The Stones

Highly Appreciated

The Rolling Stones  (or simply The Stones) were in the vanguard of the British Invasion of bands that became popular in the US in 1964–65.  They were instrumental in making blues a major part of rock and roll, and of changing the international focus of blues culture to the less sophisticated blues typified by Chess Records artists such as Muddy Waters, writer of “Rollin’ Stone”, the song after which the band is named.  Their albums Beggars’ Banquet (1968), Let It Bleed (1969), Sticky Fingers (1971), and Exile on Main St. (1972) are generally considered the Rolling Stones’ “Golden Age”.  Musicologist Robert Palmer attributed the “remarkable endurance” of the Rolling Stones to being “rooted in traditional verities, in rhythm-and-blues and soul music” while “more ephemeral pop fashions have come and gone”.  The Rolling Stones were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1989, and the UK Music Hall of Fame in 2004.  Their estimated album sales are above 250 million.  In 2012, the band celebrated its 50th anniversary.  (More from Wikipedia)
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●    The Rolling Stones 
Sam Ugly (who was only 16) and Tony Torcher had played together in a Anglophile band called the Markeys that played a lot of early Stones, Yardbirds, AnimalsKinks, and Who songs.  After they heard the first Ramones album, and after several of the early punkers came through town – Patti Smith, Talking Heads, and Iggy Pop – a new direction was clear; and the band brought in lead singer Mike Nightmare and his brother Raymi Gutter (when original Markeys guitarist Brian Vadders wouldn’t cut his hair) – good thing, too, because it is Gutter’s guitar that really stands out here.  The band started out with the name Rotten and changed it to the Ugly when they heard about Johnny Rotten.  
(November 2011)
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In fact, name shortening has been common among rock bands:  The Young Rascals became the Rascalsthe Troglodytes lost a little something in the translation when they changed their name to the Troggs, Small Faces morphed into Faces, Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark was abbreviated to OMD, and (believe it or not) the 1990’s Irish band the Cranberries started out with the name The Cranberry Saw Us.  Sometimes the official name never changes, but fans and DJ’s naturally begin to shorten the name, so the Rolling Stones are just as often the Stonesthe Doobie Brothers are sometimes rendered the Doobies (as on two of their Greatest Hits albumsBest of the Doobies and Best of the Doobies Volume II), and bands like, say, Dr. Hook and the Medicine Show are called just Dr. Hook.  Occasionally it can even go the other way:  A DJ on one of our local radio stations where I was growing up in Winston-SalemDick Bennick at WTOB-AM Radio was forever calling the Fab Four “the beetley, bootley Beatles
(June 2012)
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Brian Wilson was the bandleader and primary songwriter of the Beach Boys; writing for AllmusicWilliam Ruhlmann says that Brian Wilson “is arguably the greatest American composer of popular music in the rock era”.  In the beginning, there were fun songs about surfing and cars and girls, as well as a (more or less) friendly rivalry with Jan & Dean that prefigured the more contentious Beatles vs. Stones debates.  It is no secret that Jan Berry – a wunderkind in his own right – wasn’t happy that the Beach Boys copied the surf sounds that Jan & Dean pioneered. 


(June 2013/2)


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Ron Silva and Steve Potterf of the Crawdaddys grew up as neighbors in Point Loma, California and began listening to records together in the ninth grade.  Silva recalls of those early days:  “After a while Steve started getting into the music I liked – Beatles, early Stones.  I remember sitting in his room playing guitars along to my dad’s Chuck Berry and Elvis Presley 45’s.”   


(January 2015/2)


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There is a post discussing the meaning of Satisfaction on the website, and that makes reference to another line that I didn’t really understand at the time either (although I eventually decided that this must be what was meant):  “The anti-commercial rant [in the early part of the song] rubbed some folks the wrong way, but [Mick] Jagger’s blunt recapitulation of his failed attempts to ‘make some girl’ was the real problem.  Radio stations hesitated to play the song.  Funnily enough, they were actually hung up on one of its tamer lines.  When the Stones appeared on Shindig, a variety TV show, standards-sensitive execs bleeped ‘And I’m tryin’ to make some girl’.  Meanwhile, the reference to a woman being on her period – ‘better come back later next week, ’cause you see I’m on a losing streak’ – made it on air with no problems at all.” 


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I found another great Keith Richards quote on SongFacts concerning The Last Time” – the 45 that was released right before Satisfaction – as taken from the 2003 book According to the Rolling Stones:  “We didn’t find it difficult to write pop songs, but it was VERY difficult – and I think Mick [Jagger] will agree – to write one for the Stones.  It seemed to us it took months and months and in the end we came up with The Last Time, which was basically re-adapting a traditional Gospel song that had been sung by the Staple Singers, but luckily the song itself goes back into the mists of time.  I think I was trying to learn it on the guitar just to get the chords, sitting there playing along with the record, no gigs, nothing else to do.  At least we put our own stamp on it, as the Staple Singers had done, and as many other people have before and since:  they’re still singing it in churches today.  It gave us something to build on to create the first song that we felt we could decently present to the band to play. . . .  ‘The Last Time’ was kind of a bridge into thinking about writing for the Stones.  It gave us a level of confidence; a pathway of how to do it.  And once we had done that, we were in the game.  There was no mercy, because then we had to come up with the next one.  We had entered a race without even knowing it.” 


(May 2015)


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In retrospect though, most rock scribes view Fun House as the peak album in the short, frantic life of the Stooges, with more than a few calling it the greatest album of all time. As an example, as quoted in Wikipedia: “In The Rolling Stone Album Guide (2004), Scott Seward claimed that, although saying so ‘risks hyperbole’, Fun House is ‘one of the greatest rock & roll records of all time’ and that, ‘as great as they were, the Stones never went so deep, the Beatles never sounded so alive, and anyone would have a hard time matching Iggy Pops ferocity as a vocalist’.”
(December 2016)
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After interviewing the bandmembers and writing them up for Ugly Things, a few years later the Sloths started making noises about “putting the band back together”, and Mike Stax gave them a shot by hiring them as the opening act for a concert by the Loons. As reported in AARP The Magazine: “They sounded rough, but kids turned out in droves to see a real-live 1965 band in the flesh. Tommy [McLaughlin] recalls the exuberant reaction at one early show in East L.A.: ‘We were like the Stones up there for them. I was like, We gotta do this.’”  
(June 2017)
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Charles Spano writing for Allmusic says of Wild Love:  “Though lacking the teenage venom of cuts like ‘1969’ and ‘I Wanna be Your Dog’ off of The Stooges and the unadulterated raw power of, well, Raw PowerWild Love is still essential for die-hard fans.  The album, culled from rehearsals in DetroitLos Angeles, and New York for the band’s 1973 tour, runs the gamut from full-fledged, ready-to-record tunes to the types of swampy jams that the band has claimed indicative of their studio songwriting process.  Gems like the three minutes of rock & roll bliss dubbed Wild Love, the rambling, grinding ‘Pinpoint Eyes’, the Stonesy I Came From Nowhere’, and the eerie, sprawling ‘Til the End of the Night’ could have given Iggy Pop the material for a stunning solo debut as early as 1973.” 
(December 2017)
Last edited: March 22, 2021