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ROLLING STONES SONGS: ‘STUPID GIRL’ (1966)

Rolling Stones songs: Stupid Girl
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MORE ROLLING STONES SONGS 1962-PRESENT

It doesn’t matter if she dyes her hair/ Or the colour of the shoes she wears…

Written by: Jagger/Richard
Recorded: RCA Studios, Hollywood, USA, March 6-9 1966
*Data taken from Martin Elliott’s book THE ROLLING STONES COMPLETE RECORDING SESSIONS 1962-2012

From Songfacts:
This song is rather harsh, with Mick Jagger railing a girl that has clearly gotten under his skin:
She’s the worst thing in this world
Well, look at that stupid girl

Keith Richards explained in a 1971 promotional interview: “Songs like ‘Under My Thumb’ and ‘Stupid Girl’ were all a spin-off from our environment – hotels, and too many dumb chicks. Not all dumb, not by any means, but that’s how one got.”

Mick Jagger added in a 1995 interview: “It’s much nastier than ‘Under My Thumb.’ Obviously, I was having a bit of trouble. I wasn’t in a good relationship. Or I was in too many bad relationships. I had so many girlfriends at that point. None of them seemed to care they weren’t pleasing me very much. I was obviously in with the wrong group.”

The bridge on this song is rather distinctive, with the line “shut up, shut up,” repeated throughout. Sounds like The Stones can’t even stand the sound of this girl.

Elvis Costello’s 1978 track “This Year’s Girl” is an “answer song” to “Stupid Girl.” His version is less misogynistic: “My lyrics might have been tough on the girl but it was full of regret and a little sympathy,” Costello wrote in his autobiography, Unfaithful Music and Disappearing Ink, “while the Jagger/Richards song seemed to take delight in being heartless and cruel.”

From the The Rolling Stones – All the Songs book:
Mick Jagger’s obsessive misogyny reached a climax in “Stupid Girl.”
Everything about the young woman in the song is subjected to mockery.
And the attack becomes increasingly vicious from verse to verse. This
stupid girl is grasping, critical of people without knowing them, and bitches
about things she has never seen. In short, despite purring like a pussycat,
this lady is the sickest thing in this world.
A more explicit condemnation of the opposite sex is difficult to imagine.
Is this diatribe directed against all women? It is not impossible that the
Rolling Stones’ singer was targeting his girlfriend of the time, Chrissie
Shrimpton, the younger sister of the top model and sixties muse Jean
Shrimpton. Mick and Chrissie met in 1962 at the London School of
Economics. She was still a secretary in Covent Garden (her modeling career
had not yet started) when their relationship ended abruptly in 1966. Mick
then started to make eyes at Marianne Faithfull. In December 1995, Jagger
acknowledged that he was going through a difficult period at that time:
“Obviously, I was having a bit of trouble. I wasn’t in a good relationship.
Or I was in too many bad relationships. I had so many girlfriends at that
point. None of them seemed to care they weren’t pleasing me very much.”19
“Stupid Girl” is the favorite Stones song of Scottish folksinger Jackie
Leven: “The song has this kind of football chant rhythm and I like the fact
that the playing’s awkward and sounds like they could only just play it. And
they [Mick and Keith] never attempt to blend harmonies like everyone else,
they still sound like two geezers shouting in a pub. It’s really hopeless and
very exciting.”

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