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Rolling Stones songs: Talkin’ About You
*Click for MORE ROLLING STONES SONGS 1962-PRESENT
Let me tell you ’bout a girl I know/ Help me know she looks so good…
Written by: Chuck Berry
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:
The narrator of this song is talking to a young woman. He tells her he has
seen a girl uptown who is so fine and has such lovely skin that she oughta
be somewhere in Hollywood. He then reveals that this girl, whom he wants
to be his girlfriend, is the person sitting by his side. The song is a pretty
declaration of love with a rock ’n’ roll accompaniment that is pure Chuck
Berry, and was released as a single in 1961 (with “Little Star” as the B-side).
It is not to be confused with “Talkin’ About You” by Ray Charles,which was released in 1958.
Chuck Berry was a major source of inspiration for British groups of the
early sixties, and many are the guitarists who have lifted the rock ’n’ roll
pioneer’s guitar sequences for “Johnny B. Goode,” “Carol,” and “Roll Over
Beethoven.” The Beatles had been performing “I’m Talking About You” at
the Star Club in Hamburg as early as 1962. Three years later the Rolling
Stones came to record it, having likewise honed it onstage, in their case
since the beginning of 1964. Paradoxically, although the Stones were
continually improving from concert to concert and from recording to
recording, “Talkin’ About You” is definitely not their best version of a
Chuck Berry song!
They have chosen to considerably slow down the tempo (from 148 to
120 bpm) in order to give the number a heavier, more insistent groove. The
effect brings Bill Wyman to the fore with a big sound obtained from his
Framus Humbug plugged into a Fender Bassman amp. Charlie Watts avoids
stressing the beat even further by opting for an excellent funky, airy style.
Keith Richards performs the intro exactly as Chuck Berry does, before
switching to rhythm and later playing a solo. Brian Jones supports him with
a second (discreet but efficient) rhythm part, which he seems to play in
power chords on his Gibson Firebird VII. Jagger fulfills his role as front
man with a good vocal performance, assisted by Richards on backing
vocals. A piano part attributable to either Ian Stewart or Jack Nitzsche can
also be made out. The Stones’ version is more rhythm ’n’ blues than rock
’n’ roll, but although well put together, it is a long way from matching
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Categories: Can You Hear the Music?