Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Richie Unterberger presents "The Rolling Stones, England's Newest Hitmakers"
It was fifty years ago this month -- on June 7, 1963, to be precise -- that the Rolling Stones released their first record. The band is still, um, wheezing along, in the midst of a 50th anniversary tour.

To commemorate this half-century mark, rock historian Richie Unterberger will present two hours of rare clips of the Rolling Stones on Saturday, June 29 from 2pm-4pm in Koret Auditorium at the Main branch of the San Francisco Public Library.

Spanning the first decade of their recording career (through 1972), most of the material is unavailable on commercial video. While some clips show up on official releases, these were often shown in only short excerpts in that format. This presentation features the most complete filmed versions of those songs and performances available.

While the Rolling Stones are still active forty years after the final clip in the program, virtually everyone would agree that the lion's share of their greatest music was made in the 1960s and early 1970s.  The program emphasizes clips of the group performing live, which is the best way to appreciate their charisma, and affords us a chance to hear them doing material in somewhat different form than we hear on the studio recordings.

Some notable songs are only represented by mimed performances or promotional films (i.e. music videos, though they didn't call them that then) when the clips are enjoyable or the songs are not available in other formats. These are still interesting to see as they do illustrate the evolution of their music and image.

The program also features more clips from the Stones' earliest mid-'60s years than any other phase of this period. Although some famous hits are missing from the presentation, this does allow the inclusion of quite a few songs that are not so famous, especially from their earliest years.

From early blues covers like "I Just Want to Make Love to You" through breakthrough mid-'60s smashes like "Satisfaction" and later classics such as "Ruby Tuesday," "Honky Tonk Women," and "Brown Sugar," many highlights of their repertoire will dot this survey of their peak years as musicians, songwriters, and performers.

All programs at the Library are free.  This program is supported by the Friends of the San Francisco Public Library.

No comments: