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The Story of Brian Jones

Written by Robert Byrne All Rights Reserved © Void Magazine.

The Creative tornado engulfing the talented unique figure of the multi-instrumentalist Brian Jones hurricaned blues music into the pubs and bars around England during the early 1960s, Brian formed a successful blues outfit that he nonchalantly labeled “The Rolling Stones” after a booking agent asked for their non-existent name, Brian kicked over an amplifier and grabbed the closest LP he could reach. Quickly choosing the opening song from the running list on a Muddy Water’s LP. A name that would eventually become a piece of furniture in houses all around the world. If only Brian lived to see it happen. The band he created seemed to become an animal he could not control.

The fatality of Brian Jones has been documented time after time again, but the first times the multi-instrumentalist’s fate was mentioned was found in the pros of fellow musicians and members of the cultural revolution in the late 60s, Pete Townshend of the Who wrote a poem titled “A normal day for Brian, a man who died every day” Jim Morrison of the Doors published a poem titled “Ode to L.A. while thinking of Brian Jones, Deceased”. The legendary guitarist, Jimi Hendrix dedicated a song which was broadcasted live on national television to Brian days after his death. Is it a coincidence or curse that Jimi and John also found their end 2 years later when they were both 27?

After the musician’s death there seemed to be a shift in the music industry almost immediately after the event, the drama and controversy surrounding the industry became a prominent talking point in discussions within the music industry. Unfortunately, to call the death a shock is not a statement that would be heavily agreed upon, Brian was a victim of addiction to the highly sought-after lifestyle of a rock and roll star. Late nights, parties, shows, after-parties, gifts, glamour and more. You must remember that this was a different time and to put it into perspective, cocaine was still considered good for you. The safety and danger of drug use and addictions were at the research stage and the science behind it all was non-existent. LSD was the new drug around the block and was the choice for most musicians interested in psychedelia and sense enhancement, Brian fell under the drug’s spell and to draw similarities from Alice in Wonderland, Jones fell down the rabbit hole. With each passing day, he searched for Alice only to further fall and fall some more. His condition deteriorated and his involvement with the Rolling Stones diminished.

After many instances of drug convictions and avoided jail time Jones was excluded from The band he was once the core member and creator of. He had officially been fired by the Rolling Stones, it was made public that Brian walked out of the band voluntarily. During this time Jones managed to fight his addictions and win battles in the war he found himself in.

Like all stories surrounding this topic there won’t be a happy ending, Brian Jones was found dead in his swimming pool on the night of the 2nd of July 1969. Death by misadventure. The Rolling Stones dedicated their Hyde show performance to the late musician who they once called their band member and their friend.

When speaking about Brian Jones, I believe it’s important to remember the talent he possessed and the music he could produce. The man was a musical mastermind and it isn’t noticed enough. Addiction can take hold of anyone and Brian was unfortunate to fall victim to it, he will remain an important figure in the history of the blues and his work and involvement in the many songs he played during his time with the Rolling Stones will live on into the future and the futures beyond.

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