rolling stones december's children blue turns to greyCan You Hear the Music?


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Rolling Stones songs: Blue Turns to Grey
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You think you’ll have a ball/ And you won’t care at all…

Written by: Jagger/Richard
Recorded: RCA Studios, Hollywood, USA, July 2-12, Sept. 6-7 1965
*Data taken from Martin Elliott’s book THE ROLLING STONES COMPLETE RECORDING SESSIONS 1962-2012

From the The Rolling Stones – All the Songs book:
Mick Jagger and Keith Richards were clearly in a poetic frame of mind when they started to write songs together. “Blue Turns to Grey” tells the story of a pitiful romantic youth who is abandoned to his sad fate by his girlfriend. While waiting to find her again, or for another girl to come along and make him forget his pain, blue turns to grey. I feel so down, sings Mick Jagger.
In February 1965, this song by the Dartford duo was recorded more or less simultaneously by the Mighty Avengers, a vocal group produced by Oldham, and Dick & Dee Dee, a US pop duo (also produced by Oldham, who met the pair at the TAMI Show in 1964). However, it was Cliff Richard & The Shadows who made the song a hit in the United Kingdom, taking their version, which they recorded at Abbey Road studios, to number 15 on the charts in March 1966. The Stones’ recording, meanwhile, dates from September 5 or 6, 1965.

“Blue Turns to Grey” demonstrates just how far the Jagger-Richards songwriting partnership had developed since “Tell Me.” “Mick and I were still learning how to write material for the Stones,” Keith Richards would later claim. Nevertheless, this number reveals a certain mastery in the composition of both music and words. It is a ballad, which Brian Jones gives a Byrds-like electric folk flavor with his Rickenbacker “1993” 12- string played with abundant vibrato. Keith also uses plenty of vibrato on his 6-string electric (Gibson Firebird VII or Epiphone Casino) which both harmonizes with, and provides the perfect support for, Brian’s playing. The combination of the two guitars is brilliant. The bass and drums provide a highly successful pop rhythm, and Mick Jagger delivers a very good performance of his lyrics. He is accompanied in the choruses by Keith,
while also apparently double-tracking his own voice. “Blue Turns to Grey” is a very good song (that bears some resemblance to “Mercy, Mercy” in its soft version), and if the Stones did not record it for Out of Our Heads, this must be because they thought its Byrds-like character was better suited to their US audience.

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