October 10, 2002

Just saw something incredibly cool: the Rolling Stones on SNL in 1978, doing "Beast of Burden" and "Shattered." This is my favorite period in the Stones' career -- when they were doing the mountains-of-coke, Studio 54, New York Dolls-gone-disco scene, not just Englishmen but honorary richbitch Gothamites slumming it up in the artpunkdance ghetto. This SNL appearance had Mick bathed, nay, smothered in a red light, doing his exaggerated ostrich moves in a really charged, diabolical way, ripping his tight red t-shirt off, putting his arm around Ron Wood to lean into his mic; Keith was laid back but you could clearly hear his cranky voice barking out the so-called "harmony." "Beast of Burden" is more Lone Star than Mudd Club, though, a beer-and-sawdust bourgeois-bohemian twang singalong for hairy new-parent potheads who haven't yet hightailed it out to the Jersey suburbs. Which makes '70s SNL (which feels like the hippest swingers party anyone's ever gone to) the PERFECT venue for such a performance.