We’re dipping into the Far Out Magazine vault to revisit one of our favourite performances from The Rolling Stones, their intense rendition of ‘Wild Horses’ live from the L.A. Forum in 1975.
The band are known for their heart-jumping, body-flailing rock and roll chops but on the 1971 track ‘Wild Horses’, Mick Jagger and Keith Richards created a reflective moment of reprieve. It has always worked as the perfect solidifying moment in their live shows ever since.
The Rolling Stones were the archetypal rock and roll group. Breaking out of the 1960s blues scene the group made a name for themselves by paying homage to some of rock and roll’s founding fathers. Their fiery performances and sexually-charged wit made them the perfect antithesis to the charming Beatles.
Their career would take them through unfathomable lows and unreal highs before reaching present-day and their latest sold-out American tour. But if you ever thought that the band were in it just for the paycheque, then you need to see the intensity in their eyes when performing this beautiful number.
In the 1993 Rolling Stones compilation album Jump Back, Jagger states of ‘Wild Horses’: “I remember we sat around originally doing this with Gram Parsons, and I think his version came out slightly before ours. Everyone always says this was written about Marianne but I don’t think it was; that was all well over by then. But I was definitely very inside this piece emotionally.”
Richards later said of the song, “If there is a classic way of Mick and me working together this is it. I had the riff and chorus line, Mick got stuck into the verses. Just like ‘Satisfaction’, ‘Wild Horses’ was about the usual thing of not wanting to be on the road, being a million miles from where you want to be.”
Ironic then that perhaps when this song’s at its most powerful is when it is played live by the band who wrote it. This may well be one of the most sleazy and easy versions of the track you’ll hear but it holds a certain raw quality that highlights the band’s power.
The footage is covered with vaseline and the audio has a little to be desired but perfect AV isn’t what rock and roll is about. The Rolling Stones know a thing or two about rock and roll.
Watch The Rolling Stones’ iconic performance of ‘Wild Horses’ from their legendary L.A. Forum show, 1975.