Sunday, December 4, 2011


The Rolling Stones released Some Girls in 1978 when I was nine years old.  I don't think I was aware of the concept that a band was releasing a new album, but I did associate certain artists with certain songs, I just had no idea if they were new or old.

But I do remember hearing "Miss You," "Beast Of Burden" and "Shattered" all over the place.  Years later, when I started really getting into the Stones, learning their history and buying their old albums (this was around '89, when they hit the road for the first time in years for Steel Wheels) I picked up Some Girls and was knocked out by how great it was.  This may be sacrilegious to say, but it quickly became my favorite Stones album. I realize that most hardcore fans choose albums from the Brian Jones or Mick Taylor eras.  Of course I love albums from both of those eras, and there are no bad albums from either era, but this is my favorite.

If you didn't know better, you would have thought that Ronnie Wood was created in a lab to join The Stones. In the history of rock, has there ever been a replacement in a major band that just fit so perfectly?

I don't think I knew too much of the context when I first got the album though. I just knew that there were three incredible singles, but in between them were a group of songs that were just as good, or better.  I knew that this came out during the punk rock era, and they seemed to nod at this without trying too hard, on songs like "Lies," "Respectable" and "When The Whip Comes Down." Their soul roots were acknowledged with their cover of The Temptations' "Just My Imagination." They nodded at their country influences (and made fun of them more than a bit) on "Far Away Eyes." "Miss You" and "Shattered" were funky as hell, and "Beast Of Burden" is one of their best pop songs ever.  Also on this album is one of my favorite Keith Richards-sung Stones tunes, "Before They Make Me Run" ("see my taillights fading, there's not a dry eye in the house"). On my Rolling Stones iPod mix, every song on this album is included. (That mix is nearly 11 hours long, but still.)

I just bought the deluxe (not super-deluxe) version of the album. It comes with a second disc of stuff that didn't make the album. Often times, this kind of thing is a curiosity, but disc 2 of Some Girls is its own great album.  I think I prefer it to their next album, Emotional Rescue! "Claudine" is a great vintage rocker.  "No Spare Parts" (featuring newly recorded parts by Mick Jagger, Keith Richards and Ronnie Wood) is a lovely country-ish song.  There's actually a lot of country on disc two, including Keith singing a classic song, "We Had It All," and also a cover of Hank Williams' "You Win Again."

The super-deluxe version also contains a DVD of a live concert from the tour, but not the CD version.  So, I decided to get the deluxe version, and pick up the DVD/CD version of Some Girls - Live In Texas '78, which you can get separately (and buying both was still less expensive than the super-deluxe version). I have a lot of great live recordings by the Stones, but this might be the best one. So, if you love the Stones, particularly the Ronnie Wood era, I'd recommend doing what I did: get the deluxe version, and get the DVD/CD (or BlueRay/CD) combo of Some Girls Live.

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