There was always this argument: who is better The Beatles or the Stones? These were the only two bands pitted this way – there was never an argument: who is better Herman’s Hermits or The Yardbirds? I doubt if The Beatles or The Stones really cared – who was selling most was probably, their concern, if they had any at all. Looking back now I see The Stones had a darker & more sexual sound. The Beatles were lighter & more playful. One would never mistake one for the other.
On shelf as stand-alone or mp3 I have England’s Newest Hit Makers (1964), 12 x 5 (1964), Out of Our Heads (1965), December’s Children (1965), Aftermath (1966), got LIVE if you want it! (1966), Between the Buttons (1967), Satanic Majesties Request (1967), Beggar’s Banquet (1968), Ya-Ya’s Out (1970).
The other argument was: which is the best Stones lp before 1970? Their material progressed from lp to lp as they went from covers to original songs. I find it impossible to pick a favorite lp – even favorite song – my favorite moment, however, is Keith’s guitar break in Sympathy For The Devil. Buttons was perhaps their most radio friendly & I did love it. The reviled Majesties is excellent but certainly not Satanic nor as compelling as Banquet.
Rounding out one of the mp3 cds I added: John Mayall with Eric Clapton (1966), A Hard Road (1967), Jazz Blues Fusion (1978) – Mayall is a traditional blues player who was very influential but never really tried for radio top ten. Clapton went on to bigger fame & the Stones replaced the deceased Brian Jones with Mick Taylor – who was one of Mayall’s lead guitarists.
How could I resist Marianne Faithful’s Best (1987) – a sweet collection of her sweet nearly folksy early work. If you only know her later work (Broken English) you will stunned by the purity of her voice. Finally is the soundtrack from Performance (1970): A film starring Mick Jagger as a reclusive rock star caught up in gangsters. Great music & let’s face it Jagger was never reclusive.
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