Let It Bleed

Let It Bleed
The Rolling Stones
Released 5 December 1969
Recorded November 1968, February–November 1969, Olympic Studios, London, England
Genre Blues rock, rock and roll, hard rock[1]
Length 42:13[2]
Language English
Label Decca (UK)
Producer Jimmy Miller
The Rolling Stones chronology
Beggars Banquet
Let It Bleed
Sticky Fingers

Let It Bleed is the eighth British and tenth American album by English rock band The Rolling Stones, released in December 1969 by Decca Records in the United Kingdom and London Records in the United States. Released shortly after the band’s 1969 American Tour, it is the follow-up to 1968’s Beggars Banquet and the last album by the band to feature Brian Jones as well as the first to feature Mick Taylor.


[edit] History

Although they had begun the recording of “You Can’t Always Get What You Want” in November 1968, before Beggars Banquet had been released, recording for Let It Bleed began in earnest in February 1969 and would continue sporadically until early November.[citation needed] Brian Jones performs on only two tracks, playing the autoharp on “You Got the Silver“, and percussion on “Midnight Rambler“. His replacement, Mick Taylor, plays guitar on two tracks, “Country Honk” and “Live With Me“. Keith Richards, who had already shared vocal duties with Mick Jagger on “Connection“, “Something Happened to Me Yesterday” and “Salt of the Earth“, sang his first solo lead vocal on a Rolling Stones recording with “You Got the Silver“.[3]

[edit] Release and reception

Released in December, Let It Bleed reached No. 1 in the UK (temporarily knocking Billboard Top Pop Albums chart in the US, where it eventually went 2x platinum.

The album was released in US as an LP record, reel to reel tape and 8-track cartridge in 1969, and as a remastered CD in 1986. In August 2002, it was reissued in a remastered CD and SACD digipak by ABKCO Records, and once more in 2010 by Universal Music Enterprises in a Japanese only SHM-SACD version.[4]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 5/5 stars[2]
BBC (favourable)[5]
Entertainment Weekly (A)[6]
The Daily Vault (A)[7]
PopMatters (favourable)[8]
Rolling Stone 5/5 stars[9]

In his 2001 Stones bio, Stephen Davis said of the album “No rock record, before or since, has ever so completely captured the sense of palpable dread that hung over its era.”[10] Indeed, the day after its 5 December release is the date of the infamous Altamont Free Concert. But the album was critically well received.

Let It Bleed is the second of the Stones’ run of four studio LPs that are generally regarded as among their greatest achievements artistically, equalled only by the best of their great 45s from that decade. The other three albums are Beggars Banquet (1968), Sticky Fingers (1971) and Exile on Main St. (1972).[11]

In 1998 Q magazine readers voted Let It Bleed the 69th greatest album of all time, while in 2000 the same magazine placed it at number 28 in its list of “The 100 Greatest British Albums Ever”. In 2001, the TV network VH1 placed Let It Bleed at number 24 on their best album survey. In 1997 it was voted 27th greatest album by The Guardian. In 2003, it was listed as number 32 on the “List of Rolling Stone’s 500 Greatest Albums of All Time“.[12]

[edit] Cover

The cover displays a surreal sculpture designed by [16]

The [18]

[edit] Track listing

The track listing on the back of the album jacket did not follow the one on the album itself. According to Brownjohn, he altered the track listing purely for visual reasons; the correct order was shown on the record’s label. Additionally, “Gimme Shelter” is rendered as “Gimmie Shelter” on the jacket.

All songs written by Mick Jagger and Keith Richards, except where noted.

Side one
No. Title Length
1. Gimme Shelter”   4:30
2. Robert Johnson†) 4:19
3. Country Honk”   3:07
4. Live with Me”   3:33
5. Let It Bleed”   5:27
Side two
No. Title Length
6. Midnight Rambler”   6:52
7. You Got the Silver”   2:50
8. Monkey Man”   4:11
9. You Can’t Always Get What You Want”   7:30

†Early US editions of the album credit the song using Johnson’s pseudonym Woody Payne.

[edit] Personnel

The Rolling Stones
  • harmonica on “Gimme Shelter” and “Midnight Rambler”
  • backing vocals on “Gimme Shelter”, “Country Honk” and “Monkey Man”, lead vocals on “You Got the Silver”
  • autoharp on “You Got the Silver”
  • slide guitar on “Country Honk”, guitars on “Live with Me”
  • drums (except “You Can’t Always Get What You Want”)
  • vibes on “Monkey Man”
Additional personnel

[edit] Sales chart performance

Year Chart Position
1969 UK Albums Chart 1[20]
1969 Billboard Pop Albums 3[21]
Preceded by
The Beatles
number-one album
20 – 27 December 1969
Succeeded by
Abbey Road by The Beatles
Year Single Chart Position
1973 “You Can’t Always Get What You Want” The Billboard Hot 100 42[22]

[edit] Certifications

Country Provider Certification
(sales thresholds)
United States RIAA 2× Platinum
United Kingdom BPI Platinum

[edit] References

  1. ^ Unterberger, Richie (28 November 1969). “Let It Bleed – The Rolling Stones”. AllMusic. http://www.allmusic.com/album/r16831. Retrieved 9 December 2011.
  2. ^ http://www.allmusic.com/album/r16831. Retrieved 31 October 2009.
  3. http://www.minilps.net/images/stories/shop_image/product/17{afaa16ff8fc15ae1f3a93f63bb0e25306e8730d54626544684f78bc2bc5f898c}20Bleed{afaa16ff8fc15ae1f3a93f63bb0e25306e8730d54626544684f78bc2bc5f898c}20f.jpg. Retrieved 13 July 2012.
  4. ^ Walsh, Christopher (24 August 2002). “Super audio CDs: The Rolling Stones Remastered”. Billboard: p. 27.
  5. ^ “The Rolling Stone Let it Bleed”. BBC. http://www.bbc.co.uk/music/release/6hmq/. Retrieved 31 October 2009.
  6. ^ “Let It Bleed CD”. Muze Inc.. http://www.cduniverse.com/search/xx/music/pid/4940211/a/Let+It+Bleed.htm. Retrieved 21 June 2008.
  7. ^ “The Daily Vault review”. Dailyvault.com. 17 August 1999. http://dailyvault.com/toc.php5?review=3816. Retrieved 9 December 2011.
  8. ^ Jason MacNeil. “The Rolling Stones – Let it Bleed”. PopMatters. http://www.popmatters.com/music/reviews/r/rollingstones-letitbleedmft.shtml. Retrieved 31 October 2009.
  9. ^ “Album Reviews: The Rolling Stones – Let it Bleed”. Rolling Stone. http://www.rollingstone.com/artists/therollingstones/albums/album/158769/review/6067534/let_it_bleed. Retrieved 31 October 2009.
  10. ^ Stephen Davis (2001). Old gods almost dead: the 40-year odyssey of the Rolling Stones. Random House, Inc.
  11. ^ Steven Van Zandt. “The Immortals – The Greatest Artists of All Time: 4) The Rolling Stones”. The RollingStone. http://www.rollingstone.com/music/lists/5702/31963/31980. Retrieved 31 October 2009.
  12. ^ Let It Bleed. Rolling Stone. January, 2003. http://www.rollingstone.com/music/lists/500-greatest-albums-of-all-time-19691231/let-it-bleed-the-rolling-stones-19691231. Retrieved 21 August 2011.
  13. ^ Robert Brownjohn from the Design Museum website
  14. ^ Delia Smith from loog2stoned.com
  15. ^ Back cover image from the Design Museum website
  16. ^ Wyman, Bill. 2002. Rolling With the Stones
  17. http://www.royalmail.com/portal/stamps/content1?catId=32300674&mediaId=112400790. Retrieved 8 January 2010.
  18. ^ Michaels, Sean (8 January 2010). “Coldplay album gets stamp of approval from Royal Mail”. The Guardian (London). http://www.guardian.co.uk/music/2010/jan/08/coldplay-album-stamp-approval. Retrieved 8 January 2010.
  19. ^ The choir asked to have its name removed from the album’s credits.[citation needed]
  20. ^ Record Retailer
  21. ^ “The Rolling Stones Complete Hit Albums List (1964–2008)”. BeatZenith. http://www.beatzenith.com/the_rolling_stones/rsalbumslist.htm. Retrieved 24 July 2009.
  22. ^ “The Rolling Stones Complete Hit Singles List (1963–2006)”. BeatZenith. http://www.beatzenith.com/the_rolling_stones/rsingleslist.htm. Retrieved 24 July 2009.

This article uses material from the Wikipedia article Let It Bleed, which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.