The two inner sleeves of the initial album artwork featured headshots of the Stones and other celebrities of the day. The sleeve slides into the front cover so each photo becomes adorned by a wig.
1. Miss You
2. When the Whip Comes Down
3. Just My Imagination
4. Some Girls
6. Far Away Eyes
8. Before They Make Me Run
9. Beast of Burden
As Keith Richards faces the prospect of years in jail, the Rolling Stones pull one out of the hat that gives punk rock the two-finger salute and houses a huge disco hit
- June, 1978
- Rock On Rock Recommends:
It’s worth getting the whole album
“I’ve never had a problem with drugs. I’ve had a problem with the police”
> Keith Richards
“You can’t out-punk Keith. He’s the original punk”
> Mick Jagger on Keith Richards
“Because we couldn’t remember their fucking names”
> Keith Richards explaining the Some Girls album title
THE Rolling Stones hit back at those snotty-nosed one-chord acne-pocked punk kids on Some Girls.
This album combines the disparaging forces of fast-paced rock, a smash disco hit, dose of country and western humour and denigration wrapped in the band’s vilifying best.
“If they can’t take a joke too fucking bad,” Mick Jagger told Rolling Stone magazine of the furore surrounding the album’s title track.
With lines like “black girls just wanna get fucked all night, and I just don’t have that much jam”, there was a backlash from the Afro-American and feminist communities.
Black civil rights leader Jesse Jackson said the song was vulgar and obscene.
Two of the celebrities whose pictures adorned the Some Girls album cover without their permission > Hollywood stars Raquel Welch and Lucille Ball > were also suitably unimpressed and demanded their images be removed forthwith. The Rolling Stones had little option but to oblige. The estates of singer Judy Garland and actress Marilyn Monroe also objected to the images of them on the cover.
There was also the matter of guitarist Keith Richards facing a years-long haul in jail > charged with heroin trafficking after a hotel room bust in Toronto, Canada. (See reports below)
If this was to be the last Rolling Stones album for God knows how long > thank God it’s a good one.
THE Rolling Stones are in a New York state of mind > both Mick Jagger and Keith Richards having made it their main abode. Opening song Miss You takes a walk through Central Park and album closer Shattered is dedicated entirely to the Big Apple > just “don’t mind the maggots”.
During a long, hot summer in New York it was international No.1 Miss You which pounded the pavement out of ghetto blasters [a large radio/cassette player with booming speakers slung on the shoulder of the street wise] and filled the dancefloors.
Guitar threesome Jagger, Ronnie Wood and Richards glance riffs off each other as the singer bleats through a dance beat of a lost love.
“I was gay in New York, and a fag in LA,” Jagger bemoans on rocker When the Whip Comes Down.
It’s the Rolling Stones image and lack of street cred post-punk rock that Jagger questions on the Richards-led rocker Respectable > with its disrespecting “We’re dropping heroin with the President” and “You’re the easiest lay on the White House lawn”.
Lies flies along at a similar pace > without the twisted lyrics imagery of Respectable, but just plain good rock-out fun.
You know you’re in for a treat the moment title track Some Girls starts > pounding blues, those loping Charlie Watts drums, wailing harmonica. Some Girls wails against women [just for a change] in an international orgy of fucking and fucken relationships as one Michael Phillip Jagger sows his seeds with French, Italian, English, American and Chinese women who are not so lady like.
Meanwhile, back at the ranch > hot digitty dog > Far Away Eyes > Ron Wood on steel guitar > is one of them there country and western lurve songs > about a dopey dufus duped into giving money to “the Church of the Sacred Bleeding Heart of Jesus” and next week “they play my song on the radio and all my dreams come true”.
Rocker Before They Make Me Run has Keef on scratchy vocal and scratch riff > remaining defiant. “Wasn’t looking too good, but I was feeling real well,” he sings. The album was recorded while Richards was out on bail. Could this be the end tune for rock and roll’s greatest outlaw?
Ballad Beast of Burden swings with sentiment > Mick Jagger, now in his mid-40s, questioning if he’s tough enough, rough enough, in love enough and even rich enough.
Shattered’s a little bit rap wrapped in funk/rock > bemoaning a New York City in the depths of decay > and a battered city makes for a battered mind.
The only disappointment on Some Girls is a lack-lustre version of soul hit Just My Imagination (Running Away With Me) > original by American group The Temptations.
THE KEITH RICHARDS TORONTO HEROIN BUST
“The actual busts have always been farces … to wake up with 15 Mounties standing around your bed after they’ve spent an hour trying to wake you up”.
> that was Keith Richards’s interpretation of his drug career > as told to UK rock magazine New Musical Express > after being busted in Toronto, Canada.
He and wife Anita Pallenberg’s hotel suite was raided by drug officers. She was awake, he fast asleep > and the Mounties found an ounce of heroin on the bedside table.
This is a big enough amount for Keith Richards to be charged with “possessing heroin for the purpose of trafficking” > which can carry a maximum life sentence.
The Mounties’ hotel room raid came after Pallenberg being charged > when the couple flew into Toronto airport > with possessing 10 grams of hashish and a small amount of heroin.
The Rolling Stones were assembling in Toronto to play two nights at a small club > the El Mocambo > for additional material for live album Love You Live (1977).
SEX SCANDAL: CANADIAN PRIME MINISTER’S WIFE
Seen in a dressing gown at the same hotel as the Rolling Stones and at the band’s El Mocambo gig was the wife of charismatic then Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau > the modern and sexy Margaret Trudeau. [Maybe the Stones had sent her down the hallway to fill the ice bucket when she was spotted!!])
The tabloids had a field day with reports of a sexual liaison with Mick Jagger.
The scandal even resulted in the Canadian dollar dropping in value.
Later it was revealed it was guitarist Ron Wood to whom she became “friendly” with.
KEITH RICHARDS IN (ANOTHER) MOMENT OF TRUTH
Keith Richard’s wife Anita Pallenberg appears in court March 4 and pleads guilty to possession of heroin and hashish > fined $400. He fronts up a few days later at Toronto’s Old City Hall Court for a brief appearance and is grabbed by the hair by a magazine photographer who calls him a “junkie bastard”.
Police add a charge of cocaine possession. Richards is on bail and > with the heat on from the cops > all band members soon leave the country.
Richards and family flea to New York where he undergoes drug rehabilitation.
His court case is eventually heard in October 1978 and > with much plea bargaining going on beforehand > the trafficking charge is withdrawn and he pleads guilty to possession of heroin.
The judge says incarceration would be inappropriate because of Richard’s continuing drug treatment. The Rolling Stones guitarist is put on one year’s probation and ordered to play a special concert for the blind in Toronto.
This unusual court order came about through a blind Rolling Stones fan writing to the judge begging for leniency for her idol.
The story goes that Keith Richards had seen her after a concert and > fearing she would get run over > gave her a lift in his limo. The rest of the band joined Richards in playing the concert for the blind.
> WORDS by MALCOLM LIVERMORE