Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Jagger: Rebel, Rock Star, Rambler, Rogue

A compelling take on elusive, multifaceted Mick Jagger: within the cultural-historical context of the last fifty years and more. That's what Marc Spitz provides in Jagger: Rebel, Rock Star, Rambler, Rogue (New York: Gotham Books, 2011). Jagger the artist and hedonist is much more enjoyable to contemplate than any hypocritical politician or moralist I can think of.

As a band, the Rolling Stones turn fifty in 2012. As Spitz puts it, "Connecting with the the old blues and soul seems to bring out [Jagger's] best and probably keeps him young. Mick and his fellow Rolling Stones have become like the bluesmen they worshipped in their teens . . ." (page 291).

Spitz wisely makes selective choices in this biographical and aesthetic study. It's refreshing. I'll end here with Charlie Watt's quip made upon the occasion of Mick Jagger's knighting, performed by Prince Charles in December of 2003. "Anybody else would be lynched: eighteen wives and twenty children and he's knighted, fantastic!" (page 276).

Today's Rune: Flow. 


the walking man said...

The old prince probably knighted him out of jealousy..he's been waiting 50 years to be a rock star and Jagger has been one for that long...who was the royal in this summation?

Charles Gramlich said...

Some folks can just get away with shit. and I kind of admire them for that. I will definitely want to read this.

Johnny Yen said...

About 24 or 25 years ago, a friend of the woman I was dating met Mick (and then-partner Jeri Hall) at a charity fundraiser; they were bartending for the event. She said Mick was witty and charming and ever the gentleman.

He pretty much wrote the book on being a rock star, didn't he? I previewed Keith Richards' autobiography last summer (it was at my school library) and look forward to reading it in earnest. I think I'll have to add this one to my reading list.

I'm jealous! Somehow never seen the Stones perform!

Erik Donald France said...

Cheers, y'all -- thanks for the comments~~