The Rolling Stones song you're thinking about right now thread

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Silent Majority
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Re: The Rolling Stones song you're thinking about right now thread

Post by Silent Majority »

I kind of like the pointless meanness of it.
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Re: The Rolling Stones song you're thinking about right now thread

Post by Marky Dread »

Silent Majority wrote:
19 May 2020, 7:22am
I kind of like the pointless meanness of it.
Yeah I get that. Don't think we should lose sight of the fact that it's "The Stones" and they are not known for being the good boys of rock 'n' roll. ;)
Last edited by Marky Dread on 19 May 2020, 2:33pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The Rolling Stones song you're thinking about right now thread

Post by WestwayKid »

“It was disgusting.” Jagger says he wrote the song in Australia while filming Ned Kelly. “God knows what I’m on about in that song. It’s such a mishmash. All the nasty subjects in one go,” he told Rolling Stone in 1995. It was a “very instant thing.”
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Re: The Rolling Stones song you're thinking about right now thread

Post by WestwayKid »

Mick would draw some flack for the track "Some Girls" in 1978. Again, it feels like a poorly thought out attempt to sound risque. The band issued a statement at the time claiming the lyrics actually mocked stereotypical feelings towards women. Apparently, Jagger now changes up the lyrics when the song is performed - flip flopping white girls for black girls in the line in question.

There is something about being provocative as an artist and pushing people towards subjects that are uncomfortable. I wonder if this is something Jagger thinks about or whether it truly is a case of just not thinking things through. If he really did hash out the lyrics to Brown Sugar in 30 minutes down in Muscle Shoals, how much time did he give to actually considering the content? Probably not much.
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Re: The Rolling Stones song you're thinking about right now thread

Post by matedog »

Silent Majority wrote:
19 May 2020, 7:22am
I kind of like the pointless meanness of it.
I assumed it was meant to be provocative/outrageous. Not unlike Some Girls as WWK noted. I'm not sure though because I can't think of a lot of other examples from Mick. Furthermore, though there are some somewhat thorough details in the song, I don't know if someone raised in the UK would have the same understanding of what is offensive to African Americans as someone from the US (I'm mostly thinking of the class vs. race discussions we've had ad naseum here). Particularly at that time. I agree it has not aged well and what is particularly problematic is the public's lack of awareness of the subject matter. It gets played on classic rock radio and in ads (at least the chorus) without any recognition of that (particularly the first verse) the lyrics are very ugly and offensive.

I guess I feel it's okay to enjoy the song knowing that parts of it are likely meant to rile. I'm not 100% sure though and I go back and forth a lot on it. I'll be honest, it doesn't help that it is an otherwise stupendous song.
Look, you have to establish context for these things. And I maintain that unless you appreciate the Fall of Constantinople, the Great Fire of London, and Mickey Mantle's fatalist alcoholism, live Freddy makes no sense. If you want to half-ass it, fine, go call Simon Schama to do the appendix.

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Re: The Rolling Stones song you're thinking about right now thread

Post by Dr. Medulla »

Jack Hamilton's Just After Midnight, about race in 1960s rock music (really, how black people were squeezed out as rock n roll became rock), has a chapter about the Stones and, in part, "Brown Sugar." My notes on that section (make of it what you will):
“Brown Sugar” seized on white-on-black rape in antebellum years, with stereotypes of black female sexuality. Its flippancy can be seen as racially offensive, but it can also be interpreted as a sincere exploration of racial imagination, of how the boundaries of race in present music were born centuries earlier. In covering desire, lust, exploitation, violence, and race, it is a song about rock n roll itself and its antecedents. Where Hendrix critiqued violence against a utopian future where racial category would be surpassed in favour of individual creativity, the RS approached it by plunging deep into the history of black music as central to rock n roll. In a way, the RS were conservative and JH progressive, but each sought a means of neutralizing the perniciousness of race in music. However, the RS never properly freed themselves from fetishized fantasies, the ones that encouraged transgression and violence, especially as they were turned into white hypermasculine fantasies. Successive bands would champion the violence as white male authenticity, with no greater purpose than that.
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Re: The Rolling Stones song you're thinking about right now thread

Post by Marky Dread »

matedog wrote:
19 May 2020, 12:38pm
Silent Majority wrote:
19 May 2020, 7:22am
I kind of like the pointless meanness of it.
I assumed it was meant to be provocative/outrageous. Not unlike Some Girls as WWK noted. I'm not sure though because I can't think of a lot of other examples from Mick. Furthermore, though there are some somewhat thorough details in the song, I don't know if someone raised in the UK would have the same understanding of what is offensive to African Americans as someone from the US (I'm mostly thinking of the class vs. race discussions we've had ad naseum here). Particularly at that time. I agree it has not aged well and what is particularly problematic is the public's lack of awareness of the subject matter. It gets played on classic rock radio and in ads (at least the chorus) without any recognition of that (particularly the first verse) the lyrics are very ugly and offensive.

I guess I feel it's okay to enjoy the song knowing that parts of it are likely meant to rile. I'm not 100% sure though and I go back and forth a lot on it. I'll be honest, it doesn't help that it is an otherwise stupendous song.
Well there are such good people here as African Englishmen/women. ;)
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Re: The Rolling Stones song you're thinking about right now thread

Post by Olaf »

Quite frankly, that song makes me puke.

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Re: The Rolling Stones song you're thinking about right now thread

Post by Heston »

Dr. Medulla wrote:
19 May 2020, 1:05pm
Jack Hamilton's Just After Midnight, about race in 1960s rock music (really, how black people were squeezed out as rock n roll became rock), has a chapter about the Stones and, in part, "Brown Sugar." My notes on that section (make of it what you will):
“Brown Sugar” seized on white-on-black rape in antebellum years, with stereotypes of black female sexuality. Its flippancy can be seen as racially offensive, but it can also be interpreted as a sincere exploration of racial imagination, of how the boundaries of race in present music were born centuries earlier. In covering desire, lust, exploitation, violence, and race, it is a song about rock n roll itself and its antecedents. Where Hendrix critiqued violence against a utopian future where racial category would be surpassed in favour of individual creativity, the RS approached it by plunging deep into the history of black music as central to rock n roll. In a way, the RS were conservative and JH progressive, but each sought a means of neutralizing the perniciousness of race in music. However, the RS never properly freed themselves from fetishized fantasies, the ones that encouraged transgression and violence, especially as they were turned into white hypermasculine fantasies. Successive bands would champion the violence as white male authenticity, with no greater purpose than that.
I'm not buying it. No amount of clever words can detract from the fact it is grossly offensive and treads very dodgy ground. But if it comes on I sing along as I'm kind of inured to it now.
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Re: The Rolling Stones song you're thinking about right now thread

Post by Marky Dread »

Olaf wrote:
19 May 2020, 4:08pm
Quite frankly, that song makes me puke.
It's worse around midnight.
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Re: The Rolling Stones song you're thinking about right now thread

Post by Dr. Medulla »

Heston wrote:
19 May 2020, 5:23pm
Dr. Medulla wrote:
19 May 2020, 1:05pm
Jack Hamilton's Just After Midnight, about race in 1960s rock music (really, how black people were squeezed out as rock n roll became rock), has a chapter about the Stones and, in part, "Brown Sugar." My notes on that section (make of it what you will):
“Brown Sugar” seized on white-on-black rape in antebellum years, with stereotypes of black female sexuality. Its flippancy can be seen as racially offensive, but it can also be interpreted as a sincere exploration of racial imagination, of how the boundaries of race in present music were born centuries earlier. In covering desire, lust, exploitation, violence, and race, it is a song about rock n roll itself and its antecedents. Where Hendrix critiqued violence against a utopian future where racial category would be surpassed in favour of individual creativity, the RS approached it by plunging deep into the history of black music as central to rock n roll. In a way, the RS were conservative and JH progressive, but each sought a means of neutralizing the perniciousness of race in music. However, the RS never properly freed themselves from fetishized fantasies, the ones that encouraged transgression and violence, especially as they were turned into white hypermasculine fantasies. Successive bands would champion the violence as white male authenticity, with no greater purpose than that.
I'm not buying it. No amount of clever words can detract from the fact it is grossly offensive and treads very dodgy ground. But if it comes on I sing along as I'm kind of inured to it now.
Certainly not saying I agree with the argument either, but he also argues that part of it, too, was the Stones' cultivated image as the anti-Beatles. They were dangerous and taboo. So they were also playing a role. Which, okay, sure, but I don't see persona as a better defense than sincerity.
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Re: The Rolling Stones song you're thinking about right now thread

Post by Marky Dread »

Heston wrote:
19 May 2020, 5:23pm
Dr. Medulla wrote:
19 May 2020, 1:05pm
Jack Hamilton's Just After Midnight, about race in 1960s rock music (really, how black people were squeezed out as rock n roll became rock), has a chapter about the Stones and, in part, "Brown Sugar." My notes on that section (make of it what you will):
“Brown Sugar” seized on white-on-black rape in antebellum years, with stereotypes of black female sexuality. Its flippancy can be seen as racially offensive, but it can also be interpreted as a sincere exploration of racial imagination, of how the boundaries of race in present music were born centuries earlier. In covering desire, lust, exploitation, violence, and race, it is a song about rock n roll itself and its antecedents. Where Hendrix critiqued violence against a utopian future where racial category would be surpassed in favour of individual creativity, the RS approached it by plunging deep into the history of black music as central to rock n roll. In a way, the RS were conservative and JH progressive, but each sought a means of neutralizing the perniciousness of race in music. However, the RS never properly freed themselves from fetishized fantasies, the ones that encouraged transgression and violence, especially as they were turned into white hypermasculine fantasies. Successive bands would champion the violence as white male authenticity, with no greater purpose than that.
I'm not buying it. No amount of clever words can detract from the fact it is grossly offensive and treads very dodgy ground. But if it comes on I sing along as I'm kind of inured to it now.
Have you been listening to "Take It Off" by KISS again? ;)
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Re: The Rolling Stones song you're thinking about right now thread

Post by Heston »

Dr. Medulla wrote:
19 May 2020, 5:36pm
Heston wrote:
19 May 2020, 5:23pm
Dr. Medulla wrote:
19 May 2020, 1:05pm
Jack Hamilton's Just After Midnight, about race in 1960s rock music (really, how black people were squeezed out as rock n roll became rock), has a chapter about the Stones and, in part, "Brown Sugar." My notes on that section (make of it what you will):
“Brown Sugar” seized on white-on-black rape in antebellum years, with stereotypes of black female sexuality. Its flippancy can be seen as racially offensive, but it can also be interpreted as a sincere exploration of racial imagination, of how the boundaries of race in present music were born centuries earlier. In covering desire, lust, exploitation, violence, and race, it is a song about rock n roll itself and its antecedents. Where Hendrix critiqued violence against a utopian future where racial category would be surpassed in favour of individual creativity, the RS approached it by plunging deep into the history of black music as central to rock n roll. In a way, the RS were conservative and JH progressive, but each sought a means of neutralizing the perniciousness of race in music. However, the RS never properly freed themselves from fetishized fantasies, the ones that encouraged transgression and violence, especially as they were turned into white hypermasculine fantasies. Successive bands would champion the violence as white male authenticity, with no greater purpose than that.
I'm not buying it. No amount of clever words can detract from the fact it is grossly offensive and treads very dodgy ground. But if it comes on I sing along as I'm kind of inured to it now.
Certainly not saying I agree with the argument either, but he also argues that part of it, too, was the Stones' cultivated image as the anti-Beatles. They were dangerous and taboo. So they were also playing a role. Which, okay, sure, but I don't see persona as a better defense than sincerity.
Well yeah, it was all part of the game back then. I can fully appreciate Christine Sixteen by KISS in retrospect but if a band released it now I would be calling the cops. We seem to haved moved on as a society and mistakes of the past are there to learn from, not be censored.
There's a tiny, tiny hopeful part of me that says you guys are running a Kaufmanesque long con on the board

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Re: The Rolling Stones song you're thinking about right now thread

Post by Heston »

Marky Dread wrote:
19 May 2020, 5:39pm
Heston wrote:
19 May 2020, 5:23pm
Dr. Medulla wrote:
19 May 2020, 1:05pm
Jack Hamilton's Just After Midnight, about race in 1960s rock music (really, how black people were squeezed out as rock n roll became rock), has a chapter about the Stones and, in part, "Brown Sugar." My notes on that section (make of it what you will):
“Brown Sugar” seized on white-on-black rape in antebellum years, with stereotypes of black female sexuality. Its flippancy can be seen as racially offensive, but it can also be interpreted as a sincere exploration of racial imagination, of how the boundaries of race in present music were born centuries earlier. In covering desire, lust, exploitation, violence, and race, it is a song about rock n roll itself and its antecedents. Where Hendrix critiqued violence against a utopian future where racial category would be surpassed in favour of individual creativity, the RS approached it by plunging deep into the history of black music as central to rock n roll. In a way, the RS were conservative and JH progressive, but each sought a means of neutralizing the perniciousness of race in music. However, the RS never properly freed themselves from fetishized fantasies, the ones that encouraged transgression and violence, especially as they were turned into white hypermasculine fantasies. Successive bands would champion the violence as white male authenticity, with no greater purpose than that.
I'm not buying it. No amount of clever words can detract from the fact it is grossly offensive and treads very dodgy ground. But if it comes on I sing along as I'm kind of inured to it now.
Have you been listening to "Take It Off" by KISS again? ;)
See my post above, you were near.
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Re: The Rolling Stones song you're thinking about right now thread

Post by Dr. Medulla »

Heston wrote:
19 May 2020, 5:41pm
Well yeah, it was all part of the game back then. I can fully appreciate Christine Sixteen by KISS in retrospect but if a band released it now I would be calling the cops. We seem to haved moved on as a society and mistakes of the past are there to learn from, not be censored.
That is something to appreciate—the late 60s and early 70s were a period where a whole lot of taboos were exploded and explored openly. Some of the results were generally good—e.g., sexual freedom, cross-racial relationships, more openness towards homosexuals, recreational drug use—but some shit was nasty—e.g., sexual predators (especially on minors), religious cults, crippling drug addiction. So with the idea of no boundaries as the only rule, you can understand how a song like that could emerge. We don't have to excuse it or perpetuate it, but historical context does matter. But it does suggest the essential white male privilege at the bottom of rock culture.
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