The Rolling Stones ‘hit a wall’ mak­ing new mu­sic, says Don Was

Malta Independent - - ENTERTAINMENT -

The Rolling Stones’ new al­bum of blues cov­ers was cre­ated af­ter at­tempts to record new ma­te­rial fal­tered, pro­ducer Don Was said.

“We’d gone in the studio to start cut­ting some new songs,” said Was, who has worked with the band since 1994.

“Around day three we just hit a wall... and Keith sug­gested that, to cleanse the cre­ative pal­ette, we played Blue and Lone­some, the Lit­tle Wal­ter song.

“For­tu­nately we ran the tape and it was just awe­some.”

He said: “The whole mood of the room changed dra­mat­i­cally in those three-and-a-half min­utes. So we said, ‘let’s do an­other one’, and ‘let’s do an­other one’.

“They just called songs off that they knew and loved. It was very spon­ta­neous. And by the end of the day we had six.”

The re­sult is Blue and Lone­some, the band’s first studio al­bum since 2005’s A Big­ger Bang.

In to­tal, 12 tracks were recorded over three days at Lon­don’s Bri­tish Grove Stu­dios. They are all cov­ers of songs by clas­sic blues­men, in­clud­ing Howlin’ Wolf (Com­mit a Crime), Lit­tle Wal­ter (I Gotta Go) and Jimmy Reed (Lit­tle Rain).

“They re­ally know this mu­sic well,” Was told Matt Everitt. “Most of the songs that are on there are songs they played when they first started out, play­ing pubs in Rich­mond, so it’s kind of sec­ond na­ture to them.

“They do not play karaoke ver­sions. They found their own way to in­ter­pret the blues.”

Rock leg­end Eric Clap­ton also ap­pears on two tracks, Lit­tle Johnny Tay­lor’s Ev­ery­body Knows About My Good Thing and Otis Rush’s I Can’t Quit You Baby.

“Eric Clap­ton was record­ing next door,” ex­plained Was. “He just walked over and he had the same re­ac­tion as ev­ery­one else did. His jaw just dropped.

“Pic­ture the Rolling Stones just set up in a cir­cle in one room [and] the am­pli­fiers are blar­ing.

“It re­minded him of when he was a teenager, go­ing to see the Stones play­ing in Rich­mond. He was just in awe, so he just grabbed one of Keith’s guitars and started play­ing. It was quite a thing.”

Blue and Lone­some will be re­leased in De­cem­ber, while the first sin­gle Just Your Fool is avail­able from yes­ter­day, to fans who pre-or­der the record.

Was added that the Stones had not aban­doned plans to com­plete an al­bum of new ma­te­rial.

“Both Keith and Mick have some great new songs,” he told Matt Everitt. “They’re far from done.”

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