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Rolling Stones unreleased: Did Everybody Pay Their Dues?
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*Early version of ‘Street Fighting Man’
Also known as: ‘PRIMO GRANDE’, ‘PAY YOUR DUES’
Written by: Jagger/Richard
Recorded: Rolling Stones Mobile, Redlands, Sussex and Olympic Sound Studios, London, England, March 17-31 1968
Guest musicians: Nicky Hopkins (piano), Dave Mason (shenani), Ric Grech (violin), Jim King and Roger Chapman (backing vocals)
From Martin Elliott’s book THE ROLLING STONES COMPLETE RECORDING SESSIONS 1962-2012:
Keith Richard’s new house in the country, Redlands, was used as a base for rehearsing songs and laying ideas onto cassette in February 1968. The tapes were then played to Jimmy Miller for suggestions and eventually the would set about transferring the track from cassette to four track in the studio. Primo Grande was the first working title for Did Everybody Pay Their Dues?, until it eventually turned into Street Fighting Man. Did Everybody Pay Their Dues? has a different set of lyrics which sound quite stilted and cumbersome compared with the well-known official release.
Some of the backing track was carried through to Street Fighting Man such as Nicky Hopkins’ piano, Keith Richard’s acoustic and Charlie Watt’s percussion. There is an up front lead guitar which blisters through the track. Other instruments include Brian Jones on sitar, Dave Mason on shenani and Ric Grech on violin. Backing vocals were performed by Jim King and Roger Chapman. They were all members of the group Family who were in the same studios recording their debut album Music In A Doll’s House. This was produced by Jimmy Miller and engineered by Eddie Kramer and George Chkiantz.
The Rolling Stones, one of the most iconic rock bands of all time, have a vast catalog of hit songs that have shaped the course of music history. However, hidden within their archives lies a treasure trove of unreleased tracks that fans have clamored to hear for decades. One such gem is the enigmatic and captivating song titled “Did Everybody Pay Their Dues?”
Recorded in 1968 during the sessions for their legendary album “Beggars Banquet,” this unreleased track captures the raw energy and rebellious spirit that define the Rolling Stones’ musical ethos. With its infectious bluesy riffs, Mick Jagger’s gritty vocals, and Keith Richards’ signature guitar licks, “Did Everybody Pay Their Dues?” showcases the band at the height of their creative prowess.
The lyrics of the song delve into the themes of society’s expectations, personal struggles, and the price of fame. Jagger’s impassioned delivery evokes a sense of urgency and a call to question the establishment. It’s a powerful reminder that even in their unreleased material, the Rolling Stones were trailblazers, unafraid to challenge the status quo.Given its significance and the intrigue surrounding it, one can’t help but wonder why “Did Everybody Pay Their Dues?” was never officially released. Perhaps the band felt it didn’t fit the overall narrative of “Beggars Banquet,” or they simply had an abundance of incredible tracks to choose from.
Whatever the reason, the fact that this hidden gem still remains in the shadows only adds to its mystique.For ardent Rolling Stones fans and music enthusiasts alike, the existence of unreleased tracks like “Did Everybody Pay Their Dues?” reinforces the band’s enduring legacy. Despite being recorded over five decades ago, the song’s relevance and impact are undeniable, a testament to the timeless quality of the Rolling Stones’ music.While we may never fully understand the decision to keep “Did Everybody Pay Their Dues?” under wraps, one thing is for certain – the Rolling Stones’ vast collection of unreleased tracks continues to intrigue, captivate, and remind us why they are indeed the greatest rock ‘n’ roll band in the world.
From the Rolling Stones – All the Songs, The Story Behind Every Track book:
Street Fighting Man was originally called “Did Everyone Pay Their Dues?” and was about with the brutality of adults. Jagger and Richards then wrote new words that became “Street Fighting Man” after the London demonstration and the riots in the Latin Quarter in Paris. The lines What can a poor boy do/Except to sing for a rock ’n’ roll band are by Keith and Mick and the verses are by Mick.