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Stones’ Band Member to Release Jazzed-Up Album of Stones Songs

Rolling Stones fans and jazz fanatics alike should be thrilled (or at least intrigued) about Tim Ries’ new album, The Rolling Stones Project (Concord), which will hit stores on Aug. 9. Ries, along with artists such as Sheryl Crow, Norah Jones and even some of the Rolling Stones themselves, bring together a new sound to some old favorites such as “Satisfaction,” “Honky Tonk Women,” “Wild Horses,” “Paint It Black” and others.

The idea for such an album came to Ries while touring with the Rolling Stones, which he has done since 1999, he said. He originally decided to add some jazz flavor to the song “Moonlight Mile” and ran it by his producer, who urged him to create an entire album of such songs, Ries explained. Soon after, Ries re-created three other tunes with the help of Bill Charlap, John Patitucci and Brian Blade, and sought for the approval of the Rolling Stones themselves. Impressed with the arranged songs, Charlie Watts, Keith Richards and Ron Wood joined the crew, and in 2002, the group started to record, said Ries. He said he was planning to record with his quintet, but the interest sparked in his new venture “just kind of snowballed into this huge event.”

Ries experimented on each song after hearing them while on tour. “I tried to keep the melodies exactly how they were but I changed the keys, the time signatures and I changed the groove.” Some of the noteworthy moments you’ll find on the album are a Brazilian beat behind “Street Fighting Man,” a swinging groove to “Honky Tonk Women” and a cool, confident version of “Wild Horses” performed by Norah Jones.

Ries said that he optimistic with the way that Rolling Stones fans will take to his new endeavor. “Maybe it will bring more jazz musicians to do more things like this where it can be more of a cross pollination of people checking other stuff,” he said. Ries notes amusingly that Rolling Stones fans have been coming out to see his jazz gigs equipped with their Rolling Stones light-up tongues they bought at the Stones’ concert.

Ries will be touring extensively in the upcoming months, playing solo dates between the Rolling Stone’ tour dates. Though he said is not planning to do an extensive tour of his own, he is still keeping busy with a new album coming out next spring, which will include originals, standards and yet another Rolling Stones song, “You Can’t Always Get What You Want.”

For more information on The Rolling Stones Project, go to Tim Ries’ website at

Originally Published