"Gimme Shelter" by The Rolling Stones - all about the song, history of the song, lyrical meaning, live performances and covers
The Rolling Stones are recognised by many cultural researchers as one of the most influential musical groups since the British Invasion itself. Their importance to rock music can hardly be underestimated: they have long been included in the Rock and Roll Hall of FameThey are one of the top five artists of all time according to a magazine inspired by their band's name, have won numerous awards. And, most importantly, they are still releasing music and keeping their fans happy!
Beginning their career in the psychedelic rock genre, The Rolling Stones quickly evolved, drawing on the inspiration from old blues records, looking for something new, and eventually created a unique sound that no one else can replicate. Now the Rolling Stones have become teachers and mentors: they no longer need an introduction and are the idols of millions. This article is about one a landmark hit of the British, whose popularity came to him in a surprising way.
The creation process: background and inspiration
By the time the composition was written. "Gimme Shelter" The Rolling Stones, or according to the band's then manager's idea of a "rebellious" alternative The Beatles, continued to compete with the Liverpool four for the title of the greatest rock band. Album "Let It Bleed."whose title song was "Gimme Shelter"was written at a time of real upheaval. In 1969, the relationship of the band's founder and leader Brian Jones with other members of the collective became aggravated due to the guitarist's unsatisfactory condition and his licentious lifestyle. As a result, Mick Jagger decided to sack Jones and replace him with another musician, as the album would not write itself. A month after leaving the band, Brian was gone, which also shocked the other Rolling Stones.
A rainy day in London, a relentless storm and a lonely Keith Richardssitting by the window. Puzzled by the events happening in the world, he picks up a guitar and literally accidentally comes up with one of the best riffs of 1969, which will later form the basis of the band. "Gimme Shelter". Moreover, The Rolling Stones guitarist was very concerned about the possible romance between Mick Jagger and his girlfriend Anita Pallenberg, with whom the band's lead singer was starring at the time in the crime drama "Submission". Hence the dramatic nature of the track, which keeps the listener in suspense for 4 minutes and 37 seconds.
It's important to note that the initial inspiration was the London weather: the sky quickly turned black and a heavy downpour began. I was sitting with an acoustic guitar and watching people running back and forth in search of shelter. That was the first idea behind the song," Richards shared.
Iconicity "Gimme Shelter" is also supported by the interesting fact that the guitar, which was present at the recording of the song, physically barely survived the sessions in the studio. According to Keith's own reports, in the original take of the song, during the very last note you can hear the the fingerboard completely fell off.
Despite the fact that initially. "Gimme Shelter" did not carry a deep meaning, as Mick Jagger wrote the final version of the lyrics it took on a darker character. This was largely due to major global events to which the music community could not help but react appropriately. 10 years went on conflict in VietnamThe song's creator felt that what made it special was that it was really nasty and disliked by the people who were watching in horror. According to the songwriter, the peculiarity of this event was that it was really nasty and disliked by the people who were watching in horror.
"Gimme Shelter" became an anthem for the violent era of the late '60s. Social unrest and political incidents were very easily put to the tune written by Keith Richards. And the song became a composition about a reimagined end of the worldor the apocalypse.
Oh, look, there's a fire coming,He's already on our street -Like a carpet of glowing red coals,Like a lost raging bull...," the song sings.
The best live performances ...
The first song from the album "Let It Bleed."Although it was never released as a single, it quickly became a favourite with The Rolling Stones fans. So when the musicians started to include it in their concert programme, more people started to attend the Rolling Stones' live shows.
What's the secret "Gimme Shelter"? Not only in the legendary riff, but also in the vocal parts, because it actually has two soloists, although nominally Merry Clayton is listed as a backup singer. Her strong high voice, coupled with Jagger's insightful voice, is very good combine together.
Currently, the co-performer at concerts during this song is an American woman Lisa Fisher. She has participated in every tour of The Rolling Stones since 1989. "Gimme Shelter" has become a real trademark of the British band, as the two parts, female and male, allow Mick Jagger to draw attention to it thanks to the invitations of famous female vocalists to sing this song together.
For example, in the 50th anniversary tour, "The Rolling Stones." performed it with Mary J. Blige, Florence Welch and Lady Gaga.
...And the best covers
The popularity of "Gimme Shelter" has spawned a multitude of covers to it. One of the famous renditions is a cover by an American rock band Grand Funk Railroad. Musicians were able to hit the Billboard Hot 100 chart with a reprise!
Another famous performance was a cover U2with the singer Fergie from the Black Eyed Peas and Mick Jagger himself. It was timed to coincide with the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame benefit concert in 2009.