Categories: Beat News

What Do The Rolling Stones Have In Common With Mr. Burroughs?

Aside from the love of guns, hard drugs, being cultural phenomenons and part-time movie stars, what did William S. Burroughs share with the Rolling Stones?

Recently released on DVD,  Stones In Exile is a documentary premiered by the BBC in May.  Amid the great footage of the boys (?) jamming and living at Keith Richards’ house in France, we get a gliimpse of the song-writing process that put Jagger/Richards on the pop map.

One pleasant surprise, among many, is the creation of the song, Casino Boogie.

Casino Boogie was written in the famous ‘cut up’ style created by Williams Burroughs and Brion Gysin. Words and phrases and cut from sentences and thrown into a hat. Then the cut up pieces of language are magically arranged by the forces that be and are divined by the artist, who randomly picks out the cut up pieces and puts them together into some semblance of order.  Burroughs based novels on the concept, as is explained in David S. Wills’ essay on Burroughs and Scientology in the soon-to-be-released Beatdom Number 10, The Religion Issue.

Here is what Mick and Keith did with their cut ups…just click on the link below.

Casino Boogie

Michael Hendrick

Michael Hendrick, activist, capitalist, poet and writer, has been published in newspapers and magazines since 1972. Editor of the literary journal, Beatdom, he is currently finishing his first novel, Egypt Cemetery, the first volume of a Proustian effort he refers to as 'A Remembrance of Things Crass' (with apologies to Marcel Proust). A survivor of five bookstores and two libraries, his two cats are his most prized possessions. He likes Irish ciders and organic foods and never misses a Bob Dylan tour!

View Comments

  • Ted Morgan relates a meeting between Jagger and Burroughs.
    Supposedly, Warhol introduced them as "having something in common - Bill shot someone, and Mick almost got shot."
    Jagger: "You shot someone?"
    Burroughs: "Not today."

    Also, Richards was going to play some kind of tribute concert for Burroughs in the late Seventies and was talked out of it - because Richards was facing heroin charges at the time.

    Regardless, thanks for this! It just made me think of other stories...

  • katy, that is a good anecdote. thanks for sharing it. i am sure it will lighten up some future conversation, when repeated.

    that is pretty interesting about the tribute concert. i am going to have to look around and see if i can find out more about that.

    fell free to post anything else that comes to mind in relation to these guys. this post was quite interesting!

  • i guess i should have shown the lyrics...

    No good, can't speak
    Wound up, no sleep
    Sky diver, insider
    Slip rope, stunt flyer

    Wounded lover, got no time on hand

    Burn that cycle
    Thrill freak, Uncle Sam
    All for business, no, you understand?
    Judge and jury walk out hand in hand

    Dietrich movies, close up boogies
    Kissing cunt in Cannes
    Protest music, million dollar sad

    I got no tactics, got no time on hand

    Left shoe shuffle, right shoe muffle
    Sinking in the sand
    Fade out freedom, stand that heat on
    Watch that hat in black

    Finger twitching, got no time on hand

    All right, mama

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