THE ROLLING STONES: Bad-ass rock band


Victor Pross

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The Rolling Stones. Bad-ass rock band

The ROLLING STONES, all else aside, played best in the early days as a counterbalance to the Beatles. Here was a band of young mop-tops from England you wouldn’t take home to your parents: when the Beatles were composing cute little ditties (“She’s in love with me and I feel fine,”) the Stones offered sexual complaint (“I can’t get no satisfaction”), the Beatles put together Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Heart’s Club Band, the Stones played At His Satanic Majesty’s Request, The Beatle’s said “Let it Be,” and the Stones countered with Let it Bleed.

Mick Jagger and Keith Richard’s, the public personality of the band, formed a song writing team that was the abandoned id to Lennon/McCartney’s polished ego. When John and Paul wanted to hold your hand, Mick and Keef wanted you under their thumb.

Was anyone really surprised when a fan was stabbed at a Rolling Stones concert at Altamonte? Who else besides the Stones would think it was a good idea to hire the Hell’s Angels to provide security? The event, billed in advance by the music press as “Woodstock West,” provided a horrendous bookend to the summer of love, and once again the Stones were the center of it, showing the hippie movement that every silver lining has a dark cloud.

The Rolling Stones—in their lyrics, in their music, and in their public posturing—always hinted at the darker side of 60s youth culture. There was something always raunchy about their sound, an explosion of bluesy sexuality that ignored heart and drove straight to the groin. Whether it accompanied Jagger’s sneering wail on “sympathy for the devil” or Richard’s intense blues-propelled guitar riffing on “Jumpin’ Jack Flash", it all let the audience know that rock and roll is about sex.

Jagger, preceding the glam and punk rockers that would follow, played the androgynous, snarling apostle to the dark side with a degree of smirking self-awareness, while Richard’s played the smoldering bluesman, communicating with the Ghost of Robert Johnson with a cigarette hanging from his lips and god-knows-what running through his veins.

The Stones seemed always to be in touch with the alternate meaning of the term “rock and roll,” the old blues man’s meaning, which means what takes place under bed covers, not on stage. And even now, while many commentators use the band as the punchline to a joke about the geriatric rockers, they insist they are The Greatest Rock Band in the World.

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I have retuned much of my attention to completing Icons and Idols to regular OL posting. With this project taking much of my time and energy, I’m happy nevertheless to offer selections from the book for OL’s viewing and reading pleasure, and also---suggestions from members and feed-back is always welcomed. B)

Edited by Victor Pross
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One of my favorite rock albums of all time is Sticky Fingers. The Stones' don't get enough credit for their contribution to and influence on alt-country music.

Mick

Mick, There is no argument from me. Sticky Fingers rocks, and I have had many a grand time blazing up with friends at college listening to this specific album. In the above selection from Icons and Idols, I said that the Stones are a sexual band—f***ing being the actual meaning of Rock and Roll. "Brown Sugar" is a case in point: “How come she tastes so good”—and—“She can make a dead man come!” B)

What's the second Stones album that is a runner up?

-Victor

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There is a theoretical classic divide in the rock world: Elvis people vs. Beatle people. But maybe its Beatle people vs. Stones people. Me? Nah, I’m a fan of it all! But maybe not for others. I like classic rock too much all round. It would be interesting to simply do a series of paintings of only rock stars for a follow up coffee-table book. Hmmm?

-Victor

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I would have liked the Stones much better if they just did rock instrumentals.

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There is a theoretical classic divide in the rock world: Elvis people vs. Beatle people. But maybe its Beatle people vs. Stones people. Me? Nah, I’m a fan of it all! But maybe not for others. I like classic rock too much all round. It would be interesting to simply do a series of paintings of only rock stars for a follow up coffee-table book. Hmmm?

-Victor

Oh, hell yeah you should do that coffee table book, dude. 'Twould be badass.

I find that I'm more of an Elvis person, though I do love the Beatles. Elvis, to me, is just more cheerful and he sets my heart on fire. He gets me all...shook up!

Never heard much of the Stones. *embarrassment*

Victor, the thing about this article that jumped out at me most was your comparison of the Beatles and the Stones. I especially loved: "The Beatle’s said “Let it Be,” and the Stones countered with Let it Bleed." Nice!

Makes me wanna check out the Stones. They seem naughty...and that's right up my alley. :devil: :lol:

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Kori, with your request to suggest new CDs, the ones already referred to here are a fine start. Sure, check the Stones out! In your ever increasing expansion of listening pleasures, you have contemporary artists, dead artists...and now artists old enough to be your grandparents. B)

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Tootsie, for some inexplicable reason that defies all known logic and reason, something most irregular has happened: I was hit—from nowhere—with the sudden urge to draw ice cube! ME—this classic rock lover, this old-school guy locked in yesteryear…is drawing a caricature of ICE CUBE!! :frantics: Sometimes there is no comprehending the creative process or inspiration. :hmm: I just told Angie about it, and she said you will absolutely love this.

I imagine you'll want to see it? As it’s turning out, I am pulling out all the stops here, girl---it’s whacked. Now then, what are some interesting facts about this dude?

-Victor

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Many years ago I saw a documentary about Chuck Berry. Chuck did a concert in Kansas City and he asked Kieth Richards of the Rolling Stone to help him. I had never had a high opinion of the Stones until that movie.

The movie is very good and I had a much better appreciation of Chuck Berry too.

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Many years ago I saw a documentary about Chuck Berry. Chuck did a concert in Kansas City and he asked Kieth Richards of the Rolling Stone to help him. I had never had a high opinion of the Stones until that movie.

The movie is very good and I had a much better appreciation of Chuck Berry too.

Chris,

Keith Richards—guitar player from the Stones—would agree with you: he is a diehard fan of Chuck Berry. :turned:

-Victor

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