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Mick Jagger: The Mystery Continues

December 17, 2009

Not to belabor the point, but I was watching Let’s Spend the Night Together and once again I find myself, regarding Sir Mick Jagger, asking WHAT … THE … F%#K??? What is he? Did people really think he was cool or did people think he was a jackass, but kind of liked him anyway? Did he slowly become a jackass over time, and people just went along with it until they found themselves cheering on the most ridiculous performance style in human history?

His dancing looks like the movements of someone or something that needs to be “put down”, like he has rabies. (I’m not even gonna say anything about his get-up; it was the 80s after all, and who can blame a guy wearing some eyeliner, a pink tank top, with white lace-up football pants and, er, knee pads.)

And let’s not forget his vocal style, which is really all style, especially live. He’s basically just grunting and barking, which I would have no problem with if that was his intention. But it appears what we have here is an Englishman who, in his coarse mimicry of the most superficial aspects of some American blues singers, seems to think something is being communicated besides a neverending series of vocal tics and grimaces. He’s essentially made a career out of a kind of Pan-Atlantic quasi-minstrelsy.


6 Comments leave one →
  1. la mama permalink
    December 17, 2009 10:58 pm

    I think part of the appeal, especially back in the day, was that very spazziness, that unselfconscious raving out-there-ness. And the outfits …? Honeeeey. He’s a man of style and taste (of a sort).
    But I disagree with you on his singing ability, actually. I think, for instance, in that (dreadful) 25th anniversary of the RnR Hall of Fame show, he did VERY well for an old coot, as far as singing loud and strong and pretty much on key.
    But it is truly, as you say, almost a parody of something, but what??? surely not some Delta blues guy… but, lordy, the endurance of the dude.

    • A. Strung permalink*
      December 17, 2009 11:21 pm

      It’s not that it’s off-key, it’s as you say, like a parody, though unintentional.

  2. tiefighter25 permalink
    December 18, 2009 1:47 am

    this confused me as a youth. (Yoer honnor, a yewt)

    This is good?

    • A. Strung permalink*
      December 18, 2009 9:01 am

      It is confusing still …

  3. tiefighter25 permalink
    December 18, 2009 2:09 am

    p.s. good, rhymes with could, should, and would; and wood. A little off kilter, brood, mood, food, hey now, lude, et alia. Saxon linqu bien vivre (good).

  4. tiefighter25 permalink
    December 18, 2009 2:52 am

    Enough of etymology and Ivanhoe. Self imposed ban for an indeterminate period of time for trying to high-jack a blog, (so says I, the gaelic-norman.)

    I’m a man of wealth and taste
    I’ve been around for a long, long year
    Stole many a man’s soul and faith

    See what happens when things go wrong?

    So until I’m freed from Powers’ Court, Happy Holidays.

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