THE ROLLING STONES CHRONICLE

1983
 

The strength of darkness still abides


    January 1983: Bill Wyman and Astrid Lundstrom start work on the film Digital Dreams and its soundtrack.
 

    January 7, 1983: Ron Wood performs/lectures at the Learning Annex in New York City.
 

    Early January 1983: Mick Jagger films his role in Los Angeles for a US cable TV fairy tale (The Nightingale).
 

January 18, 1983: The Rolling Stones, minus Bill Wyman, attend a promotional party for the premiere
    of the concert film Let's Spend the Night Together at the Tavern on the Green in New York City.
 

    January 19, 1983: Keith Richards attends the funeral for Patti Hansen's father in Staten Island.
 

    January 23, 1983: Keith Richards catches a John McEnroe tennis match at Madison Square Garden.
 

    January 25, 1983: Keith Richards watches Tina Turner perform at The Ritz in New York, and parties afterwards with
        Turner, David Bowie and John McEnroe.
 

January 30-February 9, 1983: The Rolling Stones resume recording sessions for the Undercover album
    at Pathé Marconi Studios in Paris, France.
 

February 10, 1983: The Rolling Stones, minus Bill Wyman again, fly in to New York to watch and
    celebrate the premiere of the concert film Let's Spend the Night Together, directed by Hal Ashby.
 
 

Keith Richards (1983): Let's Spend the Night Together

I'm sick of this tour stuff. Coming off the two tours and doing Still Life, I've lost all objectivity. Yeah, maybe I'll get around to watching it in a year or two.


 

February 15-Mid-March 1983: The Rolling Stones continue recording sessions for the Undercover album
    at Pathé Marconi Studios in Paris, France, including Feel On Baby and Undercover of the Night.
 
 

Mick Jagger (1984): "Undercover of the Night"

The song Undercover of the Night was always, when it was written, it was always like... it's supposed to be about the repression of violence in our minds, you know, in society's mind. Because we have so much of it. We get used to it.  It's also about repressive political systems. Pretty serious stuff for, you know, Top - sort of - 20 material.  It's pretty risky to put out songs like that 'cause nobody is really interested, I think. I mean everyone's interested in songs about having a party all night or whatever. Or just mumbo-jumbo, you know. No one's interested in anything real. Plus, then the video which is setting out to reflect that song made it perhaps a little easier - or not! (laughs) - to understand. So that was a bit of a departure for us, for a while. Cause we hadn't done anything like that since Street Fighting Man


 

    March 1983: Bill Wyman and Astrid Lundstrom separate after a 16-year relationship.
 

    Mid-late March 1983: Mick Jagger and Jerry Hall holiday in Kenya, then on the island of Mustique.
 

    March 25, 1983: Charlie Watts joins Rocket 88 for a concert at the 100 Club in London, England. 


    April 20, 1983: In New York City at the 5th annual Rock Radio Awards, Ron Wood accepts an award by Billy Idol on
        behalf of the Rolling Stones for "favourite concert act".
 
 
    April 27, 1983: Mick Jagger returns to New York City.

 
    April 28-29, 1983: Bill Wyman and Charlie Watts perform with Alexis Korner and other musicians at The Marquee in
        London, England.

 
    April 30, 1983: Muddy Waters dies in Chicago.

 
    May 1983: Keith Richards spends the first three weeks of the month in San Francisco.

 
Early May-May 9, 1983: Mick Jagger starts recording overdubs for the album Undercover at Compass
    Point Studios in Nassau, The Bahamas.
 
 
Keith Richards (1983): Percussion on Undercover 

A lot of Jamaican reggae interests me because they have a lovely, wide-open concept about recording, which the rest of us are slowing coming around to. For them, a console is as much an instrument as a drum or a guitar... They'll just go Whack! Bang! and drop out an instrument... When we first started working with our engineer, Chris Kimsey, we tried to turn him on to some dub records. He was interested but he didn't really get into it until we started working in the Caribbean over the last few years.... (T)here are some people you don't normally think of as producers, like Sly Dunbar, who are incredible. I didn't realize how good he was until recently when we were in the same studio in Nassau... Matter of fact, that's him doing percussion on Simmons Drums on a couple of tracks on the new album... We (also) brought in a couple of guys from Senegal to get that percussive bongo sound. They brought in their own instruments, and an incredible array of primitive African hardware, so there's lots of great percussion throughout the album; a lot of work with rhythms. 


Late May-early June 1983: Mick Jagger, Keith Richards and Ron Wood start mixing sessions for the album
    Undercover at The Hit Factory in New York City.
 

    May 9, 1983: Mick Jagger sees Stevie Ray Vaughan perform at The Bottom Line in New York City.
 

    May 14, 1983: Mick Jagger meets up with John McEnroe at a party at The Ritz.
 

    May 16, 1983: Mick Jagger attends a party at Studio 54 for Marvin Gaye.
 

    June 1, 1983: Mick Jagger, Billy Idol and Christopher Reeve attend Ron Wood's 36th birthday party in New York.
 

    June 1983: Bill Wyman films in France & England for the movie Digital Dreams.
 

    Late June 1983: Keith Richards spends time in Jamaica.
 

Late June-August 1, 1983: Mick Jagger and Keith Richards finish mixing sessions for the album Undercover at
    The Hit Factory in New York City.
 

    July 16, 1983: Keith Richards performs with Jerry Lee Lewis in Los Angeles, taping a salute to Lewis for U.S. TV. 
 

Keith Richards (1983): Dream bands

I could have done with being one of Elvis' original band, being one of the Crickets, being one of the Blue Cats. I could've used being in Little Richard's band in the '50s, a million others. I would've loved to have been in Muddy's band in the early '50s. Would've loved to be in Louis Armstrong's band in the '20s. I mean, I can go back further than that.


 

    July 25, 1983: Pete Townshend writes an open letter on the topic of Mick Jagger's 40th birthday in the London Times.


    July 26, 1983: Mick Jagger celebrates his 40th birthday in a Vermont resort with Jerry Hall.


 
    July 27, 1983: Mick Jagger and Keith Richards witness David Bowie perform at Madison Square Garden.
 

    August 12 or 13, 1983: Mick Jagger sees The Police perform, with opening act R.E.M., at Hartford's Civic Center.

 
 
Mick Jagger (September 1983): A Rolling Stones tour?

No one seems to be doing anything very innovative in stadium shows. I've seen David Bowie, I've seen Talking Heads and the Police, and I mean, is that all there really is?... I don't know whether the Stones are gonna go on the road next year or not. We're gonna sit down and talk about that in the next few weeks. I mean, CHARLIE obviously doesn't want to go on tour. But yeah, I love it. It's kind of in my blood.


 
Mick Jagger (1983): Breakdancing

I went (out) a couple of times on scratch-dance night, and I got a lot of letters from girls afterward saying, You danced with me. Of course, nobody really dances with anyone; it's just twitching around and scratching and getting on the floor. I tried spinning on my head and got a terrible hangover the next day.


 

Mid-August 1983: The Rolling Stones gather in New York City, where they sign a new four-album deal
    with CBS Records for a record $28 million, with Mick Jagger also signing a side deal for a solo album.
 
 

Mick Jagger (1983): The CBS deal 

I think the CBS offer was based on the performance of our last three studio albums (Some Girls, Emotional Rescue, Tattoo You). I think CBS figures they can sell more records than anybody, so if our next three sell the same as the last three, they're gonna make money.


 
Mick Jagger (1983): A solo album 

I could do all kinds of things. I could go very commercial - very, VERY commercial American pop. Or I could go for just ordinary, straight rock and roll, in an English way. Or I could mix it up: some very, you know, some HITS, and some things that are a bit more experimental, outside of this kind of mainstream rock. You could do some interesting things in that area. I have a lot of stuff. I think I'm gonna do it relatively soon.


 

    August 20, 1983: Jo Howard gives birth to her and Ron Wood's second child together, their son Tyrone.
 
 

Charlie Watts: Starting drug use 

(My drug and alcohol problems were) my way of dealing with (family problems)... Looking back on it, I think it was a mid-life crisis. All I know is that, taking amphetamines and heroin, I became totally another person around 1983 and came out of it about 1986. I nearly lost my wife and everything over my behaviour. I was not particularly fun to live with. 


 

    September 16, 1983: Charlie Watts performs with Rocket 88 again in London.
 

    September 20-21, 1983: Bill Wyman & Charlie Watts participate in benefit concerts for multiple sclerosis (ARMS) in
        London, with Eric Clapton & other musicians.
 

    September 24, 1983: Mick Jagger and Keith Richards record promotional interviews in New York for Undercover.
 

    October 1983: Bill Wyman's film Digital Dreams is released on video, along with its soundtrack.
 

    Early October 1983: Mick Jagger and Jerry Hall visit Mick's parents in England, where they tell them of Jerry Hall's
        pregnancy. Keith Richards and Patti Hansen holiday in Barbados.
 
 

Mick Jagger (September 1983): Marriage? 

I'm not gonna get married. Not right now! I MAY get married. But I'm not getting married right now. 


 

October 18, 1983: The Rolling Stones shoot a videoclip for Undercover of the Night, performing at
    Bain-Douches Club in Paris, France.
 

October 26-30, 1983: Mick Jagger & Keith Richards shoot narrative scenes for the Undercover of the
    Night videoclip in Mexico.
 
 

Mick Jagger & Keith Richards (1983): Joining the videoclip race 

Mick: Two and half years after (after the Tattoo You videos), you want to make a video that works for now. You can't wing it at all. Before, you used to be able to wing it, with a video like Neighbors.

Keith: I was thinking of saving money and doing it in Super-8, which WOULD happen to fit this particular record and the cover artwork. I mean, who benefits from a video worth a quarter of a million bucks? Obviously, for Michael Jackson it was well worth it. But I don't think it would make much difference to us to try and outdo that or join the race on that level, especially since we've been doing it for so long, anyway. I think the only thing we can do is to come out with a video that's got something else to it, or suggets something else. 


 

October 31, 1983: The Rolling Stones' lead single off their next album, Undercover
of the Night, is released.
 
 
 
 
 

    October 31, 1983: Keith Richards stays behind in Mexico, right through December.
 

    Early-to-mid-November 1983: Mick Jagger and Jerry Hall spend time in Paris, then London. Bill Wyman visits his
        home in France, before returning to England.
 

November 7, 1983: The Rolling Stones' 19th U.S. and 17th UK studio album, Undercover, is released.
 
 
 
 
 

    Late November-December 1983: Mick Jagger starts writing songs for his first solo album in Barbados.
 

    November 28-December 9, 1983: Charlie Watts, Bill Wyman and Ron Wood are part of the ARMS benefit tour of the
        United States, from Dallas to New York City, featuring Eric Clapton, Joe Cocker, Jimmy Page and others.
 

    Mid-December 1983: Ron Wood enters a clinic for drug rehabilitation in Devon, England.
 
 

Mick Jagger (1984): Ron Wood in rehab

Sounded horrible to me, the one he went to. This guy rang ME up, screaming, 'cause Woody had given them my name. This guy yelled at me, 'cause Woody checked out. Like, It's your fault he left. Hey, it was my idea to get him IN there.


 

    December 18, 1983: Keith Richards marries Patti Hansen in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, on his 40th birthday, with
        Mick Jagger as best man.
 

    December 21, 1983: Andy Warhol, Peter Wolf and Ahmet Ertegun attend Mick Jagger and Jerry Hall's Christmas
        party in New York.
 

    Late December 1983: Keith Richards and Patti Hansen spend their honeymoon in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. Charlie
        Watts and his family holiday in Thailand. In New York City, Mick Jagger tapes his appearance in Bette Midler's
        video of her cover of Beast of Burden.
 

    December 28, 1983: Mick Jagger sees Stevie Ray Vaughan perform again at The Beacon Theater in New York.
 
 
 
 
 

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