Monday, September 30, 2013

40 Year Itch: Rolling Stones Saxman Takes a Bath

On September 30, 1973 The Rolling Stones played two shows at the Festhalle in Frankfurt Germany rounding up the first month of their 1973 European tour. Despite the sexy poster, designed by John Pasche from a photo by David Thorper, this tour wasn't as wild as the '72 American Tour. Billy Preston, a big star in his own right and the opening act for the tour, played keyboards. Keith Richards wasn't always keen on his musicianship as he related in his autobiography Life:

There was one time in Glasgow when he was playing so loud he was drowning out the rest of the band. I took him backstage and showed him the blade. "You know what this is, Bill? Dear William. If you don't turn that fucking thing down right now, you're going to feel it." It's not Billy Preston and The Rolling Stones. You are the keyboard player with the Rolling Stones.

   The Frankfurt show is missing saxophone player Bobby Keys. Richards says  found Keys and some French chick  in a bathtub full of champagne and Bobby told Richards he wasn't going anywhere. This was also the last tour to feature Mick Taylor on guitar.

By the way, the Stones had planned to put out a live album of their European tour. They has their mobile recording unit at almost every gig. The talk at the time was of a part live/part studio album ( not unlike Humble Pie's most recent outing) with the studio tracks coming from the same Jamaican sessions that produced Goats Head Soup.

   Below: an out of breath and over-heated Jagger sings the last song of the night.

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