Release Date: June 12, 2020
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The story of Brian Jones, famous for originating the band The Rolling Stones, is a compelling real-life account. I had the opportunity to view the DVD and listen to the red vinyl LP of Rolling Stone: Life And Death Of Brian Jones Soundtrack. It is a Dudeski/Chip Baker production directed by Danny Garcia. I watched the Rolling Stone: Life And Death Of Brian Jones DVD first to learn about the story of his life and untimely death. The DVD would tie in well with the soundtrack and make more sense to me.
I, like many others, assumed that Jones died because of drugs and alcohol. This revealing movie shows evidence that contradicts those basic beliefs. Yes, he did his share of mind-altering substances however when he was found dead at the bottom of his pool it is believed, based on evidence and a 600-page document unearthed by Scott Jones, that he was murdered. Jones had been arguing with a man named Frank Thorogood all day and each time the arguments became more heated and the last altercation being a physical struggle in the pool with the larger and stronger Thorogood that ended Jones’s life. The truth about his death was covered up by law enforcement and was under a 75-year rule established by that very institution.
Jones was a brilliant multi-instrumentalist and referred to as genius in the film. I would not dispute that statement with what I know and have listened to the Stones most of my life. What I found so interesting and shocking was how Jones was treated by his mother, band members, and friends. I understand that he was temperamental and had issues but that does not explain the way he was treated and at times very unfairly. He was a very sick man that never got the help he needed but I know it was not desired by the flamboyant musician. He was the leader of the Stones and eventually, the songwriting went to Jagger and Richards and that was the beginning of the end for Jones.
The beginning of the film starts with footage of Brian in his youth and his rise to fame with the Stones. One scene shows the band at a party getting in a cake fight, which I thought was very light-hearted. Too bad things did not stay that way for the band and Jones. By the time Jones was 19 he had three illegitimate children and at the time of his death, he left behind six children. Interesting how if this story was about a woman how she would have been looked upon as a whore but because it was a man he got labeled as a lost rock star a lower class of society by the establishment. And actually, the establishment of that period was doing everything they could do to split up the group including planting drugs and arresting them.
The bonuses of the DVD include nearly an hour of Deleted Scenes, Behind The Scenes, and Muddy Waters: The Scott Jones Files. All of which reveal more stories about Brian Jones, The Rolling Stones, and his mysterious death and cover-up. Rolling Stone: Life And Death Of Brian Jones is a fascinating film and it brings forth so many stories and facts about the famed artist and how he died that I certainly never knew. I am now well-informed thanks to this eye-opening DVD.
Now on to the music...Rolling Stone: Life And Death Of Brian Jones Soundtrack is a special Red Vinyl LP. If you remember the early Stones music when Brian was involved there were strong blues influences and many classic blues covers. Jones loved Elmore James and Alex Korner etc. This soundtrack will satisfy all Stones fans and blues lovers.
Side one opens with “1969,” echoing that fateful year for Jones. The music is very much retro sounding like it was recorded then. “Ain't Nothing Here to Change My Mind” is a real ear catcher and the first thing that you notice is that the lead singer sounds like Jagger. How appropriate for this record to have vocals like that. Dick Taylor & The Red Squirls (the first bass guitar player for the Stones who left to form The Pretty Things as their lead guitar), who is interviewed on the DVD, has his contributions on the LP as well with “Edith” an instrumental, which certainly did remind me of Dick’s band The Pretty Things. And another instrumental on side two titled “14a Chestnut St,” which is real rockin’ blues boogie. “Dusted” is a slow-burning simmering hot blues track with cuts like a knife slide guitar (a nod goes to Brian for his memorable slide playing). “Riding The Dog” is classic blues with a fine six-string workout towards the end of the track. Then the “The Path of the Meeting” closes out the first side with an atmospheric instrumental perfectly suited for a soundtrack.
After side one I was quite pleased with what I heard, all of it was very good and I expected it would continue on side two, which it did. After the kick start of side two “14a Chestnut St” then “Tighten It Rough” keeps the momentum going and then “Brian” follows which features some nice acoustic guitar picking and some killer slide work. Next up is “(I’ll Never Be) Satisfied” which immediately brings to mind one the most famous Stones hits “Satisfaction.” All the tracks are purposeful and fitting and that is a fact.
Following that wake-up call, fans and historians are sent a reminder of the fact that Brian was the originator and first leader of the Stones with “Brian Jones (The Real True Leader of The Rolling Stones),” which is a peppy pop-rock tune, suitable for cutting a rug. The one track that seemed out of place but was a good one was “Glitter Girl.” It sounded like a band from the 80’s straight out of England, complete with the accent. I am sure it was dedicated to Anita Pallenberg, one of Brian’s more famous glamorous movie star girlfriends (that ended up with Keith Richards). The album closes out most appropriately with a short instrumental soundtrack outro that was just perfect.
So, this music lover and Stones fans got a double shot of Rolling Stones and Brian Jones's history and music. I have a different view of some of the members of the band now and what Jones was like and how he died. It was a sad tragic end and Jones is a member of the “27’ club that includes luminaries like Hendrix and Joplin. Most impressive was the soundtrack music, I did not hear one throwaway track and it is the kind of music I will want to hear often. Watching the DVD first made a big difference in how I heard and interpreted each track and I would recommend doing it that way.
Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck-TFOV Founder
June 21, 2020
01. 1969 by The Proper Ornaments
02. Ain't Nothing Here to Change My Mind by Greg ‘Stackhouse’ Prevost
03. 3Edith Groove by Dick Taylor & The Red Squirls
04. Dusted by Ray 'Sonic' Hanson’s Whores of Babylon
05. Riding the Dog by Deadbeat Poets
06. The Path of the Meeting by J.M. Baule
07. 14a Chestnut St. by Dick Taylor & The Red Squirls
08. Tighten It Rough by Steve Hooker
09. Brian by John Perry
10 .(I’ll Never Be) Satisfied by Alabama 3
11. Brian Jones (The Real True Leader of The Rolling Stones) by The Bermondsey Joyriders
12. Glitter Girl by The Primadonna Reeds
13. Muddy Waters by John Roome