How Brian Jones Made ‘Paint It Black’ Standout
via The HollyHobs / Youtube
The Rolling Stones are never just a “blues band.” For over half a century of being together, they’ve established themselves on the different genres of music, and that supplied their longevity of a career as a group.
The band might have quickly found their feet with their hit song, “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction,” but they’ve found confidence in doing absolutely everything with “Paint It Black.” Released inside Aftermath, their 1966 album became a pivotal point for them, as it is the first album to consist mostly of original compositions, written mainly by Mick Jagger and Keith Richards. But there’s also the one person who’s credited for the growth of Stones’ artistic skills: original leader Brian Jones.
Before Jones was fired from the group in 1969 due to the lack of participation in the later albums, he was a key element in the wide-ranging music that Stones take heed of. Among the songs in which his talents as a multi-instrumentalist thrived the most was “Paint it Black,” with his use of the eastern instrument Sitar.
“We had the sitars, [and] we thought we’d try them out in the studio,” Richards said in an interview. “To get the right sound on ‘Paint It Black’ we found the sitar fitted perfectly. We tried a guitar but you can’t bend it enough.”
Like George Harrison of The Beatles, Jones was also an avid fan of the Indian instrument, which he picked up during the band’s quick vacation in South Pacific. The song was the first one to feature the Sitar in many of the Stones’ recordings, which makes it a remarkable standout in contrast with the others.
You can listen to “Paint it Black” below.