In 1971, The Rolling Stones were at their absolute peak: a band blessed with the Midas touch both in the recording studio and on the stage. Here, rock photographer Alec Byrne captures them at the height of their powers, with 10 intimate and unseen shots of Mick, Keith and co during their club gig at The Marquee in March, 1971. The photographs are part of a new exhibition, overseen by Uber Editions, which opens at LA’s Perfect Exposure gallery this month.
Mick Jagger in all his pouty glory, onstage with The Rolling Stones at The Marquee in London, March 1971. Legendary photographer Alec Byrne’s snaps from the gig, unseen until now, will be on show with Uber Editions at The Perfect Exposure gallery from June 22 – 28.
A DVD concert of the same gig, meanwhile, titled The Marquee Club – Live In 1971, will also be released on June 22.
Few bands have ever experienced a golden age quite like The Stones did between 1968 and 1972.
In 1968 and 1969, Mick, Keith and the rest put out classic albums ‘Beggars Banquet’ and ‘Let It Bleed’ as the Stones continued to make a reputation for themselves as one of the planet’s most dangerous and exciting bands.
The same year as their Marquee Club gig, meanwhile, the Stones released the seminal ‘Sticky Fingers’ LP, and then followed-it up a year later with the peerless ‘Exile On Main Street’. How’s that for a run of form?
And a list of the songs recorded by the Stones during that period is even more impressive: ‘Gimme Shelter’, ‘Brown Sugar’, ‘You Can’t Always Get What You Want’, ‘Sympathy For The Devil’ and lots, lots more…
If you want an idea of just how supreme The Stones’ were as a live band during the time, then check out 1970’s live masterpiece ‘Get Yer Ya-Ya’s Out!’ Much-celebrated rock critic Lester Bangs said upon its release: “I have no doubt that it’s the best rock concert ever put on record.”
Calm among the storm: Alec Byrne’s camera catches a pensive moment from Jagger during a between-song break.
Byrne, who worked as a freelance photographer for both NME and Melody Maker, also took iconic photographs of acts including The Beatles, David Bowie, Jimi Hendrix, The Who and many more.
If you can’t make it to The Perfect Exposure exhibition in LA, a selection of the photographs will be available for purchase from Uber Editions‘ website.