Jagger & Keith Richards
Recording date: November-December 1972, June-October 1979 & April-June 1981
Recording locations: Dynamic Sound Studios, Kingston, Jamaica; Pathé Marconi Studios, Paris,
France; & Atlantic Studios, New York City
Producers: The Glimmer Twins Chief engineers: Andy Johns & Chris Kimsey
Performed onstage: 1981, 1997, 2003, 2005, 2007, 2013
Probable line-up:Drums: Charlie Watts
Watching girls go passing by
It ain't the latest thing
I'm just standing in a doorway
I'm just trying to make some sense
Out of these girls go passing by
The tales they tell of men
(But) I'm not waiting on a lady
I'm just waiting on a friend
A smile relieves a heart that grieves
Remember what I said
Don't need a whore, I don't need no booze
Don't need a virgin priestess
But I need someone I can cry to
I need someone to protect
Making love and breaking hearts
It is a game for youth
This one dates from the Goats Head Soup sessions. We all liked it at the time but we didn't have any lyrics, so there we were. As well as the vocal, we stuck on that amazing sax solo at the end by Sonny Rollins. The lyric I added is very gentle and loving, about friendships in the band. At least I think that's what it was about. The influence of the video comes in here because when we scripted it we had me and Keith sitting round waiting for each other. But I can't actually remember now if that was the original idea of the song.
(There were) two songs on Tattoo You (I played on). One was called Tops and the other was called Waiting on a Friend.
Just let me be cynical for a moment. First of all, it's really NOT about waiting on a woman friend. It's just about a FRIEND; it doesn't matter if it's a man or a woman. I can see people saying, Oh, we're all much older now, Mick's writing this much more compassionate stuff, must be about a real person. But that's only in their perception of it.
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