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Song of the Day: Mick Jagger, “Memo from Turner” – from Performance (1970)

Featured prominently in the movie Performance, directed by Nicolas Roeg with Donald Cammell and released in 1970, this song remains one of my favorite Mick Jagger/Stones songs—right up there with “Sympathy,” “Satisfaction” and “Monkey Man.” Here it is in a clip from the movie, with what is surely Jagger’s finest performance in any film:

A higher quality clip (and without the subtitles) is available through TCM: Performance (1970) — (Movie Clip) Memo From Turner. (As a Warner film, Performance is part of the TCM archive and you can check their webpage on the movie for any scheduled broadcast times.)

The Song

The song “Memo from Turner” was released as a single in the UK and also appeared as the first track on the second side of the Performance soundtrack—which also features music by Randy Newman and Buffy Sainte-Marie. It features Ry Cooder on slide guitar, and other musicians, rather than the regular Stones line-up. (Keith Richards reportedly balked at playing on the track because of love scenes in the movie between his girlfriend at the time Anita Pallenberg and Jagger, which were rumored to have gone beyond simulation.)

The song is also available on a number of compilation albums, including The Very Best of Mick Jagger, and some Rolling Stones compilations, such as Singles Collection: The London Years.

A second version of the song was released on the Stones album Metamorphosis in 1975. It features a different line-up of musicians—but still not the Stones—possibly including Brian Jones and Stevie Winwood of Traffic, as well as slightly differently lyrics. I think the original is much more powerful and appealing, but you can compare the two for yourself.

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zerode by nick chapman is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.

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Upcoming Bay Area Films of Interest

  • San Francisco Silent Film Festival May 28, 2015 – June 2, 2015
  • Castro: Days of Heaven/Out of the Blue June 3, 2015
  • Dazed and Confused at Balboa June 2, 2015 at 7:30 pm – 8:30 pm Balboa
  • Breaking Away at Balboa June 9, 2015 at 7:30 pm – 8:30 pm Balboa
  • Henri Langlois Tribute at PFA June 11, 2015 at 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm PFA Thursday, June 11, 2015 7:30 p.m. Henri Langlois Centennial Tribute: Opening Program Introduced by Tom Luddy. Judith Rosenberg on pian o. A collection of shorts on the legendary Langlois, as well as the 1918 I talian short La Tosca, a lost film found by Langlois in the BAM/PFA Collec tion. Titles include Langlois (1970), Chit Chat…
  • Dimitri Kirsanoff & Nadia Sibirskaïa Collaborations at PFA June 12, 2015 at 7:00 pm – 8:00 pm PFA Friday, June 12, 2015 7:00 p.m. Dimitri Kirsanoff & Nadia Si birskaïa Collaborations Dmitri Kirsanoff (France, 1924/1928). Imported Pr ints! Judith Rosenberg on piano. Two rare works from the great silent-era d irector Dimitri Kirsanoff: the evocative portrait of two young sisters, Mé nilmontant, and Autumn Mists, a short about a melancholy soul. (54 mins) n…
  • Max Ophuls, "From Mayerling to Sarajevo" (1940) at PFA June 12, 2015 at 8:15 pm – 9:45 pm The UC Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, 2625 Durant Avenue #2250, Berkeley, CA 94720, United States Friday, June 12, 2015 8:15 p.m. From Mayerling to Sarajevo Max Ophuls (France, 1940). New 35mm Print! Ophuls presents the love affair between Archduke Franz-Ferdinand and Czech Countess Sophie Chotek in his o wn elegant, fluid style. “Amongst the finest works of Max Ophuls” (Robin W ood). (90 mins) http://www.bampfa.berkeley.edu/filmseries/theater_near_y ou2015
  • Lubitsch "Forbidden Paradise" at PFA June 13, 2015 at 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm PFA Saturday, June 13, 2015 6:30 p.m. Forbidden Paradise Ernst Lubitsch (US, 1924). Imported Print! Judith Rosenberg on piano. Lubitsch t eams with his favorite muse, the great actress Pola Negri, for this comed y inspired by the amorous intrigue surrounding Catherine the Great of Russi a. Adolphe Menjou costars. (78 mins) http://www.bampfa.berkeley.edu/filmse ries/langlois2015
The 400 Blows

zerode

is an over-caffeinated and under-employed grad school dropout, aspiring leftwing intellectual and cultural studies academic, film buff and occasional reviewer, and former private detective. Raised in San Francisco on classic film, radical politics, burritos and soul music, then set loose upon the world. He spends his time in coffee shops with his laptop and headphones, caffeinating and trying to construct a post-whatever life.

 

What's in a name... The handle "zerode" is a contraction of Zéro de Conduite, the title of Jean Vigo's 1933 movie masterpiece about schoolboy rebellion.

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