Piece of the Week: The Rolling Stones

When the Rolling Stones began their careers as a scruffy English blues band playing gigs around London in 1962, none of them could have dreamed that the band would still be going strong fifty years later. The very idea of being a “rock star” was still a new concept in the early sixties, and most everyone at the time considered rock ‘n’ roll a flash-in-the-pan fad. Yet the music proved resilient, and The Rolling Stones went on to make some of the genres most enduring and best-known tunes, from 1965’s “I Can’t Get No Satisfaction” and 1969’s “You Can’t Always Get What You Want,” to 1970s songs like “Brown Sugar” and “It’s Only Rock ‘n’ Roll (But I Like It),” on into the 1980s with “Start Me Up” and “Street Fighting Man.” The band is still touring and recording to this day, and their enduring brand of blues-based rock ‘n’ roll formed the foundation for much of the rock music that came after them.

The Rolling Stones’ popularity spans at least three generations, and you may be surprised by how well their classic songs work as concert band and string orchestra pieces. Alfred Publishing has licensed and arranged several pieces of music by The Rolling Stones, and we invite you to check them out in SmartMusic.

Click Here for a full biography of The Rolling Stones.

Composition Notes: “Paint It, Black”

Released in 1966 by The Rolling Stones, this legendary rock tune is credited to Mick Jagger and Keith Richards, reached number one in the United States and the U.K. in 1966, and is on the Billboard “Top 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.” Since its release, it has been performed by dozens of artists across the globe and has been featured in a wide variety of films and television programs.

Click here for more info on arranger Roland Barrett.

Audio Sample

Audio provided by Alfred Music Publishing Co., Inc.

Composition Notes: “Rolling Stones On Tour,” arr. Patrick Roszell

Celebrating their 50th anniversary, the legendary Rolling Stones are still going strong. This arrangement combines the dramatic “Paint It, Black,” the beautiful “Ruby Tuesday,” and the rocking “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction.”

Click here for more info on arranger Patrick Roszell.

Audio Sample: String Orchestra medley

Audio provided by Alfred Music Publishing Co., Inc.

Audio Sample: Concert Band medley

Audio provided by Alfred Music Publishing Co., Inc.

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If you are an educator, musician, composer or student with a suggestion for a “piece of the week” blog post, you can email your suggestion to Griffin at [email protected]. Please let me know the name of the piece, composer, publisher, and why this piece is special to you.

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