Memo From Turner

Album: Metamorphosis (1970)
Charted: 32
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Songfacts®:

  • The Stones recorded this for the movie Performance, starring Mick Jagger as a guy named "Turner." It is on the soundtrack.
  • Keith Richards balked at recording this because he was not happy about the love scenes between Jagger and his girlfriend, Anita Pallenberg, in the movie.
  • The version on Metamorphosis features Traffic members Steve Winwood and Jim Capaldi singing backup.
  • This was released as a single in 1970 only in the UK. This version was credited only to Jagger and peaked at #32. It can be found on The Singles Collection.
  • Jagger sings this in Performance to the assembled mobsters while persuading them to take their clothes off. The scene wasn't originally scripted in the Donald Cammell and Nicolas Roeg-directed movie. Jagger recalled to Mojo in a 2019 interview:

    "'Memo from Turner' is like watching a total kind of video, a foreshadowing of MTV. It's very cleverly done, although at the time I quite understand what Don wanted in that scene when he told me - it was sort of thrown in a bit last minute and wasn't in the original parts of the scripts. It was a sequence that he added later."

Comments: 15

  • Lars Iverson from Montreal CanadaI'm pretty sure Ted from Carlsbad is right about the players ,at least on the movie version (far and away the best version in my opinion{it's my favourite Jagger song})As to Johnny Zhivago's comment about the lyrics: certainly the "english language idiom" he quotes is an idiom but Jagger chooses to mutilate it and ,thus, make it more interesting. The lyric,as sung, is "they have a tasty habit,to eat the hand that bleeds" Also "Performance" is one of Roeg's best films,I believe'.
  • Jae from New YorkRy Cooder claimed a lot of music riffs and playing on Stones’ “Let it Bleed” were ripped-off from him; I’d guess it’s him on slide in “Performance” film version.
  • Ted from CarlsbadIt's not the Stones. It's Ry Clooder on slide, Russ Titelman guitar, Randy Newman piano, Jerry Schff bass, and Gene Parsons Drums. The Stones never sounded this good! S--t version on Metamorphosis. Look at the credits! Even on the singles collection it says, Mick Jagger.
  • Johnnyzhivago from Holmby Hills, CaI love this song but the lyrics, as printed here, seem off, even to my foreign ear. For example, I think it's "they have nasty habit, they bite the hand that FEEDS." It's an English language idiom.
  • Paul from Boston, MaThe version from "Performance" featured Ry Cooder and late Lowell George, before he founded Little Feet. Also Jack Nitzsche and Randy Newman, Jim Capaldi, and Steve Windwood.
  • Jim from Long Beach, CaI love this song. Jagger played this song live on his '88 tour of Japan with Joe Satriani on guitar.I wish they would play it live with the Stones.
  • Gary from Seattle, WaBrian Jones is on lead guitar. Also rumored at that session Stevie Winwood, Jim Capaldi, Al Kooper and Charlie Watts.

    Be safe.
    Crowski KZOK Classic Rock Seattle
  • Ken from Booneville,ms, MsDepends on which version, there are 3 different version. One had Ry Cooder, one has Brian Jones and one has Al Kooper
  • Todd from Toronto, Canadahmmmm. well eric claptons in the rolling stones! naww dude Keith Richards plays on the is
  • Dan from Newport, WalesDoes anyone know who played the guitar,it sounds like Clapton
    - Pete, Burlington, WI

    Ry Cooder
  • Pete from Burlington, WiDoes anyone know who played the guitar,it sounds like Clapton
  • Bertrand from Paris, FranceThe version on Metamorphosis is reminiscent of Jimi Hendrix's own influence.
  • Michael from Wayne, NjGreat song....great lyrics
    "You'll still be in the circus when I'm laughing, laughing in my grave..."
  • Dave from Chicago, LaThis song is also playing in the background in the movie "Goodfellas" when Ray Liotta's character Henry emerges from the house during the daylight on a binge. This is the song I thanked Mick Jagger personally for recording when I met him at the MCA in Chicago in 1999.
  • Michele from Philly, Pai belive there are 2 differnt sets of lyrics one for metamorphasis first ofall isnt all that legal stuff hisory now over time etc. also they lyrics were kinda differnt ,,on each verison even the live ones they do kow so how many really are they and who plays which instrument on it ??
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