Mick Jagger: The Story Behind the Rolling Stone
Hardcover: 263 pages
Publisher: Carol Publishing Corporation (September 1993)
From Kirkus Reviews
Unrevealing bio of the lead singer of the Rolling Stones. Though he dutifully gives us Jagger's story from its narrow middle-class beginnings onward, Seay (Stairway to Heaven, 1986) fails to get close to his subject or to develop a convincing thesis about Jagger's character. Moreover, he writes superficially (``Stardom was about to change [Jagger's] life forever, but his essential character, stripped of his charisma, would remain unchanged'') and with mistakes (Seay hails ``The Last Time'' as the Stones' first truly authentic tune when it's clearly derived from the Staple Singers' song of the same name). Quotes from Jagger- -culled mostly from other sources--often fail to enlighten, though they tend to confirm some critics' contention that he's vacuous. Wading through the moral mine field the Stones represent, Seay vacillates between griping at the group's mores and worshipping their music--especially the energetic versions of classic blues the band cut its teeth on. Meanwhile, he seems to find Bianca Jagger's gold-digging and revealing blouses as reprehensible as the Stones' most overinflated excesses (which at places like Altamont resulted in misery and even death). Seay's chronicle momentarily catches fire, though, in describing the mayhem of early Stones shows; in touching upon the late Brian Jones's contributions to the Stones' music (cf. Laura Jackson's Golden Stone, reviewed above); and in an extended riff about the way the group's youthful audience embraced the song ``Satisfaction.'' Otherwise, even as it hints at Jagger's bisexuality or notes his eagerness to join Britain's upper crust, Seay's very linear narrative rarely pauses for the kind of sustained analysis that might reveal the pop star to readers. You won't get no satisfaction here. (Sixteen pages of photographs--not seen) -- Copyright ©1993, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.