Tuesday, January 27, 2009

The Singer, He Looks Angry at Being Thrown to the Lions

On December 16, 1978, the musical guest on NBC's Saturday Night Live was Peter Tosh, but when he came out to sing his first song, there was a second vocal mike next to his own. And a few notes in, out trotted Mick Jagger to sing along on "Don't Look Back." (I still remember going to school the following Monday and having our social-studies teacher turn to us in the middle of class and ask, "Was that Mick Jagger on Saturday Night Live?," as if a bunch of eighth graders would know that better than she would, although I guess we did.) Jagger was a longtime fan and friend of Tosh's. Tosh had recently been signed to Rolling Stones Records, and Jagger sang on the recorded version of "Don't Look Back" as well.

This was a mere two months after the Stones' disappointing appearance in the fourth season opener, and one wonders if Mick was trying to atone for that. Whatever the reason, the Stones have never been back to SNL, although Jagger has appeared as a solo act twice: in 1993, with Luke Perry hosting, and in 2001, with Hugh Jackman hosting.

Actually, it's a bit of a surprise that Jagger and the Stones haven't been on more. He's been friendly with Lorne Michaels for a long time. "I slept on Lorne's couch for a couple of weeks, long before the show ever started, and one day I came in and Mick Jagger was sitting there - in Lorne's apartment, on the couch," said production assistant Neil Levy in Live From New York. "I don't know how Lorne knew Mick Jagger, because at that point he wasn't even 'Lorne Michaels.'"


Kinky Paprika said...

Keef was the musical guest once, around '88 or so, right after the release of "Talk Is Cheap."

I vaguely remember that they forgot to turn on his vocal mic for the first number ("Take It So Hard"), rendering him only slightly less intelligible than usual.

T. Nawrocki said...

October 8, 1988. Tom Hanks was the host, for the third time (out of eight total).

Rob said...

at the school cafeteria the following Monday, the debate was whether that was really Mick Jagger, or a funny-as-hell imitation of Mick Jagger. I'd assumed it was a comic impersonation, and laughed heartily all the way through it. But my friend Eddie, the only one of us who knew the name of "the reggae guy," convinced me it was really Mick...I remember it still being hilarious though. "I'm walkin' barefoot, me."