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Dead Flowers (The Rolling Stones song)


Dead Flowers (The Rolling Stones song)

"Dead Flowers"
Song by The Rolling Stones from the album Sticky Fingers
Released 23 April 1971
Recorded December 1969, April 1970
Genre Rock, country rock
Length 4:13
Label Rolling Stones/Virgin
Writer Jagger/Richards
Producer Jimmy Miller
Sticky Fingers track listing

"Dead Flowers" is a song written by Mick Jagger and Keith Richards of the rock band The Rolling Stones, appearing on their 1971 album Sticky Fingers.


  • Recording 1
  • Cover versions 2
  • Personnel 3
  • References 4
  • External links 5


Recording of "Dead Flowers" began in December 1969 at the Olympic Studios in London. The lyrics to the song are notably dark, and feature the line, "I'll be in my basement room, with a needle and a spoon", a reference to injecting heroin. The song was performed live during the album tours for Sticky Fingers and Exile On Main Street in 1970-72, then once during the Black and Blue Tour in 1976. It was not played again until the Steel Wheels Tour in 1989. The song was recently revived by the Rolling Stones - Dead Flowers W/Brad Paisley (Philly) 6-18-13. Brad Paisley accompanied Mick Jagger during a most recent performance of Dead Flowers at LP Field in Nashville, Tennessee during the Zip Code Tour on June 17th, 2015. [1]

This was written during the period when the Stones were stepping into country territory, when Richards' friendship with Gram Parsons was influencing his songwriting. Jagger commented in 2003: "The 'Country' songs we recorded later, like "Dead Flowers" on Sticky Fingers or "Far Away Eyes" on Some Girls, are slightly different (than our earlier ones). The actual music is played completely straight, but it's me who's not going legit with the whole thing, because I think I'm a blues singer not a country singer - I think it's more suited to Keith's voice than mine."

Both Richards and Taylor contribute the 'honky-tonk' style lead guitar lines throughout the album version. Richards' choppier fills act primarily as a response to Jagger's vocal lines during the verses, while Taylor's more fluid licks counteract with the vocals of the chorus. It is Taylor who performs the guitar solo in place of a third verse.

A live cut can be found on their 1995 live album Stripped. The recent live version with Brad Paisley in Philly on 6-18-2013 is available on YouTube.

The song was also played during a September 2006 concert in Louisville, Kentucky because of the lyric, "making bets on Kentucky Derby Day". The concert was held at Churchill Downs, site of The Kentucky Derby.

Cover versions

The song has been widely covered. Guns N' Roses also performed the song since 2009, notably at the 2012 London O2 Arena concert, where their former member Izzy Stradlin joined the band on stage to play the song. Whitewater Band released a version of Dead Flowers on their 2013 Country Rock album "Many Roads". Paul Milner, who worked on Talk is Cheap with Keith Richards, was the producer of Many Roads.

Caitlin Rose covered the song on her, 7 track, Dead Flowers album in 2009 Cœur de pirate made a cover of the song in her album Trauma released in 2014.



  1. ^ 4. Hudak, J. 18 June 2015. Rolling Stone. Retrieved from
  2. ^ "The New Riders of the Purple Sage Recorded live on 31 December 1977 at Winterland (San Francisco, CA)". Wolfgang's Vault. Retrieved 2012-08-02. 
  3. ^ "The Troubled Troubador". Aware One Records. Retrieved 2012-02-14. 
  4. ^ Mean Old ManJerry Lee Lewis, Retrieved 16 June 2012.

External links

  • Complete Official Lyrics
  • Full lyrics of this song at MetroLyrics

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