Taking their name from a lyric in a Muddy Waters, song The Rolling Stones were very popular at the Old Twisted Wheel. Most of their early records were copies of USA blues and Soul artist originals. Every Mod had to have their first LP – often they walked around with it tucked under one arm!
In the Twisted Wheel cellar under Brazennose Street in Manchester, walking from room to room in the darkness with Stoned blaring out in 1964, it just didn’t get much better, unless the originals were played, and to be fair the Stones had turned on a lot of people to R&B, Blues and soul, with their copying of USA artists, usually adding an extra twist. I Just Wanna Make Love To You which was fairly laconic on the original Muddy Waters version, became an uptempo song which adults detested and the young loved with equal vigour.
Soon the Wheelers found the original artists, who then became more popular than the Stones. 2120 South Michigan Avenue and Stoned were written by ‘Nanker Phelge’ (Jagger and Richards), the first being in praise of Chess Records, the latter in praise of marijuana.
The DJ Roger Eagle on one occasion played many of the Stones tracks one after the other in late 1964 when the Stones visited the club – only the originals, rather than their versions.
1964 and the love affair of British Mods with the Stones was in full swing.
The single ‘ Come On’ a cover of Chuck Berry’s original had got everyone’s attention in the previous year. Then ‘I Wanna Be Your Man’ written for them by the Beatles!
They released their LP in April and hit the top of the pop charts in June with ‘Its All Over Now’ a cover of The Valentinos.
Mods had turned away from the Beatles to the Stones, probably because the Beatles had become so popular and Mods liked to have an ‘In’ thing going that the crowd didn’t follow. The Beatles were fantastic, but the Stones more obscure at that time in 63. In late 64 they were challenging the Beatles and the Mods, loving Blues, R&B and Soul were moving on. On to the source material of the Beatles early influences and those of the Stones.
Rolling Stones in Manchester
When the group was on in Manchester in late 64/early 65, its not clear exactly when; they went to the most famous club in the city – The Twisted Wheel. By this time it was a MOD exclusive joint with everyone focused upon ORIGINAL artists. Of course the Stones had done mostly copies of black American artists. This did not sit too well with the DJ at the club. When Roger Eagle the DJ heard that the group were upstairs in the coffee bar area he started to play the original artists of the covers that the Stones had done on their LP. But first he put on his imported 45 of the Valentinos a group inspired by Sam Cooke with lead singer Bobby Womack, who’s obscure records were to feature within a year at the club. After about fifteen minutes they got the message and left!
The Stones appeared in Manchester in 65′ at the Odeon cinema on Oxford Street and had to be ‘smuggled’ into the venue from a van at the rear door. The pictures of this are shown in a new book about the group: ROLLING STONES 50. What the book doesn’t mention is that a pal of mine, with style and a Stones haircut was standing at the stage door after their performance, the van pulled up for the Stones, the door opened and out they came. But my pall got mixed with the group and pushed into the van with them. The Stones were pushing him out the back doors as the minders and police were forcing him back in!
BLUES – STONES
Their version of Howlin’ Wolf’s Little Red Rooster shot straight to number one. The first ever and the only Blues recording that I know of to achieve this.
On their first LP which was different from the subsequent USA release which did not have ‘Mona’ by Bo Diddley, it was replaced by ‘Not Fade Away’ a UK single. In the UK in 1963/4 there was a Blues boom and the Stones were a Blues band hence all the blues covers on this their first LP: released in 1964.
Give it a chance because it really rocks.
At that time in England the fashion of the youth movement was Mod and Mod’s favoured originals. Soon they found the original recordings, just as the Stones had. So at the UK’s Northern Mod club in Manchester the original records were obtained by the DJ in favour over playing the Stones LP, which had been played extensively.
2020 South Michigan Avenue from a Stones EP was a huge 45 at the ‘Wheel’.
So being somewhat arrogant at the time, even though appreciating the Stones, which was regarded as better than being a Beatles fan as they had become too popular (for Mods). Manchester Mods moved away from the Stones to the original blues artists, to R&B and ultimately to 100% drenched in SOUL.
However this LP is magic, its just as brilliant, even better in many ways, than the originals as the Stones do ad something more: they ROCK.
I WANNA BE YOUR MAN
IT’S ALL OVER NOW
I WANT TO BE LOVED
AROUND AND AROUND
LITTLE RED ROOSTER
2120 SOUTH MITCHIGAN AVENUE
IT’S OFF THE HOOK
NOT FADE AWAY
Time Is On My Side
And Many more..
ROLLING STONES first LP:
THE ROLLING STONES
1. “Route 66” – Written by Bobby Troup first recorded by Nat King Cole.
The Stones version was a related to the 1961version by – CHUCK BERRY.
2. “I Just Want to Make Love to You” Written by Willie Dixon for MUDDY WATERS
3. “Honest I Do” JIMMY REED
4. “Mona (I Need You Baby)” (Ellas McDaniel ) AKA BO DIDDLEY
5. “Now I’ve Got a Witness (Like Uncle Phil and Uncle Gene)” Nanker Phelge – Mick & Kieth Instrumental.
6. “Little by Little” Junior Wells – Phelge/Phil Spector – JUNIOR WELLS
7. “I’m a King Bee” SLIM HARPO
8. “Carol” CHUCK BERRY
9. “Tell Me (You’re Coming Back)” Nanker Phelge – Mick Jagger/Keith Richards
10. “Can I Get a Witness” Written by: Holland/ Dozier/Holland. MARVIN GAYE
11. “You Can Make It If You Try” – GENE ALLISON
12. “Walking the Dog” RUFUS THOMAS
On The STONES LP
Band-members, Musicians and Performers
Mick Jagger – Lead vocals, harmonica, percussion
Keith Richards – Guitar, vocals
Brian Jones – Guitar, harmonica, vocals, percussion
Charlie Watts – Drums, percussion
Bill Wyman – Bass guitar, vocals
Ian Stewart – Organ, piano
Gene Pitney – Piano on “Little by Little”
Phil Spector – Maracas on “Little by Little”