Michael Philip Jagger
Written by Nicholas Walker on February 23, 2021
Michael Philip Jagger began his career in music when he dropped out of the London School of Economics to join The Rolling Stones. Their first gig under the name Rollin’ Stones was at the Marquee Club (London) on July 12, 1962. For more formality, they later changed their names to “The Rolling Stones.” The group originally played music written by other artists. However, their manager(Andrew Loog Oldham) strongly encouraged them to begin writing their own music. As they began composing, Jagger and Richards wrote “The Last Time,” the group’s first original No. 1 single in the UK. They also had 2 other No. 1 singles, making “The Last Time” actually their 3rd No. 1 single. However, the first two had been previously recorded by other artists.
The Rolling Stones’ image as defiant troublemakers emerged when Jagger and Richards wrote their first International hit, “(I Can’t Get No)Satisfaction.” In Vanity Fair Profile (1992), Jagger told Stephen Schiff: “I wasn’t trying to be rebellious in those days; I was just being me. I wasn’t trying to push the edge of anything. I’m being me and ordinary, the guy from suburbia who sings in this band, but someone older might have thought it was just the most awful racket, the most terrible thing, and where are we going if this is music?… But all those songs we sang were pretty tame, really. People didn’t think they were, but I thought they were tame.”
After the group released several successful albums, including Out of Our Heads, Aftermath, Between the Buttons, etc, the band greatly struggled with legal battles and the imprisonment of Jagger and Richards over drug charges. When the album Beggars Banquet was released, Brian Jones was only periodically contributing to the band and that resulted in Jones ultimately leaving the group altogether. Jagger purchased an estate(Stargroves) in Hampshire in 1970; the Rolling Stones and a few other bands recorded there using the Rolling Stones Mobile Studio. Jagger, along with the rest of the group, began to change his look and style as the 1970s progressed. After learning to play guitar, Jagger contributed to certain songs on Sticky Fingers (1971) and all following albums except for Dirty Work (1986).
After the band split with their second manager in 1971, Jagger took control of their business affairs and has managed them ever since in collaboration with Prince Rupert Loewenstein.
As the Rolling Stones entered the 1980s and continued touring and releasing albums, Jagger also began to “establish an artistic identity for himself apart from the Rolling Stones” according to the February 14, 1985, Rolling Stone issue. Jagger began writing and recording songs for his first solo album, She’s the Boss. The album did fairly well, and the single “Just Another Night” was a Top Ten hit. Jagger also performed without the Rolling Stones for the Live Aid Charity Concert in 1985. Jagger released his second solo album, Primitive Cool, in 1987.
Jagger attempted to re-establish himself as a solo artist after the success of the Rolling Stones 1989 comeback album. Jagger released his third solo album, Wandering Spirit(1993), with co-producer Rick Rubin. The album was successful, reaching No. 12 in UK and No. 11 in the US. Jagger released his fourth and final album (Goddess in the Doorway) in 2001. Throughout the 2000s, Jagger performed various concerts as well as his most recent tour, No Filter in 2019.