Sway (The Rolling Stones song)

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Song by The Rolling Stones from the album Sticky Fingers
Released 23 April 1971
Recorded March 1970
Genre Blues rock
Length 3:51
Label Rolling Stones/Virgin
Writer Mick Jagger/Keith Richards, Mick Taylor (uncredited)
Producer Jimmy Miller
Sticky Fingers track listing

"Sway" is a song by English rock 'n roll band The Rolling Stones from their 1971 album Sticky Fingers. It was also released as the b-side of the "Wild Horses" single in June 1971. This single was released in the US only. Initial pressings of the single contain an alternate take; later pressings include the album version instead.

Credited to Mick Jagger and Keith Richards, "Sway" is a slower blues song and was the first song recorded by the band at Stargroves. Although the song is credited to Jagger/Richards, Mick Taylor has always stated that he wrote this song with Jagger, as well as "Moonlight Mile" from the same album, when Richards was not even present.

The song features a bottleneck slide guitar solo towards the middle of the song and a dramatic outro solo performed by Taylor. Rhythm guitar performed by Jagger was his first electric guitar performance on an album. The strings on the piece were arranged by Paul Buckmaster, who also worked on other songs from Sticky Fingers. Richards added his backing vocals but provided no guitar to the track. Pete Townshend, Billy Nichols and Ronnie Lane are believed to contribute backing vocals as well.

It was performed live for the first time in Columbus, Ohio, and then at many of the shows on the band's A Bigger Bang Tour in 2006.

A seven minute version of "Sway" appears on the Carla Olson/Mick Taylor Live at the Roxy album aka Too Hot for Snakes. Taylor gets to stretch out and solo whereas the Stones version faded at just under four minutes. (Ian McLagan plays piano on this version).

During the Stones' "50 and Counting" concert tour in 2013, the band, accompanied by their guest Mick Taylor, played "Sway" during concerts at Los Angeles, Chicago and Boston. These concerts marked the first time that Taylor played on "Sway" at a Stones concert. One of the fans in the audience at Los Angeles on 20 May 2013 remarked that he had waited for more than 40 years to hear the Stones with Taylor play this song live, and he was happy to have his wish come true that night.


Cover versions[edit]

The song was covered by the band Overwhelming Colorfast on the 1996 compilation album Super Mixer: A Goldenrod Compilation.[1]

Also covered by Alvin Hart on the October 1997 River North Records release "Paint It Blue: Songs Of The Rolling Stones".