rolling stones off the hook 1964Can You Hear the Music?


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Rolling Stones songs: Off the Hook
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Don’t wanna see her, afraid of what I’d find/ Tired of letting her upset me all the time…

Written by: Jagger/Richard
Recorded: Regent Sounds and IBC Studios, London, England, June 24-16 and Sept. 2 1964
*Data taken from Martin Elliott’s book THE ROLLING STONES COMPLETE RECORDING SESSIONS 1962-2012

From the The Rolling Stones – All the Songs book:
The blues greats had made such a deep impression on the Rolling Stones that when Mick Jagger and Keith Richards started writing their own songs, there was no escaping the Chicago influence. This is especially true of “Off the Hook,” which is actually a more or less obvious copy of “Off the Wall,” a song recorded by Little Walter for Checker Records (a subsidiary of Chess) in 1953 that reached number 8 on the R&B charts. The main difference is that “Off the Wall” is an instrumental, whereas “Off the Hook” recounts the trials and tribulations of a lover who wants to talk to his girlfriend—whose line is constantly busy. Chess Records wanted to bring a lawsuit for plagiarism but in the end a compromise was reached whereby the Chicago record company was offered fifty percent of the royalties. Furthermore, when Little Walter’s “Off the Wall” was released, Big Walter Horton, who had recorded it in Memphis for Sun Records, claimed to be the sole composer!
“Off the Hook” was recorded on September 2 at Regent Sound Studios, although, according to some sources, it had been worked on during the June 24–26 sessions. This number was chosen as the B-side of the single “Little Red Rooster,” released on November 13, 1964.