Rolling Stones covers

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The Rolling Stones appeared on the UK TV show, Ready, Steady, Go! (damn it, even the programme titles were better back in the Sixties, weren’t they?), for the first time on this day in 1963.

It was the first of 20-odd appearances on the cult Friday night show, which ran until late-1966. They performed their debut single, Chuck Berry’s ‘Come On’.

This isn’t it, but it is a classic Stones performance: ‘Under My Thumb’.

As ever, for fun, which Rolling Stones songs can you imagine David performing?

I think ‘Wild Horses’ would be good, ideally with Crosby and Nash providing the harmonies, as well as ‘You Can’t Always Get What You Want’ (in a ‘lazy’ style reminiscent of ‘Fat Old Sun’; minus the choir, perhaps introducing some cümbüş in place of the piano, with the soothing tone of Sam Brown drifting in towards the end… What do you think?).

Those of you who were in St John’s Wood for the ‘Live from Abbey Road’ recording (was it really three years ago this month?) may recall David’s apt doodling of ‘Play With Fire’ during a break in filming.

If you missed our similar consideration of the Beatles’, Eagles’ and Beach Boys’ extensive back catalogues, and also those of Led Zeppelin, Elvis, Dylan and Hendrix, you can still add your inspired choices at any time.

Please keep those marvellous Moog moments coming in, too.

The chatroom’s open on Tuesday this week – from 2pm (UK time). If you’d like to chat about any of the topics we’ve covered here recently, please drop by.

Author: FEd

Features Editor of David Gilmour’s official blog, The Blog (‘Features’ previously being its rather naff title), affectionately – or lazily – shortened to ‘FEd’.

65 thoughts on “Rolling Stones covers”

  1. I was very surprised when I voted that 50% were for The Rolling Stones and 50% against. I never liked their bad boy behavior and screaming songs.

    The question is what song can I see David performing of theirs. I looked it up. They have more songs than I imagined.

    So here are two that came to mind. David would have to decide, if he picked my entry, just which one.

    “Too Proud to Beg” and “Time is on My Side”

    Patricia 8)

  2. My favourite album from the Stones is the Some Girls Album.

    Any song on that would be great to see David cover.

    Mick and the band let me down in the early 80s in Buffaloe NY. They were scheduled to play late in the evening. However, they played just as we all got there in the afternoon, because the stadium had electrical issues that wouldn’t allow the lights to function. Never paid for anything from them since. :v

    1. Frank,

      That is one of my favorite releases as well but I just can’t see David doing a cover of the title track. Just like I can’t see him doing a cover of Star Star from Goat’s Head Soup.

      Thanks.

      Andrew

    2. Thanks Andrew. There is a song on Goat’s Head Soup, if I recall was with Mick Taylor who played that album. Not Time Is on My Side, but with Time linked in. Drivin’ me nuts.

      Mick Taylor was the best replacement for the Stones, not the idiot (sorry people) who replaced him. Must be that 50th Anniversary Fender concert that made me gag when he emceed the show. Ron doesn’t do anything for me. No respect and he can’t sing worth diddly. 😉

  3. I am having a hard time imagining David covering any Stones song. They are such different kinds of acts, David/Floyd and the Stones. I love both bodies of work, but that doesn’t mean one of these artists would do well with the other’s work. Each style I love for different reasons, and each of these artists are the absolute best in the world at what they do.

    I can well imagine David playing as guest guitarist alongside the Stones, which would be an incredible show. But I cannot imagine David COVERING the Stones.

    1. Dan,

      That is exactly how I feel. Can you imagine The Rolling Stones doing “Comfortably Numb”? :))

      I don’t know if I would want David playing with them. You have to draw the line at some things. It is inconceivable trying to imagine, for instance, David playing with Black Sabbath. That would be so wrong.

      People who like The Rolling Stones REALLY like them. It’s like Rush. I love that group but a lot of people love them and a lot hate that group. Let’s discuss this in chat, OK?

      Looking forward to chat with you tomorrow!

      Patricia

    2. You have to draw the line at some things. It is inconceivable trying to imagine, for instance, David playing with Black Sabbath. That would be so wrong.

      Why would it be so? Talented artists can play a variety of styles and a song doesn’t have to be identical to the original. As we’ve seen (well, heard) so many times, songs are forever being taken and re-interpreted, often sounding completely different to the version everybody knows (or doesn’t, which obviously suits some people just fine). David could take a Black Sabbath song, just as Black Sabbath could take one of his, and add their own twist to it if they wanted to.

      Use your imagination.

      I think the Stones could do a version of ‘Comfortably Numb’. I might not like it, but I’m sure they could do it.

      Also, you only have to watch the odd benefit gig to see different styles sharing stages and producing often surprisingly good results.

    3. Good Morning,

      I guess after listening to my son play Metallica’s “Nothing Else Matters” this a.m., I think Mr. Gilmour could totally pull that one off also. I would love to hear that. 🙂

    4. I would LOVE to hear David play WITH Black Sabbath! That would be rich!! And yes, in my mind’s ear I can hear a great cover of “Masters of War” done by David (it sounds a little like “Take A Breath”).

      I cannot imagine Black Sabbath covering, say, “The Blue.” If they tried it, it would wind up on a collection of novelty tracks, for sure!

    5. Don’t forget anything is possible. Remember Pat Boone had a release a few years back covering heavy metal bands. Have you heard it?? He even did a cover of a Metallica song.

      Yes, the overall interpretations are awful. I do have a copy but only as a novelty.

      Thanks.

      Andrew

    6. Inconceivable? No. As a fan of both Floyd/Gilmour AND Sabbath/Iommi, I think it would be a wonderfully weird pairing! Iommi is no slouch on guitar, and the songs they have written in Sabbath would, in my ear, sound wonderful to have Mr. Gilmour interpreting.

      I have a drummer friend who thinks it would be GREAT to have Rush and AC/DC do a tour together involving a switching of drummers. Neil playing with the lads from Down Under, and Phil providing the backbeat for those crazy Canucks.

      And I say… WHY NOT!

      My vote for Stones song for David to cover? “Monkey Man”.

  4. Hmmm, how about Sister Morphine, Waiting on a Friend and Moonlight Mile?

    Come to think of it, maybe he should just give the entire Sticky Fingers a go.

  5. Long time ago I found something that at least every Pink Floyd fan should listen to – Their Satanic Majesties Request, the one and only psychedelic album in their discography. Sad they didn’t continue experimenting with it. I really love it, I’ve been listening it for some years.

    But there is other stuff I really love, especially albums from 70s. Oh and had much fun watching Scorsese’s Shine a Light last year. Plus I used to listen to its soundtrack twice a day.

    Stones have really got their own, incredible sound involving those bluesy elements, which really put them over the top of many bands.

    1. ‘Their Satanic Majesties Request’ has always been one of my favourite Stones album. I love ‘She’s A Rainbow’ and ‘2000 Light Years from Home’. The snoring at the end of the LP on side one always made me laugh too.

      The 3D version of the LP cover artwork is good too.

  6. Thanks for the video, I liked it very much. 🙂

    I think David could perform very well many of The Rolling Stones’ songs, but those which, in my opinion, could actually suit him perfectly are “I’m Free”, “Paint It, Black”, “Ruby Tuesday”, “Angie”, “Dead Flowers” (Crosby and Nash would be great here, too) and, one of my favourites, “As Tears Go By”.

  7. Sam Brown drifting in towards the end… What do you think?

    This sounds very good to me! Is one a Musician by any chance???

  8. Well, I can imagine David doing a fine rendition of ‘Love in Vain’ from the great ‘Let it Bleed’ album.

  9. I like Wild Horses too Fed. I didn’t listen to a lot of Stones, just the popular ones.

    Hey, it would be great if David did cover songs for a DVD/CD.

  10. “Waiting On a Friend” is my fav so, why not, Mr Gilmour? But there are some other precious ones as “Memory Motel” or “Wild Horses”.

  11. I’m not a super huge Stones fan, but I can picture David covering “Play With Fire” and “As Tears Go By”. Two of my favorite Stones songs. 😀

  12. ‘You Can’t Always Get What You Want’ (in a ‘lazy’ style reminiscent of ‘Fat Old Sun’; minus the choir, perhaps introducing some cümbüş in place of the piano, with the soothing tone of Sam Brown drifting in towards the end… What do you think?).

    That would be great!

    Another of my favourites was suggested by Alessandra already: “Dead Flowers”. I agree that Crosby and Nash would sound awesome on it.

  13. Hey There,

    The Rolling Stones, a great group. My favorite album is Big Hits (High Tide and Green Grass). I think Mr. Gilmour and his better half could really pull of As Tears Go By. Would love to hear that.

    Totally off the subject, but I think of the magazine the Rolling Stone whenever I think of the group, and Dr. Hook and the Medicine Show’s The Cover of the Rolling Stone. I know, one has nothing to do with the other, just fun stuff.

    Have a Great Day!

    Love to the World.

  14. It’d be a toss up between ‘Wild Horses’ and ‘Gimme Shelter’ for me.

    The one thing I do hope, is that Keith Richards lives to be 100 just to prove that people who do things that they really, really shouldn’t can get away with it – sometimes.

  15. As far as i can see there can only be one Rolling Stones song that David could perform and that is GIMME SHELTER.

    Hi Fed, how you doing? I’m not as regular as I should be on here lately but still look in every now and again. Keeping up the good work I see.

    1. Thanks, Graham.

      The Arsenal have had a good start to the season, haven’t they? And Vieira didn’t join Spurs…

  16. Although I like Stones, especially Charlie Watts, it takes more than fantasy to imagine David covering them…

    If, I’d suggest “Paint It Black”.

    Regards
    Taki

  17. THE ROLLING STONES DID HAVE A LOT OF COVERS DIDN’T THEY?

    BYE BYE JOHNNY, ROUND AND ROUND, MONEY, CAROL, LI’L RED ROOSTER, I THINK THEY LIKED TO PICK ON CHUCK A LOT. WILLIE DIXON AND THE LIST GOES WELL ON! BUT THEY WERE GOOD AT DOING THEM. LIKE THE I WANNA BE YOUR MAN SONG, THEY DIDN’T WRITE IT, BUT THEY SURE EARNED SOME $ WITH IT.

    I THINK FROM DOING SO MANY COVERS, THEY LEARNED TO DEVELOP THEIR OWN WRITING STYLE. LADY JANE, PAINT IT BLACK, HEART OF STONE, RUBY TUESDAY, THE STONES WERE USERS, USERS OF ANYTHING, ANYTHING THAT MADE $. SO WHAT ELSE IS NEW?

    I ALWAYS HAD TROUBLE WITH THE STONES IN THAT EVERY LP SEEMED TO CONTAIN ABOUT 60-70% OF IT WAS OKAY AND WINDING UP WITH ABOUT A 1/3 BEING FILLER.

    DOES ANYBODY HAVE AN ORIGINAL COPY OF THE SATANIC MAJESTY’S REQUEST ON THE 1/2″ REEL TO REEL TAPE WITH THE 3-D COVER FROM DECCA? YEP! COMMERCIAL IDINIT? WELL… AS TEARS AND 3-D COVERS GO BY!

    BUT TO SUM UP WHAT I MEAN… NOTHING WRONG WITH DOING COVERS, SOMETIMES THEY WIND UP BIGGER THAN WHO WROTE IT! HOW MANY TIMES HAVE THE STONES GOTTEN ROYALTIES FROM JUMPIN’ JACK FLASH? A LOT! OR SATISFACTION? I LIKE A LOT OF THEIR MUSIC, I STRONGLY ADMIRE THE TWINS WRITING ABILITY FROM ABOUT 65-75′ THE BEST LPS THEY PRODUCED “MUSICALLY” WERE TRICKY FINGERS, EXILE ON MAIN ST. AND GOAT LEG SOUP.

    SO MY APOLOGIES TO BRIAN JONES’ FAMILY, KEITH RICHARDS’ SHADOW AND 2 BAD U DIDN’T STICKY AROUND MICK TAYLOR.

    LOVE PEACE AND I GUESS U KNOW THE REST! KEEP LISTENING!

  18. I can imagine David covering any number of Stones songs, actually. Those could include lots of earlier Stones-covering-other-artists as well as many of their early originals, such as Ruby Tuesday and As Tears Go By.

    In my opinion, David could give a go at just about all of anything off of any of the Stones albums from High Tide and Green Grass to Sticky Fingers, Beggar’s Banquet, and the rest! I would love to hear his take on Wild Horses, Moonlight Mile, Sister Morphine, Can’t Ya Hear Me Knockin’ (Dick Parry on sax?), Parachute Woman, Salt of the Earth, etc. 😀

    I also think Waiting On A Friend would be a really good choice.

    I’m really surprised that so many people don’t like the Stones ~ maybe they just haven’t really given most of their work a good listen? It could be that they’ve heard too much Paint It Black and 19th Nervous Breakdown and burned out on ’em? Either way, I find it puzzling. 😕

    Right now I’m diggin’ Dead Flowers playing on my shuffle! Love Gram Parsons being channelled via the Stones (Wild Horses, for instance)… he had a huge impact on the Stones and the country-rock evolution. Don’t know how many people even know who he is, but they should!

    Peace ‘n’ Love, y’all…
    Gabrielle

  19. Although i’ve heard quite a few Rolling Stone songs over the years, I don’t really know any of them by name, so I can’t suggest any that I can imagine David doing.

    I wasn’t sure whether I’m a fan of them or not, since I’ve never really gone out of my way to listen to them. I do like the songs I’ve heard, but its never inspired me to buy any of their albums. Maybe it’s because I get distracted trying to work out why they get compared to the Beatles so much when they are two very different bands.

    On a side note, I heard “It’s All Too Much” recently when I watched Yellow Submarine and I was wondering if anyone else is reminded of “Take It Back” when they listen to it. Whilst the music is different, the vocal styles at times seem similar, so much so that I can almost hear David singing “Take it Back” whilst listening to George singing.

    It’s probably just me, isn’t it?

  20. Wild Horses… it would be great! I can easily imagine David playing it. It’s just ideal.

    But what else – maybe Play With Fire? I love this track, and it would be even better with David performing it!

  21. I’m not big on the Stones but even a baboon with a plank and some bongos is going to come up with a few decent songs in 50 odd years of trying.

    I think David could cover a fair few of their songs… it only requires the image of him prancing about a la Jagger to be wiped form the mind and think of classic mellow bluesy reworkings.

    So why not…

    You Got Me Rockin’
    It’s Only Rock ‘n’ Roll (But I Like It)
    Gimme Shelter
    Paint It Black
    Wild Horses
    Time Is On My Side
    Don’t Stop

    No question David could pull off and add to these.

  22. I always preferred The Rolling Stones over The Beatles. Good old nasty Rock N’ Roll. 😉

    ‘Wild Horses’ is one of my all time favourite Stones songs. I think David could also cover very well ‘Ruby Tuesday’ and ‘I Got The Blues’.

    But, as you ask ‘for fun’, I would suggest ‘Harlem Shuffle’.

    Nothing to do with the band ‘Rolling Stones’, but this topic reminded me that David once covered – for fun, I think, in a reggae style – ‘Like A Rolling Stone’. Don’t know where and when, though.

    Michèle

  23. It is interesting to me how some people can’t see David covering the music of a band like The Rolling Stones. It is also interesting how it seems that most are picking ballad numbers (I know, I did the same thing). I think part of that is because people are hung up on how the song was originally performed by the band and don’t take into consideration “creative license.” However we see it all the time around us.

    Take for example the Stones song Satisfaction. The original is so awesome. Yet Devo did a cover of the song which was quite different and even Britney Spears did her rendition on an early release. None of them sound like the original.

    Several years ago Mojo magazine did a feature on Led Zeppelin and with the issue released a CD of songs that inspired Led Zeppelin. It is quite fascinating listening to those tracks and knowing what Zep did with them when they recorded their renditions.

    Then you have situations where artists reinterpret their own songs. That is kind of what the whole unplugged thing is all about. Hmmm… how about David doing an unplugged tour? I bet many would hate it.

    Thanks.

    Andrew

    1. In a sense, David has already done an Unplugged. I think of the Meltdown section of the 2002 “David Gilmour Live In Concert.”

      David uses devices and effects to make his music unique and distinct; for me, he achieves the same things on an acoustic guitar without any effects at all.

  24. ***Off Topic***

    Dear David, Polly, FEd, and all,

    Marcus and I have some news we wanted to share with our virtual family.

    We’re pregnant and we’re so excited.

    Pink Floyd and David, particularly, have had a large influence on our lives from a very young age.

    If it weren’t for David, this blog would have never started, and chances are, Marcus and I would never have met.

    Now we have a baby coming, and I can’t tell you how thankful I am.

    David, you have influenced my life in more ways than you’ll ever know. Thank you for everything you’ve done.

    FEd and David, thank you for providing such a wonderful community here with such wonderful people.

    I’ve found the man I love and want to spend the rest of my life with, and now we’re growing this family! This earthly heaven is enough for me!

    Much Love,
    ~Erin

    1. Congratulations to both of you.

      I’ve always said that music and a group of music lovers can make changes in the world. There you go.

      Hope you have a wonderful time of preparation and bringing your little song bird into this world.

    2. …pretending to be surprised… :))

      Erin,

      Congratulations to you and Marcus!

      The little bundle is due in March, if I remember correctly. For a ‘happy accident’, it couldn’t have been more perfectly planned, could it?

      Love to you and your bump… oh, and the baby, too! 😛

      Gabrielle

    3. What lovely news Erin and Marcus. Congratulations and I wish you many many years of happiness. 🙂

    4. Erin and Marcus,

      Can I echo my congratulations to you both. March is a good month for birthdays. 😉

      David would be a good name for a boy and if it’s girl, how about Polly? 😛

  25. Hello everyone!

    I was always a fan of the Emotional Rescue Outtakes, but the real reason for my post is this:

    Erin and I want to share a very bright spot in our lives; we are bringing a child into this world and are SO excited by this!

    As many of you know, Erin and I met each other through this David Gilmour forum-blog-online-medium-thingy. We both share an intense love for all things David, and especially, Pink Floyd.

    When people ‘get’ one another, it’s rare. Pink Floyd fans know how society ostracizes. Even finding info on PF and David before our friend Internet was rare and difficult, a trait which made them so alluring.

    Ever since David made this online community available (with FEd guiding at the helm) individuals, of like-minded persuasion and an intense love for the pitch wielding aphrodisiac of David’s soaring guitar mastery, gathered.

    Some of us were brought even closer together.

    David, Polly, Fed, and everyone else who give anything to this community, I will forever be thankful for having the opportunity to be part of it. I am even more thankful to be able to add to it. Erin and I wished for our ‘online’ family to know, as soon as we were ready.

    Thank you for adding to our unbridled happiness!!

    All of my love,
    Marcus

    1. Erin and Marcus:

      Well, if that isn’t the coolest thing to date for the blog! Congratulations to you. Bet David didn’t know he was part of the matchmaking services and now perhaps a ‘Godfather’?

      Seriously, how delightful.

      Jan

    2. Thanks, Marcus. All the best.

      So in-tune with one another, I see, that your messages arrived barely a minute apart. Surely that’s encouraging. 🙂

    3. Hey Marcus,

      How’s my favorite bar(n)tender? :)) See what happens when you meet someone in the Barn, take a roll in the hay, have a few pints, etc.

      All kidding aside, congratulations to you and Erin!

      I thought about the Gilmourettes (you and Thomas being honorary Gilmourettes, of course!) on the second anniversary of BarnFest Northwest (18 August)! As Simon would say, “Happy Days!” Or, as Melissa would say, “I see cherries in the sky!” :))

      Love,
      Gabrielle

    4. Marcus/Erin,

      A slightly delayed congratulations to you both. 😀

      Our very own blog baby! When do we have the “naming” competition??

      Seriously, stay healthy Erin and all the best from the Norfolk branch of the pitch wielding aphrodisiac club.

  26. I guess after listening to my son play Metallica’s “Nothing Else Matters” this a.m., I think Mr. Gilmour could totally pull that one off also. I would love to hear that.

    Nothing Else Matters… good song, would love to hear David do this one too.

    Jan

  27. Have been out of the loop for a long long time now. Trying to catch up. Lots of great stuff going on I see. Especially with Erin and Marcus. Great news.

    Hope I am forgiven if I back up a bit and add some favorite female singers.

    Bird York, ‘In The Deep’
    Annie Lennox, ‘Into The West’
    Sara Vaughn, ‘Send In The Clowns”
    Joan Baez, ‘Diamonds And Rust’
    Loreena McKennitt, ‘Bonny Porthmore’
    Doris Day, ‘Secret love’
    Tricia Yearwood, ‘How Do I Live’
    Kathy Mattea, ‘Where’ve You Been’ (bet you can’t listen to this one without tearing up)
    Oleta Adams, ‘Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me’ (does it better than Elton)
    Glady Knight
    Miriam Mekeba
    Amanda McBroom
    Julie London, ‘Cry Me A River’
    Gloria Estefan, ‘Steal Your Heart Away’
    Nina Simone, ‘Here Comes The Sun’

    Just to name a few. There are so many. Karen Carpenter, laura Nyro, Eva Cassidy, Julie Andrews.

    Again, hope you will forgive my lateness to the topic. My dad fell down a flight of wooden stairs so my sister and I have been out of state taking care of him. (At 92 years of age, he does not bounce too well!!! Lucky though, only a ton of bruises, cracked ribs and a very nasty leg wound. Could have been much worse.)

    Can I ask? Will there be a blog about Les Paul as he passed away about 10 days ago and don’t know if I missed that. He did alright for a guy who had one arm frozen into a 90 degree angle (very bad break and unfixable), played into his 90s at a spot in New York. To say he had talent is maybe an understatement.

    Jan

    1. I’m very sorry to hear about your father’s fall, Jan. My very best wishes to him and his recovery.

      There hasn’t been a post about Les Paul, but the next two will certainly allow room to remember him and his massive contribution to music. The first will be here tonight, possibly tomorrow morning, and the more relevant second will be published sometime on Thursday.

  28. A HUGE Stones fan here… I’d have the band willing to perform with David be as follows:

    Steve DiStanislao – drums
    Guy Pratt – bass
    Mick Taylor – guitar (for the odd solo and rhythm)
    Durga McBroom – backing vocals
    Richard Wright – keyboards

    or

    John “Rabbit” Bundrick – keyboards

    The songs I’d love to see Mr Gilmour perform would be:

    – You’ve Got the Silver
    – Moonlight Mile
    – Dead Flowers (giving it a This Heaven type of spin)
    – I Got the Blues (can you imagine the blistering solos playing between Mick and David on this one?)
    – Sweet Virginia
    – Shine a Light
    – Coming Down Again
    – Angie
    – Winter

    I’ve read some other opinions on the appropriateness of Mr Gilmour covering the Stones music. I think everything is fair dinkum, personally. Sure, it might be odd if Dave were to try and cover Milli Vanilli or some such dreck, but no one can say that it would be wrong or that he couldn’t make a Stones song his own by applying that touch of his.

    Nuff said…
    Dirwood 😛

    1. This entry reminded me of another great but often overlooked Stones song, Salt of the Earth. Now there’s a song for David to cover.

      Interesting fact is that the Stones rarely performed this song but I did see them perform it in Atlantic City years ago with Axl Rose as guest vocals and Izzy Stradlin on guitar.

      Thanks.

      Andrew

  29. Hi Everyone,

    It’s a definite Wild Horses as a cover for David.

    And I think you’re right. Stevie D would love doing Stones songs.

  30. Right then,

    Gimme Shelter
    (I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction
    The Last Time
    You Can’t Always Get What You Want… how appropriate for us DG fans :))
    Under My Thumb
    Sympathy For the Devil
    She’s a Rainbow
    Ruby Tuesday
    Paint It Black
    Miss You
    Beast of Burden
    Angie
    Time Is On My Side
    It’s Only Rock ‘N’ Roll (But I Like It)

    Thank you very much indeed, good night to you.

    1. I think ‘She’s a Rainbow’ would be really good. In fact, it would have fitted in with the 2002 semi-acoustic shows in London and Paris perfectly, don’t you think? What with Caroline Dale’s cello and that choir.

  31. Oooooooooh (sucking breath through teeth, scratching head), I dunno about this… gonna have to think about this one. 8|

    David playing Stones, hmm.

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