Five Great Ron Wood Recordings Without the Rolling Stones
More of my “Take 5” antics…
Ron Wood celebrated his 75th birthday on June 1. While’s he’s best known as Keith Richards’ co-guitarist in the Rolling Stones (where he replaced Mick Taylor, who replaced Brian Jones), Wood has had a long and creatively fruitful career before and outside the Stones. Here are five recordings that showcase his superb musicianship.
“You Shook Me” (1968) – As bassist in the Jeff Beck Group, Wood played alongside the former Yardbirds guitarist, drummer Mick Waller and a young vocalist called Rod Stewart. Beck’s band covered this classic Willie Dixon blues number mere months before his former Yardbirds bandmate Jimmy Page recorded it with his new band, Led Zeppelin.
“Barabajagal” (1969) – This Donovan track was first issued as a single, and later included on the album of the same name. The studio session’s lineup featured Wood on bass with the Jeff Beck Group plus Donovan Leitch.
“Stay With Me” (1971) – This fiery classic from Faces’ third studio album presents one of Rod Stewart’s finest vocal outings. Wood co-wrote the song with Stewart, and plays electric and slide guitars on the track.
“Ding Dong, Ding Dong” (1974) – While George Harrison’s holiday tune never achieved the classic status of John and Yoko’s “Happy Xmas (War is Over),” it remains a fun way to ring in the new year. Ron Wood joins Harrison, Ten Years After’s Alvin Lee and Spooky Tooth’s Mick Jones on guitars.
“Seven Days” (1979) – From Ron Wood’s solo LP Gimme Some Neck, “Seven Days” is a rare lead vocal from the multi-instrumentalist. He sings the Bob Dylan-penned song is a style very much reminiscent of its composer.
With a background in marketing and advertising, Bill Kopp got his professional start writing for Trouser Press. After a stint as Editor-in-chief for a national music magazine, Bill launched Musoscribe in 2009, and has published new content every business day since then (and every single day since 2018). The 4500-plus interviews, essays, and reviews on Musoscribe reflect Bill's keen interest in American musical forms, most notably rock, jazz, and soul. His work features a special emphasis on reissues and vinyl. Bill's work also appears in many other outlets both online and in print. He regularly hosts lecture/discussions on artists and albums of historical importance (including monthly events Music to Your Ears and Music Movie Mondays), and is a frequent guest on music-focused radio programs and podcasts. In Spring 2023 he taught a history of Rock 'n' Roll at UNC Asheville's College for Seniors. He also researches and authors liner notes for album reissues -- more than 30 to date -- and co-produced a reissue of jazz legend Julian "Cannonball" Adderley's final album. His first book, Reinventing Pink Floyd: From Syd Barrett to The Dark Side of the Moon was published by Rowman & Littlefield in 2018, and in paperback in 2019. His second book, Disturbing the Peace: 415 Records and the Rise of New Wave, was published in 2021 by HoZac Books. His third book, What's the Big Idea: Great Concept Albums will be published in 2024. Read even more about him here.