Stones in Exile, filled with recent interviews, rare photographs and excerpts from the notorious, unreleased documentary of the Stones' 1972 tour, lays to rest any notion that there was anything formulaic about the recording of Exile on Main St. The controlled chaos of the core recording sessions at Keith's villa Nellcôte in the the south of France is well documented here. Marathon 12 hour jam sessions extending over months with songs evolving as the sessions progressed is no recipe for "formula album". Quoted in the October 1997 issue of Guitar magazine, Jagger put it this way:
Just winging it. Staying up all night ... It was this communal thing where you don't know whether you're recording or living or having dinner; you don't when you're going to play, when you're gonna sing -- very difficult. Too many hangers-on. I went with the flow and the album got made. These things have a certain energy, and there's a certain flow to it, and it got impossible. Everyone was so out of it.Jagger may not have been having much fun, but the result is an unparalleled rock/blues/country/soul document. So check out Stones in Exile and get a taste of how Exile on Main St. got made. It might even convince my ex-wife that this was no formula album.