Dynamic Sounds Studios, Kingston, Jamaica, November-December 1972
Goats Head Soup was recorded in Jamaica, United States, and the United Kingdom,
and mixed in the United Kingdom and the Netherlands. The album contained 10
tracks, all written by Mick Jagger and Keith Richards, including lead single
"Angie", which went to No. 1 as a single in the United States and top 5 in the UK.
Goats Head Soup received positive reviews and achieved number one chart positions
in the UK, US, and several other world markets. The album was remastered and
released in 1994 and again in 2009 by Virgin Records and Universal Music
In November 1972 the band relocated to Kingston, Jamaica's Dynamic Sound
Studios. Keith Richards said in year 2002: "Jamaica was one of the few places
that would let us all in! By that time about the only country that I was
allowed to exist in was Switzerland, which was damn boring for me,
at least for the first year, because I didn't like to ski... Nine countries kicked me
out, thank you very much, so it was a matter of how to keep this thing
Of the recording process, Marshall Chess, the president of Rolling Stones
Records at the time, said in 2002, "We used to book studios for a month, 24
hours a day, so that the band could keep the same set-up and develop their
songs in their free-form way, starting with a few lyrics and rhythms, jamming
and rehearsing while we fixed the sound. It amazed me, as an old-time record
guy, that the Stones might not have played together for six or eight months,
but within an hour of jamming, the synergy that is their strength would come
into play and they would lock it together as one..."
Jagger said of their approach to recording at the time, "Songwriting and
playing is a mood. Like the last album we did (Exile on Main St.) was
basically recorded in short concentrated periods. Two weeks here, two weeks
there – then another two weeks. And, similarly, all the writing was
concentrated so that you get the feel of one particular period of time. Three
months later it's all very different and we won't be writing the same kind of
material as Goats Head Soup.
On the sessions and influence of the island, Richards said, "The album itself
didn't take that long, but we recorded an awful lot of tracks. There were not
only Jamaicans involved, but also percussion players who came from places like
Guyana, a travelling pool of guys who worked in the studios. It was
interesting to be playing in this totally different atmosphere. Mikey Chung,
the engineer at Dynamic, for example, was a Chinese man — you realise how much
Jamaica is a multi-ethnic environment."
The first track recorded at Dynamic was "Winter", which Mick Taylor said
started with "just Mick (Jagger) strumming on a guitar in the studio, and
everything falling together from there."
The album's lead single, called "Angie", was an unpopular choice as lead single
with Atlantic Records which, according to Chess, "wanted another 'Brown Sugar'
rather than a ballad."
In 1993, Richards, in the liner notes to the compilation album Jump Back: The
Best of The Rolling Stones, said that the title was inspired by his baby
daughter, Dandelion Angela. However, in his 2010 memoir Life, Richards
denied this, saying that he had chosen the name for the song before he knew
the sex of his expected baby: "I just went, 'Angie, Angie.' It was not about
any particular person; it was a name, like 'ohhh, Diana.' I didn't know Angela
was going to be called Angela when I wrote 'Angie'. In those days you didn't
know what sex the thing was going to be until it popped out. In fact, Anita
named her Dandelion. She was only given the added name Angela because she was
born in a Catholic hospital where they insisted that a 'proper' name be added."
This was the last Rolling Stones album produced by Jimmy Miller, who'd worked
with the band since 1968's Beggars Banquet sessions. Unfortunately, Miller had
developed a debilitating drug habit during the course of his years spent with
Aside from the official band members, other musicians appearing on Goats Head
Soup include keyboard players Billy Preston, Nicky Hopkins, and Ian Stewart.
Recording was completed in January 1973 in Los Angeles and May 1973 at London's
Island Recording Studios. The song "Silver Train" was a leftover from 1970s
recordings at Olympic Sound.
At the time of release, Jagger said, “I really feel close to this album, and I
really put all I had into it... I guess it comes across that I’m more into
songs. It wasn’t as vague as the last album which kind of went on so long that
I didn’t like some of the things. There’s more thought to this one. It was
recorded all over the place over about two or three months. The tracks are
much more varied than the last one. I didn’t want it to be just a bunch of rock songs.”
Preceded by “Angie” as the lead single, which sailed to number one in the
United States and became a worldwide hit, Goats Head Soup was released in late
August 1973 and also shot to the top of charts worldwide. The Rolling Stones'
autumn 1973 European Tour followed soon after, in which four slots in the set
list were given to the new material: “Doo Doo Doo Doo Doo (Heartbreaker)”,
“Star Star”, “Dancing with Mr D”, and “Angie” – although apart from a few
earlier performances of “Silver Train” and “100 Years Ago” nothing else from
Goats Head Soup has ever been played live by the Stones until Silver Train and
Dancing with Mr D were dusted of for the 2014 and 2017 tours.
The sleeve and gatefold were shot by David Bailey who photographed the cover for the Rolling Stones' second album (known in the UK as No.2 and the USA as 12X5)
The album cover was designed by Ray Lawrence and photographed by David Bailey, a
friend of Jagger's who had worked with The Rolling Stones since 1964. The
portrait of Jagger on the front cover was approximately life size in the
original 12-inch LP format. Jagger was reluctant to be shot enveloped by a
pink chiffon veil, which Bailey said was meant to look like "Katharine Hepburn
in The African Queen". The album's gatefold has all the band members wrapped
around a similar fabric.
The sessions for Goats Head Soup were abundant with outtakes. Two of these —
"Tops" and "Waiting on a Friend" — would surface on Tattoo You in 1981, and
feature Mick Taylor on guitar; "Through the Lonely Nights" became the B-side
to the "It's Only Rock 'n Roll (But I Like It)" single and was released on CD
for the first time on the 2005 compilation Rarities 1971–2003. It is a soft
rock ballad that features Richards on wah wah/leslie speaker filtered guitar
with Mick Taylor playing a brief solo. In addition, Short and Curlies was
started at the Goats Head Soup sessions and ended up appearing on the It's
Only Rock 'n' Roll lp.
In 1994 Goats Head Soup was remastered and reissued by Virgin Records, and
again in 2009 by Universal Music. The 1994 remaster was initially released in
a Collector's Edition CD, which replicated in miniature many elements of the
original gatefold album packaging. The first pressing of the 2009 remaster
contains a censored version of "Star Star" that was on the original US vinyl
release, but not on the 1994 Virgin CD; later pressings contain the uncensored
The album was reissued once more in 2011 by Universal Music Enterprises in a
Japanese-only SHM-SACD version, which includes the uncensored version of "Star
Star" with a previously unreleased fadeout.
All tracks written by Mick Jagger and Keith Richards.
1. "Dancing with Mr. D" 4:53
2. "100 Years Ago" 3:59
3. "Coming Down Again" 5:54
4. "Doo Doo Doo Doo Doo (Heartbreaker)" 3:26
5. "Angie" 4:33
6. "Silver Train" 4:27
7. "Hide Your Love" 4:12
8. "Winter" 5:30
9. "Can You Hear the Music" 5:31
10."Star Star" 4:25
The Rolling Stones
Mick Jagger – lead vocals (all but 3), backing vocals (1, 3, 4, 6, 9, 10), electric guitar (6, 8), harmonica (6), piano (7)
Keith Richards – electric guitar & backing vocals (1, 3, 4, 6, 9, 10), bass guitar (2, 4, 6, 7), acoustic guitar (5), lead vocals (3)
Bill Wyman – bass guitar (5, 8-10)
Charlie Watts – drums (all tracks)
Mick Taylor – electric guitar (1, 2, 4, 6-10), backing vocals (4, 6), bass guitar (1, 3), acoustic guitar (5)
Nicky Hopkins – piano (1, 3, 5, 8, 9)
Billy Preston – clavinet (2, 4), piano (4)
Ian Stewart – piano (6, 10)
Bobby Keys – tenor saxophone (3, 4, 7, 10)
Jim Horn – alto saxophone (3, 4), flute (9)
Chuck Findley – trumpet (4)
Jim Price – horn arrangement (4)
Nicky Harrison – string arrangement (5, 8)
Anthony "Rebop" Kwaku Baah – percussion (1, 9)
Pascal (Nicholas Pascal Raicevic) – percussion (1, 9)
Jimmy Miller – percussion (9)
Chief engineer and Mixer – Andy Johns.
Assistant engineers – Carlton Lee, Howard Kilgour and Doug Bennett.
Photography and sleeve design by David Bailey.
Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 2019-01-20 00:24 by exilestones.