The Story Of The Song “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction”
via The Rolling Stones/YouTube
A Turning Point For Them
The Rolling Stones’ signature song, “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction” became their first #1 hit in the US. It’s a fan favorite which is why it’s been a staple in the band’s live repertoire. Mick Jagger referred to it as having “all the ingredients.”
He told Rolling Stone magazine, “It has a very catchy title. It has a very catchy guitar riff and a great guitar sound, which was original at that time. And it encapsulated the feeling of the times, which was alienation. A sexual kind of alienation. Alienation’s not quite the right word, but it’s one word that will do.”
Apparently, guitarist Keith Richards wrote it in his sleep and even recorded the riff’s rough version on a cassette player. He woke up in the morning without any recollection of recording anything. So he listened to the tape recorder and liked what he heard. Mick Jagger then wrote the lyrics four days before they went into the studio.
Speaking about the fuzz tone, Richards said: “It was the first one Gibson made. I was screaming for more distortion: This riff’s really gotta hang hard and long, and we burnt the amps up and turned the s–t up, and it still wasn’t right. And then Ian Stewart went around the corner to Eli Wallach’s Music City or something and came around with a distortion box. Try this. It was as off-hand as that. It was just from nowhere. I never got into the thing after that, either. It had a very limited use, but it was just the right time for that song.”
The Stones debuted it on the American musical variety series Shindig! It was released on June 5, 1965 as a single and eventually topped the US Billboard Hot 100 for four weeks. They also performed it on their third appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show.