“Some Girls” by The Rolling Stones (1978)
Release date: June 8, 1978
Produced by The Glimmer Twins (aka Mick Jagger and Keith Richards)
Chart Positions: #1 (US, Canada), #2 France, New Zealand, UK), #3 (Australia, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden), #4 (Austria), #5 (Spain), #6 (Italy, Germany), #11 (Japan), #83 (Belgium) #48 (Switzerland in 2011 reissue)
Certifications: 6xPlatinum (US), Platinum (New Zealand), Gold (France, Netherlands, UK)
During the mid 1970s the Rolling Stones went from releasing an album or two per year to one every two years. “Some Girls, their 14th studio album, was released 26 months after “Black and Blue.” Including the mega-hits “Miss You,” “Beast of Burden” and “Shattered,” “Some Girls” was Rolling Stones’ biggest selling album of their entire career.
Mick Jagger took a lead role on the album, mainly because Keith Richards had been arrested for drug possession in Toronto the previous year, and it was unclear what his sentence would be. Facing a maximum of life in prison, Keith had other things to worry about besides making an album. After this was released, the Canadian judge sentenced Richards to continue his addiction treatment and play a benefit concert for the blind.
The album cover for Some Girls was conceived and designed by Peter Corriston, who would design the next three album covers. An elaborate die-cut design, with the colours on the sleeves varying in different markets, it featured the Rolling Stones' faces alongside those of select female celebrities inserted into a copy of an old Valmor Products Corporation advertisement. The cover design was challenged legally when Lucille Ball, Farrah Fawcett, Liza Minnelli (representing her mother Judy Garland), Raquel Welch, and the estate of Marilyn Monroe threatened to sue for the use of their likenesses without permission. Similarly, Valmor did take legal action and were given a monetary award for the use of their design.
The album was quickly re-issued with a redesigned cover that removed all the celebrities, whether they had complained or not. The celebrity images were replaced with black and punk style garish colours with the phrase Pardon our appearance - cover under re-construction. Jagger later apologised to Minnelli when he encountered her during a party at the famous discothèque Studio 54. The only celebrity whose face was not removed was ex-Beatle George Harrison. As with the original design, the colour schemes on the redesigned sleeves varied in different markets.
A third version of the album cover with hand-drawn women was found on the 1986 CD reissue.
The album received a Grammy Award nomination for “Album of the Year,” the award that year went to the “Saturday Night Fever” soundtrack.
In May 1978, the first single from the album, "Miss You", a prowling, moody number built on a stripped-down disco beat and bluesy pop harmonies, was released to very strong response, garnering the Rolling Stones their last US #1 hit and reaching #3 in the UK. The bass line, horns and drums gave this a disco sound. It alienated many of their fans, but also propelled it to the top of the charts. The Stones thought of it as more R&B than disco. "Miss You" was written by Mick Jagger jamming with keyboardist Billy Preston during rehearsals for the March 1977 El Mocambo club gigs, recordings from which appeared on side three of double live album Love You Live (1977). Keith Richards is credited as co-writer as was the case for all Rolling Stones originals written by either partner or in tandem. “Miss You” was an international hit reaching #1 (US, Canada), #2 (Netherlands), #3 (Belgium, Ireland, UK), #4 (France), #6 (Sweden), #8 (Australia, New Zealand) #11 (Norway, Switzerland) #12 (Germany), #13 (Austria),#18 (Italy) #19 (Finland). The single was certified Gold in the US and Silver in the UK.
The second single “Beast Of Burden” only charted at #8 in the US but failed to chart elsewhere. “Respectable” was released as a single in Europe where it charted much better than “Burden.” The song made it to #23 (UK), #16 (Ireland, Netherlands) #91 (Australia). The fourth and final single “Shattered” reached #31 (US).
Other album highlights include a great remake of the Temptations 1971 classic “Just My Imagination (Running Away From Me)” and the country-blues tune “Far Away Eyes,” the Stones, longtime country music fans, incorporated many aspects of Bakersfield-style country music into this song. “Far Away Eyes” was used as the b-side to the single “Miss You.”
Rolling Stones (1978)