Released last month to theaters across the country for a special one-night-only screening, legendary concert film Ladies & Gentlemen The Rolling Stones is now available for home viewing on its first authorized release on Blu-Ray and DVD.
Just another Rolling Stones concert flick, you say? Uh, yeah, much like the Stones are just another rock 'n' roll band.
What makes Ladies & Gentlemen so great is that it captures the band at their artistic and performing peaks -- when they truly earned their long-standing title of the world's greatest rock 'n' roll band.
Stones fans, from casual followers to diehards, recognize the late '60s and early '70s as the band's creative apex and rightly so. There is, arguably, no better run of sequential album releases in the history of rock 'n' roll than the Stones' output from 1968-1972: Beggar's Banquet, Let It Bleed, live disc Get Yer Ya-Ya's Out!, Sticky Fingers and Exile On Main St.
Fourteen of Ladies & Gentlemen's 15-song set -- including classics "Brown Sugar," "Jumpin' Jack Flash," "Tumblin' Dice," "You Can't Always Get What You Want" and "Street Fighting Man," among others -- are drawn from those records, joined by a nod to one of the band's greatest influences, "Bye Bye Johnny," a Chuck Berry cover.
In a 2010 interview with Mick Jagger, filmed to be shown ahead of this year's theatrical release and included on the DVD, the frontman utters one of the greatest understatements of all time, deadpanning dryly, "It's a good choice of songs."
But the musical selections are only half of what makes Ladies & Gentlemen so special, the other half is the performance. Filmed in 1972 over four shows in Texas, the Stones appear here as they never would again in concert -- with no props, no backdrops, and no backup singers. Just the band, and adjunct musicians on horns and keys, on a cramped stage to "Rip This Joint," if you will. Simply put, they do.
Bonus features on the DVD include the aforementioned Jagger interview and one with the singer from 1972, along with some brief tour rehearsal footage. Ladies & Gentlemen The Rolling Stones is available now.