Unearthing the Stones
In the annals of geezer rock, nothing matches the Rolling Stones' reputation for sex, scandal, outrage, and sheer offensiveness. Long before bullshit blowhards like Noel and Liam Gallagher, the Sex Pistols, and Marilyn Manson began posturing and pontificating, the Stones set the standard for decadence and debauchery. For more than four decades, they've mixed music with mayhem, chalking up more controversy than the number of furrows on Mick Jagger's chiseled visage.
Here's a chronicle/quiz of these raunchy rockers' most outlandish episodes. The more questions you answer correctly, the greater your satisfaction.
1. Although the Stones would be hounded by drug busts throughout the Sixties, what early encounter with the authorities arose from a far less likely circumstance?
2. In 1968 the Stones released an album with a cover deemed so offensive that a plain white sleeve had to be substituted in the U.S. Which album was it, and what was on the cover?
3. In late 1969, basking in post-Woodstock euphoria, the Stones played a free festival in the California desert with the Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, and Santana. It turned into a disaster when the Hell's Angels, hired as security, killed a member of the audience. Where was the festival, and what is the name of the concert film that documented the deadly deed?
4. Why was founder and flaxen-haired guitarist Brian Jones dumped by the Stones in June 1969?
5. What is the name of the film documenting the 1972 American tour that has never been publicly released?
6. Which Stone was accused of carrying on a relationship with a thirteen-year-old girl when he was in his late forties?
1. Early on, the bandmates would tour the English countryside in a rented van. One night, following a late-night gig, they stopped at a gas station to use the restroom. Denied access, they went around back and urinated on the gas station's rear wall, prompting the pissed-off petrol attendant to call the local authorities.
2. Beggars Banquet. The cover depicted a graffiti-strewn bathroom complete with commode.
3. The festival was held at Altamont, and the film is called Gimme Shelter.
4. By the time the band entered the studio to begin Beggars Banquet in early 1968, Jones was little more than a zombie, nodding off during recording sessions and often crying inconsolably. Not that the Stones had suddenly adopted a Just Say No policy; rather they feared Jones's drug use would bar their ability to secure a work permit for future U.S. tours.
5. Cocksucker Blues. The name says it all.
6. He might have been the least animated member of the band onstage, but bassist Bill Wyman was apparently the opposite when off. In 1986 he claimed to have bedded 1000 women. The cause of controversy was his wife Mandy, whom he wed when he was 50 and she was sixteen. Their courtship began when she was a mere thirteen.
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