Some Girls

Some Girls
The Rolling Stones
Released 9 June 1978
Recorded 10 October – 21 December 1977, 5 January – 2 March 1978, Pathé Marconi Studios, Paris
Genre Rock
Length 40:45
Language English
Label Rolling Stones
Producer The Glimmer Twins
The Rolling Stones chronology
Black and Blue
Some Girls
Emotional Rescue
Original 1978 Cover
Singles from Some Girls
  1. Miss You
    Released: 19 May 1978
  2. Beast of Burden
    Released: September 1978
  3. Respectable
    Released: 1978
  4. Shattered
    Released: 29 November 1978

Some Girls is the 14th British and 16th American studio album by The Rolling Stones, released in 1978 on Rolling Stones Records, catalogue COC 39108. It peaked at #1 on the Billboard 200, and became one of the band’s biggest-selling albums in the United States, and has been certified by the RIAA as having six million copies sold as of 2000.


[edit] History

With the advent of Mick Jagger felt invigorated by the provocations and was determined to answer them lyrically. It helped, however, that almost all the punks had, openly or not, idolised the Stones in the 1960s and were heavily influenced by the band’s rebellious records from that era.

At least as important for the band’s reinvigoration was the addition of slide guitar playing would become one of the band’s hallmarks, and his unconventional uses of the instrument are prominent on Some Girls. In addition, Jagger, who had learned to play guitar over the previous decade, contributed a third guitar part to many songs. This gave songs like “Respectable” a three-guitar line-up.

Jagger is generally regarded as the principal creative force behind Some Girls, a conception that, though disputable (Richards was present at all of the sessions), is plausible considering Richards’ various legal entanglements at the time (see below). Jagger claimed in a 1995 interview to have written a great number of the album’s songs (though when the amount was pointed out to him he denied that the record was mostly his own), including its signature song, “Miss You”. In addition to punk, Jagger claims to have been influenced by New York City as a major inspiration for the album, an explanation for his lyrical preoccupation with the city throughout.

The inspiration for the record was really based in New York and the ways of the town. I think that gave it an extra spur and hardness. And then, of course, there was the punk thing that had started in 1976. Punk and disco were going on at the same time, so it was quite an interesting period. New York and London, too. Paris—there was punk there. Lots of dance music. Paris and New York had all this Latin dance music, which was really quite wonderful. Much more interesting than the stuff that came afterward.[1]

For the first time since 1968’s Status Quo!’

A serious concern was the issue of Keith Richards and his highly-publicized heroin possession bust in Toronto, Ontario in early 1977; resulting in a very real possibility that he might be sent to jail for years. However, due to the judgement that Richards was very separate from the usual theft and anti-social culture that is associated with heroin use, he was sentenced very lightly. He was ordered to perform a charity show for The Canadian National Institute for the Blind.[2] As a commemoration of his second lease on life following the end of his heroin addiction, Keith reverted his surname to “Richards” with an “s” for Some Girls, after fifteen years without it.

The sessions for Some Girls began in October 1977, breaking before Christmas and starting up again after New Year’s before finishing in March 1978. Under their new British recording contract with EMI (remaining with Warner Music in North America only), they were able to record at EMI’s Pathé Marconi Studios in Paris, a venue at which they would record frequently for the next several years. The Rolling Stones ended up recording about fifty new songs, several of which would turn up in altered forms on Emotional Rescue and Tattoo You. These sessions have also served as a prime source for many bootleg compilations over the years. Engineer for the sessions was Chris Kimsey, whose approach to recording breathed life into the somewhat dense sounding recordings like Goats Head Soup and It’s Only Rock ‘n’ Roll albums. Kimsey’s direct method of recording, together with the entrance of the then state-of-the-art Mesa/Boogie Mark I amps instead of the Ampeg SVT line of amps, yielded a bright, direct and aggressive guitar sound. In fact, there have been few Stones sessions as widely bootlegged as these.

There was some controversy surrounded the lyrics to the title song, an extended musing on women of various nationalities and races. The line “Black girls just wanna get fucked all night” drew strong protests from various groups, including Weekend Update segment: After giving the impression that he was going to openly criticise the Stones, he quoted a sanitised version of the “Black girls just…” line, then stated “I have one thing to say to you, Mr. Mick Jagger… where are these women?!?

[edit] Packaging and artwork

The album cover for Some Girls was designed by Marilyn Monroe threatened legal action.

The album was quickly reissued with a revised cover that removed all the celebrities whether they had complained or not, and were replaced with black and punk style garish colours with the phrase PARDON OUR APPEARANCE – COVER UNDER RE-CONSTRUCTION (found on most reissues since). Jagger later apologised to Minnelli when he encountered her during a party at the famous discothèque Studio 54.

There also existed a third version of the album cover with hand-drawn women (found on the 1986 CD reissue).

A fourth amended version that included Jimmy Carter in drag was not published.

[edit] Release and legacy

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 5/5 stars link
Blender 5/5 stars link
Sputnikmusic 5/5 stars link
Robert Christgau A link
Rolling Stone 5/5 stars link
Uncut 5/5 stars link
The A.V. Club A link

In May 1978, the first single from the album, “Miss You“, a prowling, moody number built on a stripped-down disco beat and bluesy pop harmonies, was released to very strong response, garnering The Rolling Stones their last US #1 hit and reaching #3 in the UK. Some Girls appeared in June to a very welcoming audience, reaching #1 in the US and #2 in the UK, becoming their biggest-selling studio album in the process (currently certified six times platinum in the US alone). It was also a major critical success, with many reviewers calling it a classic return to form, and their best album since 1972’s Exile on Main St.Beast of Burden“, “Respectable” (in the UK) and “Shattered” (in the US) would follow as the next singles, all becoming minor hits as well.

The Stones embarked on their summer US Tour 1978 in support of the album, which for the first time saw them mount several small venue shows, sometimes under a pseudonym.

In 2003 Some Girls was ranked number 269 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of The 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.

In 1986, the first Universal Music, restoring the original color scheme of the cover.

[edit] Re-release

Some Girls was re-issued on 21 November 2011 as a 2 CD deluxe edition, including twelve songs recorded during the recording sessions for the album (with the exception of “So Young”). A Super-Deluxe edition also included a DVD with live footage & promo videos, a 100-page book, 5 postcards, a poster, and a 7″ 180-gram replica vinyl single of “Beast of Burden”.No Spare Parts” was released as a single on 13 November, which went to No. 2 on Billboard’s Hot Singles Sales. “So Young” was the second single from the Some Girls reissue, released briefly for free on iTunes the same day “No Spare Parts” was released. A video for “No Spare Parts” was produced and was later released on 19 December 2011.

In 2012 it was released by Universal Music Enterprises in a Japanese only SHM-SACD version.

[edit] Track listing

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

Side one
No. Title Length
1. Miss You”   4:48
2. When the Whip Comes Down”   4:20
3. Barrett Strong) 4:38
4. Some Girls”   4:36
5. Lies”   3:11
Side two
No. Title Length
6. Far Away Eyes”   4:24
7. Respectable”   3:06
8. Before They Make Me Run”   3:25
9. Beast of Burden”   4:25
10. Shattered”   3:48
  • North American copies of the album on 8-track tape format contain extended versions of “Miss You” and “Beast of Burden” and edited versions of the songs “Far Away Eyes”, “Shattered” and “Imagination” (aka “Just My Imagination (Running Away with Me)”).

[edit] 2011 bonus disc

No. Title Length
1. “Claudine”   3:42
2. “So Young”   3:18
3. “Do You Think I Really Care?”   4:22
4. “When You’re Gone” (Jagger/Richards/Ronnie Wood) 3:51
5. No Spare Parts”   4:30
6. “Don’t Be a Stranger”   4:06
7. “We Had It All” (Donnie Fritts) 2:54
8. “Tallahassee Lassie” (Frederick A. Picariello) 2:37
9. “I Love You Too Much”   3:10
10. “Keep Up Blues”   4:20
11. “You Win Again” (Hank Williams) 3:00
12. “Petrol Blues”   1:35

[edit] Personnel

The Rolling Stones
  • handclaps on “Tallahasse Lassie”
  • bass guitar on “Some Girls” and “Before They Make Me Run”, piano on “Faraway Eyes”; bonus tracks: lead vocals on “We Had It All”, piano on “No Spare Parts” and “I Love You Too Much”, electric piano on “You Win Again”
  • Ronnie Wood – electric, acoustic, pedal steel and slide guitar, backing vocals, bass guitar and bass drum on “Shattered”
  • drums
  • marimba on “Don’t Be a Stranger”
Additional personnel
  • Sugar Blue – harmonica on “Miss You” and “Some Girls”; bonus tracks: harmonica on “Don’t Be a Stranger” and “We Had It All”
  • organ on “Just My Imagination”
  • saxophone on “Miss You”
  • congas on “Shattered”
  • Ian Stewartbonus tracks: piano on “Claudine”, “So Young”, “Do You Think I Really Care?”, “Tallahasse Lassie”, “You Win Again”, and “Petrol Blues”
Additional personnel on 2011 bonus disc
  • Chuck Leavellbonus tracks: piano solo on “So Young”
  • Don Wasbonus tracks: bass guitar on “Don’t Be a Stranger”, handclaps on “Tallahasse Lassie”
  • John Fogertybonus tracks: handclaps on “Tallahasse Lassie”
  • Matt Clifford – bonus tracks: percussion on “Don’t Be a Stranger”

[edit] Chart positions

Year Chart Position
1978 UK Top 75 Albums[5] 2
1978 Billboard Pop Albums[6] 1
1978 RPM Canada 1
1978 Dutch Albums Chart[7] 3
1978 Swedish Albums Chart[7] 3
1978 Austrian Albums Chart[7] 4
2011 UK Top 75 Albums[5] 58
2011 The Billboard 200[6] 46
Year Single Chart Position
1978 “Miss You” UK Top 75 Singles[5] 3
1978 “Miss You” The Billboard Hot 100[6] 1
1978 “Miss You” Club Play Singles[6] 6
1978 “Miss You” Black Singles[6] 33
1978 “Beast of Burden” The Billboard Hot 100[6] 8
1978 “Respectable” UK Top 75 Singles[5] 23
1979 “Shattered” The Billboard Hot 100[6] 31
2010 “Beast of Burden” Billboard Rock Digital Songs[6] 49
2011 “No Spare Parts” Billboard Hot Singles Sales[6] 2

[edit] Certifications

Country Provider Certification
(sales thresholds)
United States RIAA 6× Platinum
France SNEP Gold
United Kingdom BPI Gold
Preceded by
Gerry Rafferty
number-one album
15–28 July 1978
Succeeded by
Grease (soundtrack) by Various artists

[edit] References

  1. ^ Wenner, Jan. Rolling Stone. Jagger Remembers 14 December 1995.
  2. ^ Bazay, David. The National. [1] 24 October 1978.
  3. ^ “The Rolling Stones announce reissue of ‘Some Girls'”. 21 October 2011. Retrieved 25 October 2011.
  4. ^ “UK albums chart”. 28 November 2011. Retrieved 28 November 2011.
  5. ^ Retrieved 11 October 2012.
  6. ^ Retrieved 11 October 2012.
  7. ^ Retrieved 11 October 2012.

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