Song of the Day 9/20

Posted: September 20, 2011 in J.C. Personal
Tags: ,

Today’s choice continues our weekday song week with a 1967 release by a group formed in London in 1962. A little known band that calls themselves The Rolling Stones recorded “Ruby Tuesday” in 1966 and released it as the “B” side to “Let’s Spend the Night Together”. The song hit number 1 in the U.S. but stalled at number 3 in the UK.

Unfortunately, those are some of the only known facts about the song. Please allow me to explain.

Keith Richards takes full credit for writing the song about a groupie he knew. Later Richards stated it was about his then girlfriend, Linda Keith who left Richards for Jimi Hendrix and got wrapped up in drugs. Richards eventually contacted Keith’s parents and told them that she was headed down a bad road. When Keith Richards tells you that you should cut down on the drugs…

Bill Wyman backs up Richards’ “I wrote the song story”. However, Marianne Faithful, Jagger’s one time girlfriend, says that Brian Jones played the melody for the group and Richards worked on the basic track and lyrics with Jones. Either story gives partial credit to Richards. Honestly, I have a hard time believing that anyone remembers who wrote the song.

Listed at number 303 on Rolling Stone’s 500 greatest songs of all time, “Ruby Tuesday” is about a free spirited woman (isn’t that just a nice way of saying flighty?) who can’t be bound by the expectations of society. She seems like the type of person who will call herself by a different name whenever the mood strikes her, hence Ruby Tuesday. Who knows what she’ll decide to call herself on Wednesday. “Who could hang a name on you when you change with every new day?” The lyrics fit her idea of transient existence and whoever the girl was, she was probably wonderful and frustrating at the same time.

The song also inspired the name of a casual dining establishment that was founded in 1972.

So today, we say hello to Tuesday while The Rolling Stones say goodbye to “Ruby Tuesday”.

See ya on the “B” side


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