Tag Archives: Rolling Stones

Rolling Stones tour posters, 14 On Fire in Europe

The Rolling Stones tour posters promoting 14 On Fire in Europe were striking.

Eye-catching advertising – you couldn’t help but notice them as you passed them – they’d also adorn the walls of the most fastidious rock art collector or Rolling Stones fan.

Bold primary colours and artful designs, placing John Pasche’s Rolling Stones tongue logo in a succession of local contexts, make the posters fine collectables.

The Rolling Stones tour posters advertising the shows in Berlin, Paris and at Pinkpop Festival in the Netherlands, are particularly attractive.

The Rolling Stones 14 On Fire tour in Europe concluded yesterday (Thursday 3 July) at the Roskilde Festival in Denmark.

Rolling Stones tour posters - 14 On Fire

Rolling Stones tour – Berlin, 2014

Rolling Stones tour posters, 14 On Fire - Paris

Rolling Stones tour – Paris, 2014

Rolling Stones tour posters - 14 On Fire, Pinkpop Festival

Rolling Stones tour – Pinkpop, 2014

Rock Art: what to see in July

Early Rolling Stones photograph

Early Rolling Stones by Terry O’Neill, on show at Izzy Gallery, Toronto, Canada, © Terry O’Neill 1963?

There’s a wealth of Rock Art exhibitions running around the world at the moment. Here are some of the most promising.


TERRY O’NEILL: The Rolling Stones plus many other 1960s musicians and other celebs on view at Terry O’Neill: The Man Who Shot the Sixties, Izzy Gallery, Yorkville Avenue, Toronto, Canada. 27 June-24 August.


PETER BLAKE: A new permanent mural, Appearing at the Royal Albert Hall, on display near the Cafe Bar, Royal Albert Hall, London. Free. Gathers 400+ performers who have appeared since the Hall opened. Notable rock musicians include Bob Dylan, David Bowie, Jimi Hendrix, Queen, The Rolling Stones, and The Who.

Peter Blake will be best known to many readers of ROCK / ART / EDITIONS for his celebrated artwork on the cover of the Beatles album, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.

BOB DYLAN: photographs by Daniel Kramer, Paulucci Space Theatre, Hibbing Community College, Hibbing MN. To 23 August. Free.

PATTI SMITH: a dozen or so photographs in the Robert Mapplethorpe exhibition, Le Grand Palais, Paris. To 13 July.

GREAT BLACK MUSIC: Michael Jackson, Cesaria Evora, Marvin Gaye, Billie Holiday, Fela Anikulapo Kuti, Aretha Franklin, Bob Marley, Myriam Makeba, Oum Kalsoum, among many others. La Cité de la Musique, in NE Paris. To 24 August

RONNIE WOOD of the ROLLING STONES: Ronnie Wood: Art and Music, William Benton Museum of Art in Storrs, University of Connecticut. To 10 August. Free.

AMERICAN COOL: 100 “cool Americans”, including musicians Bob Dylan, Johnny Cash, Miles Davis and Jay-Z, film actors like Lauren Bacall, and writers such as Ernest Hemingway. National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian, Washington DC. To 7 September. Free.

(You are strongly advised to check details with a venue’s website before travelling – some shows require advance booking and details can change, often at short notice)

Have you seen any of these shows? What did you think of it?  Your comments are very welcome.

Have we missed an important show?  Visitors and galleries: please tell us of any show we have missed, for inclusion in next month’s round-up.

Please send comments/details of shows to ROCK / ART / EDITIONS via “Leave a reply” at the top of this post.

The Rolling Stones in Paris: the Stones love France #2

The Rolling Stones in Paris this Friday promises to be one of the highlights of the 2014 tour.

Why? Because the Rolling Stones love France: lots of images suggest that the Stones, particularly Mick Jagger, have enjoyed a richly rewarding 50-year relationship with la Belle France.

Their most productive visit to France, in 1971, delivered Exile on Main St, one of the top Rolling Stones LPs, with its distinctive album cover.

Here are a four more illustrations of the French connections of the Rolling Stones (with apologies for the poor sizing – I’m in a rush to make Eurostar to Paris first thing on Friday morning):

#1 Mick Jagger with Francoise Hardy, 1967

The Rolling Stones in Paris

Mick Jagger with Francoise Hardy, © Jean-Marie Perier 1967

Francoise Hardy was the leading French pop singer in mid-’60s Paris, with hit singles like Tous les Garcons et les Filles. Mick Jagger was clearly a fan…

#2 Sympathy For The Devil, 1968

One + One by Jean-Luc Godard

Sympathy For The Devil, © Cupid Productions Ltd 1968

Sympathy For The Devil (aka One + One), a film directed by Jean-Luc Godard, the best-known French director of the period, has extensive footage of the Rolling Stones recording their classic song, Sympathy For The Devil.

(The DVD pictured is a freebie promo copy distributed with the English newspaper The Sunday Times.)

#3 The Rolling Stones in Paris studios

The Rolling Stones in Paris studios

Studio Guillaume Tell, Suresnes, near Paris

The Rolling Stones have occasionally recorded in Paris, most recently in 2012 at Studio Guillaume Tell in Suresnes, where they recorded One More Shot, and Doom and Gloom, for the GRRR! compilation.

Mick Jagger is thought to have laid down his vocals for Tattoo You in a studio on an industrial estate somewhere on the Peripherique.

And the rehearsals for the current tour included a set in a studio in Bondy on 14 February 2014. Other recent tour rehearsals featured a flash gig on the the Avenue des Champs-Elysees.

#4 Mick Jagger, le gentilhomme francais

Chateau Mick Jagger

Mick Jagger house, Loire valley

Mick Jagger is probably the most francophile Rolling Stone. He’s owned an impressive chateau near Amboise, in la Touraine in the Loire valley, since 1980. And he’s a fluent French speaker, as you’d expect from such an intelligent man.

Yes, the Rolling Stones certainly give the impression that they love France.

The Rolling Stones in Paris: the Stones love France

The Rolling Stones in Paris: the 14 On Fire Arena Tour reaches the French capital next week. The Friday 13 June Stade de France gig will be special for the Rolling Stones: they clearly love the country, visiting throughout their 52-year career – to record, play gigs and simply hang out. Evidence? Loads – and an abundance of intriguing images.

Exile On Main St.

Remastered Exile on Main St by the Rolling Stones

Exile on Main St, © Promotone BV 2010

The best-known Rolling Stones link with France is their extended visit to the French Riviera in 1971, when they recorded Exile On Main St., released the following year.

Villa Nellcote

Villa Nellcote, rented by Keith Richards in 1971, used as studio for recording Exile on Main St.

Villa Nellcote, © Gerald Smith 2014

Villa Nellcote, Villefranche-sur-Mer, where the Rolling Stones recorded Exile on Main St.

Rolling Stones fan at Villa Nellcote, © Gerald Smith 2014

The recording venue was Villa Nellcote, a mansion rented by Keith Richards. It’s a large, secluded house, just across the bay from the picture postcard town of Villefranche-sur-Mer, a few miles east of Nice.

My photographs show Villa Nellcote from the public beach, and the imposing gates on a quiet lane adjacent to the Cote d’Azur’s main railway line.

Next week: The Rolling Stones in Paris: the Stones love France #2

Top Rolling Stones album covers: the next three

The top three Rolling Stones album covers – The Rolling Stones, Goats Head Soup and Out Of Our Heads (UK version), reviewed here last week – packaged great music. The albums are as pleasing to listen to as the album covers are to gaze upon. By contrast, the next best three Rolling Stones album covers – Between the Buttons, It’s Only Rock ‘N’ Roll and Dirty Work – contain weak albums.

Top Rolling Stones album covers #4 Between The Buttons

Between The Buttons, Rolling Stones, photograph by Gered Mankowitz

Top Rolling Stones album covers: Between The Buttons, ABKCO 2002 CD version, photograph by Gered Mankowitz

Gered Mankowitz’s cover photograph of Between The Buttons magically captures a bleary-eyed dawn on Primrose Hill, north London. It must have been one hell of a night before. If only Between The Buttons sounded as good as it looks. Only one track, Back Street Girl, ever gets an airing on my iPod.

Top Rolling Stones album covers #5 It’s Only Rock ‘N’ Roll

It's Only Rock 'N' Roll, Guy Peelaert cover

Top Rolling Stones album covers: It’s Only Rock ‘N’ Roll, The Rolling Stones, Rolling Stones Records, 1974, cover art by Guy Peelaert

Guy Peelaert’s witty album cover for It’s Only Rock ‘N’ Roll also portrays excess. In this case, the excess in Heaven supposedly inhabited by the male rock star, with its unlimited “chicks for free”. Peelaert sets the Rolling Stones in a cod-Classical tableau, worshipped by countless garlanded women, all clearly interested. Unfortunately, with Jimmy Miller having vacated the producer’s chair, the music on It’s Only Rock ‘N’ Roll is inconsistent, relying on a handful of strong tracks, notably Time Waits for No One, Till the Next Goodbye and Fingerprint File.

Top Rolling Stones album covers #6 Dirty Work

Dirty Work album cover

Top Rolling Stones album covers: Dirty Work, Rolling Stones, Rolling Stones Records, 1986, photograph by Annie Leibovitz

With photography by the celebrated Annie Leibovitz, the album cover of Dirty Work contrasts starkly with the album’s music. The weakest album in the Stones catalogue – only One Hit (To The Body) ever gets a hearing here – Dirty Work has one of the most striking covers.

The Rolling Stones were middle-aged by 1986 and struggling to remain relevant. While the music on Dirty Work didn’t manage to roll back the years, the colourful album cover succeeded: “we are forward-looking and youthful, even if no longer young”. A bold idea, and outstanding execution. Just look at those primary colours and smile! To be continued: more top Rolling Stones album covers to follow here on ROCK | ART | EDITIONS. What are your top three Rolling Stones album covers?

The A-Z of Rolling Stones art: B is for… Beggars Banquet

Beggars Banquet by the Rolling Stones, released in 1968, needed to hit the spot quickly, after the twin disappointments of Between the Buttons and Their Satanic Majesties Request.

The choice of cover art for Beggars Banquet reportedly caused a stand-off between the Rolling Stones and Decca and London, their record labels, thus delaying the album’s release for several months.

The Rolling Stones apparently offered Decca and London an album cover featuring graffiti scrawled on a toilet wall, shot by Barry Feinstein in a garage workshop in Hollywood. The record labels rejected it.

Beggars Banquet - original version of album cover for

Beggars Banquet by the Rolling Stones, Decca 1968, original “RSVP” cover

The album was eventually released with a cover unlikely to offend, the “RSVP” cover, which bore a striking resemblance to the Beatles’ White Album.

Beggars Banquet was packaged in this way until 1986, when LP reissues and CD launches reverted to the previously rejected toilet graffiti art as the album cover. The 2002 remastered ABKCO CD retained the toilet graffiti cover.

Beggars Banquet cover art - toilet graffiti

Beggars Banquet by the Rolling Stones, here in the ABKCO 2002 remastered CD version

The inside of the 2002 cover has photographs by Michael Joseph documenting a “banquet” of “beggars”, staged in a venue rented for the shoot in Hampstead, north London.

Rolling Stones fans and collectors have long argued over which Beggars Banquet album cover they prefer. My view is that the conflict with Decca and London probably had deeper roots – it was really about artistic freedom, not just the right to employ a challenging, technically excellent, but essentially juvenile photograph.

With hindsight, it’s also clear that the Rolling Stones and Decca/London missed a golden opportunity. They should have compromised by using photographs from the Michael Joseph shoot for the Beggars Banquet album cover: his images are among the strongest, most beguiling, in the vast Rolling Stones photo archive.

Rolling Stones album covers: the top three

Rolling Stones album covers tell you that they understand the power of images and have consistently wrapped their recordings in high quality sleeves.

Over a dozen Rolling Stones LPs were released with outstanding cover art. Not really surprising, given that they often commissioned top celeb/show biz photographers, such as David Bailey and Gered Mankowitz.

My top three Rolling Stones album covers are:
* The Rolling Stones,
* Goats Head Soup, and
* Out Of Our Heads (original, UK version).

Top three Rolling Stones album covers #1 The Rolling Stones

Rolling Stones album covers: the first LP

The Rolling Stones LP, Decca, 1964

The telling cover photograph of The Rolling Stones, the band’s first album, was shot by Nicholas Wright.

The defiant young Stones, their faces subtly lit and coloured, and highlighted by the shot’s dark background, suggest they could be an important, maybe challenging, new musical force.

The absence of graphics – no LP title, no indication of artists – suggest that the Rolling Stones knew that their music would do the talking.

(Scroll down to my 28 April post for more on the cover art of The Rolling Stones LP.)

Top three Rolling Stones album covers #2 Goats Head Soup

Rolling Stones album covers: Goats Head Soup, by David Bailey

Goats Head Soup, 1973

Goats Head Soup has a striking yellow portrait of Mick Jagger wearing the hat of a Victorian “lady”, complete with protective veil. Inside, Bill Wyman, Charlie Watts and Mick Taylor get a similar treatment, while on the back cover Keith Richards appears to be in the process of removing his feminine headgear.

Inside, there’s a head of an unhappy looking goat, bubbling away in a cooking pot.

What does it all mean? Androgyny? Voodoo? Black magic? David Bailey probably knows – he did the photo shoot and the album cover design.

Top three Rolling Stones album covers #3 Out Of Our Heads (UK)

Rolling Stones album covers: Out Of Our Heads (UK version)

Out Of Our Heads, 1965/2002

The cover of Out Of Our Heads (UK), shot by Gered Mankowitz, is probably the best photograph of the early Rolling Stones. I’ve long wondered what prop Mankowitz used to frame the band so well. (The Out Of Our Heads photograph above is the 2002 ABKCO CD release, complete with unnecessary added graphics – “uk”.)

The Rolling Stones, Goats Head Soup, and Out Of Our Heads (original, UK version) are my top three Rolling Stones album covers.

What are yours? Please Leave a reply – link at top of post.

Rolling Stones photos: top 5 books for the 50th anniversary

Aficionados of Rolling Stones photos are in luck!  The 50th anniversary in 2012 generated some very collectable photography books.

Here are my top 5:

Rolling Stones photos #1 Rolling Stones 50

Rolling Stones photos: the official book

The Rolling Stones 50, 2012

The official coffee table book has the richest content; it’s certainly the biggest. Unmissable.

Rolling Stones photos #2 The Rolling Stones Fifty Years exhibition catalogue

Rolling Stones photos

Rolling Stones 50th Exhibition

The catalogue of the official Rolling Stones exhibition, which I saw in Somerset House, London, features all of the lovely photographs on display at the show. Much slimmer than #1, above.

Rolling Stones photos #3 Rolling Stones – 50 x 20

Rolling Stones photos

Rolling Stones 50 x 20, Insight Editions

My favourite unofficial collection: the 20 in the title refers to the photographers whose work is presented, chapter by chapter. Includes photography by Michael Joseph – the front cover is from his inspired Beggars Banquet shoot – Gered Mankowitz and Barry Feinstein.

Rolling Stones photos #4 The Rolling Stones Photobiographie 1962-2012

Rolling Stones photos

Rolling Stones Photobiographie 1962-2012, Fetjaine

The Rolling Stones Photobiographie 1962-2012 (Getty Images; text, in French, by Francois Plassat, published by Fetjaine) is well worth checking out…

Rolling Stones photos #5 Chronique

Rolling Stones photos

Chronique des Rolling Stones, Chronique Editions

… as is a second French collection, Chronique des Rolling Stones, text by Philippe Margotin (published by Chronique Editions).

If you have a favourite book from the many other compilations of Rolling Stones photographs celebrating the 50th anniversary, please share it with fellow ROCK | ART | EDITIONS readers – please Leave a reply (at the top of the page).

Mick Jagger by Richard Hamilton: 7 essential collectables, #6-7

The Swingeing London image of Mick Jagger by Richard Hamilton is one of the best-known in rock art.

It’s currently highly visible on posters in London as Tate Modern promotes its Richard Hamilton retrospective exhibition.

Swingeing London, showing Mick Jagger handcuffed to a prison guard in the back of a van, is also occasionally used on book covers, employed as a metaphor for “Pop Art” or the “Swinging Sixties”.

Such books are essential collectables for many a serious Rolling Stones aficionado. Here are two examples from my collection.

Mick Jagger in Swingeing London by Richard Hamilton

The First Pop Age, 2012

Pop Art by Hal Foster is an art historical study of the work of Richard Hamilton and contemporary pop art giants Warhol, Lichtenstein, Richter and Ruscha.







Robert Fraser with Mick Jagger, from Swingeing London by Richard Hamilton

Groovy Bob, 1999

Groovy Bob is a biography of art dealer and Swinging London scenester Robert Fraser. It’s a highly regarded study of a period of rapid cultural change, as some in England started to throw off the shackles imposed by Victorian society.

Together with the five desirable artefacts covered in my two posts last week, these two books make up my 7 essential Mick Jagger by Richard Hamilton collectables.




If you can expand my list, please share your expertise with fellow Rolling Stones art collectors by clicking Leave a reply at the top of the post.

Mick Jagger by Richard Hamilton: 7 essential collectables – #3-5

In Tuesday’s post, I introduced the first two of my favourite 7 essential collectables of Mick Jagger by Richard Hamilton, namely the poster and postcard box from the current Hamilton retrospective exhibition at Tate Modern, London.

Here are my selections #3-5.

Promo pamphlet and catalogue of Richard Hamilton exhibition, 2010

Mick Jagger by Richard Hamilton in Swingeing London

Promo for Modern Moral Matters

The Rolling Stones singer is the subject of 13 illustrations in the Modern Moral Matters exhibition catalogue. Apart from the cover image, the promo pamphlet has nothing on Hamilton’s Swingeing London image of Mick Jagger.

Mick Jagger by Richard Hamilton T-shirt

Mick Jagger Rolling Stones T-shirt

Mick Jagger by Richard Hamilton

The T-shirt, from the National Portrait Gallery, London, reproduces a slightly different version of the Richard Hamilton artwork, viz Swingeing London 67(a). The owner of this shirt clearly values it too highly to actually wear it – it hasn’t left the bag.

Swingeing London monograph

Mick Jagger by Richard Hamilton

Richard Hamilton Swingeing London 67(f)

This is the most detailed art historical study of Richard Hamilton’s iconic Mick Jagger artwork, Swingeing London.

Next week I’ll be sharing my essential collectables #6-7. I’d welcome hearing about your favourite Mick Jagger by Richard Hamilton images.