Ruby Tuesday (song)

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"Ruby Tuesday"
Netherlands single picture sleeve
Single by the Rolling Stones
A-side"Let's Spend the Night Together" (double A-side)
Released14 January 1967 (U.S.)
Format7-inch single
RecordedLondon, 8 November – 3 December 1966
GenreBaroque pop[1]
Producer(s)Andrew Loog Oldham
The Rolling Stones singles chronology
"Have You Seen Your Mother, Baby, Standing in the Shadow?"
"Ruby Tuesday" / "Let's Spend the Night Together"
"We Love You" / "Dandelion"

"Ruby Tuesday"
Ruby Tuesday - Melanie.jpg
Single by Melanie
B-side"What Have They Done to My Song, Ma"
ReleasedDecember 1970
Format7-inch single

"Ruby Tuesday" is a song recorded by the Rolling Stones in 1966, released in January 1967. The song, coupled with "Let's Spend the Night Together", was a number-one hit in the United States and reached number three in the United Kingdom. The song was included in the American version of Between the Buttons (in the UK, singles were often excluded from studio albums).

Rolling Stone magazine ranked the song number 310 on their list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.[2]

Music and inspiration[edit]

Multi-instrumentalist Brian Jones played recorder whilst the double bass was played jointly by bassist Bill Wyman (pressing the strings against the fingerboard) and Keith Richards (bowing the strings). According to Keith Richards in a 1971 Rolling Stone interview, he wrote the song in a Los Angeles hotel room in early 1966 about a groupie he knew;[3] he has also stated that it was about Linda Keith, his girlfriend in the mid-1960s.[4] The song's lyrics concern an apparently free-spirited woman, with Jagger singing:

Who could hang a name on you
When you change with every new day?
Still, I'm gonna miss you.[5]

"That's a wonderful song," Mick Jagger told Jann Wenner in 1995. "It's just a nice melody, really. And a lovely lyric. Neither of which I wrote, but I always enjoy singing it."[6] Bill Wyman states in Rolling with the Stones that the lyrics were completely written by Keith Richards with help from Brian Jones on the musical composition.[page needed] However, Marianne Faithfull recalls it differently; according to her, Brian Jones presented an early version of this melody to the rest of the Rolling Stones.[7] According to Victor Bockris, Richards came up with the basic track and the words and finished the song with Jones in the studio.[8]

From Richards's autobiography, Life, the song was written about his girlfriend Linda Keith. Linda had taken up with Jimi Hendrix, and had got involved with drugs. She left Richards, and he tried to get her back. He eventually went to her parents and told them she was going down a dark path. Linda's father went to New York City to find her, and she was made a ward of court. Richards reports that Linda regarded this as a betrayal, and they did not speak again for many years.


"Ruby Tuesday" was released as the B-side to "Let's Spend the Night Together" on 13 January 1967. Due to the controversial nature of the A-side's lyrics, "Ruby Tuesday" earned more airplay and ended up charting higher in both the UK and the US.[9] The song topped the American Billboard Hot 100 chart, while reaching number 3 in the UK's Record Retailer chart, which listed "Let's Spend The Night Together"/"Ruby Tuesday" as a double A-side.

"Ruby Tuesday" was included on the US version of the 1967 album Between the Buttons, while being left out of the British edition, as was common practice with singles in the UK at that time. That summer, the song appeared on the US compilation album Flowers.[5] Due to its success, the song became a staple of the band's compilations, being included on Through the Past, Darkly (Big Hits Vol. 2) (1969), Hot Rocks 1964–1971 (1971), Rolled Gold (1975), and 30 Greatest Hits (1977), and, in mono, on Singles Collection: The London Years (1989).

The 2002 ABKCO reissues of the song—including on reissued albums and a new compilation, Forty Licks—have a remastering error; a vocal overdub is missing in the chorus. This was subsequently remedied, and the versions on 2007's Rolled Gold+, 2012's GRRR!, and the 2013 iTunes remasters contain the overdub.

A concert rendition of the song from the Rolling Stones' Steel Wheels/Urban Jungle Tour was released on the band's 1991 concert album Flashpoint. A July 2013 live performance is featured on Sweet Summer Sun: Hyde Park Live.


Charts and certifications[edit]


Region Certification Certified units/Sales
United States (RIAA)[23] Gold 1,000,000^

*sales figures based on certification alone
^shipments figures based on certification alone

Cover versions[edit]


  1. ^ "Steve Smith: Wyman and Taylor join the Rolling Stones onstage; Coldplay takes a break". Archived from the original on 3 December 2012. Retrieved 7 May 2016.. Pasadena Star-News. 29 November 2012.
  2. ^ "Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Songs of All Time". Rolling Stone. 7 April 2011. Retrieved 1 October 2015.
  3. ^ Greenfield, Robert (19 August 1971). "The Rolling Stone Interview: Keith Richards". Rolling Stone. Rolling Stone.
  4. ^ McPherson, Ian. "Track Talk: Ruby Tuesday". Retrieved 17 March 2008.
  5. ^ a b "Show 46 - Sergeant Pepper at the Summit: The very best of a very good year. [Part 2] : UNT Digital Library". Retrieved 1 October 2016.
  6. ^ Wenner, Jann S. (14 December 1995). "Jagger Remembers". Retrieved 18 March 2008.
  7. ^ "Brian Jones", Mojo Magazine, July 1999, p.75
  8. ^ Bockris, Keith Richards, 1993, p.93-94
  9. ^ "Let's Spend the Night Together" at AllMusic
  10. ^ "Top RPM Singles: Issue 10044." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved 17 June 2016.
  11. ^ "The Irish Charts – Search Results – Ruby Tuesday". Irish Singles Chart. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
  12. ^ "SA Charts 1965–March 1989". Retrieved 5 September 2018.
  13. ^ "The Rolling Stones Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard. Retrieved 17 June 2016.
  14. ^ "Cash Box Top 100 2/25/67". 25 February 1967. Retrieved 1 October 2016.
  15. ^ "Item Display - RPM - Library and Archives Canada". 9 January 1971. Retrieved 10 December 2018.
  16. ^ "The Irish Charts – Search Results – Ruby Tuesday". Irish Singles Chart. Retrieved 23 December 2018.
  17. ^ "SA Charts 1965–March 1989". Retrieved 5 September 2018.
  18. ^ "Official Charts Company". 26 September 1970. Retrieved 22 December 2018.
  19. ^ "Melanie Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard. Retrieved 17 June 2016.
  20. ^ Cash Box Top 100 Singles, 2 January 1971
  21. ^ "Item Display - RPM - Library and Archives Canada". Archived from the original on 12 August 2016. Retrieved 1 October 2016.
  22. ^ "Top 100 Hits of 1967/Top 100 Songs of 1967". Retrieved 1 October 2016.
  23. ^ "American single certifications – The Rolling Stones – Ruby Tuesday". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved 17 June 2016. If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH. 
  24. ^ Viglione, Joe. "Good Morning Starshine - Oliver | Songs, Reviews, Credits". AllMusic. Retrieved 1 October 2016.
  25. ^ "flavour of new zealand - search listener". Retrieved 1 October 2016.
  26. ^ Mathew, Leslie. "The Wonder Years: Music From the Emmy Award-Winning Show & Its Era - Original Tv Soundtrack : Songs, Reviews, Credits, Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved 8 March 2013.
  27. ^ "Sail On - Dick Gaughan's Discography". Retrieved 1 October 2016.