Forty Licks

30th September 2002
                  Double-CD(ABKCO Records/Virgin Music CDVD 2964).
                  Greatest hits compilation incl. four previously unreleased tracks

                      recorded in Paris, France between May 13  and June 7 2002
                 

Contributing musicians (new tracks): Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Charlie Watts, Ron Wood, Darryl Jones, Chuck Leavell.

.                 DISC 1:
                         -Street Fighting Man (MJ/KR)
                        - Gimmie Shelter (MJ/KR)
                        - Satisfaction (MJ/KR)
                        - The Last Time (MJ/KR)
                        - Jumpin' Jack Flash (MJ/KR)
                        - You Can't Always Get What You Want  (MJ/KR)
                        - 19th Nervous Breakdown  (MJ/KR)
                        - Under My Thumb  (MJ/KR)
                        - Not Fade Away  (Petty/Hardin)
                        - Have You Seen Your Mother, Baby, Standing in the Shadow? (MJ/KR)
                        - Sympathy for the Devil (MJ/KR)
                        - Mother's Little Helper (MJ/KR)
                        - She's a Rainbow  (MJ/KR)
                        - Get Off of My Cloud  (MJ/KR)
                        - Wild Horses (MJ/KR)
                        - Ruby Tuesday  (MJ/KR)
                        - Paint It Black  (MJ/KR)                     
                        - Honky Tonk Women  (MJ/KR)
                        - It's All Over Now (BWomack/SWomack)
                        - Let's Spend the Night Together (MJ/KR)

.                 DISC 2:

                        - Start Me Up  (MJ/KR)
                        - Brown Sugar  (MJ/KR)
                        - Miss You  (MJ/KR)  -single edit
                        - Beast of Burden  (MJ/KR) -promo edit
                        - Don't Stop  (MJ/KR) *
                        - Happy  (MJ/KR)
                        - Angie  (MJ/KR)
                        - You Got Me Rocking (MJ/KR)
                        - Shattered  (MJ/KR)
                        - Fool to Cry  (MJ/KR) -promo edit
                        - Love Is Strong (MJ/KR)
                        - Mixed Emotions (MJ/KR)-single edit
                        - Keys to Your Love (MJ/KR) *
                        - Anybody Seen My Baby?  (MJ/KR) 
                        - Stealing My Heart  (MJ/KR) *
                        - Tumbling Dice (MJ/KR)
                        - Undercover of the Night  (MJ/KR) -remixed version
                        - Emotional Rescue  (MJ/KR) -remixed version
                        - It's Only Rock 'n Roll (MJ/KR)
                        - Losing My Touch (MJ/KR)*

                          Note: Markt with * four new previously unreleased tracks

 Forty Licks, like Elvis' Elvis 30 #1 Hits, is a career-spanning compilation that wouldn't have happened without the unprecedented, blockbuster success of Beatles 1. Where Elvis' set is hurt by the simple fact that there are too many damn Elvis comps on the market, the Rolling Stones benefit greatly from the fact that there has not been any set that chronicles all their recordings from the '60s through the '90s. It also benefits that this is the concept behind the record -- it's meant to be a journey through their biggest songs, not just the number one hits. Of course, the Stones couldn't have had a CD containing just their number ones that spanned one disc, much less two, because they never topped the charts that frequently. This is a liberating thing (compare it to Elvis', which got weighed down with the number ones, resulting in some subpar selections), since it opens the door for almost every Stones song of note to feature on this collection, along with four new songs (not great, but solid songs, all). Sure, there are many great Rolling Stones moments missing, and not just fan favorites Beggars Banquet or Exile on Main Street, either -- "Play With Fire," "2000 Light Years From Home," "Tell Me," "Heart of Stone," "Doo Doo Doo Doo Doo (Heartbreaker)," "Lady Jane," "Time Is on My Side," "Waiting on a Friend," "I'm Free," and "We Love You" are all missing in action. The thing is, as the disc is playing, you don't miss any of them, and it feels like all the hits are here. At first, the non-chronological order seems to be a mistake, but both discs flow well, especially since they're roughly divided thematically (the first is devoted largely to the '60s, with the rest on the second). Yes, the Stones made great albums that should be in any serious rock collection, but if you just want a summary of their best moments, Forty Licks is it; it does its job as well as Beatles 1 did.

 

 Recording date:
 

13th May - 7th June 2002 THE ROLLING STONES. Suresnes (near Paris), France,
                    Guillaume Tell Studios. Producer: The Glimmer Twins & Don Was.
                   Guest musicians: Chuck Leavell (keyb), Darryl Jones (bass). Incl.
                   - Donít Stop  (MJ/KR)
                   - Keys To Your Love (MJ/KR)
                   - Losing My Touch (MJ/KR)
                   - Stealing My Heart (MJ/KR)


 

The last tour ended in 1999, and I thought, I probably won't get a phone call for about 18 months. And, sure enough, slightly after (18 months had passed), Mick calls up and goes, Do you think we should so something next year? I just wait for people to get antsy at home.

- Keith Richards, August 2002


I didn't have a lot to do with (the choosing of the songs). Everyone sent me their lists and some people get into it and I said, I'll just go with what the flow is, because you can start to get so greedy about them and you realize afterward that it didn't really matter. So I thought I'd let them do it and I just sort of watched the lists as they changed and said, Oh, that's the one that's come out the most favorite amongst everybody, so I went with that.

- Keith Richards, August 2002


The only difference between us and the Beatles is that we're still going. So, unlike the Beatles' greatest-hits set [1] we felt we had to put on two or three new tracks in a "to be continued" kind of spirit. I didn't want it to be all just nostalgia. Also, I didn't want to turn up for rehearsals for this tour without having played together with everybody since the end of the last tour. That would have been a little too much - straight into Start Me Up all over again... Playing new music really tightens the band up. Getting everybody together for a month in Paris, I didn't mind if we came out with no tracks at all. But as it turned out, we came out with 30 tracks! On our very first night in Paris we got three tracks down. Everybody went, Yeah. Out of the 30 songs we recorded, we mixed four or five. We're still dickering between them right now, figuring out what will go on the album. But my strategy worked, I think. Everyone's got their chops together and they're really looking forward to this tour. It's not just a regurgitation. It's still a working band.

- Keith Richards, June-July 2002


I think what's important to me is that I'm personally writing new songs and the band is cutting new songs. But there's no point pretending that the Rolling Stones is a new band. There's bits of you that would like to relive that. It's like being a novelist or a film actor. You think, Won't it be great when I burst on the scene with new new movie or novel, instead of being a veteran of 15 movies and 25 novels, and with this one, it's Surprise me.

- Mick Jagger, August 2002


If we came straight to Toronto (to rehearse for the tour) and hadn't played together since the last show of the last tour, then it would have been straight into the trench, without feeling like we'd done anything in between. I'm not saying they're finished or anything. But they are basic tracks. They just started piling out. And we've kept going ever since.

- Keith Richards, August 2002


I thought it was important to get the boys playing new stuff. When we were recording in Paris in May, I thought we might get 4 or 5 tracks down. We got 30.

- Keith Richards, October 2002


I don't think people think about whether there's anything left in us. When you cut 28 tracks in a month, there's plenty in there. It's a matter of do you feel like doing it and, at any rate, what's the point of doing it and is there a reason, etc. But, in a way, it's so srange because we really just work like a band. You know, Let's make a record. There's no really sort of great strategy involved in any of this.

- Keith Richards, August 2002


They're not old tunes that we dug up or even things that were relatively new. These are new new. Don't Stop is the single-y one. Stealing My Heart is more like garage rock with a hook. Keys to Your Love is kind of like a soul ballad, but not very slow. It has a kind of Beast of Burden tempo. And Losing My Touch is Keith singing a ballad. And that is very slow.

- Mick Jagger, August 2002


  I daren't hardly say it, but it's probably the best Stones yet - at least for a long time. With the Stones, it usually takes two or three weeks to knock off the rust. Yet somehow, we were all well oiled. Something was right.

- Keith Richards, August 2002


(W)e've got (new tracks) in the can, and in a way I'm going to try to work on them and see if there's an album in there or the beginnings of an album or what. It seems like there's a lot there and it was a very profitable and prolific month in Paris, so I'm not going to just let them sit in the can and forget about them. But at the moment I can't do anything but this. But once this tour gets going, maybe I'll find some time to start working on them.

- Keith Richards, August 2002


I don't remember how much is actually finished. When the tour gets to be like clockwork, we can work on some of the songs on the road.

- Mick Jagger, October 2002


We went there, in Paris, to do 6 songs, and we ended up doing 25. Like, we have another new album in the making, if you like, out of the Paris sessions. I would say it wouldn't take more than a few months to do the final vocals and mixing. There's not much needs doing to the basic tracks - you know, maybe an overdub here and there - but if we were forced, we could have it out in a couple of months.

- Ron Wood, October 2002


(We recorded) 28 bits: 28 songs is pushing it, wouldn't that be nice? But there's a lot of great ideas, we've got a lot of stuff for an album that could come afterwards. Maybe with technology we could finish it on the road, like we did with Stripped.

- Mick Jagger, August 2002


 

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