BLESSED ARE THE BIG (and squashed) NOSES: (from top left) singer Mick Jagger, guitarist Keith Richards, drummer Charlie Watts, guitarist Brian Jones (blonde) and bass player Bill Wyman. The original vinyl album was an octagon shape.
1. Jumpin’ Jack Flash
2. Mother’s Little Helper
3. 2000 Light Years from Home
4. Let’s Spend The Night Together
5. You Better Move On
6. We Love You
7. Street Fighting Man
8. She’s A Rainbow
9. Ruby Tuesday
11. Sittin’ on a Fence
12. Honky Tonk Women
Through The Past Darkly
From sci-fi to beaut ballads and hot rock > the Rolling Stones hits keep coming > in a variety of styles
- September, 1969
- Rock On Rock Recommends:
The whole album
MILESTONE rock and roll hits Jumpin’ Jack Flash and Honky Tonky Women launched the Rolling Stones into a new era of being the biggest and best bad-ass band in the land.
A harder-edged Rolling Stones emerged after a brief trip into LSD-infused hippiedom and the trauma of being targets for police harassment and arrest > not that attention from the law stopped.
Along with Brown Sugar released the following year, Jumpin’ Jack Flash and Honky Tonk Women were the staple of many a pub band in the 1970s > with a crowded dancefloor the usual result.
There’s also Street Fighting Man > with its criss-cross acoustic guitars > released at a time of sometimes violent street and university campus protests in Europe and America. Street Fighting Man was banned on many radio stations in the US > in fear that it would incite more trouble.
More protest on Mother’s Little Helper > rallying against the parents and well-to-do who rally against youth taking drugs > in an era when marijuana use was fairly new and feared to be a demonising influence on those damn disrespectful youth of the day.
When Keith Richards and Mick Jagger were arrested on spurious drug charges in 1967 and faced jail > the Rolling Stones rush released a tribute to their fans We Love You > opening with echoing footsteps down a prison corridor and a cell door being slammed shut.
Sci-fi rock blasts off in 2000 Light Years from Home > which along with ballad She’s a Rainbow are highlights of otherwise disappointing acid album On Their Satanic Majesties Request (1967).
Lone piano, rollicking drums, lead guitar bursts, hippy-trippy voices, melodic strings to strings distorted, and plenty of “oh la la la las” as she “comes in colours everywhere” > what’s not to like about She’s A Rainbow. [And who wouldn’t want a girl who comes in colours everywhere]
Let’s Spend the Night Together also got a going over from 70s pub bands > but I could never see what the fuss is about with this the original version. Glam rock original David Bowie’s cover > on his best album Aladdin Sane (1973) > adds a verse or two and plenty more zip.
The trippy Rolling Stones vocals return on run-through-the fields Dandelion > with strings, drum rolls and bangles of percussion.
The folksie Sittin’ on a Fence has Mick Jagger vowing to stay a bachelor. “There is one thing I could never understand, some of the sick things that a girl does to a man” He would marry just a few years later.
It’s the Philosopher’s Stone on melodic Ruby Tuesday > a free-spirited woman > with Bill Wyman on double bass and Brian Jones playing piano and recorder. “Lose your dreams; and you will lose your mind; ain’t life unkind”.
Through the Past Darkly is a greatest hits album at a time when hit singles still weren’t necessarily put on albums > with the belief fans already had the song. The single was still king and this is a strong collection of Rolling Stones tunes of the time.
AMERICAN VERSION of Through The Past Darkly deletes the tracks You Better Move On, We Love You and Sittin’ on a Fence > replaced with Paint it Black and Have You Seen Your Mother Baby, Standing in the Shadow.
MICK JAGGER DRUG BUST
MICK Jagger and girlfriend/singer Marianne Faithfull’s flat in Cheyne Walk, Chelsea, London, was raided by half a dozen police and they appeared in Marlborough Street [one of the cream brown set in Monopoly] Magistrates Court on May 23, 1969, charged with possessing cannabis. They were released on bail
Forty years later, secret police files revealed Mick Jagger claimed that during the police search one officer planted “white powder” in the apartment and then sought a 1000 pound bribe. But Jagger only faced the cannabis charge.
JUMPIN’ JACK FLASH
I was raised by a toothless, bearded hag
I was schooled with a strap right across my back
I was drowned, I was washed up and left for dead
I fell down to my feet and I saw they bled
SHE’S A RAINBOW
Have you seen her dressed in blue?
See the sky in front of you
And her face is like a sail
Speck of white so fair and pale
Have you seen a lady fairer
JAGGER’S GIRFRIEND IN COMA AFTER DRUG OVERDOSE
WHILE with Mick Jagger in Australia > who was there for the lead role in film Ned Kelly > girlfriend Marianne Faithfull lapsed into a coma in their Sydney hotel suite as Jagger was giving an interview. She was rushed to hospital and spent several days in a coma in intensive care.
Their relationship would soon end > and it’s a pity Jagger’s film career didn’t at the same time.
The film Ned Kelly is about a notorious 1850s Australian bushranger of Irish stock > and many in the Aussie press were unimpressed with this oh-so-English long-haired lout portraying one of their heroes.
They and the international press in general were even more unflattering when the movie hit the big screen.
Jagger’s best acting performance > apart from when doing press interviews > is in the cult British move Performance > filmed before Ned Kelly but released after.
> WRITTEN by MALCOLM LIVERMORE