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The Trucking Rhythm Section. The chuggalug!
Posted by: ChelseaDrugstore ()
Date: July 4, 2005 18:48

Mick Taylor was a hell of a rhythm guitar player. This is always considered his weakness but IMO he was very good at it. Maybe it was the fact that it was him together with Charlie and Bill, and sometimes Nicky or Stu too. But I have been listenign to many livecuts from 69 -72 last two days. I am so blown away again by how effortlessly tight that band was. Keith and Ron play completely different when they go to rhythm. It's not a big difference to them between lead or rhythm. It's this two string chopping. More like comping in Jazz. Then when Keith takes a solo he cranks it up and throws more singlke notes in there. Taylor plays very standard. On solos it';s single notes wailing and soaring. Then he comes way down, with a clean sound playing full chords strumming. Or he will do the low string kind of 1-4-5 boogie, very classic.
So then around keith's sharp slashing,a nd Taylor's clean strums you got Charlie's snare shffles, busy hi hat, Nicky swerving in and around the beat like paperplane that flies around almost aimlessly. But hones in on the ebat every once in a while. Bill who one might think should now hold it all together; be the glue, is maybe the most "erratic" of the lot. I don't mean "error" in "erratic"; just "loose".
It's like nobody has the fulltime job of keeping it together. It's a team effort. Everytime the beat comes around soemone else might have the 'one'. At the top of the bar you are never sure who' going to be there to hit it.
Then in reality all this written stuff ends up sounding totally unique and exciting. That shuffle (I can never think of a better word for it) on Ya-Ya's in "Carol", "Rambler", "Queenie" is one of the big secrets of the Stones. Other people can never get it right. So often you hear about an artist doing a "Stones" type rocker. And it invariably is a crunchy electric guitar doing the sus4 chords a' la "Stay with Me" or "Dance Lil Sister", "Jiving Sister Fanny". But that is not enough. That's when you end up with a decent tune like "Saturday Night's Alright". Decent but never magic. Stones make sure that even the smallest ingredient is in the pocket down there. Others will ignore the drums piano etc so ultimately it doesn't stimulate below the belt.

Re: The Trucking Rhythm Section. The chuggalug!
Posted by: john r ()
Date: July 4, 2005 19:11

Decent but contrived, or mechanical - especially in terms of timing.

Re: The Trucking Rhythm Section. The chuggalug!
Posted by: Wuudy ()
Date: July 4, 2005 19:20

The stones rhythm is always what i liked most about there music. It's always different than other bands. Also if you listen to When the wip comes down from handsome girls cd1, Bill and Charlie are at there best there especially the second verse. Beast of Burden and Miss You are also good examples of great rhythm!!!

Cheers,
Wuudy

Re: The Trucking Rhythm Section. The chuggalug!
Posted by: Shawn20 ()
Date: July 4, 2005 20:00

Taylor was a great rythm player....look at Hyde Park...he rocks. Nothing wrong with his timing. Taylor was a great, great guitar player.

Re: The Trucking Rhythm Section. The chuggalug!
Posted by: john r ()
Date: July 4, 2005 20:07

My timing comment had to do with that awful Elton song - the man should not be encouraged to rock out, its not in his musical nature. Being able to rock is one of those ineffable / intangeable things, Sun Ra could do it, Miles, Ike Turner, T Rex, even Donovan (who has more in common w/ Bolan than his uncool image might suggest - check Epistle to Dippy, Zep fans, or Barabajagal), but Billy Joel, Eagles, Elton, no...

Re: The Trucking Rhythm Section. The chuggalug!
Posted by: liddas ()
Date: July 4, 2005 20:23



"It's like nobody has the fulltime job of keeping it together"

I think that this magic was some how missing (or not so exciting) from 73 to 76. In the 73 tour I hear Keith filling everithing with his open G hitting hard as hell (I am not good at numbers, but I bet he never used so few standard tuned guitars as he did in 73). Taylor reinterpretes his role, spreads his wings and flyes away with his terrific solos. Save some great "power" jams (notably Rambler and Heartbreaker) there is little interaction between two rythm guitars.

Same in 75/76 (although Keith calmed down a little), with Ronnie in MT's shoes.

All differnt music in 78 and 81. Of course less openG-based rockers in the set list.
Here the magic is back. No one plays it safe her. You have the feeling that everything could collapse in a major fu.. ups in every moment. Some times it did. Others no and there rock and roll as a piece of art was served!!!

C

Re: The Trucking Rhythm Section. The chuggalug!
Posted by: ChelseaDrugstore ()
Date: July 4, 2005 22:09

It's that 69-72 era where the magic took place. Then the early years of Keith and Ronnie also. From 77 to 81. But even when Keith and Ron came together in their best moment in 78 it was different than Taylor and Keith. becasue Ron and Keith do essentially the same thing. Taylor and Keith don't. Later on this very fact worked against them but in 69 when they were really listening to each other it created such a musical vehicle. How could jagger NOT jump up and down? And go 'yeah yeah'? Early on Keith listened to what the enw guy was doing. It was probabaly really exciting for him to play with another guitarrists again. Hadn't that been his dram all along? And Taylor it seems developed some kind of attitude later on. It sounds like he had a major chip opn his shoulder whewn he solos and when he drops back down into the pocket again it is almost resentfully so.

Re: The Trucking Rhythm Section. The chuggalug!
Posted by: bassplayer617 ()
Date: July 4, 2005 22:27

ChelseaDrugstore Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
>
> ...Taylor it seems developed some kind of
> attitude later on. It sounds like he had a major
> chip opn his shoulder whewn he solos and when he
> drops back down into the pocket again it is almost
> resentfully so.

You hit the nail on the head with this comment, Chelsea. This is exactly why MT left the band--he was getting bored! The best thing that can be said is that Mick T gained the confidence to strike out on his own and do what HE wanted to do, which was to stretch the envelope and experiment as a solo artist. I respect him for that--it took a lot of guts to leave the Stones, so that should be the end of it. Of course, we all love to second-guess, don't we?



Re: The Trucking Rhythm Section. The chuggalug!
Posted by: john r ()
Date: July 4, 2005 22:40

Too bad he so rarely has found a strong context for his talent since '75. The Jack Bruce/Carla Bley project (which had me excited) fell apart, the Columbia solo debut was way too careful (or do I mean hesitant?) & deprived of enough strong material...My favorite post-Stones moments are the Dylan Real Live album, the Carla Olsson 'Too Hot For Snakes' (what a 'Sway'!!), Joe Henry, & just a couple of his solo tracks..

Re: The Trucking Rhythm Section. The chuggalug!
Posted by: bassplayer617 ()
Date: July 4, 2005 22:49

With my previous comment in mind, the "chuggalug" is one of the things that separates the Stones from anyone else. With Ronnie, especially in the 78-81 period, the concept of "four hands playing one guitar" was indeed true. As I write this, I'm listening (once again) to the classic "Handsome Girls". The interaction between Ron & Keith is a marvel to hear--it harkens back to the earlier Stones, with no clear distinction between lead/rhythm guitars. Of course, MT/Keith had some great moments, but it became clear as time went on that MT never got comfortable with playing as a second guitarist. This is not a knock on Taylor--he happened to be be around when the band cut some of their all-time classics and standard "warhorses", but this is the biggest reason his tenure keeps getting brought up. As a matter of fact, my all-time favorite studio track just happens to be "Honky Tonk Women".



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