The Rolling Stones Release 'Emotional Rescue'
Emotional Rescue is the 15th studio album by The Rolling Stones, released in 1980.
Upon release, Emotional Rescue topped the charts in both the United States and United Kingdom.
Recorded throughout 1979, first in Nassau, Bahamas, then Paris, with some end-of-year overdubbing in New York City, Emotional Rescue was the first Rolling Stones album recorded following Keith Richards' exoneration from a Toronto drugs charge that could have landed him in jail for years. Fresh from the revitalization of Some Girls, Richards and Mick Jagger led The Rolling Stones through dozens of new songs—some of which were held over for Tattoo You—picking only ten for Emotional Rescue.
While several of the tracks featured just the core band of Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Charlie Watts, Ronnie Wood and Bill Wyman, keyboardists Nicky Hopkins and band co-founder Ian Stewart, sax player Bobby Keys and harmonica player Sugar Blue joined The Rolling Stones on Emotional Rescue.
The album cover, designed by Peter Corriston, features a sombre selection of band photos which had been taken by a thermo camera, a device which measures heat emissions. The original release came wrapped in a huge colour poster featuring more thermo-shots of the band, the whole being wrapped in a plastic bag. The music video shot for "Emotional Rescue" also utilized thermo-shots of the band performing.
Released in June with the disco-infused hit title track as the lead single, Emotional Rescue was an immediate smash. The title track hit #3 on Billboard's Hot 100 chart. The album gave The Rolling Stones their first UK #1 album since 1973's Goats Head Soup and spent seven weeks atop the US charts. The follow-up single "She's So Cold" was a Top 30 hit while "Dance Pt. 1" reached #9 on Billboard's Dance chart. Richards' "All About You" would be the first of several album closers featuring Keith's increasingly gravel-sounding voice on lead vocal. Tattoo You, released the following year, has subsequently been the only exception.
The song "Claudine" was rumored to be a part of the original album, but didn't make the cut most likely due to the fear of litigation and controversy. The lyrics dealt with the light sentence (30 days in jail) singer-actress Claudine Longet received after she killed her live-in boyfriend, Olympian ski racer Vladimir "Spider" Sabich, in their Aspen, Colorado home. She had previously been married to musician Andy Williams. Some other songs left off the album would find their way onto the next album, Tattoo You ("Black Limousine", "Start Me Up", "Hang Fire", "Little T & A", and "No Use in Crying"). "Think I'm Going Mad", another song from the sessions, was released as the B-side to "She Was Hot" in 1984. And two cover songs sung by Keith Richards ("We Had It All" and "Let's Go Steady") have yet to be officially released, but can be found on the bootleg Static in the Attic, along with "Claudine".
In 1994, Emotional Rescue was remastered and reissued by Virgin Records, and again in 2009 by Universal Music.
No one will ever mistake this for a great Stones album, but I bet it sounds more interesting than It's Only Rock 'n Roll should we take the time to compare and contrast in our respective retirement communities. The mid-'60s charm of such tossed-off tropes as "Where the Boys Go" and "She's So Cold" goes with music that's far more allusive and irregular and knowing: for better and worse its drive isn't so monolithic, and the bass comes front and center like Bill was James Jamerson. Looser than you'll ever be.