I, Downloader 3 - me, Mick and music

music saved my life.

ever since the summer of '64 when i first heard George Harrison hit that Rickenbacker chord that kicks off A Hard Day's Night, music has been an essential part of my life... and the lives of most of the people around me.

i've spent decades bring musicians and audiences together around  stages in parks, clubs, community halls and sidewalks, and getting those musicians paid. along the way, a lot of indies move mad product, working like a dog and loving every minute of it.

i've spent more money on music recordings than other people have putting their kids through school, and so did most of my friends.

then and now, we put a high value on our music... sometimes, more than the people making it and never any less than anyone at any major labels.


one of the bands i have listened to a lot is the Rolling Stones. i started listening when Satisfaction came out, and i kept listening til about Black and Blue.

i hung this poster on my wall for years, because i thought it was so damn good.
i've worn 4 Stones tour shirts into threadbare oblivion.

i've seen them live 3 times - '72 and '75 in Maple Leaf Gardens and once in Oshawa at the benefit Keith Richards had to do for the blind after his smack bust in Toronto.

i have probably bought 20 Stones albums in my time, six of which were Exile on Main Street.

i bought my first copy the day i got out of high school- went home and proceeded to blast it out
of mom and dad's stereo while hustling my younger brother to cough for half the sticker price, so it could be 'ours'.

when that copy got swiped at a party one night,
i bought another copy, which worked until that got scratched up too bad at a house party in second year, which led me spend nearly 50 bucks for a half-speed Japanese virgin vinyl copy.

i probably listened to that a thousand times
before making the tragic mistake of loaning it
to the coke-head younger brother of another friend for a weekend. when it finally came back a month later, there was a scratch on side one.

a few years later, some friends got me a CD player when such things were all gee whiz and shiny new.

Exiles was the only album exempted from my resolution not to buy the CD of an album
i already owned.

hey, it was Exiles, and my devotion was rewarded
a few months later when one night listening to it on headphones, i heard a glass bottle get knocked over during one of the tracks.

i've went to hear Andrew Loog Oldham speak in Belfast, at the screening of old documentary of young Stones touring Ireland, made after the Beatles did "A Hard Day's Night".

i will never forget his answer to a sincere young man embarking on a career in music...

"Darling, if you're not prepared to get fucked,
find another business


as i write this, there is a hard cover copy of Keef's new autobiography on my coffee table, that i'm saving for the next time i get on a train somewhere.


the point? i've spent a lot of money
on the Rolling Stones over the years,
and i'm still spending money on them.

because the things i've found
online have kept my interest alive.

it is my fondness for the Rolling Stones
and a certain era of their musical evolution
that has led me deeper and deeper
into the Land of the Pirates.


i have sought, and i have found amazing
stuff out there...

i have found more rough takes, out-takes,
re-takes, unused takes and alt-mixed versions from their rankest early days to more recently than i care to hear.

my main focus is from '67 to '79 or so, and even with those parameters, what's out there dwarfs
even my curiousity.


i have my own copy of the "Cocksucker Blues",
the film Robert Frank made about the '72 tour...

the film so frickin' true the Stones organization
did everything in it's legal power to keep people from seeing.

next: I Downloader 4 - People's Exhibit A



1 comment: