Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Shadows: Have You Seen Your Mother Baby ...

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Various online sources note the horn section on the Stones' <Have You Seen Your Mother Baby>, arranged by Mike Leander and produced by Glyn Johns. But the use of the horns wasn't the only thing the Stones were experimenting with in 66. It could have been the guitar effects, it could have been their lifestyle, it could have been their public personas.

Would you let your daughter marry a Rolling Stone? The group was well into establishing their "bad boy" image, and one of the PR photos that goes with this has them dressed in drag. And that is kind of what this song is about - Various things in the shadows. 

The song is a continuation of their (not just) lyrical provocations:, but think also: I Can't Get No Satisfaction, Let's Spend the Night Together, Get Off of My Cloud, Nervous Breakdown... you continue the list.

Snipets of the lyrics suggest to me that they are asking the girl for more than sympathy, even as they sing

I'm all alone, won't you give all your sympathy to mine?
We live in... glimpse through... hate in ...tear at ... the shadows.
There's a lot in the lyrics that isn't particularly clear and that's probably the intention. Do with it what you will. What you do in the shadows of your mind is your business.

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