Mick Jagger’s new band SuperHeavy previewed the band’s eponymous debut album for a select number of journalists in Los Angeles on June 30, 2011.
According to CNN.com, all five members of the band (Rolling Stones lead singer Jagger, Eurythmics co-founder Dave Stewart, Joss Stone, Damian Marley and Oscar-winning “Slumdog Millionaire” songwriter/composer A.R. Rahman) attended the listening session at Henson Recording Studios’ Studio A, where they talked about the making of the album.
As previously reported, SuperHeavy’s eponymous debut album (which Jagger and Stewart produced) will be released September 19, 2011, in countries outside the United States and Canada, and on September 20, 2011, in the United States and Canada. The album’s first single, “Miracle Worker,” goes on sale worldwide on July 7, 2011.
Universal Republic will release the album in the United States, and A&M Records will release the album everywhere else. Both record labels are part of Universal Music Group, which is the current record company that has the Rolling Stones under contract for new releases and reissues.
CNN.com describes the “SuperHeavy” album in this way: “The music sounds like the sum of its parts — a joyous fusion of rock, soul, reggae and percussive Indian beats, with vocals from Jagger and Stone seamlessly interwoven with Marley’s distinct toasting.”
(Click here to watch a SuperHeavy promotional clip, which has examples of their music.)
SuperHeavy has completed the music video for “Miracle Worker,” according to an update on SuperHeavy’s official Fabebook page. (The premiere date for the video is to be announced.) CNN.com reported that the video was filmed in Los Angeles on June 29, 2011.
Rahman said that the “Miracle Worker” video shoot was the first time that SuperHeavy performed in public. Rahman commented on the audience at the video shoot: “Of course they were all extras, but they liked the music.”
Meanwhille, a photo of a hand-written set list that was posted on SuperHeavy’s Facebook page reveals several song titles. The songs (which are presumably on SuperHeavy’s debut album) include “I Don’t Mind,” “One Day One Night,” “Beautiful People,” “Common Ground,” “Unbelievable,” “Never Gonna Change,” “Rock Me Gently” and “Hey Captain.” Other announced songs on the album are “Energy,” “SuperHeavy” and “I Can’t Take It No More.”
The CNN.com article reports what SuperHeavy said during the listening session:
“I got a call from Dave,” Stone recalled. “He said, ‘Hey Joss, Mick and I want to make this band. Do you want to come and have some fun?'”
“It was an intense process that covered several countries, but started in this room,” Stewart explained.
Jagger said the group wrote 29 songs in 10 days. “Working with four other vocalists was interesting to me,” admitted the Rolling Stones front man. “I’ve never actually done it before. Normally, I have to do everything – which I’m quite happy to do, don’t worry.”
Marley, meanwhile, is used to collaboration.
“I do a lot of work with my brothers,” said the reggae star. “But this is quite different with the different genres.”
“What genre of iTunes?” asked Jagger. “The unknown. The unclassifiable.”
Whether SuperHeavy will tour remains to be seen — but the occasional special performance appears to be a sure bet.
“We’ll be playing in the Unclassified tent at Glastonbury,” Jagger quipped, as the crowd laughed.
Spinner has this description of the listening session:
The hour-long listening session began with a short documentary showing the band recording at Henson Studios, before the invited guests got a taste of what it sounds like when cultures, genres and generations gather together for a supergroup.
In the press conference afterward, Stone said, “We’ve made this crazy music that doesn’t sound like anything else. It’s its own thing.” And Jagger joked it will end up in the uncategorized section of iTunes. It may indeed, and that is a good thing.
The eight songs played showed an impressive array of diversity, from the heavy rock and reggae feel of ‘SuperHeavy’ and the uplifting pop lilt of the first single, ‘Miracle Worker’ to a double shot of vintage Jagger, the ballad ‘You’re Never Gonna Change, and the slightly ominous feel of ‘One Day, One Night,’ which also features Marley taking the song home with a huge finale.
Jagger also spoke about how much fun it was for him to do a project with four other vocalists. “For me, working with four other vocalists was interesting. I realized we all had a part to play,” he said. While Jagger might be the main attraction for those curious what his first band outside of the Stones sounds like, this is a collective. And what was truly exciting about the music was the seamlessness with which the vocalists work together. Often in the eight songs the group played, which Jagger said was just half the record, Jagger and Stone could be heard exchanging vocals with Marley coming in and toasting, all three of the voices interwoven brilliantly.
As the band made their way out yesterday to the five chairs seated in front, Jagger commented on the video shoot they had done the night before at the Paramount lot. Later on, Stone commented on the video, “We need to play again, but without extras, for real people.” So, will the collective hit the road?
“It was fun miming it,” Jagger said. “If everyone wants to hear it, I’m sure we’ll do it.”
As previously reported in a separate June 2011 interview with Spinner, Stewart hinted that there may be a SuperHeavy tour: “We’re talking about how to perform such an epic fusion of sounds. There’s lots of talk of different ways, almost like a happening, and I think when we do something, it’ll be a happening. And it will have all sorts of people intersecting from different cultures and different walks of life and different ages, because of the fusion.”
Stewart has solo tour dates at the end of 2011, so a SuperHeavy tour will most likely launch in 2012. However, don’t be surprised if SuperHeavy does at least one live performance close to the album’s September 2011 release date. Any live performances that SuperHeavy could do in 2011 might be a TV appearance or a concert that is open to the public or both. Nothing has been officially announced yet.