A Blast from the Past, Rarities Edition – Part 7

| June 6, 2020

Been listening to some classic Rolling Stones lately. And while doing so, I ran across a couple of tunes that – though quite well known – qualify as rarities.

You ask, “How is that possible?” Read on – and yes, that means I’m about to embark on another musical trivia “walkabout”.

. . .

Brian Jones was the original leader of the Rolling Stones. But the man had problems, most of which appear to have been chemically-induced. His behavior became more extreme, and he became completely unreliable as a member of the band. So during the recording of their classic album Let It Bleed, the Stones and Jones parted company – involuntarily.

Simply put: the band fired Jones. Jones was found dead in his home’s swimming pool less than a month later.

Needing a replacement for Jones, the band hired a young Englishman named Mick Taylor. While much of Let It Bleed had been recorded prior to Taylor’s hiring, Taylor also contributed overdubs to two tracks on the album. This tune was the first of the two that Taylor recorded during those sessions.

But things get even stranger. On the same tune, tenor saxophonist Bobby Keys – who was to collaborate with the band from 1969 until his death in 2014, and who toured with them on the majority of their tours during that period – made his debut with the Stones. So the tune not only ushered in the dual-lead guitar phase of the band (where first Mick Taylor and later Ron Wood “traded guitar licks” with Keith Richards); it also marked the introduction of brass and horns (especially sax) as prominent parts of the Stones’ music.

The tune also reportedly is the only time that the Stones ever recorded with Leon Russell. Russell and longtime Stones collaborator Nicky Hopkins each contributed piano to the tune.

Finally: the tune’s lyrics also are somewhat, um, crude. As a result, the London Bach Choir – who recorded intro and backing vocals for the final track on Let It Bleed, “You Can’t Always Get What You Want,” but which was actually the first tune from the album to be recorded – allegedly requested their contributions on Let It Bleed not be credited.

So, we have a tune that simultaneously (1) features the studio debut of a founding member’s replacement; (2) also features the debut of a second individual who would become a 45 year collaborator and touring musician with the band; (3) further features the band’s sole collaboration with a musical legend; and (4) whose lyrics caused a contributor to a different song from the same album to request their contribution be uncredited. In my book, that means the tune qualifies as a rarity.

The tune is named Live with Me. It was never released as a single, but it’s still found on many “best of” lists concerning the Stones’ catalog. It showcases the Stones in raucous, “rock and roll” mode.

Obligatory warning: remember, it’s the Rolling Stones. As I mentioned previously, it’s possible you might find some of the lyrical content offensive. But you likely won’t find this tune’s lyrics as offensive as those of this Stones’ rarity I’ve previously discussed. (smile)



. . .

Another track from the same album is also a rarity of sorts, but for very different reasons. Like the previous song, it was never a primary single (it was released as the B-side for the Japanese single with A-side “Let It Bleed”) – but it’s nonetheless found on many “best of” lists about the Stones’ catalog.

Mick Jagger is the Stones’ primary vocalist. However, on a handful of Stones tunes Keith Richards sings lead instead of Jagger. The song that follows is a ballad that Richards wrote; it was also included on Let It Bleed. It is the first Stones tune on which Richards’ is the solo lead vocalist (Richards had been featured prominently as lead vocalist on portions of a couple of previous tunes, but Jagger sang lead on different portions of those earlier songs).

Moreover: as I mentioned above, for part of the Let It Bleed recording sessions Brian Jones was still a member of the Stones. And he did actually contribute to two songs on the album – albeit playing backing instruments such as autoharp and congas.

The song discussed here is one Brian Jones’ two final recorded contributions to the Rolling Stones’ catalog. This was one of the two tunes Jones’ contributed to during the Let It Bleed sessions; on this tune, Jones played autoharp. (The second tune to which Jones contributed was “Midnight Rambler”, where Jones played congas; it was apparently recorded somewhat later, and thus is likely the final contribution Jones ever made to a Stones’ recording.)

The song is called You Got the Silver. Enjoy.



. . .

OK, that’s the end of today’s musical “walkabout”. Hope everyone enjoyed the ramble.

Have a great weekend, everyone.

Category: Pointless blather, Who knows

Comments (3)

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  1. 5th/77th FA says:

    Taking me back, once again, Hondo to the days of my youthful indiscretions, listening to these tunes on an aftermarket, under the dash 8 track tape player. No way Mama was gonna have this in her house, on her record player. The 8 track tape is long worn out, but I do still have the 33 rpm poly vinyl carbon version.

    War story alert. Our neighbor back then had one of the RCA Home Entertainment systems. Some of y’all will remember them; a big piece of furniture with the color TV, record player, AM/FM FM Stereo AND the tape deck with 12 -15 inch speakers. Yeah, that monster. Well his picture tube went out and instead of just fixing it, he went out and bought a new one, with remote control and gave me the old one to haul off. The tape deck and amplifier worked off of the 12 volt dc step down power transformer leg. Took the aftermarket 8 track out from underneath the dash of that ’62 Bel Aire, used pipe strap to mount the deck from the console entertainment center and put the vacuum tube amp and the speakers in the trunk. Viola, the very FIRST car audio thump system. Pissed off Mama, the neighbors, and the school principle, all in one fell swoop. Good Times.

    • 26Limabeans says:

      “aftermarket 8 track”

      I worked the assembly line at “Automatic Radio” in the 60’s.
      They made all the car radios of the time and the 8 track was
      the latest rage. They also made the “reverbs” which was the
      real moneymaker. Good times indeed.

  2. 26Limabeans says:

    Ok, Stones it is on a rainy Saturday morning.
    See if can’t break a few windows…