Watch Mick Jagger and Keith Richards Reflect on Ron Wood’s Sobriety in New Documentary Clip
Ron Wood documentary Somebody Up There Likes Me is out now
The new documentary Somebody Up There Likes Me traces the career of Ron Wood, from his days as the bassist in the Jeff Beck Band, through his brief and boozy tenure in the Faces with life-long friend Rod Stewart, to his long run in the Rolling Stones.
The film features new interviews with Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Charle Watts and Rod Stewart, along with Wood himself. It’s available now as a Virtual Cinema release on the movie’s official website and will arrive on DVD/Blu-ray on October 9th.
To discuss every ballad written by the Stones would require expert skills of condensing that, as an English student, I simply don’t possess. So, here are six of the band’s renowned and also, frankly, underrated ballads. There is certainly no point in crowning these six as the definitive best, because that would be completely criminal.
1. Winter (from the album Goat’s Head Soup), 1973
Written by Mick Taylor, the song’s title is oddly paradoxical: Bill Janovitz commented that the band were writing the album in ‘sunny Jamaica’, and they ‘felt that starting the sessions with “Winter” could transition them out of the old and into the new climate’
.”Winter” is actually the work of Jagger and the Stones’ lead guitarist at the time, Mick Taylor. It was the first song recorded for the album and does not feature Richards.
2 Let It Loose (from the album Exile on Main Street), 1972
“Let It Loose” has never been performed live by the Rolling Stones Jagger and Richards composed this heavenly gospel blues ballad, featuring a gospel choir to mark the band’s initial venture into the genre. Jagger had recently attended a church service of the Reverend James Cleveland and was moved by the performance of the gospel choir he saw there, and felt inspired to incorporate this into a track. Even though Jagger’s typical brazen flirting is revealed by lines like ‘I can’t resist a corny line (can’t resist)’, there is something spiritual and heartfelt about the track, something that renders it raw and revealing.
3 Moonlight Mile (from the album Sticky Fingers), 1971
Jagger and Taylor produced ‘Moonlight Mile’ in a single night. If the Stones’ ballads reveal their often-hidden vulnerability, then ‘Moonlight Mile’ is the epitome of this. Jagger laments his life on the road, and his drug-hazed memories in a set of lyrics that rival his entire catalogue.
Till The Next Goodbye (from the album It’s Only Rock ’n Roll), 1974
‘Till The Next Goodbye’ is another track that has been routinely overlooked by followers of the band, and it’s never been performed live, nor is it included on a single compilation album. This doesn’t detract from its heart-breaking beauty: Jagger assumes the role of the narrator, imploring his forbidden partner to both love him and leave him.
“Memory Motel” 1976 album Black and Blue
Jagger began writing the song before beginning the Stones’ Tour of the Americas ’75 while staying with Richards at Andy Warhol’s house in Montauk, New York and finished it while on tour.