More Details on Exile on Main Street Reissue Emerge

Rolling Stones - Exile on Main StreetThe Stone reports more details on the upcoming reissue of the Rolling StonesExile on Main Street 30th Anniversary Edition. As reported here previously, there are ten previously unreleased tracks. What has not been previously reported is the fact that Mick and Keith went back and futzed with them, including adding some additional tracks and even new lyrics!

“I went back in the archives and dug out a load of things,” [Jagger] says. “I added some percussion and some vocals. Keith put guitar on one or two.” Jagger wrote fresh lyrics for “Following the River,” but other than some light revisions to the other songs, “I really wanted to leave them pretty much as they were,” Keith Richards says. “I didn’t want to interfere with the Bible, you know. They still had that great basement sound.”

Added percussion, vocals, and guitars? New lyrics??? Why would they do that? What’s next, a resurrected Brian Jones collaboration a la “Free as a Bird” or “Unforgettable”? At least they had the sense to bring in Mick Taylor (!!!) to lay down new guitar parts instead of, say, calling up Slash.

We’re still holding out hope that this will be awesome and the fact that this album is finally getting the remaster treatment justifies the project as a whole, but truth be told…you DID interfere with the Bible, Keef!

Details (as we know them) of the box set contents after the jump…


Pre-order from Amazon:

The Rolling Stones Exile on Main Street 30th Anniversary Reissue Details:

• CD featuring the original 18 tracks or as a deluxe CD edition with the 10 bonus tracks.

• Super deluxe package includes vinyl, the 30-minute documentary, Stones in Exile, directed by Stephen Kijak that details the making of Exile, along with footage from Cocksucker Blues and Ladies and Gentlemen… the Rolling Stones and a 50-page collector’s book with photos from the Exile era.

Rumors around the web about the bonus tracks predict the following titles:

• Plundered My Soul

• Dancing in the Light

• Following the River

• Pass The Wine

• I Ain’t Signifying

• Scarlet

• Aladdin Story (Jagger vocal)

• Loving Cup (alt version)

• Soul Survivor (Keith vocal)

Jagger recently refused to tell Uncut magazine when his vocals were added. “I can’t tell you. It doesn’t really matter, in a way, as long as they sound good.” I guess. It’s only rock and roll. Maybe we just have to think of the bonus disc as a “new” Stones album, sort of the Tattoo You of 2010. In that way, it’s gotta be better than anything they’ve done in twenty years…

Audio: The Rolling Stones – “Dancing into the Light” (instrumental bootleg)

Audio: The Rolling Stones – “Potted Shrimp” (instrumental bootleg)

Rolling Stones: iTunes, Amazon, Insound, wiki

26 thoughts on “More Details on Exile on Main Street Reissue Emerge”

  1. Wait a sec…so they overdubbed new vocals and instruments onto the outtakes or onto the actual album material? Man. Oh. Man. This could cause a riot.

  2. From what I’ve read, it sounds like they left the actual album well enough alone. But apparently many of the bonus tracks weren’t quite “finished” enough…

  3. Here’s the deal for me. When they first announced this, I didn’t think it was going to contain any bonus tracks (no previously reissued studio albums had contained any bonus material). Then there were rumors that they were going to include two or three outtakes as bonus tracks, and I got really excited. Then it was 11, then 12, now 10. Well, now it looks like a bunch of those 10 bonus tracks have 2009 Mick vocals. So maybe we’re back down to two or three outtakes as bonus tracks, which is still cool. Worth the extra money? That’s up to you. But considering how stingy the Stones have been with their archives over the years, in my opinion this still has the potential to be cool.

    Listen to the instrumental bootlegs we linked to above. They’re cool, but you know Mick’s never going to release anything in that state. And from what I understand, Mick rarely bothered recording a vocal track unless the song was in serious consideration to be placed on an album.

    Do I wish that they’d just master the original recordings and release them as is? Of course. But I’m willing (for once) to hold my judgment until I’ve actually heard the songs…

  4. I am of the same mind and the idea of the DVD and book is interesting but may not be enough for me to throw down $98. I still haven’t bought the Neil Young Archive even though I cried for that for years.

  5. I’ll go you one further: for a band that never releases their archives, maybe it’s a Good thing that Mick recorded on to them. I mean, I don’t know if this is the case, but it could be one of those situations where the songs were written and rehearsed or at least completely conceptualized but then were never finished. In which case you could have a decent enough rhythm track with no melody, and the artist is going, “No, it’s actually a good song, but you can’t tell because it’s missing a couple critical parts that we never got around to recording. But if you heard them you’d agree that this song is worth putting out.” Now obviously the ideal situation would be if it was finished all at one time and was never released for various reasons until now, but I’m just saying that maybe these tracks work much better as Songs with whatever they added. You know, not revised and fixed per se, but finished. And if you still hate that idea then the argument could be made that they just shouldn’t release them period because they weren’t finished. I’m just speculating though. If they were actually finished back then and Mick went back and “updated” them, then yeah, that sucks nut.

  6. THIS is the biggest news here:

    “Mick Taylor has been working in the studio in cooperation with Mick Jagger on this project.”

    Wow.

    If they patch things up with Taylor and work on a new album or tour, that would be phenomenal.

  7. Where the hell are the recordings with Gram Parsons? I refuse to believe they didn’t get some Keith & Gram stuff on tape at some point during this period.

  8. From what I understand, recording at Nellcote didn’t start until the end of June 1971 and Gram was kicked out in early July. Seems like there’s gotta be something recorded though…

  9. Also someone just posted this to the SH forums: “in the new issue of Rolling Stone, Don Was also said that there was no evidence that Gram Parsons was recorded during the original Exile sessions. He said that it was one of the things he was seeking when going through the tapes-long rumored evidence that Parsons took part in any actual recording sessions even though he hung out there at Nellcote a lot.”

  10. “In that way, it’s gotta be better than anything they’ve done in twenty years…”

    Thirty. Since Tattoo You was cobbled from Some Girls outtakes, Rescue was their last great studio record/experiment. Since then it’s Jaggerassic Park and the methodical fleecing of millions to this day. Pick up the bonus tracks online and don’t drag your pants down for yet another Glimmer nostalgia bung.

  11. Okay, I picked up the Rolling Stone (RS 1100) and here are some more details:

    • Jagger tasked Don Was with sorting through hundreds of hours of “wildly disorganized” tapes.

    • Was made sure he had a comprehensive list of everything that has been bootlegged. “There’s an Exile underground, and I wanted to give them some surprises too.”

    • “Following the River” is the only track that received a brand-new vocal.

    • Others — “Pass the Wine,” “Plundered My Soul,” “Alladin’s Story” –needed additional guitar parts or other sonic improvements.

    • Was doesn’t deny rumors that guitarist Mick Taylor was brought back to cut new parts.

    • On Gram Parsons: “I didn’t hear him anywhere, and that was one of the things I was looking for.”

    • “Good Time Woman” is an early version of “Tumbling Dice” with completely different lyrics (YouTube)

    • “Pass the Wine” is the song that had the working title of “Sophia Loren.”

    • “Alladin’s Story” has been bootlegged but just as an instrumental. This version has vocals.

    • “Soul Survivor” features Richards on [guide] vocals and completely different lyrics.

    But my favorite part about the whole article is the last paragraph:

    Asked about recent reports that he has quit drinking, Richards just laughs. “Listen, the rumors of my sobriety are greatly exaggerated,” he says. “And we’ll have to leave it at that.”

  12. More info from Don Was in Variety:

    Don Was, the credited producer on the newly unearthed “Exile” tracks along with the late Jimmy Miller and the Glimmer Twins (the Stones’ Keith Richards and Mick Jagger), told Daily Variety that he sifted through 200 hours of tape for the new bonus material, which will be heard when the package is released May 17 in the U.K. and May 18 Stateside.

    “I’ve been to the tape warehouse,” Was said. “If you can picture the last scene of ‘Raiders of the Lost Ark,’ with this enormous room filled from floor to ceiling with (all these antiquities), that’s what they have.

    “There’s stuff that nobody’s heard,” he added. “The things that have slipped out on bootleg is just a fraction of what’s available. They could do this with every album they’ve ever made if they wanted to.”

    And:

    Was described the bonus tracks, which include alternate versions of “Soul Survivor” and “Loving Cup,” as either “extremely finished songs” or “finished but with a rawness.” One track, “Following the River,” consisted of just an instrumental on which Jagger subsequently wrote lyrics and supplied the vocals. But for the most part, Jagger and Richards’ overdubs are “pretty minimal” and limited to a couple of songs.

    Accompanying the release is a 61-minute doc about, as director Stephen Kijak describes it, “why the Stones went into exile in France and about how they made this extraordinary album.”

    Kijak culled his footage mainly from about 20 hours of outtakes from Robert Frank’s infamous documentary of the Stones’ 1972 tour, “Cocksucker Blues,” as well as images from the lavish, limited release photo book by Dominique Tarlet called “Exile,” which chronicled the recording sessions at Nellcote.

    I wish they’d reissue that whole Dominique Tarlet book.

  13. wow, how cool is that book? I say if we’re not going to use the GLONO bank for a field trip to Cedar Point, then the Tarlet book should be the next choice. Everyone gets to hold it for 20 minutes.

  14. I just sent a message to see how much a 20×24 print of this photo costs. There’s not a lot of shit in this world that I need, but I think a print of that photo might be one thing I do.

  15. Hot damn am I glad I came back to check in on this thread. Awesome news from Rolling Stone and Variety. Thanks for those updates, Jake. I’m once again excited about this one.

    BTW, did you ever get a quote on that photo of Keith and Gram?

  16. 20×24 inch paper size is GBP 1,800 (approx USD 2,700)

    32 x 48 inch paper size GBP 2,700 (approx USD 4,000 )

    48 x 72 inch paper size GBP 4,500 (approx USD 6,750)

    Free shipping though!

    So I’ve decided to print out a jpg and stick it to my wall with a thumbtack.

  17. More “uh oh” details from Rolling Stone now. A quote from Mick:

    I added some percussion. I added some vocals. Keith put guitar on one or two. I added some acoustic guitar and some other things. Charlie [Watts] didn’t need to come in. The drums were all perfect. “Pass the Wine,” for example, was very, very long, so I edited it down. In the spirit of Exile we added some girl background vocals on “Tumbling Dice” and “Shine a Light.” We had some nice background vocals on the originals. But I think in the end it’s very much sounding like it was in those days, so to speak.

    And did you guys notice the price of the super deluxe box jumped from $89 to $179? Should’ve pre-ordered it when it was cheap! Amazon honors its pre-order prices (and gives you the cheapest price if it goes lower from the time you pre-order to the time it ships).

  18. From allmusic:

    19 Loving Cup [alternate take] 5:25

    20 Pass the Wine (Sophia Loren) 4:54

    21 I’m Not Signifying 4:54

    22 Dancing In the Light 4:21

    23 So Divine (Aladdin Story) 4:31

    24 Soul Survivor [alternate take] 3:58

    25 Following the River 4:52

    26 Plundered My Soul 3:59

    27 Good Time Women [alternate take] 3:21

    28 Title 5 1:47

    Plus, apparently there is going to be a 7″ with an alt version of “All Down the Line” as the b-side, released for Record Store Day. (Which would be the 11th bonus track we reported earlier.)

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