This site is being preserved as it was on 17 September 2001 as a memorial to the life and work of Eberhard Wenzel.
Website by Eberhard Wenzel is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.


Role playing in the Rolling Stones
May 1999

Last night I saw a lengthy documentation on the Rolling Stones in one of our cable channels. I don't remember who produced the feature, but it was a fairly recent production because it included tour material until 1998.

One issue impressed me because I hadn't realized before that the Rolling Stones are a show company which provides roles for its members to play. Mick Jagger is more of a role than a real person. As he mentioned in one of his comments, he needs to get in the mood to play the singer of the greatest rock & roll band on earth, and after the concert he needs time to get rid of the character he played for two and a half hours.

We've got two Mick Jaggers in fact. The singer and the businessman Mick Jagger who heads "Rolling Stones Incorporated", an international, perhaps a truly global company active in the entertainment business.

But it's not just Mick, the former student of economics, who presented himself in two different roles. The rest of the band joined in and even my old hero Charlie Watts, the drummer, said that him playing in the Rolling Stones is him playing a role. He's an actor, he creates images as much as imagination. The Rolling Stones ain't real, they're role players.

Gee, I thought they were enjoying themselves playing music, now I learnt it's their alter egos enjoying themselves, perhaps. And afterwards they're on their way home from work, just like everybody else.

There's one big difference between these guys and most of us: they get paid a bit more for 2 or 3 hours work than we do. Guess, I need to enroll in an actor's school.

Copyright © by Eberhard Wenzel, 1997-2001