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Sep 29 2017

The best Rolling Stones singles

Rolling Stones (rollingstone.com)

Rolling Stones

Preface

The Rolling Stones have to be part of my blog. Tomorrow they will perform in The Netherlands again. As a tribute to “The World’s Greatest Rock and Roll Band”, the 10 greatest Rolling Stones singles.

A few ‘rules’:

  • the singles are Dutch releases only;
  • the singles are released after my date of birth (March 14, 1966);
  • the line after the single’s title represents the date of entry in the Dutch Top 40 chart, followed by the highest charting position and the number of weeks the single was part of the Top 40.

Without further ado, the 10 best Rolling Stones singles, ordered by date of (Dutch) release:

 

The Rolling Stones - We Love You (dutchcharts.nl)

We Love You

02-09-1967, 1, 12

Reaction to the arrest of the Stones members for possession of marijuana. The song starts off with the slamming of a (cell)door. An a-typical Stones song, which serves as a thank you to the fans, as well as being a sneer to the authorities.

John Lennon and Paul McCartney sing along in the background.

 

The Rolling Stones - Jumpin' Jack Flash (dutchcharts.nl)

Jumpin’ Jack Flash

08-06-1968, 2, 10

According to Keith Richards the song was inspired by Richards’ gardener, whom was called jumpin’ jack by Richards.

In 1995 Mick Jagger stated that the song originated “out of all the acid of Satanic Majesties. It’s about having a hard time and getting out. Just a metaphor for getting out of all the acid things”.

 

The Rolling Stones - Honky Tonk Women (dutchcharts.nl)

Honky Tonk Women

19-07-1969, 4, 13

Opening with the famous cowbell intro, a classic Stones song, written as Jagger en Richards had a short holiday in Brazil. Just like Jumpin’ Jack Flash, this song was, initially, only available as a single.

 

The Rolling Stones - (I Can't Get No) Satisfaction (dutchcharts.nl)

(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction

22-08-1970, 19, 6

A re-release. the first time the song was released as a single in The Netherlands (on 08/14/1965) it reached number 1 of the Top 40 and was part of the chart for 19 weeks.

No Stones list is complete without it.

Also see the story on Devo’s cover of this song.

 

The Rolling Stones - Brown Sugar (dutchcharts.nl)

Rolling Stones logo

Brown Sugar

01-05-1971, 1, 11

The first Stones single that was released on their own Rolling Stones recordlabel.

Jagger: “The lyric was all to do with the dual combination of drugs and girls. This song was a very instant thing, a definite high point”.

 

The Rolling Stones - Sympathy For The Devil (dutchcharts.nl)

Sympathy For The Devil

20-10-1973, 14, 5

Dutch-only single release. It contains a unique (edit) version of the song. It is said that the was done by Ad Bouman, a DJ of Dutch radiostation Radio Veronica which broadcast outside of the territorial waters during the 1960’s and 1970’s.

 

The Rolling Stones - Miss You (dutchcharts.nl)

Miss You

10-06-1978, 2, 13

The song on which Prince, reportedly, once remarked that that was the one song he wished he had written himself. The Stones go disco. I remember the video vividly, as well as my, non-successful, search for the single in the (dutch) province Drenthe, where we held our family summer holiday at the time.

 

The Rolling Stones - Emotional Rescue (dutchcharts.nl)

Emotional Rescue

05-07-1980, 8, 9

I can’t put my finger on why exactly, but I adore the Emotional Rescue album. It has a kind of swing to it, that I really like. Is this song Miss You, pt. II? Perhaps, but it still works.

 

The Rolling Stones - Start Me Up (dutchcharts.nl)

Start Me Up

05-09-1981, 9, 7

I clearly remember the excitement of the teachers at my junior highschool surrounding the release of Tattoo You, who were overjoyed with the new Stones: a return to their true form, they were back! Based on Start Me Up, it’s hard to argue with that.

 

The Rolling Stones - Undercover (dutchcharts.nl)

Undercover Of The Night

12-11-1983, 5, 8

The Rolling Stones is not a political band. However, this is one of the few songs that doesn’t shy away from politics. Jagger: “It was heavily influenced by William Burroughs’ ‘Cities of the Red Night’, a free-wheeling novel about political and sexual repression. It combines a number of different references to what was going down in Argentina and Chile”.

The accompanying videoclip was deemed too violent for MTV.

 

In closing

What do you think of The Rolling Stones? Do you miss songs and, if so, which ones? Let me know!

 

2 comments

  1. Hamish

    I like your list, but I never warmed to Honky Tonk Woman. I cant get past the cowbell, perhaps my least favourite instrument

    1. A Pop Life (Erwin Barendregt)

      Ha ha, can’t get past the cowbell! Doesn’t bother me! Thanks for your reply!

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