Robert Johnson's Love in Vain performed by the best Stones lineup ever
After Robert Johnson wrote this song in 1937, there was rock n' roll.
Keef handles the arpeggios; Mick Taylor handles the Olympian duties on slide guitar, masterfully. Gram Parsons, working with Keef at the time, was a big influence on the final arrangement performed here.
"Welcome to the very first blues/rock song. Glad to see you! Settle back, can I get you a drink?" (-- Me)
Epigram: My editor, quite correctly, points out that a bold statement such as "first blues/rock song", from 1937 no less, deserves more discussion. When she's right, she's right.
The key dilemma here that lead me astray is that the story behind that "bold statement" is a legend. I am saved, however, because rock 'n' roll is, in essence, all legend.
Anyway: In the Mississippi Delta country, Mr. Johnson was just an average player, not even a match for his collaborator Sun House. Then, one moonless night, Mr. Johnson went down to a rural crossroads. At that crossroads, there he saw an apparition -- turned out to be The Devil.
Robert and Mr. D. got to talkin' -- a bargain was struck. Johnson got the original rock licks from The Devil, gladly trading his mortal soul for such a treasure. That legend continues to grow today, over three quarters of a century later.