Thursday, May 20, 2010

It's only Rock & Roll, but I like it

I can't wait to see this Stones doco 'Stones in Exile', which has just premiered in Cannes. I've seen the Stones twice, once in Auckland in Western Springs in the late 90's, then again in London at Wembley Stadium. Both times they were AMAZING!

The music is fantastic & Mick is an absolutely electric performer, with his larger than life strutting and pouting. You can't keep your eyes off him, and Keith is painfully cool, with his well-practiced opening line "I'm happy to be here. I'm happy to be anywhere, really!" It always gets a laugh!

Filmed by the BBC, 'Stones in Exile' it follows the recording of their seminal album 'Exile on Main St' in the South of France during the year I was born, 1972. Back in their hey day, Mick, Keith & Brian Jones (below with Anita Pallenberg) were quite the triumvirate - the sexy swaggering lead singer, the naughty rock & roll rascal and the cute, sartorially slick dandy.

Brian & Anita
Like Kate Moss & Sienna Miller et al, the Stones 70's boho/rock looks has inspired stylistas & dedicated followers of fashion ever since. WAGs such as Marianne Faithful and Anita Pallenberg, then later Bianca Jagger and Jerry Hall epitomised 60 to 70's style.

Anita Pallenberg

Keith & Anita

With her 'Nico' style bangs, shearling coats and broad brimmed hat, Anita's effortless Boho style tinged with rock made her a style icon. The stunning Italian model/actress met the ill-fated Brian Jones in 1965 and infiltrated the band successfully, leaving her mark. Anita is credited for singing back up on 'Sympathy for the Devil', and Mick even asked for her advice on tracks from the 'Beggar's Banquet' album.

Anita later moved on to Keith Richards, with whom she has two adult children - Marlon and Dandelion. They had a third son who tragically died of cot death weeks after his birth. Their tumultuous relationship was the stuff of folklore, and Keith has still professed his love for Anita when he met his future wife, Patti Hansen.

Marianne and Anita

Marianne Faithfull

The wide-eyed, pretty blonde fledgling folk singer the Stones aged 19 at a party in swinging London in 1964 and quickly captured Mick's attention. Several of the Stone's best songs were said to be inspired by Mick's teenage girlfriend, Marianne Faithfull, including 'Sympathy for the Devil', 'Wild Horses' and Marianne herself penned 'Sister Morphine'.

One of the most famous Marianne stories is when the Stones were arrested at Keith's house Sussex, with Marianne clad in nothing but a fur rug. The stigma of this event still haunts her "It destroyed me. To be a male drug addict and to act like that is always enhancing and glamourising. A woman in that situation becomes a slut and a bad mother". She split with Mick in 1970. In 1979 she hit pay-dirt with her solo album, Broken English, with her beautiful song 'The Ballad of Lucy Jordan' going ballistic...

"The morning sun touched lightly on the eyes of Lucy Jordan
In a white suburban bedroom in a white suburban town
As she lay there 'neath the covers dreaming of a thousand lovers

Till the world turned to orange and the room went spinning round.

At the age of thirty-seven she realised she'd never
Ride through Paris in a sports car with the warm wind in her hair..."

Mick, Marianne, Anita & Keith

Much later, Kate Moss inevitably became pals with her style hero Marianne, but fell out in a widely publicised tiff with Marianne claiming in a rather vitriolic way "Kate Moss is a vampire who stole my style. 'Now I see pictures of her with a boy who looks like Mick Jagger, and her looking like me. So there was a reason. It's one of her gigs to do me". Eek! Here they all are in happier times.

Jo & Ronnie Wood, Marianne, Kate & Anita, circa 1990's
The Nicaraguan beauty met Mick after a Stones gig in 1970 & they married a year in St Tropez later while she was pregnant with their daughter Jade. Wearing an immaculately tailored, plunging white Saville Row suit sans shirt instead of a wedding dress cemented her role as a style icon.

They divorced in 1978, after Bianca discovered Mick's affair with Jerry Hall.

Jerry Hall

The leggy 70's supermodel (far left, in this fabulous 1978 Helmut Newton shot for French Vogue) couldn't have been more different to the sultry Bianca - all long legs, blonde sunshiny hair & Texan twang, Jerry met Mick at a dinner party in 1977 when she was with rock-star & Roxy Music singer Brain Ferry - natch!
An affair ensued, with Mick writing one of my fave songs 'Miss You' (1978) about Jerry:

"I've been holding on so long
Sleeping all alone, And I miss you
I've been holding on so long
Sleeping all alone, I want to kiss you"

Bianca divorced Mick and he and Jerry were together through the late 70's and 80's, Jerry turning a blind eye to his alleged infidelities and marrying him in 1980.

They had 4 children but the marriage petered to a predictable end in 1999 when Mick was found to have got another woman, model Luciana Gimenez pregnant.

To me, Jerry epitomised the glam, 70's disco look with her wet-look lip lacquer, Helmut Newton shots and shimmery Halston dresses. This is another all time favourite image - again, at Studio 54, Jerry with Andy Warhol.

The Rolling Stones are STYLE. Even their progeny have inherited that innate style (and many a fabulous retro wardrobe) had their fair of modelling success - Lizzie and Georgia Jagger, Theodora Richards and Leah Wood.

Theodora & Lizze in Nylon Magazine 2004

Georgia May's Madonna tribute shot in Vogue Russia shoot

But what better way to finish than with 'Keef' - still rocking his signature look & fronting the Louis Vuitton campaign in.

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