Pianowski: My Top 10 Rolling Stones Songs

By Scott Pianowski

This is awfully, awfully hard. There are a slew of tremendous songs I’m leaving off, like everyone else. And if I did this list in 48 hours, I could have a lot of changes. The Rolling Stones catalogue is ridiculously deep.

(The number is how many points each song gets, with 30 points allocated for 10 songs.)

5 – Gimme Shelter – Not necessarily my favorite Stones song, but I think it’s their best. I recognize that’s a nebulous point. For me, it’s how I consider Pulp Fiction the best film I’ve ever seen, but it’s not necessarily my favorite (though it rates very well, too).

4- Rocks Off – To me, the quintessential Stones number. The lyrics are a perfect kick-start to Exile (also kicking off the fourth album in what is probably the best Rock and Roll run in history, Banquet to Exile), but what really gets me is everything going on behind Mick, especially the horns and Hopkins piano. Mick could sing about Peanut Butter & Jelly and this is still fantastic.

4- Bitch – Yeah, it’s been played into the ground, but rock doesn’t get any hookier than this.

3- Can’t You Hear Me Knocking – Mandatory for Marty’s mob pictures.

3- Ruby Tuesday – I loved it at first listen, but I’ll admit I loved it a little more when it turned up in the key scene of The Royal Tenenbaums. (I also hated to leave out I Am Waiting, which framed the most melancholy 90 seconds of Rushmore.)

3 – Moonlight Mile – Japanese Thing

3 – Under My Thumb – Sarcasm font didn’t exist in the 60s.

2 – Waiting on a Friend – The Stones don’t get enough credit for the 80s. Maybe they weren’t hitting 100 on the gun then, but they still cranked it up into the high 90s.

2- Brown Sugar

1- Little T & A – Long Live Keith Richards

4 thoughts on “Pianowski: My Top 10 Rolling Stones Songs

  1. I’m sorry, but how do you mot include Time Waits For No One and No Expectations? Should have been the first 2 on the list.

    • I’ve always had a little mini battle in my mind between these two lyrics:

      “Time can tear down a building, or destroy a woman’s face”


      “Time is a jet plane, it moves too fast.”

      I don’t think either reflects well on its author.

  2. Almost as bad as “time takes a cigarette and puts it in your mouth” and “time – he flexes like a whore, falls wanking to the floor,” both courtesy of David Bowie.

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