Category Rolling Stones
“Charlie’s good tonight in’nit he?” — Mick Jagger, Madison Square Garden, 1969. Charlie Watts’s drum kit was a pitch-perfect reflection of the man who sat behind it for The Rolling Stones for nearly 60 years: modest yet essential. Charlie famously eschewed rock drum solos as frivolous, show-offy expressions of ego. A lifelong jazz devotee and […]
Talk about setting a high bar. How do you match an album (1968’s “Beggars Banquet”) that has “Sympathy For The Devil” as its opener? Simple. Make “Gimme Shelter” the opening salvo on your follow-up record. Some of us didn’t need a big box set (out now) marking the golden anniversary of “Let It Bleed” to […]
The 300 lucky radio station contest winners who crowded into a dozen buses bound for Toronto’s El Mocambo Tavern one early March evening in 1977 began booing when they thought they wouldn’t be seeing the club’s headliners, April Wine, after all. Also on the bill that night was some opening act called The Cockroaches. They […]
To truly consider the Rolling Stones, it’s simply not adequate to ponder a clutch of hit singles or a few best-selling albums, or even an epochal moment or movement in music history. No, to properly contemplate the Stones is to throw a wide net across the stretching seas of the decades encompassing music, fashion, and culture that’s informed their existence (and vice versa). And bring your magnifying glass and microscope.
Diamonds from the Mines: In the service of being a little less “Blue & Lonesome” (even though we’re quite enjoying the state of mind the new LP brings, so thanks boys), we’ve rolled away the stones and cracked open our hermetically sealed, climate-controlled “RPM” vaults to peruse a handful of sparkling jewels and (thankfully) non-scuffed […]
Ultimately, despite (or perhaps because of) being bashed-about and knocked-out off-the-cuff, “Blue & Lonesome” firmly and expansively situates itself in time and place. Like most good albums, it captures and distills a mood and a feeling, a frame of mind, a state of being, and it’s a welcome, if relatively brief (at 42 minutes), escape.
It’s now almost farcical to consider that for a spell during the mid-1970s, the Rolling Stones were not only grappling with questions of relevance as a creative and cultural force, but struggling to just stay afloat (even with that inflatable phallus – or perhaps in spite of it) as a working unit.
In the spirit of Throwback Thursday (although, truth be told, we’re throwin’ it back pretty much every day of the week here), I invite you to check out a sample of some of my rarer records and vintage music memorabilia being posted and catalogued on an ongoing basis at my brand-spankin’ new “RPM: Life In Analog” Google+ […]
No wonder Nicky Hopkins felt right at home next to Jeff Beck’s wailing electric guitar. On the day of his birth, Feb. 24, 1944, an air raid hit his hometown of Perivale, England. It was 72 ago today that the late, great British pianist/keyboardist, a longtime session ace and sideman to the stars, as well as core member of […]
AMERICAN EXILES ON TOUR ’72: The Stones Roll On That Dusty Road In Wax Boots (And Digital Ones Too!)
LADIES & GENTLEMEN, A PREFACE TO THE INTRODUCTION: Call it kismet or the hand of fate or the rock gods grinning with glee at the chemical convergence of impulse, intent, and circumstance. But I just noticed that this review essay, which I intended to serve as a kind of Part II piggybacking follow-up to […]