(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction

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"(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction"
Single by The Rolling Stones
from the album Out of Our Heads (US)
B-side"The Under Assistant West Coast Promotion Man" (US)
"The Spider and the Fly" (UK)
Released6 June 1965 (US)
20 August 1965 (UK)
Format7", 12"
Recorded12 May 1965, RCA Studios, Hollywood
GenreRock,[1] hard rock[2]
Length3:44
LabelLondon 45-LON 9766 (US and Canada)
Decca F12220 (UK)
Writer(s)Jagger/Richards
ProducerAndrew Loog Oldham
The Rolling Stones singles chronology
"The Last Time"
(1965)
"(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction"
(1965)
"Get Off of My Cloud"
(1965)
Music sample
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Music video
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"(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction"
Single by The Rolling Stones
from the album Out of Our Heads (US)
B-side"The Under Assistant West Coast Promotion Man" (US)
"The Spider and the Fly" (UK)
Released6 June 1965 (US)
20 August 1965 (UK)
Format7", 12"
Recorded12 May 1965, RCA Studios, Hollywood
GenreRock,[1] hard rock[2]
Length3:44
LabelLondon 45-LON 9766 (US and Canada)
Decca F12220 (UK)
Writer(s)Jagger/Richards
ProducerAndrew Loog Oldham
The Rolling Stones singles chronology
"The Last Time"
(1965)
"(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction"
(1965)
"Get Off of My Cloud"
(1965)
Music sample
Sorry, your browser either has JavaScript disabled or does not have any supported player.
You can download the clip or download a player to play the clip in your browser.
Music video
"(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction (Live)" (Official) on YouTube

"(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction" is a song by the English rock band The Rolling Stones, released in 1965. It was written by Mick Jagger and Keith Richards and produced by Andrew Loog Oldham. Richards' throwaway three-note guitar riff – intended to be replaced by horns – opens and drives the song. The lyrics refer to sexual frustration and commercialism.

The song was first released as a single in the United States in June 1965 and also featured on the American version of Out of Our Heads, released that July. "Satisfaction" was a hit, giving the Stones their first number one in the US. In the UK, the song initially played only on pirate radio stations because its lyrics were considered too sexually suggestive.[3] In Britain, the single was released in August 1965; it became the Rolling Stones' fourth number one in the United Kingdom. The song is considered to be one of the all-time greatest rock songs ever recorded. In 2004 Rolling Stone magazine placed "Satisfaction" in the second spot on its list of The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time, while in 2006 it was added to the Library of Congress National Recording Registry.

Contents

Recording[edit]

Richards recorded the rough version of the riff in a hotel room. He ran through it once before falling asleep. He said when he listened back to it in the morning, there was about two minutes of acoustic guitar before you could hear him drop the pick and "then me snoring for the next forty minutes".[4]

The Rolling Stones first recorded the track on 10 May 1965 at Chess Studios in Chicago[5] – a version featuring Brian Jones on harmonica. The group re-recorded it two days later at RCA Studios in Hollywood, with a different beat and the Gibson Maestro fuzzbox adding sustain to the sound of the guitar riff.[6][7] Richards envisioned redoing the track later with a horn section playing the riff: "this was just a little sketch, because, to my mind, the fuzz tone was really there to denote what the horns would be doing."[6] The other Rolling Stones, as well as manager Andrew Loog Oldham and sound engineer Dave Hassinger eventually outvoted Richards and Jagger so the track was selected for release as a single.[7][8] The song's success boosted sales of the Gibson fuzzbox so that the entire available stock sold out by the end of 1965.[9]

Like most of the Stones' pre-1966 recordings, "Satisfaction" was originally released in mono only. In the mid-1980s, a true stereo version of the song was released on German and Japanese editions of the CD reissue of Hot Rocks 1964-1971. The stereo mix features a piano (played by session player Jack Nitzsche) and acoustic guitar that are barely audible in the original mono release (both instruments are also audible on a bootleg recording of the instrumental track). This stereo mix of "Satisfaction" also appeared on a radio-promo CD of rare stereo tracks provided to US radio stations in the mid-1980s, but has not yet been featured on a worldwide commercial CD; even later pressings of the German and Japanese Hot Rocks CDs feature the mono mix, making the earlier releases with the stereo mix collectors' items. For the worldwide 2002 reissue of Hot Rocks, an alternate quasi-stereo mix was used featuring the lead guitar, bass, drums, and vocals in the center channel and the acoustic guitar and piano "split" left and right via a delay effect.[10]

Lyrics and melody[edit]

Guitar riff from "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction"

The song opens with the guitar riff, which is joined by the bass halfway through. It is repeated three times with the drums and acoustic guitar before the vocal enters with the line: "I can't get no satisfaction". The title line is an example of a negative concord when the article of the noun (no) becomes negative under the influence of the standard negation (-n't), a common usage in colloquial English and not to confuse with double negation (which would be "I can't get not satisfaction"). Jagger sings the verses in a tone hovering between cynical commentary and frustrated protest, and then leaps half singing and half yelling into the chorus, where the guitar riff reappears. The lyrics outline the singer's irritation with the increasing commercialism of the modern world, where the radio broadcasts "useless information" and a man on television tells him "how white my shirts can be – but he can't be a man 'cause he doesn't smoke the same cigarettes as me." Jagger also describes the stress of being a celebrity, and the tensions of touring. The reference in the verse to not getting any "girl reaction" was fairly controversial in its day, interpreted by some listeners (and radio programmers) as meaning a girl willing to have sex. Particularly shocking to some people was a reference to a girl having her period (being "on a losing streak").[11] The song closes with a fairly subdued repetition of the song's title, followed suddenly by a full shout of the line, with the final words repeated into the fade-out.[12]

In its day the song was perceived as disturbing because of both its sexual connotations and the negative view of commercialism and other aspects of modern culture; critic Paul Gambaccini stated: "The lyrics to this were truly threatening to an older audience. This song was perceived as an attack on the status quo".[9] When the Rolling Stones performed the song on Shindig! in 1965, the line "trying to make some girl" was censored,[13] although a performance on The Ed Sullivan Show on 13 February 1966 was uncensored. Forty years later, when the band performed three songs during the February 2006 Super Bowl XL halftime show, "Satisfaction" was the only one of the three songs not censored as it was broadcast.[14]

Release and success[edit]

"Satisfaction" was released as a single in the US by London Records on 6 June 1965, with "The Under-Assistant West Coast Promotion Man" as its B-side.[15] The single made its way through the American charts, reaching the top on 10 July, displacing The Four Tops' "I Can't Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch)". "Satisfaction" held on for a full four weeks, being knocked off on 7 August by "I'm Henry the Eighth, I Am" from Herman's Hermits.[16] The song entered the Billboard Hot 100 charts in America in the week ending 12 June 1965, remaining there for 14 weeks; it was No. 1 for four straight weeks. While in its eighth week on the American charts, the single was certified a gold record award by the RIAA (Recording Industry Association of America) for selling more than half a million copies in the United States,[17] giving the band their first of many gold disc awards in America. Later the song was also released by London Records on Out of Our Heads in America.[8] According to "Joel Whitburn Presents, Top R&B/Hip-Hop Singles: 1942–2004", the song also reached No. 19 on the Top Selling Rhythm and Blues Singles.

"Satisfaction" was not immediately released by Decca Records in Great Britain. Decca was already in the process of preparing a live Rolling Stones EP for release, so the new single did not come out in Britain until 20 August,[15] with "The Spider and the Fly" on the B-Side. The song peaked at number one for two weeks, replacing Sonny & Cher's "I Got You Babe", between 11 and 25 September, before being toppled by The Walker Brothers' "Make It Easy on Yourself".[16]

In the decades since its release, "Satisfaction" has repeatedly been acclaimed by the music industry. In 1976, Britain's New Musical Express listed "Satisfaction" 7th among the top 100 singles of all time. There was a resurgence of interest in the song after it was prominently featured in the 1979 movie Apocalypse Now. In 1991, Vox listed "Satisfaction" among "100 records that shook the world".[18] In 1999, BMI named "Satisfaction" as the 91st-most performed song of the 20th century. In 2000, VH1 listed "Satisfaction" first among its "Top 100 Greatest Rock Songs";[19] the same year, "Satisfaction" also finished runner-up to "Yesterday" in a list jointly compiled by Rolling Stone and MTV.[20] In 2003, Q placed the song 68th out of its "1001 Best Songs Ever". In 2004, Rolling Stone's panel of judges named "Satisfaction" as the second-greatest song of all time, coming in second to Bob Dylan's "Like a Rolling Stone".[21] Newsweek has called the opening riff "five notes that shook the world".[22]

Jagger said of "Satisfaction":

"it was the song that really made the Rolling Stones, changed us from just another band into a huge, monster band... It has a very catchy title. It has a very catchy guitar riff. It has a great guitar sound, which was original at that time. And it captures a spirit of the times, which is very important in those kinds of songs... Which was alienation."[8]

The song has become a staple at Rolling Stones shows. They have performed it on nearly every tour since its release, and concert renditions have been included on the albums Got Live If You Want It!, Still Life (American Concert 1981), Flashpoint, Live Licks and Shine a Light. One unusual rendition is included in Robert Frank's film Cocksucker Blues from the 1972 tour, when the song was performed by both the Rolling Stones and Stevie Wonder's band as the second half of a medley with Wonder's "Uptight".

Music video[edit]

A live performance in Hampton from 1981 was released as an official music video.

Accolades[edit]

ListPublisherRankYear of Publication
500 Greatest Songs of All TimeRolling Stone22010
100 Greatest Rock SongsVH112000
Top 100 Most-Performed Songs of the 20th CenturyBMI911999
1001 Best Songs EverQ682003
500 Songs That Shaped RockRock & Roll Hall of FameN/A1995

Personnel[edit]

Cover versions and samples[edit]

Otis Redding recorded a rendition of "Satisfaction" for his album Otis Blue, 1965. Otis claimed that he did not know the lyrics of the song, saying: "I use a lot of words different than the Stones' version," Redding noted. "That's because I made them up."[23] Redding's soul-style arrangement featured horns playing the main riff,[24] as Keith Richards had originally intended. Alvin and the Chipmunks covered the song for their 1990 television special Rockin' Through the Decades and its corresponding soundtrack.[25] In 2003, Ronnie Wood noted that The Rolling Stones' later concert renditions of the number reflect Redding's interpretation.[6] French singer Eddy Mitchell released his version in November 1965 with Big Jim Sullivan and Jimmy Page on guitars. Manfred Mann released a cover version of the song on their 1967 album, The Soul of Mann.[26] Jerry Lee Lewis released a version that can be found on the album The Complete London Sessions, Vol. 1.[27] Frankie Ruiz recorded the song in salsa which peaked at No. 7 on the Billboard Latin Tropical Airplay chart.[28] Jonathan King recorded a very different version on his Bubblerock album; released as a single in 1974 it was a Top 20 UK hit and sold 250,000 copies. Blue Cheer released a version of the song on their album, Outsideinside. Bill Cosby did a comic version of the song for his album, Hooray For The Salvation Army Band.

A 12 minute cover of the song under the title "Wild Satisfaction" is included in Taste of Conium, the 2nd album by Socrates Drank the Conium, a Greek rock band of the 70s.

The Residents[edit]

"Satisfaction"
Single by The Residents
B-side"Loser ≅ Weed"
Released1976
Format7"
Recorded1975
GenreAvant-garde
Length4:30
LabelRalph Records
Writer(s)Jagger/Richards

In 1976, avant-garde rock band, The Residents released a cover of "Satisfaction" featuring re-written vocals and a guitar solo from collaborator Snakefinger as a companion piece to their album The Third Reich 'n' Roll. The single was the most successful release by The Residents at that point, and was later re-released in 1978 while Ralph Records and The Cryptic Corporation waited for the band to finish work on their album Eskimo. The song was also performed on their 1982 "Mole Show" tour.

Devo[edit]

"(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction"
Single by Devo
from the album Q: Are We Not Men? A: We Are Devo!
B-side"Sloppy (I Saw My Baby Gettin')"
ReleasedSeptember 1977
Format7"
RecordedJuly 1977
GenreNew Wave
Length3:00
LabelBooji Boy
Warner Bros.
Writer(s)Jagger/Richard
ProducerBrian Eno
Chuck Statler
Devo singles chronology
"Mongoloid"
(1977)
"(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction"
(1977)
"Be Stiff"
(1978)

Background[edit]

American New Wave band Devo released their rendition of "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction" as a single in 1977. Because of the extensive changes Devo had made to the song, they met with Mick Jagger and his lawyer so Mick could give his blessing. During that visit, Jagger said he liked Devo's version. Gerald Casale characterised this meeting as "a setup".[29] After the meeting, he found out that Devo's lawyer told Jagger's lawyer they should approve the song because it would make Jagger a lot of money. Steve Huey of Allmusic stated that the cover version "reworks the original's alienation into a spastic freak-out that's nearly unrecognisable".[30]

This version of the song was featured prominently in the 1995 Martin Scorsese motion picture Casino (film) and appears on the film's two disc soundtrack compilation.

Music video[edit]

The quirky music video for the song and several others from this album received significant airplay on the upstart MTV. The video appears on Devo's home videos, The Men Who Make the Music, We're All Devo and The Complete Truth About De-Evolution. A notable feature of the video was dancer Craig Allen Rothwell, known as Spazz Attack, whose signature dance move, a forward flip onto his back, drew him significant attention.[31] He later appeared in the music video for Devo's "Peek-A-Boo", and on David Bowie's Glass Spider tour.

Chart positions[edit]

Chart (1977)Peak
position
UK Singles Chart41

Britney Spears[edit]

"(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction"
Song by Britney Spears from the album Oops!... I Did It Again
Recorded24 February 2000; Pacifique Recording Studios (Hollywood).
GenreTeen pop
Length4:25
LabelJive
WriterJagger/Richard
ProducerRodney "Darkchild" Jerkins
Oops!... I Did It Again track listing
"Don't Go Knocking On My Door"
(3)
"(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction"
(4)
"Don't Let Me Be the Last to Know"
(5)

Background and composition[edit]

In 2000, Spears recorded a cover of "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction" with producer Rodney "Darkchild" Jerkins. After the 42nd Grammy Awards, on 24 February 2000, Spears went to Pacifique Recording Studios in Hollywood with Darkchild and recorded her vocals for the song.[32][33] The singer revealed it was her idea to record the cover, while commenting, "I was just like, 'I like this song,' and I think it will be a really cool combination working with Rodney and doing a really funky song like that. We're going in to work on it after the Grammys, so I don't have a clue how it's going to sound."[33] The cover was included on Spears' second studio album, Oops!... I Did It Again (2000).[33] After the album's release, Jagger heard Spears' cover through the walls of his daughter's room, revealed Darkchild's publicist Courteney Barnes.[34] As a result, Jagger liked the cover and wanted to collaborate with Jerkins on his third solo studio album.[34] Later in 2001, Jagger met up with Spears on the red carpet of the 2001 MTV Video Music Awards.[35]

Critical reception[edit]

Spears' cover received mixed reviews from critics. While reviewing Oops!, Stephen Thomas Erlewine of Allmusic selected the song as Track Pick and said, "Fortunately, [Spears] and her production team not only have a stronger overall set of songs this time [with Oops!], but they also occasionally get carried away with the same bewildering magpie aesthetic that made the first album's "Soda Pop" – a combination of bubblegum, urban soul, and raga – a gonzo teen pop classic. It doesn't happen all that often – the clenched-funk revision of the Stones' deathless "Satisfaction" is the most obvious example – but it helps give the album character apart from the well-crafted dance-pop and ballads that serve as its heart."[36] David Browne of Entertainment Weekly said, "barring a new Puff Daddy single featuring Jennifer Lopez and a sample of Bad Company's "Shooting Star," there may be no more audacious piece of music [on 2000] than Britney Spears' assault on the Rolling Stones' "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction"."[37] Robert Christgau gave the song a 'a pair of scissors', icon on his website that means the cover "is a good song on an album that isn't worth your time or money",[38] while a New Musical Express review gave the cover a negative review, saying, "the long-awaited [...] [Spears'] cover of the Stones' '(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction' is a letdown".[39]

Live performances[edit]

Spears first performed the cover on 2000's Oops!... I Did It Again World Tour. The performance consisted on Spears singing along her cover, with a dance sequence set to the original version at the end.[40] On 6 September 2000, Spears performed "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction" on the 2000 MTV Video Music Awards at the Radio City Music Hall in New York City.[41] Before performing "Oops!... I Did It Again", the singer appeared behind a backlit screen, and descended a spiral staircase and started performing the song, while wearing a tuxedo.[41][42] After performing a shortened version of it, the singer tore the tuxedo off, revealing a skin-tight flesh-coloured outfit.[41]

Credits and personnel[edit]

Technical
Personnel
  • Britney Spears – vocals
  • Rodney Jerkins – producer, recording engineer, mix engineer, all instruments, vocal arrangement
  • Harvey Manson Jr. – recording engineer, pro-tools editing
  • Dexter Simmons – mix engineer
  • Alfred Bosco – assistant mix engineer
  • Flip Osman – assistant mix engineer
  • Clayton Wood – assistant mix engineer
  • Michael Thompson – guitar
  • Nora Payne – background vocals
  • Darryl Anthony – background vocals
  • LeDon Bishop – background vocals

Source:[32][33]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Unterberger, Richie. "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction". Allmusic. 
  2. ^ Quentin James Schultze, Dancing in the dark: youth, popular culture, and the electronic media, (Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing, 1991), ISBN 0802805302, p150
  3. ^ Nuzum, Eric (2009). Parental Advisory: Music Censorship in America. HarperCollins Publishers. ISBN 0-06-197673-3. 
  4. ^ Keith Richards - In His Own Words by Mick St Michael, Omnibus Press, 1994, page 24. ISBN 0-7119-3634-X
  5. ^ Zentgraf, Nico. "The Complete Works of the Rolling Stones 1962–2008". Archived from the original on 27 February 2008. Retrieved 23 February 2008. 
  6. ^ a b c McPherson, Ian. "Track Talk: Satisfaction". Archived from the original on 20 July 2009. Retrieved 5 March 2008. 
  7. ^ a b Wyman, Bill (2002). Rolling With the Stones. DK Publishing. p. 187. ISBN 0-7894-9998-3. 
  8. ^ a b c "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction by The Rolling Stones". Retrieved 4 April 2006.
  9. ^ a b "Sold on Song: '(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction'". BBC. Retrieved 18 December 2008.
  10. ^ "The Rolling Stones In Stereo". Lukpac.org. 27 August 2002. Retrieved 27 February 2011. 
  11. ^ "Going to Pot". Time. 1 July 1966. Retrieved 18 December 2008.
  12. ^ Unterberger, Richie. "Song review: '(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction'". Allmusic. Retrieved 18 December 2008.
  13. ^ "Shindig!". Season 1. Episode 37. 26 May 1965. http://www.tv.com/shindig/rolling-stones---howlin-wolf---sonny-and-cher---jackie-deshannon/episode/99960/summary.html?tag=ep_list;title;40.
  14. ^ "ABC has no ‘Satisfaction’ with Stones’ lyrics: Network says NFL enforced 5-second delay on group’s halftime show". 6 February 2006. Archived from the original on 5 February 2007. Retrieved 22 March 2007. 
  15. ^ a b Elliott, Martin (2002). The Rolling Stones: Complete Recording Sessions 1962–2002. Cherry Red Books. p. 69. ISBN 1-901447-04-9. 
  16. ^ a b "No. 1 UK Hit Singles of 1965". Retrieved 15 January 2011.
  17. ^ "RIAA – Gold & Platinum Records Database". Retrieved 15 January 2011.
  18. ^ "VOX Magazine's 100 records that shook the world". VOX Magazine, January 1991. Archived from the original on 4 January 2011. Retrieved 15 January 2011. 
  19. ^ "100 Greatest Songs of Rock & Roll (20–1)". VH1. Retrieved 8 March 2008. 
  20. ^ "Rolling Stone's 100 Greatest Pop Songs". Rolling Stone Magazine, December 2000. Archived from the original on 5 January 2011. Retrieved 15 January 2011. 
  21. ^ "500 Greatest Songs". Retrieved 11 October 2004.
  22. ^ "KeithRichards.com". Retrieved 4 April 2006.
  23. ^ 74) Otis Blue: Rolling Stone
  24. ^ Gilliland, John (1969). "Show 51 – The Soul Reformation: Phase three, soul music at the summit. [Part 7] : UNT Digital Library" (audio). Pop Chronicles. Digital.library.unt.edu. 
  25. ^ "Rockin' Through the Decades - The Chipmunks". Billboard. Nielsen Business Company. Retrieved 28 September 2010. 
  26. ^ "The Soul of Mann". Retrieved 1 September 2011. 
  27. ^ Jerry Lee Lewis, The Complete London Sessions, Vol. 1 Retrieved 18 March 2012.
  28. ^ "Frankie Ruiz: Leyenda Charts & Awards". Allmusic. Rovi. Retrieved 31 October 2011. 
  29. ^ "RBMA Radio – Devo (De-evolution, Devonia) – Fireside Chat". Redbullmusicacademyradio.com. Archived from the original on 29 November 2010. Retrieved 27 February 2011. 
  30. ^ Q: Are We Not Men? A: We Are Devo! review. Allmusic. Retrieved 9 April 2009.
  31. ^ Craig Allen Rothwell at the Internet Movie Database
  32. ^ a b Oops!... I Did It Again liner notes. Jive Records (2000)
  33. ^ a b c d Moss, Corey (23 February 2000). "Britney Wants Older Fans To Get "Satisfaction"". MTV Networks. Archived from the original on 29 June 2011. Retrieved 27 August 2011. 
  34. ^ a b Wiederhorn, Jon (27 June 2001). "Mick Jagger Finds A Muse In Britney Spears". MTV Networks. Retrieved 27 August 2011. 
  35. ^ "Just a year after covering Rolling Stones, "Satisfaction", Britney runs into Mick Jagger on the VMA red carpet. (2001)". MTV Networks. 3 September 2008. Retrieved 27 August 2011. 
  36. ^ Erlewine, Stephen Thomas (16 May 2000). "Oops!... I Did It Again – Review". Rovi Corporation. Retrieved 27 August 2011. 
  37. ^ "Oops!... I Did It Again – Review". Entertainment Weekly. ´Time Inc. 19 May 2000. Retrieved 27 August 2011. 
  38. ^ Christgau, Robert (16 May 2000). "CG: Britney". Robert Christgau. Archived from the original on 4 June 2011. Retrieved 27 August 2011. 
  39. ^ "Oops!... I Did It Again – Review". New Musical Express. UK: Time Inc. 29 May 2000. Retrieved 27 August 2011. 
  40. ^ Miller, Andrew (20 July 2000). "Britney Spears/Mikaila". The Pitch (Village Voice Media). Retrieved 20 January 2010. 
  41. ^ a b c "MTV Video Music Awards of 2000". MTV Networks. 6 September 2000. Retrieved 27 August 2011. 
  42. ^ Basham, David (7 September 2000). "Britney, Eminem, 'NSYNC Get Wild, Weird For VMA Sets". MTV Networks. Retrieved 27 August 2011. 

External links[edit]