Jumpin' Jack Flash
Mick Taylor describes the lyrics to Jumpin' Jack Flash as "surreal" on the liner notes from his "Stranger In This Town" CD. What better description of the song. The lyrics are capable of conjuring up some incredible imagery. Jumpin' Jack Flash was chosen to be the catchy opener for '69 shows that would set the stage for the entire performance. The song was performed with a distinctly different vocal style during the '69 US tour.
a. The studio version of the song has what I will refer to as a "stretched" chorus.
b. Live versions of the song from the opening show in Ft. Collins November 7, 1969 to the December 14, 1969 performance at the Saville Theater all feature the added "yeah it's all right" line in the chorus. "Ya-Ya's" is extraordinarily unique in that it has the "stretched" chorus. There is an explanation for this!
A. Structure: This will be used as a basis for referencing various musical and vocal markers in the song.
"Markers" are the unique "DNA coding" of the song. Random words and music heard during the song that are unique to the "Ya-Ya's" point of reference, or subject to improvisation and change from show-to-show. These will be the primary factors when making comparisons to the alternate audience sources. There will be varying degrees of conclusion that can be drawn from markers. Matching random feedback will have a higher degree of certainty for identification than a line in the song that varies a particular word from show-to-show for example. The source shows will be identified by finding matching markers to the "Ya-Ya's" references.
Line 1. I was born in the crossfire hurricane
Line 2. And I howled at my ma in the driving rain
Line 3. But it's all right now (yeah it's all right) in fact it's a gas
Line 4. But it's all right (yeah it's all right) I'm Jumpin' Jack Flash it's a gas gas gas
Line 5. I was raised by a toothless bearded hag
Line 6. I was schooled with a strap right across my back
Line 7. But it's all right now (yeah it's all right) in fact it's a gas
Line 8. But it's all right (yeah it's all right) I'm Jumpin' Jack Flash it's a gas gas gas
Instrumental Break #1
Line 9. I was drowned I was washed up and left for dead
Line 10. I fell down to my feet and I saw they bled
Line 11. Yeah, sure and I frowned at the crumbs of a crust of bread "shuung"(Marker #1)
Line 12. Yeah, I was crowned with a spike right through my head
Line 13. But it's all right now (yeah it's all right) in fact it's a gas
Line 14. But it's all right (yeah it's all right) I'm Jumpin' Jack Flash it's a gas gas gas
Instrumental Break #2
- Charlie hits the bass drum in quick succession at 3:08 creating sort of an instrumental bridge. Fourteen seconds later at 3:22 Taylor begins to play a counter rhythm in the left channel that is nearly dissonant, but isn't.(Marker #2)
- Feedback during the closing drum roll(Marker #3)
B. Reference Recordings, Markers and Conclusions:
1. Compared to MSG November 27, 1969 audience source:
Chorus #1: There is feedback during the vocal
Line 8: Jagger ends the line with "Whoo...Yeah"
Chorus #1, #2, #3: "yeah it's all right" version
Line 11: The line has been "changed" to:
I was crowned at the crumbs of a crust of bread (?!)
Line 11: Jagger ends the line with a "Whoo". He has a tendency to this when he "changes" a line in a lyric during a live performance. Another example of this is Heartbreaker from Hamburg 10/2/73
(Jean-Clarke../Reflections..). He says "whoo...all right" after inadvertently starting a vocal during the instrumental break.
Line 11: No vocal Marker #1 "shuung"
Line 14: Jagger ends the line with "Get it on boy...get it on boy"
Instrumental Break #2: Marker #2 is present!!!
Line 14: Jagger says "Jumpin' Jack Flash" during the closing bars of the song.
Marker #3 is present
The instrumental markers are unique enough in my opinion to conclude that GYYYO consists of the November 27, 1969 instrumental tracks. The vocal doesn't match the music though, so the only explanation is that the vocal is overdubbed, probably because of the Chorus #1 feedback and the lyric "change" in Line 11. The chorus has also been changed to sound more like the studio version with the "stretched" all right. Fifteen '69 shows were checked, and not a single performance has the "stretched" chorus.
2. Compared to MSG November 28, 1969, 2nd
Line 2. And I howled at my ma in the driving rain
Line 4: Jagger ends the last line of the chorus with some unintelligible words.
Line 8: Jagger ends the last line of the chorus with "Whoo..something unintelligible..Ya..Ya".
Line 14: Jagger ends the last line of the chorus with "Whoo...now get it on now".
Instrumental Break #2: Mick Taylor plays only a couple of long vibrato notes, there is no solo.
3. Compared to the "Gimme Shelter" movie
Line 2: And I howled with my ma in the driving rain (note the difference between "my" and "with" in lyrics from section B).
Line 4: Jagger ends the last line of the chorus with a "whoo...yeah".
Line 8: Jagger ends the last line of the chorus with a "whoo...yeah".
Line 14: No ad lib line from Jagger
Instrumental Break #2: Mick Taylor plays the long vibrato notes and goes on to solo during this section of the song.
There is enough conflicting evidence both vocal and musical to conclude that November 28, 2nd, is not the "Gimme Shelter" movie version of the song. Therefore, it's November 28, 1969, 1st show, by process of elimination. Baltimore 11/26/69, and Boston 11/29/69 2nd, shows were also checked for a "match".
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