Saturday, 15 March 2014

No need to figure Mick Jagger out... Or to read Marc Spitz's biography

     I understand that after a couple dozen books about Mick Jagger have been written, it must be hard to come up with new things to say about him so that your biography is unique and not just a regurgitation of previous novels. Everybody who attempts to write a book about the illusive Mr. Jagger has to search for a new angle to write about, to make their book the one about Mick Jagger to read. (Even I don't have the patience to read every book about him out there.) With so many books about available I plan on only reading the good ones.

     I gave Marc Spitz's book Jagger: Rambler, Rock Star, Rebel, Rogue a chance because somebody bought a copy for me. Overall it wasn't an unreadable book, but it had one major flaw. The angle Spitz went for to make his book unique was the attempt to figure out Mick Jagger. His book was essentially a long rambling effort to answer the question "Who Is Mick Jagger?" And let's be honest, that is not a question that we should try to answer.

     This book did little to actually describe the life and times of Mick Jagger; for example, what I like in a biography is an account of important things that happen in the life of one of my heroes and how that influenced his music and his life henceforth. This was pretty much absent from the book altogether. Instead, it gives us a timeline of the different faces of Mick Jagger, the author always asking who he truly was, but never providing an answer or any good information which could lead the readers to create an answer of their own.

     Mick Jagger was a very complicated individual. He changed his image and his behaviour and his persona simply whenever he felt like it, whenever the times were changing and before he got bored of himself. He always stayed current and so he was always what the times were, but he was always himself. That's all that needs to be said, isn't it? Who is Mick Jagger? He is Mick Jagger. And I'm sure Mick Jagger knows who he is, and he's the only one who really needs to know. So why do we still keep talking about it? I think it's time to move on to more important Rolling Stones related questions like "How is Keith Richards still alive?" 

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