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ABKCO Restores And Expands ‘Rolling Stones Rock And Roll Circus’

The soundtrack of the 1968 film now features an unheard version of The Beatles’ ‘Revolution’ featuring John Lennon with The Dirty Mac.

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Mick Jagger Keith Richards Rock And Roll Circus
Photo: Michael Randolf

The 4K Dolby Vision restoration of the famed concert film The Rolling Stones Rock and Roll Circus will be released by ABKCO Films and ABKCO Music & Records in June. The newly-expanded, star-laden special will be available on Blu-ray for the first time ever, as well as on DVD and for digital download (TVOD). Among many new treats, it includes an unseen version of The Beatles’ ‘Revolution’ that features John Lennon, Eric Clapton and Keith Richards.

Filmed over two days in December 1968, the show starred the 1960s line-up of the Stones, complete with Brian Jones. They were joined on screen by The Who, Jethro Tull, Taj Mahal, Marianne Faithfull, Yoko Ono and the remarkable, impromptu supergroup known as The Dirty Mac, comprising John Lennon, Keith Richards, Mitch Mitchell of the Jimi Hendrix Experience and Eric Clapton. The lead release, the Stones’ Rock and Roll Circus version of ‘Parachute Woman,’ is available now.    

The limited deluxe edition of the release is a multi-format package featuring the Blu-Ray, DVD, 2CD soundtrack and a perfect-bound 44-page book. This includes the original 1969 Rolling Stone essay by David Dalton and photographs by Michael Randolf.

The soundtrack to The Rolling Stones Rock and Roll Circus has undergone a new mix and 192k 24 bit HD restoration, and has been expanded to 28 tracks for the new editions. Bonus material features music by the late American concert pianist Julius Katchen, introduced in the expanded audio edition by Brian Jones; three additional songs by blues titan Taj Mahal; and previously unheard recordings by The Dirty Mac of The Beatles’ ‘Revolution’ as well as ‘Warmup Jam.’ The soundtrack will be available as a 3LP vinyl package for the first time and is due on CD and all digital formats.

The film, originally intended as a BBC special and shot in north London by director Michael Lindsay-Hogg and cinematographer Tony Richmond, used a Felliniesque circus backdrop for a unique live happening. The Stones were seen performing six songs (Jumpin’ Jack Flash,’ ‘Parachute Woman,’ ‘No Expectations,’ ‘You Can’t Always Get What You Want,’ ‘Sympathy for the Devil’ and ‘Salt of The Earth’) in front of an audience for the first time.

John Lennon Mick Jagger Rock & Roll Circus Michael Randolf

Photo: Michael Randolf

The lucky witnesses to the event were fan club members, contest winners and friends; plans for the film to air to promote the band’s Beggars Banquet album, released in the week it was shot, were abandoned in the wake of Jones’ departure and subsequent death. It was not officially released until 1996.

“It was an incredible shoot, I think, 36 hours or something,” says Keith Richards “I remember not remembering everything towards the end…but it was fun…we went through two audiences…wore one out…it was great!”

The new edition of Rock and Roll Circus has been produced by the Grammy-winning team at ABKCO, using immersive Dolby Atmos Technology and Dolby Vision for the first time on an archival concert film. The enhanced viewing experience can be enjoyed by viewers in their own homes in both original 4×3 and widescreen 16:9 aspect ratios. There are commentary tracks by Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Tony Richmond, Michael Lindsay-Hogg, Yoko Ono and Marianne Faithfull as well as an on-camera interview with The Who’s Pete Townshend and many other extras.

The Rolling Stones Rock and Roll Circus is released in June. Scroll down for the full tracklisting, and pre-order it here.

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The Rolling Stones Rock and Roll Circus (4K FILM)
THE FILM
Song For Jeffrey – Jethro Tull
A Quick One While He’s Away – The Who
Ain’t That A Lot Of Love – Taj Mahal
Something Better – Marianne Faithfull
Yer Blues – The Dirty Mac
Whole Lotta Yoko – Yoko Ono & Ivry Gitlis, and The Dirty Mac
Jumpin’ Jack Flash – The Rolling Stones
Parachute Woman – The Rolling Stones
No Expectations – The Rolling Stones
You Can’t Always Get What You Want – The Rolling Stones
Sympathy for the Devil – The Rolling Stones
Salt Of The Earth – The Rolling Stones

EXTRAS
Widescreen Feature, Aspect Ratio: 16:9 (65 min)
Pete Townshend Interview, Aspect Ratio: 4×3 (18 min)
The Dirty Mac:
‘Yer Blues’ Tk2 Quad Split, Aspect Ratio: 4×3 (5:43)
Taj Mahal:
-Checkin’ Up On My Baby, Aspect Ratio: 4×3 (5:37)
-Leaving Trunk, Aspect Ratio: 4×3 (6:20)
-Corinna, Aspect Ratio: 4×3 (3:49)
Julius Katchen:
-de Falla: Ritual Fire Dance, Aspect Ratio: 4×3 (6:30)
-Mozart: Sonata In C Major-1st Movement, Aspect Ratio: 4×3 (2:27)
Mick & The Tiger/ Luna & The Tiger, Ratio: 4×3 (1:35)
Bill Wyman & The Clowns, Aspect Ratio: 4×3 (2:00)
Lennon, Jagger, & Yoko backstage, Aspect Ratio: 4×3 (45sec)

FILM COMMENTARY TRACKS:
Life Under The Big Top (Artists) Featuring: Mick Jagger, Ian Anderson, Taj Mahal, Yoko Ono, Bill Wyman, Keith Richards (65 min)
Framing The Show (Director & Cinematographer) Featuring: Michael Lindsay Hogg, Tony Richmond (65 min)
Musings (artists, writer, fan who was there) Featuring: Marianne Faithfull, David Dalton, David Stark (50 min)

The Rolling Stones Rock and Roll Circus Expanded Audio Edition
1. Mick Jagger’s Introduction Of Rock And Roll Circus – Mick Jagger
2. Entry Of The Gladiators – Circus Band
3. Mick Jagger’s Introduction Of Jethro Tull – Mick Jagger
4. Song For Jeffrey – Jethro Tull
5. Keith Richards’ Introduction Of The Who – Keith Richards
6. A Quick One While He’s Away – The Who
7. Over The Waves – Circus Band
8. Ain’t That A Lot Of Love – Taj Mahal
9. Charlie Watts’ Introduction Of Marianne Faithfull – Charlie Watts
10. Something Better – Marianne Faithfull
11. Mick Jagger’s and John Lennon’s Introduction Of The Dirty Mac
12. Yer Blues – The Dirty Mac
13. Whole Lotta Yoko – Yoko Ono & Ivry Gitlis with The Dirty Mac
14. John Lennon’s Introduction Of The Rolling Stones + Jumpin’ Jack Flash – The Rolling Stones
15. Parachute Woman – The Rolling Stones
16. No Expectations – The Rolling Stones
17. You Can’t Always Get What You Want – The Rolling Stones
18. Sympathy for the Devil – The Rolling Stones
19. Salt Of The Earth – The Rolling Stones
BONUS TRACKS
20. Checkin’ Up On My Baby – Taj Mahal
21. Leaving Trunk – Taj Mahal
22. Corinna – Taj Mahal
23. Revolution (rehearsal) – The Dirty Mac
24. Warmup Jam – The Dirty Mac
25. Yer Blues (take 2) – The Dirty Mac
26. Brian Jones’ Introduction of Julius Katchen – Brian Jones
27. de Falla: Ritual Fire Dance – Julius Katchen
28. Mozart: Sonata In C Major- 1st Movement – Julius Katchen

Explore our Rolling Stones Artist Page.

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