Sympathy for the devil...(way-off topic)

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by bluegoatwoods, Oct 16, 2008.

  1. bluegoatwoods

    bluegoatwoods Well-Known Member

    Like the title says, this is way off topic. But I figured I'd share it anyway.

    I was just listening to this old chestnut from the Rolling Stones on headphones. No distractions, clear sound, etc. It reminded me of something that has been growing on my mind for years; this song is a truly masterfull "audio portrait" of pure evil. i.e.; the sort of evil that enjoys itself.

    (this is obvious, of course. I only bring it up because we've heard it so many times that it's too easy to only half-listen. But it really does deserve our attention.)

    Consider Lucifer's very first words to us; rather polite and might almost be charming. He immediately starts bragging about his success, but in a cheerfully self-appreciative way that's almost like-able.

    He then goes on to describe the horrors of history that he had played a part in. Making certain, for instance, that no one saved Jesus from the crucifixion.
    As he describes some of his other mis-deeds over the next few verses, he becomes more and more ferociously hysterical. Even charging, at one point, that we are all partners in crime with him.

    He finishes up with the threat that if we don't mind our Ps and Qs with him, he'll drag us down into his ****ation right along with him. Some will argue, of course, that the devil can't have us without our own co-operation. But this misses the point; he would surely imply or threaten that this is not so. He would try to make us think that we are his for the taking in order to frighten us into surrendering.

    Now this is just a song, after all. And, personally, I don't believe in the devil anyway. But when I suspend that disbelief and open my mind to the message that Jagger and Richards were trying to send, I'm filled with a sort of fascinated horror that's pretty impressive.

    They deserve a pat on the back for getting the story they were trying to tell across so forcefully. Definitely a song worth spending a few minutes with.

  2. stude13

    stude13 Active Member

    jumping jack flash
  3. augidog

    augidog New Member

    "the white zone", for those who don't know, was named for a musical reference...the reader can figure it out ;)

    so imo, yer post is on-topic off-topic...and very cool...while i've always appreciated the tune from a similar viewpoint as yours, i've never heard the message re-phrased so accurately or respectfully..

    btw-i had the LP, and now have the full set of MP3's..."beggar's banquet" is surely worth a listen :cool:
  4. kerf

    kerf Guest

    I've never been a "stoney", obviously too crude to understand their talent. That being said, never occurred to me to extract deep philosophical meaning from the lyrics of a spoiled drug head entrainer. I really should be more sophisticated.
  5. BoltsMissing

    BoltsMissing Active Member

    I have disected this song in so many ways from the live version, it's got "alchemy", it was a insane mind riot that night, yet it was brilliant at the same time as a performance under the, circumstances

    The lyrics of it..,

    Last edited: Oct 17, 2008
  6. Pablo

    Pablo Motored Bikes Sponsor

    The version on "Get Your Ya-Ya's" out is pretty amazing. One of my fav. CD's. Really does get the power of the Stones across.
  7. BoltsMissing

    BoltsMissing Active Member

    Pablo, if you listen to the very begining of that live track, before the song starts, where you hear the audience asking to play "Paint it black".
    If you disect it second by second and listen to all the sounds and minor sound checks, it asks the question,
    WAS the song "sympathy...," the next song on their list, or was it chosen at a split second change in retaliation to what the last audience chick yelled out to Jagger ?
    As if, "don't call me that name, you insulted me", and as a "pay back" they chose to sing "Sympathy..," instead ?
    It's an interesting analogy if one listens very very closely and try to picture what was actually happening.
  8. Pablo

    Pablo Motored Bikes Sponsor


    I also didn't mention the guitar solo. Up there in the top 10 or 20.
  9. bluegoatwoods

    bluegoatwoods Well-Known Member

    Let's see...."White zone"...Musical referrence....."White Room"?

    I never saw the connection before. Learn something new every day.

    "Strange Brew" would be a pretty good way of describing our MB hobby too, by the way.
  10. augidog

    augidog New Member

    not to hijack the stones...but since yer semi-interested, here's another hint, from the forum's description:

  11. bluegoatwoods

    bluegoatwoods Well-Known Member

    The mystery deepens; does "load, or unload" have some connection to the musical referrence?

    I had always taken that to mean "if you need to let off steam about something".

    Now let's do a 90 degree turn; another music question. Does anyone know who that girl singer on "Gimme Shelter" is? She's always reminded me of Grace Slick.
    I doubt it's actually Grace. But that would've been pretty neat.
  12. Zev0

    Zev0 Member

    Google is your friend!

    Merry Clayton is the female vocalist. She was a Gospel singer who did backup vocals for various artists, including Ray Charles. She had a regular role on the '80s TV show Cagney and Lacey, and played a maid in the movie Maid To Order.
  13. Pablo

    Pablo Motored Bikes Sponsor

    You beat me to it. Mary Clayton is actually pretty famous (and good) in her own right.
  14. Pablo

    Pablo Motored Bikes Sponsor

    So I whipped it out. My .....Ya Ya's.........CD.

    Just a couple things:

    1) When the drunk girlie is screaming for "Paint it Black......Paint it Black, you devil(s)...." (man I won't GO there) - it's really at the end of "Midnight Rambler"

    2) The guitar solo is like 1000% times better than I remember. Wholly moley....starting at minute 3:00 (Mick stops singing the main body at 2:56 or so)...then warming the riff until minute 4:00....then really ripping at 5:05 until 6:10....

    An amazing song.......thanks for the thread.
  15. bluegoatwoods

    bluegoatwoods Well-Known Member

    Well, now you've got me feeling pretty eager to hear that version from "Get your ya-yahs out"

    That's cool. It's always neat to have something to track down.

    Might as well carry on with another thought; It's always seemed to me that the Rolling Stones with Mick Taylor was their neatest (tightest, most precise) sound. Though I might be wise to study the Ron Wood albums a bit more. When it comes right down to it "Some Girls" is the only one that I've listened to. And that's been a while.
  16. BoltsMissing

    BoltsMissing Active Member

    trivial, but it's in the picture-art form

    nooooo, lol
    it's four differrant girlies, each voice tone is distinct, but could be 3, ( I wasn't there).
    (Going by memory btw cos ain't played it yet, the CD is currently stuffed)
    Girl 1. "paint it blaaack"
    Girl 2. "paint it blaack"
    girl 3 or 1. "paint it black"
    and, girl 4. "paint it black you devil" ,and she say's it from the heart type of tone. I'll give her credit cos took alotta guts to say it.

    Then a short pause as if, "what the ff was that!!"
    Then the song starts on cue.

    Now here another analogy,
    2. What if the song was next on their list, being Sympathy..,
    OK, coincidence, and meant to be after girl 4 said,,,.

    3. What if the Stones had no song list and chose on instinct, "vibe",
    then that girl is part of something for having something to do with the course of rock history, trivial, but.., it's there.
    If Da Vinci were alive and he painted according to what he saw, read or heard, it be a awsome painting.

    yeah the geetar riffs in the ya ya album is craftmanship, raw and classy.
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2008