The Rolling Stones Song That Changed Their Songwriting Style
via The Howard Stern Show/ YouTube
There was a lot of excess baggage to throw out when the Rolling Stones approached the end of the 60s. As lead singer Mick Jagger and guitarist Keith Richards established themselves as the primary songwriters for the group, there’s nothing much left for original leader Brian Jones to do. Feeling that he’d lost his grip on reality and now starting to become a hefty burden for the band to carry on, they all decided to fire him. A month later – the news of his death broke out.
The Stones felt guilty for what they did; nevertheless, continued to move on with their lives. Among the things that they plan for was an immediate replacement to Jones’s responsibilities, which meant hiring a new guitarist to blend with Richards and fulfill the 2-guitar duty of every Stones song. At that point, they were altogether ready to record the new album, Let It Bleed, and showcase the genius talents of Mick Taylor, their newly-hired replacement.
Taylor, whose background work can be traced back to John Mayall and the Bluesbreakers was nothing short of extraordinary. Some still argue that with his brief stint in the Stones’ career, the songs and albums that he contributed were considered the greatest among the others. And perhaps that’s true, especially in the song “Live with Me,” the first track he recorded with the group.
Before Taylor became an official band member, this song marked the beginning of a more distinct rhythm and lead guitar sound on the Stones’ albums. For Taylor, this was a pivotal moment for the band as it was “the start of that particular era for the Stones, where Keith and I traded licks.”
“Live with Me” for Taylor was also kind of an appropriate title as he began to start his journey as a member of one of rock’s finest bands. “‘Live with Me,’ very appropriately named because once I joined The Stones, it was like living with a family for the next five or six years,” he said in 2000.
Listen to the song below.