The day Brian Jones was dismissed from the Stones
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June 8, 1969: Mick, Keith and Charlie visit Brian at Cotchford Farm, his home in Surrey, to inform him he has to leave the group. Later on they issue a press statement that Brian Jones is leaving the Rolling Stones. Next day Brian announces “I no longer see eye-to-eye with the others over the discs we are cutting… I want to play my kind of music, which is no longer the Stones music. The music Mick and Keith have been writing has progressed at a tangent, as far as my own taste is concerned.”
From the Pop Expresso site:
After several months of alienation and self-reclusion in his Cotchford Farm home (a farmhouse previously owned by author A. A. Milne that wrote all of his Winnie-the-Pooh books at the house), Brian Jones, founding member and guitarist of the Rolling Stones was visited on June 8, 1969, by Keith Richards, Mick Jagger and Charlie Watts to discuss the future of the band. Later, the Stones issued a press statement announcing Jones was leaving the band. Brian Jones was the mastermind behind the Rolling Stones creation; the talented multi-instrumentalist first met Jagger and Richards in 1962 while playing the London club circuit.
Together they formed the Rolling Stones, and Jones, served not only as guitarist but also as a manager to the band during the early days, advertising them and getting their first gigs. He also named the band, according to Keith Richards, this happened during a phone call to Jazz News. When asked by a journalist for the band’s name, Jones saw a Muddy Waters LP lying on the floor; one of the tracks was “Rollin’ Stone”.
During that period, Richards, Jagger and Jones lived all the three together in a small flat in London, where they also rehearsed. In 1963 the band signed Andrew Loog Oldham as their manager and soon recorded their debut album, “Rolling Stones”, released in 1964. During their early years, Jones had a pivotal role on the band and served as the leader. But around 1965, when Jagger and Richards started to write songs together, Jones role in the band changed and diminished, leaving Jagger to take the role of bandleader. Jones drug problems started around this period, but despite that, and despite not being credited as a composer or co-author to most of the band’s songs, his contribution to it’s music, resulted in the Rolling Stones most creative period.
Not merely a guitar player, Jones was gifted with the ability of quick learning any instrument. The 1966 album “After-Math”, features some of the earliest creative Stones songs, including “Paint It, Black”, “Mother’s Little Helper”, “Under My Thumb”, “Out Of Time” and “Lady Jane” in which Jones played several sometimes unusual instruments changing the original compositions in some cases or parts. The trend followed with the 1967 “Between The Buttons” on songs such as “Let’s Spend The Night Together” and “Ruby Tuesday”, and later, “Their Satanic Majesties Request”, the Stones most experimental album, where Jones talent as a multi-instrumentalist can be best heard in tracks such as “She’s A Rainbow”, “2000 Light Years From Home” or “In Another Land” among others.
But by 1968 the band had stopped touring, and one of the reasons was Jones not being allowed a travel visa to the U.S due to previous drug busts. The band focused on the “Beggar’s Banquet” album, only by then, Jones had beginning to alienate further from the band, one of the motives was that he not identifying himself anymore with the band’s music direction. He still contributed to tracks such as “No Expectations” that features his distinctive slide guitar solo. His last live appearance with the band happened in November 1968 during the filming of the Rolling Stones Rock N’ Roll Circus TV special.
A visibly worn out Jones can be seen on the footage from the show, he performed all the songs with the band and did his slide guitar solo for “No Expectations”, but rumor has it that the Stones cut down the power to his guitar during some of the performances that night. In 1969, Brian Jones distanced himself further from the band and isolated in his Cotchford Farm home, unable to stop his increasing drug habit.
He neglected to appear on the recording sessions for “Let It Bleed” and end up being credited on just two songs. Feeling the pressure to tour in the U.S, the Stones took the decision to dismiss Jones from the band. On June 8, Jagger, Richards and Watts, met Jones for the last time. He was out of the band he created and mentored for years, replaced by newcomer 20 year old Mick Taylor. Less than one month after, on July 3, Brian Jones died at age 27 drowned on the swimming pool of the Cotchford Farm under mysterious circumstances. It’s not stretched to say that the Rolling Stones biggest creative and experimental period was with Brian Jones, he was the original Stone and undoubtedly, back then, the most creative, flamboyant and famous of them all. His talent lives on through some of the best Stones songs.
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