FLASHBACK: THE ROLLING STONES 1972 TOUR

(photos from the Bob Newbury Collection)

The Rolling Stones' 1972 North American Tour began on June 3 at the Canadian Pacific Coliseum in Vancouver, B.C. and ended with a performance at Madison Square Garden in New York City on July 26. Also known as the "STP Tour" (Stones Touring Party; as Stones associates were so named), it consisted of 48 concerts in the U.S. and Canada. Backing musicians used on the tour included Ian Stewart and Nicky Hopkins on piano, Bobby Keys on saxophone, and Jim Price on horns. Stevie Wonder and his band were the opening act on all but one show. The Stones' setlist varied slightly as the tour progressed. Songs that were played only once include: Ventilator Blues, Don't Lie To Me, Torn and Frayed, and Sweet Black Angel. Loving Cup was performed twice.

Interested in learning more about The Rolling Stones' 1972 tour? Want to experience it for yourself? Besides audio bootlegs, there are also a few films and books about the tour that may be of assistance. Plus, for more indepth information about this tour, as well as the 1973 shows, check out Harold Colson's excellent site.


FILMS OF THE 1972 TOUR

1. "Ladies and Gentlemen: The Rolling Stones" (released 1974; directed by Rollin Binzer; 83 minutes; not officially available on home video)

- This is a strictly a concert film with nothing other than live performances included. A great (although suffers from poor lighting at times) film showing the Stones at their live best during this tour. (Keep in mind that other performances may have been better, but these two shows are at least representative of the tour.) Recorded at Fort Worth and Houston, Texas on June 24 & 25, 1972.

2. "C*cksucker Blues" (a.k.a. CS Blues; never released but first shown unofficially at the Pacific Film Archive, Berkeley, CA. in 1975; directed by Robert Frank; 95 minutes)

- This film may be described as a non-professional documentary about life on the road during the '72 tour. Notorious for the drug and sex scenes, it was later revealed that many of the shots were staged. The film spends a great deal of time recording the Stones' associates and hanger-ons, which after a while can get tedious if you aren't interested. However, the fact that this film is so "loose" makes it a classic in terms of Stones' recorded memorabilia. It is particularly interesting to view compared to recent Stones tours. Definitely worth seeing for amusing scenes such as Keith attempting to order fruit from room service, the heroin "enthusiast" rap, the tv thrown from the window, and super-8 film of the Stones driving through the southern U.S.

BOOKS ABOUT THE 1972 TOUR

1. "STP: A Journey Through America With The Rolling Stones" (1974; written by Robert Greenfield; reissued in 1997 with no photos)

- A detailed book about the tour as it happened, along with author's personal insights. Greenfield gives the "inside scoop" about the people involved with the tour. Not a typical book; definitely worth reading.

2. "Uptight With The Stones: A Novelist's Report" (1973; written by Richard Elman)

- The title of this book should scare you away from the start. Author uses flowery, dramatic writing and comes across as an inadequate "reporter" who knows little about the Stones' camp. Makes seemingly significant errors such as spelling Charlie's name with an "ey" and referring to Chip Monck (Stones associate & stage/lighting man) as "chipmunk" for he apparently has no idea that "Chip" is his nickname. As a serious Stones fan and a writer, I find this book to be horrid.  Update: Someone recently wrote to me saying that this is a great book. I looked at it again and still feel the same - it stinks!  The photos are interesting though. ;-)
 

"JAGGER SINGS! JAGGER DANCES! JAGGER EXPLODES!" Explodes?? And never mind mentioning the other Stones! Interesting release poster for Ladies & Gentlemen, The Rolling Stones movie.
 

  1972 tour booklet/program



 
 

- text copyright 1997/2004: Bonnie Chambers -

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