Fire and Water Records: The Rolling Stones

Fire and Water Records can't get no satisfaction*! Join Ryan Daly, Neil Daly, Omar Uddin, and Tom Panarese for an all-encompassing roundtable discussion of what is arguably the greatest rock n' roll band of all time.

Track list

  1. "Can't You Hear Me Knocking"
  2. "Start Me Up"
  3. "Let's Spend the Night Together"
  4. "Love is Strong"
  5. "Angry"
  6. "Jumpin' Jack Flash"
  7. "Ruby Tuesday"
  8. "Angie"
  9. "Gimme Shelter"
  10. "Mixed Emotions"
  11. "Streets of Love"
  12. "Rocks Off"
  13. "Wild Horses"
  14. "She's a Rainbow"
  15. "Salt of the Earth"
  16. "Let it Bleed"
  17. "Midnight Rambler"
  18. "Miss You"
  19. "Honky Tonk Woman"
  20. "Happy"
  21. "Tumblin' Dice"
  22. "Brown Sugar"
  23. "Beast of Burden"
  24. "Miss Amanda Jones"
  25. "19th Nervous Breakdown"
  26. "Paint it Black"
  27. "Sympathy for the Devil"
  28. "You Can't Always Get What You Want"
  29. "Dead Flowers"
  30. "Thru and Thru"
  31. "Sweet Sound of Heaven"
  32. "Shine a Light"

Additional audio clips from Eddie Murphy: Delirious and Marc Maron: Too Real.

* Wait... "Satisfaction" isn't even on this episode?!?!?!

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12 responses to “Fire and Water Records: The Rolling Stones

  1. Midnight rambler is the reason I PLay the harmonica (along with howlin wolf’s sittin on top of the world
    2 sticky fingers is a great alum
    3 I THINK Beggers banquit was over all better (except sympathy for the devil only kinda good. but I ALSO think JIGSAW PUZZLE IS really underated as is salt of the earth
    4. love is strong is REALLY GOOD
    5 WHAT is sweet sound of heaven
    6. i love miss you (again I was always the creepy kid in the wheelchair with the harmonica yA KNOW THAT OLD trope!
    7.I NEver liked “Paint it black until…I TRIED TO SING IT…MY GOD IT’S A GREAT SONG
    8. I LOVE doing “Let it bleed at my Karioke bar and since i’ve alredy over shared i’m gonna say it. It hits diffent jamming a harmonica solo into a song with no harmonica becuase nobody said no than singing at a bar you’ve sung at for 10 years. Becuase it’s about LONG TIME FRIENDS
    9 YOU GUYS had parents that listened to Rock?! The Mccarthy parents were JAZZ people rarely even vocal jazz

  2. I never had a Rolling Stones support system.

    My mother was primarily a kicker, especially in the post-Urban Cowboy heyday. When my stepfather came into the picture, he added poppy 50s-mid ’60s to the mix, which my grandmother also seemed content with. My biological father was a big ’70s AOR guy, especially in his “lost years,” an area that I never fully embraced. However, in my teens, he expanded my more passive appreciation of the Beatles with his deep love and respect for them, strengthened by the hype around The Anthology. One of my best friends and my long timer domestic partner are both Doors fans, who I like but were overexposed after the Oliver Stone biopic, so I troll them over it. Mac’s also big on the meh Led Zeppelin, while I can share Pakita’s affection for CCR while giving her more exposure to Simon & Garfunkel and Velvet Underground. My other best friend is into Jimi Hendrix, but is too random to invest deeply into any particular ’60s acts. My trippy dippy sister is down with Bowie, Janis, and Pink Floyd. Not a Stones fan among them.

    My personal history with the Stones is complicated. My favorite song of theirs is “Gimme Shelter,” which I was introduced to by an American Red Cross commercial in the 1980s that only featured the instrumental opening. Some Girls and Emotional Rescue weren’t on my radar, but the album cover for Tattoo You was too iconic to be suppressed. I found it intimidating, but this was also the age of music video, and “Waiting on a Friend” was anything but. A lousy video for a lame song that made the lead singer look like a dork. I wasn’t aware of “Start Me Up” initially, but every time there’d be concert footage on TV or in promotion of a tour, it was reliably represented. I thought it was an older classic that they kept dragging out, but can now see it was their last big hit going into the ’80s, so no wonder. They released albums throughout the decade that seemed to not break out past the boomers, but served as a reminder of their de facto legacy act status in that period. Plus, the notorious cheese of Mick Jagger 1985 duet with David Bowie on the ’60s soul hit “Dancing in the Street,” followed by Angela Bowie going on Oprah or Phil to tell the world that they were sleeping with each other. Not a big win for conservative times. The Stones were heavily referenced in the 1987 film Jumpin’ Jack Flash, which I’m weirdly affectionate towards, but could hardly be considered cool. “Harlem Shuffle” got played at a school dance, but I just thought the teachers were giving themselves another older treat, like Steam’s “Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye”.

    When Forty Licks was released, I bought it for my father as a present, because he didn’t own a single Stones album. Beforehand, I’d asked him point blank if he even liked the band, considering their absence from the collection. He said that he did, but had no further explanation. Over time, I came to the conclusion that he was simply satisfied with their heavy representation on the local oldies station that he listened to. Ironically, I remember a snippet of “Satisfaction” being a staple of the station’s TV and radio promotion. I contrasted that to Divo’s mocking cover of same. As a kid, the Stones seemed like the prototypical rock band. A bunch of skinny junkie alcoholics in loud clothes with thick, low class English accents, blowing through models as pretty as they were ugly while making their fame on music stolen from Black Americans. Then there was the Jurassitol factor. The buying power of the boomers had allowed them to sustain acts like the Stones well past their prime, and nostalgia was also bringing old acts out of relative and actual retirement. I didn’t want to look at a middle aged limey shaking his ass in white pants and a blousey pink top to an arena audience. That was Wham’s well-earned territory, by god. This wasn’t necessarily my father’s music, but definitely somebody’s dad’s. Certainly not mine. And because they were unquestionably one of the biggest and best bands of all time, I didn’t feel like I got a say in hearing them. They would be on soundtracks, commercials, sporting events, school dances… Why were they at my school dance? Who in my cohort requested Stones? When would I be asked to consent to this exposure?

    Things started turning around in 1987. That was a rough year, and one where I really began to expand my musical boundaries. I had been judged harshly, and started to return it in kind. I might have heard “Paint It Black” for the first time, and if not it was like it was, and I embraced its dark sentiments wholly. Plus, it eventually turned up on Twisted Metal: Black, and that game certainly spoke to my generation. “Sympathy for the Devil” was another charmer, another sonic middle finger to the normals. In 1989, the Steel Wheels tour came off as an actual big deal, and I liked the new single “Mixed Emotions” (when a snippet appeared on a novelty song on Dr. Demento.) The Sundays had that great cover of “Wild Horses” in 1993 that, yes, ended up on a beer commercial. I never bothered to see Freejack that same year, but Mick looked cool in the trailer. Voodoo Lounge proved a formidable follow-up, with both the video and songf “Love Is Strong” winning me over. I’m also fond of 1997’s “Anybody Seen My Baby?” The journey begun in 1987 continued, I better assessed the Stones catalog, and it was not found wanting.

    I like the bit from the Pulp Fiction deleted scene about no one liking the Beatles and Elvis Presley equally. I have a lot of Elvis in me, but the Fab Four’s songs… especially the ones they wrote themselves, blow The King’s interpretations out of the water. I confess to wincing when The Who were referenced in the podcast in the same breath as the Stones. Only one of these bands is in serious contention for best ever, and since we’ve had half a century of great music produced since they were actual contemporaries, I can tell you that it isn’t The Who. Hell, Aerosmith, the love child of the Beatles and Stones, have stronger bona fides. And I do like The Who, but I also like Dion, and he ain’t Elvis. Now frankly, the Stones aren’t the Beatles, either. I grew to love and respect the Stones’ music, but I can only reliably name two members. I don’t think Mick is as big a cad as he comes off as, but I do question the sincerity of his ballads in a way that I don’t with John and Paul’s. Or George’s. There’s maybe a sincerity parity with Ringo, and Mick does have a greater vocal range… than Ringo. Unlike AC/DC, the Stones have some songs that aren’t about fucking around… just not all that many, relative to their output. But also like AC/DC, I’m not expecting “Gimme Shelter” out of them, and don’t necessarily need that. I know it’s mostly only rock n’ roll, but I like it. I’d prefer Their Satanic Majesties than some limp dick wannabe saints.

    1. Round Two:

      Finished the podcast. Amused that Ryan clearly wanted to go out on “You Can’t Always Get What You Want,” and the song manifested the circumstance wherein the episode, like the Stones themselves in Neil’s sports analogy, refuses to end until it simply can’t go on.

      I don’t have a favorite Stones album because I don’t know the band from albums. First radio play and commercials in general, then soundtrack usage and music videos, then finally the Forty Licks hits compilation. Yet as it happens, I actually have rips of many of their albums from raiding public libraries in the aughts that I’d completely forgotten about. So I intend to go through them all as albums, which will take time. However, I can use their chronological discography to go through those albums looking for familiar tracks for my top five Stones songs. But more importantly, I get to drag them again for laughable direct comparisons to the Beatles.

      On their eponymous debut, I recognize zero Stones songs by name alone. Please Please Me has “I Saw Her Standing There”, the title cut, “Love Me Do” and Ferris Bueller’s favorite cover, “Twist and Shout”. The only single I spy on 12 × 5 is the admittedly swell “Time Is on My Side”. I’m not as big on the Fab Four’s early mop-top croons, but I’ll copy to knowledge boas in their favor by offering “It Won’t Be Long”, “All My Loving”, “Don’t Bother Me”, “Little Child”, “I Wanna Be Your Man”, “Devil In Her Heart”, and “Money (That’s What I Want)” as exceptional tracks off With the Beatles that I can partially sing from memory. Like the Beatles, the Stones have a bunch of funky comps with rearranged track listings from early in their career, so I’m just going to do them the favor of skipping The Rolling Stones No. 2 and The Rolling Stones, Now! entirely. That pits Out of Our Heads against A Hard Day’s Night, and I take it back, this did them no favors. I know “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction”. You can fight me on this, but A Hard Day’s Night is a no skip album. Yes, even “When I Get Home,” coasting on the vibes of the rest of the album. And it’s the soundtrack to one of the greatest musician movies ever besides. Even if I give you “Get Off of My Cloud”, that’s two singles against A Hard Day’s Night.

      Okay, palate cleanser. Let’s take the notably weak Beatles for Sale and pit that against Aftermath. So we’re talking “Mother’s Little Helper”, “Under My Thumb”, and on the US edition “Paint It Black”. Again, I’ve not heard he rest of Aftermath, but it looks strong against “I’m a Loser”, “I’ll Follow the Sun”, and “Eight Days a Week”. I’m willing to concede this one, with an asterisk. I actually quite like Beatles for Sale‘s many covers and low key charming originals like “No Reply”, so I reserve the right to revisit this decision at a later date.

      My copy of Between the Buttons is the U.K. edition, and it’s just “Yesterday’s Papers”. I listened to “Miss Amanda Jones”, and yeah, it ain’t “I Saw Her Standing There”. And I see it, but no. But if I reach for the U.S. edition, you score “Let’s Spend the Night Together” and “Ruby Tuesday”. That’s good stuff. Nothing to sneeze at. What’s the next Beatles album? Help. Apropos. Yeah Mick, you need it alright.

      Their Satanic Majesties Request is such a rad title, and yields… “She’s a Rainbow”? *Sucks wind through teeth* And the Beatles? Rubber Soul. There’s a guy on one of those short form social media apps that jokingly describes your personality based on what you say is your favorite Beatles album. It works because they’re pretty much all valid options, and do speak to the listener, but also this is probably my favorite and one of the ones he said the most favorable things about. I don’t think it would work so good to try that with Stones albums.

      Ooo, Beggars Banquet! This is the one you guys kept hyping up. And that’s important because again, I don’t know most of these albums. And the Wikipedia pages is almost all links in the track selection! Surely I’ll know… “Sympathy for the Devil” and “Street Fighting Man”. The two. Duo. Against Revolver? I’m questioning my reasoning for continuing this. It feels like bullying at this point. Even if I gang up on Revolver with Let It Bleed, you’re stuck with fucking “Country Honk” instead of “Honky Tonk Women”. “Gimme Shelter” is carrying the whole thing, and it’s got its hands full going up against “Eleanor Rigby” on its own. And further, Revolver is one of the most overrated albums. What am I even doing here?

      Sticky Fingers? Yes! Bring it! “Brown Sugar”! “Wild Horses”! “Can’t You Hear Me Knocking” (which I didn’t know was Stones but that opening lick!) Yeah, it’s already petering out on the a-side, but this is good stuff! *eye slides to one side* Over here? Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. Fffffuck. I’d have to do some soul-searching to see how “A Day in the Life” fares against “Wild Horses”, but I’m not going to bother pitting the other two against *waves at Pepper’s track listing* They could maybe take any two of the best songs, and there are many underwhelming tracks, but as a whole? No.

      Like Ryan, I also listened to Exile on Main St. once specifically to compare it to Exile in Guyville, but he missed the part where he was supposed to acknowledge that Liz Phair’s response was the better album. I’ll give you “Tumbling Dice” over “Never Said”, even though I prefer “Never Said”, but recognize that’s a controversial and highly individual statement. What I will also say, is that if you ask a random girl to listen to both, I’m putting my money on Liz Phair. Certainly any random Gen-X girl. I’ll even go so far as to say I didn’t like my one listening of Exile on Main St., I found it tedious. But so is The White Album. Just in fits. It also has “While My Guitar Gently Weeps”, an all-timer, as well as one of my favorites, “I’m So Tired”. This is a murder happening here.

      Where are we at? Goats Head Soup? “Angie”. Versus Yellow Submarine? Does it even count? Not really, but I’ll allow it to note that “Angie” is better than “All You Need Is Love”. I’ll go out on a limb and say that Goats Head Soup is better than the orchestral score for a cartoon and “Hey Bulldog”. Given. It’s Only Rock ‘n Roll? That title cut is tight. Who’s the overwhelming nemesis this time? Abbey Road. Abbey. Road. The one with the album cover homaged more times than Maguire’s Justice League #1. I get that the medley isn’t for everyone, but also just the song snippet of “She Came In Through the Bathroom Window” is better than It’s Only Rock ‘n Roll, and I don’t mean the song.

      The last Beatles album is Let It Be, the fatigue is real, and there are flat out duds on this thing. But Black and Blue has “Fool to Cry”. It would be more fair to skip it for Some Girls. So that’s “Miss You”, “Beast of Burden”, and “Shattered”. Cool. Go hard for the big finish. Let It Be has “Across the Universe”, “Let It Be”, “The Long and Winding Road”, and “Get Back”. You could get a good fight out of the top four Stones songs ever against just the highlights from Let It Be. Maybe that’s the point? Maybe the Stones keep making albums because the pressure of each one crushes out a single song that could measure up to any given Beatles album track. Not single. Album track.

      I know I had other things to comment on, but my head’s swimming from this absolute massacre. Umm– my “She’s a Rainbow” trigger was the courting sequence from the pilot episode of FX’s Legion. I think Wes Anderson may have used it at some point, but that’s the first time that tune clicked with me.

      10) “You Can’t Always Get What You Want”
      09) “Shattered”
      08) “Under My Thumb”
      07) “Love Is Strong”
      06) “Ruby Tuesday”
      05) “Wild Horses”
      04) “Sympathy for the Devil”
      03) “Angie”
      02) “Beast of Burden”
      01) “Paint It Black”

      1. Oh wait. Duh. This really got away from me, and I was trying to knock out the list before going to bed. Obviously “Gimme Shelter” is my actual #1 Stones song. I did that top 5 (or 6, now) really fast because I knew which would be at the summit, just not necessarily the order. All the movement was from “Ruby Tuesday” back, and that song specifically kept fighting its way toward the dividing line between the peak and the rest. I spent hours on the back end of the top 15-20 and lost focus, plus that ten-spot kept rotating. You know, I really do like the Stones, but ya’ll got way out of pocket with the Beatles disrespect. It would not stand.

          1. Personally, The Beatles and The Stones are such different bands that it’s not even fair to compare them to each other. It’s a false equivalency.

  3. Even if the Stones had done nothing but Paint It Black, I’d consider them worthy. Great episode. Great opening speech Ryan, even if the guests then try to poke holes into it. Great discussion all around. A good music show reminds you of how good the featured music is, and you did that.

  4. Great episode guys. I’m not a huge Stones fan, but I like and respect their work, and their longevity.

    Two things about the Stones always stick out for me. My childhood friend Anthony could do a DEAD-ON impression of Mick from that godawful “Start Me Up”
    video. He even had the same hair and build. He could have easily had a career as a Mick tribute act.

    The other is the time Cindy and I were in Toledo for a toy convention and went to a Subway down the street. While we were in the crowded line, an old, dirty, disheveled and probably homeless man walked in, doing a spoken word version of “Sympathy for the Devil” at the top of his lungs. He was coming up to every one and getting in their face while reciting the song. The owners run him off, but it was unsettling, and I can’t hear the song without seeing that guy’s face.

    Oh, and one of my favorite Stones songs not mentioned much is “Hang Fire”. Love all the do-do-dos.

  5. I’m a more casual Stones fan, and while I don’t buy into the “Beatles vs. Stones” thing, I do believe that most people tend to lean one way or the other, and you can usually tell which way a person goes by the other bands they tend to like. So I was definitely a Beatles fan that was less into the classic rock bands and more into the rock-pop, studio magic groups.

    Having said that, this episode was really great to listen to, and it had me ticking off more and more songs from The Stones that I liked and had just forgotten about.

    Most of my early Stones exposure was from movies and soundtracks. Shattered and Paint it Black were probably the first two songs I can remember liking and seeking out. But as a kid in the 80s, I also had heavy exposure to “Undercover of the Night” thanks to the video and its still one of my favorite Stones songs.

    I find that the Stones longevity is a strength and a weakness. There are probably 50 or so songs that I love, and 50 or so I’ve never heard.

    I love early Stones. But, for me, the Stones are best when they embrace that dangerous, unpolished kind of sinister vibe. The sex and drugs and rock n roll sound. Like “Monkey Man”.

    The best thing about a pod like this is that it rekindles my interest in something or it gets me to try something new. And thanks to the four of you, this did both. I’m going to dive into some more Rolling Stones and check out some stuff of theirs I love and stuff I never listened to before.

  6. Great job, everyone! I usually end up tapping out on longer podcasts, but this would have been engrossing based on the enthusiasm of the guests alone. But! Everyone was also knowledgeable and insightful, and rekindled my own enthusiasm for the Stones.

    One question I have is, how much influence do you think the band’s time in New York had on the direction they took?

    Also, what great alchemy put a jazz drummer at heart into the middle of a blues/honky tonk group?

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