The Stones, whose contract with Decca has expired, launch their Rolling Stones Records imprint with the mighty double header of "Brown Sugar" and "Bitch," which continue to push the barriers and court controversy with their lyrics.

6th: Chloe, daughter to Mick and Rose Taylor is born at Wimbledon hospital in South London.

7th: American magazine Billboard votes The Rolling Stones third in their Best Selling Artists Poll from 1960-1970

6th: Stones quilt U.K  The Stones annonce a British Farewell Tour in March. After that, they all will be moving to France for tax reasons. Bill Wyman attends the U.K. film première of Joe Cocker’s music film “Mad Dogs And Englishmen

Dates: Newcastle City Hall (4); Froe Trade Hall, Manchester (5); Coventry Theatre, Coventry (6); Green's Playhouse, Glasgow (8); Big Apple, Brighton (10); Liverpool Empire, Liverpool (12); University of Leeds (13); The Roundhouse, Gamden Town, London (14); The Marquee, London (26).

4th - 14th: British Tour („Farewell Tour“)
Stones begin British tour in Newcastle by which time the entire tour is already sold out. The band showcase the same set as last year’s European tour, with the new tracks “Bitch” and “Wild Horses” also included.

6th: Decca starts to mine the Stones back-catalogue following the band’s departure from their label. First out of the shoot is a patchy compilation album called Stone Age which features a stone wall covered in graffiti, very reminiscent to the Stones’ original toilet-wall artwork for the Beggar’s Banquet album, which was rejected by the company.


STONE AGE Compilation LP  (Decca SKL 5084).

                         Look What You’ve Done (McKinley Morganfield)
                         It’s All Over Now (Bobby and Shirley Womack)
                         Confessin' the Blues (Walter Brown/Jay McShann)
                         One More Try (MJ/KR)
                         As Tears Go By (MJ/KR/Andrew Oldham)
                         The Spider And The Fly (Nanker Phelge)
                         My Girl (William Robinson/Ronald White)
                         Paint It Black (MJ/KR)
                         If You Need Me (Wilson Pickett/Robert Bateman)  
                         The Last Time (MJ/KR) 
                         Blue Turns To Gray (MJ/KR)
                         Around And Around (Chuck Berry )


13th: The Stones play Leeds University. The Stones issue an official statement, signed by Mick saying that the Telegraph’s “83 million” quote is ludicrous, adding that that figure alone probably reflects the collective recording earnings of The Beatles, Elvis, The Stones and many others to boot.

20th: The Stones take out an ad in the British press, denouncing their ex-record company Decca’s new “Stones” album of Golden Oldies. They claim that the “Stone Age” album (released on March 6) is “in our opinion, below the standard we try to keep up, both in choice of content and cover design.” The statement was signed by all Stones including Mick Taylor. The Stone Age album still manages to make it to Number 5 in the British charts.
26th: The Stones play before an invited audience at the Marquee Club in Soho to film two television shows, one for Britain, one for Europe. In an argument will Harold Pendleton, owner of the Marquee, Keith swings his guitar at Pendleton's head, but misses. Eventually the invited audience is thrown out by Mick Jagger because they are not showing sufficient enthusiasm for the band who, it must be said, tend to stop, start and repeat numbers with annoying regularity while the audience slopes off to the bar muttering that they'd seen better rehearsed bands in their local pubs most Saturday nights.

30th: The Stones hold a farewell Britain party at Skindles Hotel in Maidenhead before departing for the Cote d'Azur. John Lennon and Yoko Ono, Eric Clapton and other stars attend.


1st:  Bill and Astrid Lundstrom rent a house La Bastide Saint-Antoine near Grasse.

6th: The Stones are in France. They kick off in Cannes where they sign their newly-founded Rolling Stones Records to distributors Atlantic (in the USA) and The Kinney Group (elsewhere). Mick fills in the details by saying that the contract encompasses six new albums in four years’ time and will include the forthcoming “Sticky Fingers” LP. He also mentions the chance of the odd Stones solo album being added to the RS records catalogue. By now, The Stones have acquired property. Mick has opted to reside in Mougins, one-time residence of the famous artist Picasso but The Stones’ working base will be at Keith’s place Nellcôte in Villefranche-Sur-Mer where the band will record the next album, Exile On Main Street. In the meantime, back in England, Mick’s Stargroves mansion is up for rent.


15th April: The Stones visit to present their new single “Brown Sugar” on “Top of The Pops.” The single (released the next day) comes out as a mini-E.P. backed with “Bitch,” plus the live Chuck Berry cover “Let It Rock,” recorded at Leeds University last March. The rare with-picture sleeve-version sees The Stones in a state of half-undress shielding their modesty (front or rear) with the forthcoming album’s Andy Warhol “Jeans”-design sleeve. “Brown Sugar,” written when Mick was seeing Marsha Hunt, hits the Number 1 spot across the world. In The States, the record comes out on single, only b/w “Bitch.”

                   7" single (Rolling Stones Records RS 19100).
                   A: Brown Sugar (MJ/KR)
                   B: Bitch (MJ/KR)
                   B: Let It Rock (Chuck Berry)



23rd: The band release Sticky Fingers LP, their debut for their own Rolling Stones Records. Andy Warhol’s cover design, a crutch-shot of jeans, complete with adjustable zip which opened to reveal Mick’s tongue and lips, immediately creates a howl of protest and several retailers refuse to stock the “offensive artwork.” Despite this, the album reaches Number One around the world.

                  "STICKY FINGERS" LP (Rolling Stones Records COC 59100).
                  A:   Brown Sugar (MJ/KR)
                        Sway (MJ/KR)
                        Wild Horses (MJ/KR)
                        Can't You Hear Me Knocking (MJ/KR)
                        You Gotta Move (Fred McDowell/Rev. Gary Davis)
                  B:   Bitch (MJ/KR)
                        I Got The Blues (MJ/KR)
                        Sister Morphine (MJ/KR/Marianne Faithfull)
                        Dead Flowers (MJ/KR)
                        Moonlight Mile (MJ/KR)

2nd:  Mick meets Bianca in Paris for a dinner party to celebrate her birthday

7th May: The Press announces that Mick and Bianca are planning a “secret wedding” Bianca, however, says, “There’s not going to be a wedding this week, next week or ever.” A day later Mick is seen in Paris buying two specially-designed wedding rings

12th May: Mick marries Bianca Perez Marena De Macia in St Tropez. The ceremony is performed by Father Lucien Baud at St. Anne Chapel, St Tropez. Mick had been taking Roman Catholic religious instructions from Father Lucien and the Bishop of Fréjus. Roger Vadim and Natalie Delon are the witnesses. Mick’s parents also attend the ceremony. Afterwards, the wedding party guests include Keith, Charlie, Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, Keith Moon, Lord Litchfield, and Eric Clapton. Also present are Ronnie Wood and Ian McLagan from The Faces, Mick’s on-tour fashion designer Ossie Clarke, “Performance” director Donald Cammell, latest Stones record producer Jimmy Miller (since “Beggar’s Banquet”), Marshall Chess who heads the American side of RS Records, and Ahmet Ertegun, president of Atlantic – the distributor’s of Rolling Stones Records in The States. Following the ceremony an exclusive troupe heads for the Café Des Arts where Mick joins in a jam session featuring long-time Stones-blower-to-be, saxophonist Bobby Keyes, long-time Stones session keyboard player Nicky Hopkins, the band’s back-up singer Doris Troy, Mick & Andrew Oldham’s Immediate-protégé P.P. Arnold, and Stephen Stills, with Davis Brown and Michael Shrieve from Santana.


13th: Elton John announces that Mick is the most perfect pop star: “He’s rude, ugly-attractive, he’s brilliant.
 The Rolling Stones are the perfect pop group. The Beatles were a bit show-biz, but The Rolling Stones, they don’t give a shit!”

1st: 'Brown Sugar' tops U.S. chart

3rd: Shirley Watts is sentenced in absentia to six months in jail and a £30 fine for assaulting Customs officers and using abusive language to Nice Airport officials.

12th: In America, the new Stones single release is the poignant ballad “Wild Horses.” The song, off the Sticky Fingers album, was first given to Keith’s friend Gram Parsons for use on his Flying Burrito Brothers 1970 LP. The B-side features a different take of the heavily Mick Taylor-inspired album track “Sway” where it reaches No. 18.

                   7" single (Rolling Stones Records RS-19101 -US).

                   A: Wild Horses (MJ/KR)
                   B: Sway (MJ/KR)

26th: Decca release a maxi-single, featuring The Stones’ “Street Fighting Men”/ “Surprise Surprise”/ “Everybody Needs Somebody To Love.” It enters the charts at No. 27 and reaches No. 17.


10th: Recordings start at Keith’s house in the South of France. The Stones use the mobile studio outside the house for the recordings which take place in the basement inside. Mick shuttles between the Stones in the Riviera and Bianca, who is pregnant in Paris. Despite the ramshackle recording conditions, the band has enough material for a double album provisionally titled Tropical Disease

26th:  Mick spends his birthday recording at Nellcôte

29th: London, Rialto Theatre. Premiere of the movie Gimme Shelter.

30th: Mick and Bianca hit Heathrow airport on their way to Ireland and announce that they’re expecting a baby.

31st: Gimme Shelter, the film of The Stones’ 1969 tour with its violent climax, ultimately ending the ‘60s dream at Altamont, is premiered in London. Keith and Anita Pallenberg attend the opening.

5th: Shirley Watts' six months jail term is reduced to fifteen days suspended on appeal at Aix-en-Provence.

27th:   Decca Records releases Gimme Shelter LP. One side of the album features a collection of oldies; the other side includes live tracks from a performance at the Royal Albert Hall. The album has nothing to do with the soundtrack to the Altamont film of the same name.

31st:  Mick, Keith, Charlie, Bill and Brian’s father Lewis Jones file a lawsuit against former Stones managers Andrew Loog Oldham and Eric Easton, claiming that the duo had persuaded Brian to sign a 6% deal on the wholesale record price on behalf of the band while Decca paid a package of 14% to the management. Meanwhile, Oldham apparently already had a 25% management contract with the band! The original Stones plus Brian’s dad also look to Allen Klein for compensation, as they believe the manager never acted on behalf of the band’s best financial interest. Klein allegedly tricked the Stones to sign over their song-catalogue to Nanker Phelge Music Ltd., a company the band believed was owned by them but was in fact the property of Klein.


1st:  A set of eleven rare guitars are stolen from Keith’s Nellcôte villa. Keith offers a fee for their return, but fails to retrieve them

21st: Mick and Bianca celebrate the birth of their daughter Jade. Mick then goes back to work to finish the album, now called     
            Exile on Main Street

23rd: The recording sessions at Villefranche-Sur-Mer end with the Stones having produced enough material for a double album.
30th: Keith, Mick, Bianca, Jade fly to the States. Keith going first to Nashville to replace the guitars stolen at Nellcôte.
Mick going straight to Los Angeles where he and Keith are to finish work on the new album, tentatively titled Tropical Disease, right until December

 Mick announces the new Stones American tour for the next year when the band will visit 40 cities. He also adds that The Stones really want to play Russia and that they are negotiating to play behind the Iron Curtain.


11th: Mick and Bianca are shopping around the Californian housing market for a place to stay until the American Stones tour kicks off.

20th: Mick joins The Stones in the audience at B.B. King’s concert in Las Vegas.

28th: Mick is at the Los Angeles ceremony of the latest Gold Disc award presented to The Who.

For more details in 1971