RS_GRRR_CMYK_PACKSHOTOk, this is a simple post.  First off, I hope everyone’s entrance into 2013 was smooth sailing.   I trust that it was.

I picked up a copy of Grrr! (The Best of The Rolling Stones).  I know, I know, I’m a(n) _______ (insert your jeers here).  I’m just a stupid Stones fan that has to have it.  So I’ll stop there.

Now that THAT’S out of the way, I can tell you that I picked up the 3CD set.  It was a little more (actually, a lot more than it should have been given the simple inclusion of just ten more songs).  But I picked it up because the inclusions were essential for a collection, songs horribly left off the 2CD set.  (We’re talking “She’s A Rainbow”, “Time Is On My Side”,  and, can you believe this, “Doo Doo Doo Doo Doo (Heartbreaker)”, and “Under My Thumb”?)

After playing the set on a trip back to Orange County, It got me to thinking about the one Stones track that epitomizes the band.  I have my selection, and I’m sure that you Stones fans have yours.  So, for the record, I’m going with “Tumbling Dice”.

“Tumbling Dice” not only comes from the great Exile On Main Street classic, but it is a raw swagger of a tune, pompous, self-serving.  Oh yes, there are many great Stones songs.  And yes, there are songs that carry more weight musically. But for me, the song that says STONES is, at the end of the day, “Tumbling Dice”.

Now, I’m mighty curious to hear what you call the one Stones song that is…all Stones.

By MARowe

36 thoughts on “The ONE Stones Song”
      1. Hi again
        Nope – no Stones. I have never heard an album that I liked all the way through. I think they have written some of the greatest Rock songs of all time but I’ve never been keen on one whole album. Amazon UK has an incredible deal on the three disc set right now. I’ve never been one for compilations, but this one seems to be fairly comprehensive. Thanks.

  1. While I do think Tumbling Dice is a fantastic choice, I’m going with with Fingerprint File. For me, it encapsulates the danger of the late 60’s/early 70’s era in one song. It has all the majesty of Sympathy For The Devil and Midnight Rambler while providing a fantastic end to my favorite Stones record, It’s Only Rock N Roll.

  2. Narrowing down to one Rolling Stones songs is impossible. Once the list starts there’s Gimmie Shelter, 19th Nervous Breakdown, Brown Sugar, Get Off Of My Cloud etc. My question is…who actually thought putting a gorilla on the cover was a good idea?

  3. I agree with Bill B. Sympathy For The Devil sums up the attitude the Stones had going in the late ’60s. They were the “bad boys” of rock, while the Beatles were the “nice, safe boys.” When I hear Sympathy For The Devil, i think Altamont, which was certainly a low point for the band. The Stones ran with the bad boy image for many years. The song suits Mick Jagger’s personality of that time to a T. He developed his stage persona through the years, but with that song, he became the “slithering hips” Mick we still continue to see on stage today. My other personal favs are Can’t You Hear Me Knocking, Bitch, Monkey Man, Happy and Shattered (Shadoobie!).

  4. Oh…and Matt, I purchased the 3 disc set too, despite owning all of the individual CDs, plus the 3 disc Singles – London Years. I just had to have it for the new song.

  5. I’d love to have the Super Deluxe Edition if it wasn’t obscenely priced. I did find someone selling the 3-CD boxed set for $25 shipped. With that being said, I don’t think even an 80-track compilation would’ve been enough.

    As far as the post topic goes, most folks would probably say “Satisfaction”, but I would have to choose “Sympathy For The Devil”. Hearing 66,000 fans singing the iOoo-Ooos/i on the Steel Wheels tour is something I will never forget.

  6. If You Can’t Rock Me from It’s Only Rock and Roll does it for me the most, sure there are many better well known songs but this one grabs me the most.

  7. Hi Matt,
    My two choices (I can’t pick one) are not even technically on the GRRR! comp. For me, the definitve Stones song would be the ’73 “Midnight Rambler” from Brussels (1st show) and one of the Philadephia ’72 U.S. versions of “Gimme Shelter”.

  8. Ah that’s good.. Well it’s almost impossible for a fan like me.. While I think “Sympathy For The Devil”, “Paint It Black” , “Gimme Shelter” or “You can’t always get what you want” are huge, I’m completely taken by two songs which are not mentioned at all, both from the magnificient Sticky Fingers: “Sway” and “Moonlight Mile”, the most intense song and the most gorgeous ballad ever written for me..

  9. Can’t You Hear Me Knockin’

    Runners up: Gimme Shelter, Midnight Rambler, Start Me Up…. on and on…..

  10. For me, music is tied to the time when you first experienced it. While Tumbling Dice is one of my favorites and arguably one of their best songs, I was an early teen when The Stones hit the States. Get Off of My Cloud, Time is on my Side, The Last Time, Ruby Tuesday all evoke an era when the music was new and fresh. I could do the same analysis for The Beatles and the Kinks.


  11. Having got the Blu-ray GRRR, I find the alternate hi-def streams don’t really play as well as the PCM stream and sound thin on my set.
    Anyway, the Stones song that resonates with me at the moment (doesn’t it change for you too?) is Heartbreaker. When I listen I hear Bruce Springsteen’s American Skin (41 shots) in the first verse, and Elton John’s Blues Never Fade Away in the 2nd verse. Such evocative words, in a great rock rock song, it deserved to be on Sticky Fingers, surely the joint best rock album, with Born to Run, of all time!!

    1. Gee, thanks. I was passing on this because I see very little value added since I have all the songs on this compilation (except for the two new ones). Now you tell me there is a bluray version.

      You might as well go ahead an reel me in now. I can’t resist.

      1. Just a heads up. I picked up the Blu-ray from Amazon UK, delivered (to the US) for $21.00.

    2. True, “Heartbreaker” is amazing. Goat’s Head Soup is also an underrated album, with some gems like “Angie”, “Winter” and the afore mentioned “Starfucker”. For me, the Stones 1969 – 1973 were the perfect band.

  12. Difficult question. Needed to avoid picking my own favorites, many of which have been mentioned. I’d say for me it’s Jumpin’ Jack Flash. According to the Wiki entry for the song, ” ..It ranks as the song the band has played in concert most frequently..”

  13. Is there really a Blu-Ray version of this? I can’t find it on Amazon. Or is it part of one of the Deluxe editions (like the Jethro Tull/Aqualung release)? Hopefully not the latter as I could not justify the price for the JT/AL set as much as I love surround sound recordings…and these are priced just as high :( …

    And the most important question: Is the Blu-Ray in surround sound? :)

    Do tell…

    1. You need to order it from AmazonUK and no, it isn’t a 5.1 surround recording. To my knowledge the only 5.1 Stones mix is an sacd with several re-mixes, as well as the original mix, of Sympathy For The Devil.

      1. Thanks for the info…less interested now that it’s not in surround.

        I have the 5.1 Stones SACD with SFtD (and the other versions). It was a free giveaway with a past issue of Rolling Stone magazine when the industry was trying to establish the SACD marketplace maybe 10 years back or so…

        I didn’t care for the other versions, but the original in full 5.1 surround sound was pretty amazing…wish the other Stones SACDs were done is surround. I do own several of these, and they also sound great even if they are not surround :) .


  14. Blu-ray is not out in the US, supposedly because the group gave the exclusive rights here
    to HD Download. It can be ordered from, shipped to US for just under $21. Great sound and deal.

  15. I’m a little late to this conversation but my vote goes to Honky Tonk Women today. If I were a little more moody I’d have probably said Gimme Shelter or Sympathy for the Devil.

    I do have to comment on this box set though. The CDs sound great and it is a comprehensive set but I am very unhappy about some of the edits. CDs and and packaging are very cheap these days so there is no reason that we couldn’t get the same 50 songs on 4 cds instead of 3 for a reasonable price. It always bothers me when greatest hits compilations are made up of radio edited or otherwise truncated versions of the songs. The Stones have always been an “album” band so most of us grew up with the full, unedited versions of the songs and those are the versions that should have been compiled.

  16. Come on. If you are reducing the Stones to one song, it’s Jumpin’ Jack Flash. No contest

  17. “Can’t You Hear Me Knocking” has it all for me. The opening guitar riff. The cool vocal and all along knowing that the sax jam is just around the corner. Ultimately building to the “crash” ending. This was the period that the Stones were really vital. Too long of a song to be worn out by radio. “Fingerprint File” took 2nd place and “Moonlight Mile” 3rd.

  18. “Rock and a hard place” , Flashpoint – Live. One of my favourite live CD’s.
    “Sympathy…”, “Jumpin’ jack flash” from same also very good :-)

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