Song of the Day #1,448: ‘Street Fighting Man’ – The Rolling Stones

Best Albums of the 60s – #11
Beggars Banquet – The Rolling Stones (1968)

Back in high school and my first years of college, I made a point to discover the important music recorded before I was born. I had sufficiently mined the catalogs of Bob Dylan and The Beatles before finally turning my attention to The Rolling Stones.

Given my limited resources, I settled on two albums considered essential by the powers that be. One is still to come on this list, and the other was Beggars Banquet.

This album is an interesting mix of country-blues pastiche (‘Factory Girl’ and the hilarious ‘Dear Doctor’), raunchy blues-rock come-ons (‘Parachute Woman’ and my personal favorite, ‘Stray Cat Blues’) and socio-political classics (‘Sympathy for the Devil’ and today’s SOTD).

Though Mick Jagger has a lot of fun with the vocals on some of these tracks, musically the album is refreshingly direct, featuring none of the left-field production flourishes so popular on albums of this era.

The cosmic division between The Beatles and The Stones can be viewed as a split between the head and the gut, and Beggars Banquet is definitely a gut album.

Ev’rywhere I hear the sound of marching, charging feet, boy
‘Cause summer’s here and the time is right for fighting in the street, boy
But what can a poor boy do
Except to sing for a rock ‘n’ roll band
‘Cause in sleepy London town
There’s just no place for a street fighting man
No

Hey! Think the time is right for a violent revolution
‘Cause where I live the game to play is compromise solution
Well, then what can a poor boy do
Except to sing for a rock ‘n’ roll band
‘Cause in sleepy London town
There’s just no place for a street fighting man
No

Hey! Said my name is called disturbance
I’ll shout and scream, I’ll kill the king, I’ll rail at all his servants
Well, what can a poor boy do
Except to sing for a rock ‘n’ roll band
‘Cause in sleepy London town
There’s just no place for a street fighting man
No

One thought on “Song of the Day #1,448: ‘Street Fighting Man’ – The Rolling Stones

  1. Dana says:

    I have always liked “Sympathy for the Devil,” but I am rarely in the mood to hear the Stones in large doses. As such, you won’t find a Stones album on my list of favorites, eve though I know this album is highly praised.

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