Saturday, November 3, 2007


Here's a few things that should never go on an album with the words "very best of" in the title:

1. If a song features Mick Jagger, Pete Townshend and Bono, and it's still awful, it doesn't belong on a "best of." Sorry, "Joy" should never have made the cut.

2. Some unreleased songs should stay unreleased. Others fit on rarities collections. The remix of the previously unreleased "Charmed Life" certainly falls into one of those two categories.

3. Mick Jagger's "Let's Work" does not belong on any "best of" collection. I've been trying to forget about that one ever since I heard it. It's been nearly two decades, it still makes me wince.

OK, I'm being a bit too snarky. Someone told me that I gotta do it on occasion, or I lose my blog union card.

But really, a few clunkers aside, The Very Best Of Mick Jagger has some incredble moments. There's a few tracks from his 1993 Rick Rubin-produced album, Wandering Spirit , an album that I love (and the only solo Mick album I would really recommend owning). Mick's duet with the late, great Peter Tosh on "(You Got To Walk And) Don't Look Back" (a Tempations cover) is worth the price of admission. Ditto for 1970's "Memo From Turner," which he actually co-wrote with Keith Richards: the song was from the film Performance, which Mick starred in. A collaboration with L.A. blues band The Red Devils from the Wandering Spirit sessions, a cover of Sonny Boy Williamson's "Checkin' Up On My Baby" makes a great argument for releasing all of the Jagger/Red Devils sessions. The real gem, of course, is 1973's "Too Many Cooks (Spoil The Soup)," was produced by John Lennon and featured ex-Cream guy Jack Bruce on bass.

Like Paul McCartney, Mick ends up looking like the second coolest guy in his band, partially he actually has decent business sense (often seen as "uncool" in rock and roll), and partially because of his naff solo albums (which is his own fault). With a few really bad missteps, this compilation makes a great case that Mick can create cool music without the Stones.

And like Sir Paul, I doubt that Mick loses much sleep over this anyway. But if you're reading this, Mick, sorry to be snarky at your expense. But I don't want to lose my licence to blog. And don't worry, I'm working on a post about the new Rolling Stones DVD box set. Which will be totally positive.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I commend the pinch of snarkniness. ;)