = freaky trigger, ft is all about wimp-rock and only uses pop when it's convenient. (i mean, the guy worships at the altar of bob dylan and smog for chrissakes!) push him hard enough and you'll discover that most of his opinions are rarely based on fact, on listening to an artist's output and judging (e.g. belle & sebastian) and when they are, it's usually a 30 second sample from

when you factor in all of the contributors, with the obvious exception of party-pooper ned raggett, freaky trigger becomes THE pop site. we write about madonna and destiny's child and janet jackson, which allows tom to pen lengthy examinations of mazarin and charlemagne palestine. (which i prefer, actually, because when he goes straight pop, we get *shudder* that jessica simpson "interview," post-modernism that'd make eggers proud.) he'll struggle to find the pop in these artists, but will ignore the far more obvious pop in artists like the stones because they're "classic rock" and are white boys playin' the blues.

fred solinger, Thursday, 22 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

In terms of FT: I think we - or at least I - wear the wimp-rock stuff, as you call it, on our sleeves. I have a really conflicted relationship with it as has been written about at length and probably boringly by me in the zine. And we call ourselves a "pro-pop" zine, not a "pop" zine, which is intentional. I personally think a bit of respect for pop is a good thing, and a bit of disrespect for classic rock is a good thing too. As Fred points out I love Dylan, so I'm not anti "classic rock" any more than I'm anti country or anti reggae. But I think there need to be sites which poke fun at it and dont let its quality go unquestioned. I don't like that much 60s pop, though, the Stones included. It's not animosity, they just don't interest me.

I dont like rock and roll as an attitude much - it seems played out, of its time, interesting for sure but as inspirational and relevant to me as flappers are, or young edwardians, or any other historical cultural movement.

Tom, Thursday, 22 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

I prefer fading away to burning out - sorry if I'm unromantic about this. I still think the Rolling Stones sound fine, besides. I don't expect anything they've made in the last 20 years to make any converts, but Steel Wheels and Stripped sound like a great band. Nothing new and original by any means, but I don't always need that.

Patrick, Thursday, 22 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

CLASSIC. So incredibly essential it might be the musical equivalent of air or gravity or vitamins, knowwotimean? Of course there are plenty of duds but oh the classics (which i'm not going to list ;) Of course Tom's comments on Jagger's voice mystify me, but I was going to say on the Clash thread that voice's can't be argued about in the end (you either love a voice or not). And yes this is one band I totally and naively love the mythology of (esp. Nick Kent's partying with Keef). The Beatles bore me stiff these days, a thing that will never happen with The Stones, I just put on 'Gimmie Shelter' and it will give me chills just as it did the first time.

Omar, Thursday, 22 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

But when the almighty pop stick is routinely used to beat various heads, the least you can ask for is that the love of pop be more than theoretical. I'm always stunned by how thoroughly almost every single gets trashed in the Focus Group, with only a handful getting passing grades. I'd ask to participate in the next one, but I'm afraid I'm not good enough with the snappy zingers (not a putdown, BTW - the comments are often a riot).

Patrick, Thursday, 22 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

there was one innovative rolling stone: brian jones. he got kicked out of the group by a watered-down blues-wannabe (mick jagger)who had to rely on his dance moves & sickly mug to get by. as for the rest of the band, they were a good group w/ some nice rhythm's & a few good licks. like a million other groups. nothing special.

dom quinn, Thursday, 22 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Dud. I do like some of the early singles, though; "It's All Over Now" has an incredibly physical, thunderous sound for the time, and I get something from the panic of "19th Nervous Breakdown" and "Have You Seen Your Mother Baby ...". I even like "Ruby Tuesday" in a silly way. But even those songs are impossible to love; there's something intensely dislikeable about Jagger's whine of a voice, and I always find myself wanting to punch him, just wishing he'd shut up, even if I quite like the sound surrounding him (and some of the early Charlie Watts drumtracks *are* way ahead of their time). I just find something repulsive and repellent about the Rolling Stones; everything that surrounds them turns me off.

Simon Reynolds once wrote that, for him, there's something resolutely unlovable about The Who; I feel that way about the Stones, but even stronger.

Robin Carmody, Thursday, 22 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Reynolds also once wrote that it's impossible to love rock & roll if you don't love The Stones. ;)

Anyway I suspect that if you cross-reference the outcome of this thread with The Smiths thread you'll very likely find out that you either like The Stones or The Smiths (who indeed seem like the perfect anti-thesis of The Stones: weak, safe, effeminate, boring, etc.)

Omar, Thursday, 22 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

"Effeminate", Omar? It's good to see the Stones' notorious misogyny extends to their fans ;)

I think after 30 years it's hard to imagine anything safer than the Stones, too. Of course they were 'dangerous' in their time, but this is what I mean by the historical interest of rock and roll. (I'd hardly claim any different for the Smiths, at least musically.)

Patrick - almost everyone in the focus group gives a 9 or 10 to two or three pop tunes. It's just the marks then drop because of the averaged-out nature of things. And R&B and Hip-Hop do well, which pretty much define the pop charts now in the way that - as you rightly say - the Stones did 30 years ago. (I think "Satisfaction" is a genius pop single.) But by all means, everyone on this forum join in next time, please. The more the merrier.

Jagger's Voice? It's a question of mannerisms. Some mannerisms I like - some I don't like. Jagger's, in general, I don't.

Tom, Thursday, 22 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

robin: who is your favorite rock band? if you say free or humble pie, you'll ruin my theory.

omar: well, i love both the stones and the smiths. ;) however, i reckon that if i got into the latter before the former, that might not be the case: if my teen years were soundtracked by the smiths, i imagine my tastes might be quite different.

i don't think it's possible to love the stones and not, at the very least, *like* jagger's voice. it's very non-threatening: you can shout along with the music and never have to worry about sounding worse than him. he's one of those singers i wish would always shout because they're voices are really awful when they sing, though he wasn't totally without his charms as a singer.

fred solinger, Thursday, 22 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Dan, the original question was:

"brash, brassy rock gods or bloated, pathetic blues thieves?"


Ally said they'd turned into duds merely by sticking around so long.

So, I was just addressing two ideas at once. (First of all, how could they be bloated? They're all scrawny mofos!)

As far as the self-indulgent speil, what I meant was that they stayed true to their formula, making decent blues rock music. Yes, I know the whole rebellious schtick is self-indulgent, being that they do what they wanna do, etc., but I meant, they never produced some barely-even- music artistic piece of crap halfassedly, like so many other bands.

Sure, you could say "Their Satanic Majesties Request" is a self- indulgent piece of crap, but I happen to like it quite a bit and it's not too different from their other stuff.

"2000 Man" is a great tune off "Satanic", covered decently by a punk band called the Groovie Ghoulies and "Summer Romance" off the 1981 "Emotional Rescue" is a great tune covered by another punk band called New Bomb Turks. If you listen to both cover tunes, without any prior knowledge of the Rolling Stones, you'd swear they were from the same album, probably made in the late '70's. And yet, those two songs span almost 20 years.

Point being, their "artsy-fartsy" stuff *and* their later "dud" material are still, basically, the same great kind of rock and roll as ever.

Now, THAT was a tangent, Dan!

, Thursday, 22 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Yeah Tom, sorry the spirit of Under My Thumb just took control. Just to be on the safe side: I was trying to polarize things a bit to try out a theory. Sadly Fred already has disproven it. Good point on the voice though: The Stones are one of the best groups to shout along to, aren't they?

Omar, Thursday, 22 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Jesus, Fred, don't you have anything better to do today? How about we name this thread "The Stones Hour With Fred Solinger"?

ANYHOW, lots of replies. First of, I think it's "ludicrious" to claim that anyone who thinks that the Stones AREN'T consistent is wrong. You like them. I generally do not. End of story. It's like me telling the entirety of the Manics thread that they are idiots because several of them preferred EMG to THB. I mean, clearly I disagree so vehemently that I could spit blood out my mouth thinking about it, but they aren't being ludicrious or stupid. It's just what they think.

The Stones to me are a great singles band when they were good, but their albums tended to bore me. And yes, Kris has a great point: they were designed to be indulgent masturbatory rock. You could make a case that all rock is meant to do that - I mean, can someone please explain to me what albums are if NOT indulgent? You aren't exactly curing cancer if you're doing music, despite loads of artists' insistance that if you sing about changing the world, it is the same as doing something about it... ;)

And no, it did not take the Stones, for me, 20 albums to wear out their welcome. They wear it out, for me, about halfway through Hot Rocks. If the dadrock band is not called "MANICS" or "WHO", I am not interested, to give full disclosure. I only like the Stones in theory, because Mick Jagger is such a talentless, ugly man that it's fascinating - it's the ultimate triumph of someone who just really WANTED to be famous tricking the world into making him famous, based solely on personality. That's a kick ass thing, and he's great and fabulous for it; if he wasn't a "singer" he'd have been a tv presenter or actor, just because he really wanted to be a star. It of course works both ways - Mick might be ugly and unable to hit a note with a hammer, but the rest of the band are so dull that no one would've bought them without Mick.

As for FT: what are you talking about, "when you factor in all the contributors..."? As far as I can tell, 90% of any activity on this site comes from Tom. What, because you, Solinger, posted a Destiny's Child piece (which, I might add, is like the 5th piece on that song on NYLPM - can we give it a rest people? At least review a DIFFERENT DC song, look for their album on Napster or something), suddenly it's all pop and sunshine and glory? Tom does post a lot about pop music because there is a lot about pop music on this site and the contributors here are LAZY SODS, including myself, who don't write anything a good portion of the time. I mean, what is Pop Eye if not about Pop? Poor Tom, getting maligned on being a wuss rocker when he does so much work. :)

And where do I fit in, not really liking the Stones and REALLY hating the Smiths? :)

Ally, Thursday, 22 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Well Ally, I'm afraid that means you in fact do not exist! This is quite an impossible situation you see ;)

Omar, Thursday, 22 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

oh, the irony! calling me out for replying so much ends up in yet ANOTHER reply. i started this thread, so i figure i'd be an active participant, that's all. ;)

as far as the albums go, i was trying to be fair to both the manics and the stones. clearly you could give or take albums, depending on your particular opinion!

the stones have accumulated a great "legend" over the years and, going back to the weezer thread, very little of it fuels my interest in the group. besides jagger and everything surrounding him, who is a source of personal inspiration.

my comments about f.t. were meant to be taken as tongue-in-cheek. clearly none of us would be here, that is to say in this forum, if it weren't for tom and his ideas about pop.

and you fit in as that very rare hybrid, the manics-who worshipper. ;)

fred solinger, Thursday, 22 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

So why the font switch?

As for me being a party-pooper -- hm, you mean my disdain for singles last year, or my disdain in general? ;-)

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 22 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

I don't know about Fred, but I'd say it's the disdain in general ;).

Patrick, Thursday, 22 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Woops, was that fontswitch my fault? I forgot to close the endtag. I just thought it screwed up my message, but it appears to be screwing up everyones?? I just ended the tag, so maybe it'll look normal again?

, Thursday, 22 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Viva. And my disdain is part of what I am. Never trust anybody who doesn't actively hate as much as they actively praise. ;-)

Ned Raggett, Thursday, 22 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link


A long time ago, galaxies away, I went through a brief period of trying to like them, but everything about them rubbed me the wrong way: voice, style, lyrics, attitude, general crankiness. I just couldn't stand them -- they always sounded like a glorified dumb bar- band. I gave up, and then I realized that it's okay to dislike bands that rock critics think are classic.

And I like the Smiths, so I guess that makes me a pussy.

Ian White, Friday, 23 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

My theory isn't completely dead :) I wonder what Dr.C thinks, any bets? ;)

Some further thoughts: for me The Stones are year zero, i don't care about Elvis or any other blues guys they ripped off. and with year zero's you just need a lot of mythology, I would say mythology + intensity + riffs = rock 'n roll. Now regardless of The Stones becoming old farts, I immediatly forget when I put on "Beggar's Banquet" or "Let it "Bleed", for that moment you live in that record and what you get is: psychotic cops cracking skulls, cities burning, lots of knife-pulling, mountains of drugs, under-age girls, armies of rapists flooding the streets, the danger of getting hit by a stray bullit at any moment. Now, in real life I'm a very sweet, liberal, no- violent guy, but this shit excites me. :) Anyone remember the way Guy Pellaert drew them in "Rock Dreams"? A bunch of English dandy's dressed up in SS uniforms drinking tea with naked little girls on their laps. So you see why I don't really find The Smiths very interesting ;)

Omar, Friday, 23 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

I'm back unscathed from the KJ wars to proclaim - Classic, although not without reservations. The Aftermath to Exile run of albums is undoubtedly classic. Before that - great singles band for sure, but the albums are padded with R+B filler. I actually quite like mid-60's R+B filler, so that's OK I guess. Post-Exile I haven't really bothered to take notice, although it's sort of good that they're still around. The odd single is still damn fine - 'Saint of Me' anybody?

With the Stones though, the cult of Mick n' Keef is far more important than the actual music. The court cases, publicity stunts, Brian Jones' death, Altamont etc all loom large over the music. The press seem to perpetuate this to such a ridiculous level - I mean who wants to hear about Altamont again and again? If you strip all this away and get back to the music it's pretty obvious that Jagger is a fairly average singer and that a lot of their material lacks the kind of excitement that you might expect it would have if you'd read about it first.

Dr. C, Friday, 23 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Hmmm, I don't know. I have no use for their sex-drugs-and-depravation image. I mean, it *is* interesting - Stanley Booth's The True Adventures of The Rolling Stones is a great read - but you don't need any appreciation of that stuff to enjoy the music.

Patrick, Friday, 23 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

I agree Patrick, it's also about the intro-riff to 'Brown Sugar', the way the female singer starts to wail in 'Gimme Shelter', it's about the swing in 'Sympathy for the Devil'. The Stones of course are bona fide boogie monsters, they swing. Watts is a great drummer and Keef has a knack for the right riff.

Also I was talking more about the mythology in the music itself, the images of the lyrics (although eventually the spilled out into the real world). All those tales of debauchery eventually become stale, though Nick Kent's 'Twilight Babylon'(in The Dark Stuff) is a great read about the Stones in the 70s, very sick and amusing. Also some brilliant characterizations esp. of Mick 'n Bianca Jagger (man, did he see through them :)

Omar, Friday, 23 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

That Nick Kent piece is terrific, yes. If only all biographical rock writing as as psychologically compelling.

As for Rock Dreams, it's a great book but the whole Godstar decadence trip on the Stones didn't wash with me. It would have worked better for Led Zep I think. Generally though it makes the best case for classic rock and pop of any book out there - some of the images are just magnificent, capturing everything you need to know about a star in one image (the Brian Wilson one stands out).

Tom, Friday, 23 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

johnny marr proves you wrong too, omar.

aside from the odd single ("under my thumb" may be my favourite), a ho-hum dud i wouldn't bother thinking about if they weren't so acclaimed. stiff and wooden rhythm section, mechanical faux-blues vocals. give me the stooges any day. "hand in glove," "handsome devil," or "what she said" are infinitely heavier, more biting, harder rocking, and more dangerous (since when is macho more threatening than effeminate?). in fact, the idea of the stones, an institution as thoroughly mainstream as kellogg's corn flakes, being threatening at all is positively hilarious.

ah well. better get back to stephin merritt and iancu dumitrescu.

sundar subramanian, Friday, 23 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Eminem is as mainstream as Burger King, and that's exactly what makes him more threatening and dangerous than a cult act like, say, Belle & Sebastian (who will also be dad-rock 30 years from now, if they aren't already). "Gimme Shelter" may be an accepted classic and the *context* in which it is listened to and used may be safe, but its *sound* and *feel* will always be ferocious and full of life.

Patrick, Friday, 23 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

well I never said they were threatening now, did I? And of course it's a laugh when they play 'Street Fighting Man' these days. Used to be pretty heavy though. Ahem also effeminate was a bit of a joke since well for the longest time The Stones walked around with eye- liner and long hair.

I'm prepared to throw my theory out, although since i was re-reading The Dark Stuff I noticed how Kent was fascinated by Mozzer's fear for thugs, crowds and rude violent behaviour (I put 2 and 2 together and built myself a hypothesis, nothing to serious, so I'll take those comments on the wooden rhythm section & the heavyosity of The Smiths with a pinch of salt).

Omar, Friday, 23 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

This is tougher than it looks. I love the Stones, but suspect them. Maybe I should - maybe I do - dislike them. Is that possible? Like I say, this is a mite tougher than it looks.

the pinefox, Friday, 23 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

I like The Stones..I've never loved them....some great tracks yada yada yada....but I never went through a period when I was really into them unlike other classic rock bands like The Beatles or VU. I cant explain why I was never into them but something about them doesnt sound as sexy and rocking as I always wished it would...

Mike Bourke, Friday, 23 March 2001 01:00 (nineteen years ago) link

one year passes...
Nobody did rock and roll better than the Stones. Name them... you can't do it guys because they are rock and roll. Yeah yeah, they're for shit now but back in the day, they wrote the fucking rules. More classic tracks than I could list here but if you don't believe me, dig out Beggars Banquet and put Streetfighting Man on repeat and don't turn it off until you think to yourself "Hello."

Roger Fascist, Friday, 26 July 2002 00:00 (seventeen years ago) link

one month passes...
Neal Pollack lets the air out of the Stones' tires. Read it now while it's still free.

o. nate (onate), Wednesday, 4 September 2002 13:02 (seventeen years ago) link

Nice article. I saw them in Luxembourg in 1993 I think. 100,000 or more people in the mud and a couple of small puppets about 500m away jumping up and down with a Jagger the size of a mouse running from the left of the stage to the right of it.
It was really awful. I left after about 30 minutes just after Like a Rolling Stone. That was probably the best song of the evening. It wasn't theirs.
I think the Stones have achieved something no one else has. To be even more ridiculous than Michael Jackson.

alex in mainhattan (alex63), Wednesday, 4 September 2002 13:41 (seventeen years ago) link

It's a decent enough article, but what was he expecting? Pollack's a genius, I've just been for a nostalgic rummage in the McSweeney's archive and lol'ed at The Dark Goddess of Russia Is Horny. Has anyone read his book? Is it worth getting?

Mike (mratford), Wednesday, 4 September 2002 14:13 (seventeen years ago) link

I have not read his book, but. Every time I read him, I sort of laugh, but the parody seems about 30 years too late to me...

Ben Williams, Wednesday, 4 September 2002 14:46 (seventeen years ago) link

I'm interested to hear how the Stones-haters and the indifferent feel about the large swath of rock music made under their influence -- at times in flat-out imitation. You can argue that they did it better, but as near as I can tell, the Stooges could never exist if there hadn't been the Rolling Stones.

wl, Wednesday, 4 September 2002 15:34 (seventeen years ago) link

If they'd pulled a Buddy Holly after releasing the Satisfaction single, this would be a "Rolling Stones - what if?" thread.

"Oh, I bet they'd be billionaire marrionette ghouls by now..."

g.cannon (gcannon), Wednesday, 4 September 2002 15:50 (seventeen years ago) link

I understand Neal's point (that they blow these days), but his argument seems awful shaky. "The Stones suck because hipper things are happening now," seems to sum it up. Yeah, well of course! The Stones haven't been hip since 1969! And also this idea that since they are no longer cool their old records are no longer worth listening to... that's just silly.

Yancey (ystrickler), Wednesday, 4 September 2002 16:16 (seventeen years ago) link

I don't think Mick Jagger is talentless. His voice is an acquired taste, but his phrasing's great. I'm listening to "She's So Cold" right now, and he's doing some very cool things with his voice -- the choppy syllables ("She - e's so cold"), the way he thrwwwwwwoooooooooooooooows his vowels (which he sort of stole from Dylan, but he stole a LOT from Dylan) and they sort of fizzle out perfectly and fry away at the end of the phrase, the way "so" becomes "suh" or just "ssss," the blend of raspy shouting and rapping and prettiness. A Jagger vocal is never one-dimensional. Not like, say, a Belle and Sebastian vocal. Jagger really gives you a lot to listen to in his performances.

Jody Beth Rosen, Wednesday, 4 September 2002 17:02 (seventeen years ago) link

Jagger is at his best in "Dead Flowers." His phrasings there are perfect. I can do them flawlessly.

Yancey (ystrickler), Wednesday, 4 September 2002 17:56 (seventeen years ago) link

I like the Stones too actually but I think they should have the decency to admit that their glory days (almost everything after Exile has been dud) are long gone, that they aren't twenty anymore and that their world tours nowadays are a farce. They remind me a little of the pope who refuses to die. They hold on to the throne of rock'n roll though they have lost it ages ago. And they don't seem to have taken notice of this. It won't be long and they will roll the stone Mick Jagger on the stage in a wheel-chair. It really is a joke.

alex in mainhattan (alex63), Wednesday, 4 September 2002 17:58 (seventeen years ago) link

Have you read John Strausbaugh's Rock Til You Drop? Terrible book, but I loved hating it.

Jody Beth Rosen, Wednesday, 4 September 2002 18:01 (seventeen years ago) link

Reminds me of this (solid) forgotten throwaway:

TikTok to the (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Friday, 24 April 2020 00:38 (two months ago) link

i loved highwire

Pinche Cumbion Bien Loco (stevie), Sunday, 26 April 2020 22:31 (two months ago) link

the live album that accompanied it mixed in crowd sounds from get yer yayas out

Pinche Cumbion Bien Loco (stevie), Sunday, 26 April 2020 22:32 (two months ago) link

Tunes where Mick plays harp usually work out well.

earlnash, Sunday, 26 April 2020 23:11 (two months ago) link

that's true

TikTok to the (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Sunday, 26 April 2020 23:36 (two months ago) link

‘Almost Hear You Sigh’ is my lockdown tune of choice

X-Prince Protégé (sonnyboy), Sunday, 26 April 2020 23:45 (two months ago) link

mmmmmmmmmmm silky smooth
as wine

TikTok to the (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Sunday, 26 April 2020 23:53 (two months ago) link

You guys watched this clip? Holy shit, it's good

TikTok to the (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Monday, 27 April 2020 02:53 (two months ago) link

Not until just now. Thanks!

Together Again Or (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 27 April 2020 03:19 (two months ago) link

I think you shared that one time on a Some Girls thread or somewhere, which eventually led me to buying that '78 Texas DVD/CD from which it came.

The whole show is pretty hot, but that clip might be the peak.

"...And the Gods Socially Distanced" (C. Grisso/McCain), Monday, 27 April 2020 03:46 (two months ago) link

They have some tour memorabilia in the booklet. The band played a handful of smaller theatre shows under aliases in between stadium/arena dates. The DFW one was filmed for an aborted theatrical release.

"...And the Gods Socially Distanced" (C. Grisso/McCain), Monday, 27 April 2020 03:51 (two months ago) link

amazing clip - does Bill have a broken finger on his fretting hand?!?

an incoherent crustacean (MatthewK), Monday, 27 April 2020 04:06 (two months ago) link

Chet Flippo's tour report (which includes some behind the scenes stuff on that show) is something else:

"...And the Gods Socially Distanced" (C. Grisso/McCain), Monday, 27 April 2020 04:10 (two months ago) link

78 era stuff is better than that new Ghost Town video/song

curmudgeon, Monday, 27 April 2020 17:12 (two months ago) link

The best part of that clip is that I am sure the tour budget included private jets, entire floors of hotels, clothes, food, booze, drugs, stage props, security, limousines, all the things you would expect the Stones would require in order to function on the road but:

Stones account, with a green visor, arm garters, hunched over a rolltop desk calls out through the smoke:

"Mick, I've crunched the numbers and we just can't afford another mic stand & mic for backing vox, how about Woody & Keef just share one?"

chr1sb3singer, Monday, 27 April 2020 18:45 (two months ago) link

McLaughlin is close but he can’t really stretch out; we can’t.

Together Again Or (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 27 April 2020 18:59 (two months ago) link

Outside that Live in Texas 78 show, the Stones have put out quite a few live recordings worth checking out.

'Ladies and Gentlemen the Rolling Stones' - soundtrack w/ Exile era live show with Nicky Hopkins playing madcap on piano.

'Brussels Affair'- a bit rougher on the sound quality, but at least as good as most Dead shows also from 73. Released as a download, but also out there as a long time bootleg.

'LA Friday Live 1975'- This is a live at the Forum set with Billy Preston on keys. Plays up some funk including a real sleazy version of
"Fingerprint File"

This one is notable as the cover looks like a Pavement album.

The Marquee Club 1971 is pretty subdued and not quite as good as these but worth hearing if you a big Stones fan. It's pretty much cut right after Sticky Fingers, so it's got some of those tunes in the set.

earlnash, Monday, 27 April 2020 20:39 (two months ago) link

Mick with guitar will never not look awkward as all hell.

SQUIRREL MEAT!! (Capitaine Jay Vee), Monday, 27 April 2020 20:57 (two months ago) link

the Stones gave it everything they had: these old pros, crippled by age and by dissipation, but still holding the flag high

donald failson (sic), Monday, 27 April 2020 21:19 (two months ago) link

That hoary old journalistic chestnut from '78!

SQUIRREL MEAT!! (Capitaine Jay Vee), Monday, 27 April 2020 21:22 (two months ago) link

This one is notable as the cover looks like a Pavement album.

Wow! Yeah it does

I eat fast foods (morrisp), Monday, 27 April 2020 21:22 (two months ago) link

The funny thing is that all of the Stones--bar Wyman--were in their mid-30s at the time!

"...And the Gods Socially Distanced" (C. Grisso/McCain), Monday, 27 April 2020 21:25 (two months ago) link

yeah he specifically cites Jagger as 34 in the same para

donald failson (sic), Monday, 27 April 2020 21:32 (two months ago) link

There's some Lester Bangs pieces declaring the Stones were past it that ran as early as '73.

"...And the Gods Socially Distanced" (C. Grisso/McCain), Monday, 27 April 2020 21:56 (two months ago) link

From that article:

The Stones hit the stage at Will Rogers Auditorium at 10:58 p.m. to a sustained ovation.

Fuuuuuck that. What, did each opener get a full hour to play?

but also fuck you (unperson), Monday, 27 April 2020 21:57 (two months ago) link

It was Doug Kershaw and Peter Tosh, so...maybe?

Fwiw, it was a summer night in the central time zone, and if you scored a ticket at face value, it was like $5 for the Stones in a 2500 seater.

"...And the Gods Socially Distanced" (C. Grisso/McCain), Monday, 27 April 2020 22:17 (two months ago) link

Mick with guitar will never not look awkward as all hell.

― SQUIRREL MEAT!! (Capitaine Jay Vee),

tbf he plays and holds it much better now

TikTok to the (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Monday, 27 April 2020 22:19 (two months ago) link

I'm not the first to argue that Mick playing guitar in part made Some Girls so damn good, and I can hear it on the studio and live "When the Whip Comes Down."

TikTok to the (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Monday, 27 April 2020 22:23 (two months ago) link

Isn’t Mick playing guitar on Heaven? Cos that sounds great.

29 facepalms, Monday, 27 April 2020 22:31 (two months ago) link


A second rhythm guitar on most Stones singles and album tracks after 1978. He's essential to "Respectable," "Lies," "Miss You," "Hang Fire," "Mixed Emotions," and those are just the agreed-on classics, I guess.

TikTok to the (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Monday, 27 April 2020 22:35 (two months ago) link

Earlier than that period, he plays electric rhythm on "Sway" when Keith wasn't around, and no one will argue with THAT part

TikTok to the (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Monday, 27 April 2020 22:39 (two months ago) link

I love Mixed Emotions, it's got such an idiosyncratic, perfectly Stonesy momentum.

Pinche Cumbion Bien Loco (stevie), Monday, 27 April 2020 22:39 (two months ago) link

Isn't also playing acoustic on "Moonlight Mile"?

"...And the Gods Socially Distanced" (C. Grisso/McCain), Monday, 27 April 2020 22:57 (two months ago) link


TikTok to the (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Monday, 27 April 2020 23:06 (two months ago) link

I’m not sure Taylor remembers the sway session that well. That rhythm part sounds a lot like Keith to me, down to the sus4 flourishes and the open G tuning. I guess mick was playing as much inna “Keith” style as he could.

calstars, Monday, 27 April 2020 23:33 (two months ago) link

If Keith teaches you guitar things like that are gonna happen.

29 facepalms, Monday, 27 April 2020 23:35 (two months ago) link

Jagger gave Taylor credit for writing "Sway" in that '95 RS interview without calling his lawyer about it.

TikTok to the (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Monday, 27 April 2020 23:45 (two months ago) link

He still looks goofy holding it.

SQUIRREL MEAT!! (Capitaine Jay Vee), Tuesday, 28 April 2020 11:21 (two months ago) link

I mean in that concert footage. Haven't paid much attention to his contemporary guitar use.

SQUIRREL MEAT!! (Capitaine Jay Vee), Tuesday, 28 April 2020 11:23 (two months ago) link

(Y)ou... need two guitars (to play that song) , 'cause you need one guitar in open tuning to play the dah-dum-dah-da. In fact it was Mick Jagger that played rhythm guitar on that track.

- Mick Taylor, 1995

I added my solo to Sway, but it's very much Mick's song. I don't think Keith's on it. It had a great, loose feel. Mick played rhythm guitar on that. He's a great rhythm player. My theory is he has a natural feel and that's also why he's such a great dancer.

- Mick Taylor, 2011

TikTok to the (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Tuesday, 28 April 2020 11:24 (two months ago) link

three weeks pass...

is it actually a nasty habit to take tea at three?

mookieproof, Friday, 22 May 2020 15:58 (one month ago) link

depends what you mean by "tea" (rolls a dovetail joint)

Pinche Cumbion Bien Loco (stevie), Friday, 22 May 2020 15:59 (one month ago) link

either way, healthy calming rituals of self care and not at all nasty

soaring skrrrtpeggios (jon /via/ chi 2.0), Friday, 22 May 2020 16:17 (one month ago) link

Can’t be too careful, lot of tea leaves about

Spocks on the Run (James Redd and the Blecchs), Friday, 22 May 2020 16:17 (one month ago) link

hanging up meat for a week is also a good idea if you want your steaks to be tender

The fillyjonk who believed in pandemics (Lily Dale), Friday, 22 May 2020 18:40 (one month ago) link

You know what's an overlooked and great Stones song? High Wire

Pinche Cumbion Bien Loco (stevie), Friday, 22 May 2020 18:52 (one month ago) link


calstars, Friday, 22 May 2020 20:21 (one month ago) link

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