rolling stones I'm alright 1965Can You Hear the Music?


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Rolling Stones songs: I’m Alright
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I wanna tell you something, baby/ That you don’t know, no you don’t know…

Written by: Nanker/Phelge
Recorded: Live UK Tour 1965 (Edmonton, Liverpool, Manchester, Greenford), March 5-16 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:
In 1963, in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, Bo Diddley (real name Ellas
McDaniel) recorded one of the most famous live albums of the entire rock
’n’ roll era: Bo Diddley’s Beach Party, with “I’m Alright” prominently
featured. The Rolling Stones incorporated it into their repertoire in 1963, a
time when they were on the rise. Their version is an anthem to happiness
and love: … it’s alright all night long/It’s alright all day too/Yeah it’s
alright, it’s alright
. The number came to occupy an important place in their
set list, and they gave a particularly exuberant performance of it for the
recording of the EP, which took place in early March 1965. Curiously, this
song copyrighted by Bo Diddley in 1963, in other words two years earlier,
is credited to the Stones (Nanker Phelge). It should be pointed out that
while the music is clearly Bo Diddley’s, the Stones considerably reworked
the words. No doubt this unusual case resulted in some kind of
accommodation between the parties concerned.

Energy. That is the only way to describe the Stones live. Keith opens the
number with Bo Diddley’s riff on his Gibson Les Paul, distorted through the
amp. He is joined by Brian on his Vox “Teardrop” and soon after by Bill on
his Framus. During the introduction, it is also possible to hear what sounds
like bongo-style percussion, but is most probably Charlie on his medium
toms. As the master of ceremonies, Mick works his audience to fan the
flames into an almighty blaze. He is supported by equally unbridled
backing vocals from Keith. Different pairs of maracas, played by Mick, can
also be heard, sounding at times like Pete Townshend sliding down the neck
of his guitar while powering the strings with a pick and at full volume. The
Stones are definitely a live act.

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