Cover image for Stoned : a memoir of London in the 1960's
Stoned : a memoir of London in the 1960's
Oldham, Andrew Loog.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : St. Martin, [2000]

Physical Description:
x, 374 pages : illustrations, portraits ; 25 cm
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ML3534 .O54 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



A dazzling memoir from the legendary manager of the Rolling Stones, who not only lived the 1960s, but helped create themUltra-hip, brash, schooled in style by Mary Quant and tutored by Brian Epstein, Andrew Loog Oldham was a hustler of genius, addicted to scandal, notoriety, and innovation. Epstein hired him to break the Beatles, but it was his visionary work at age 19 with the Rolling Stones that turned Oldham into a legend. They were all bad boys when I found them, he recalls. I just brought out the worst in them. A svengali figure to some, a calculating opportunist to others, he quickly turned himself into one of the most brilliant impresarios of the decade. Told in his own words and in those of his contemporaries -- captured in seventy original conversations -- Stoned is a dazzling evocation of London in the 1960s. Mary Quant, Pete Townshend, Vidal Sassoon, Nik Cohn, and Marianne Faithful are among the colorful cast reassembled for this long awaited self-portrait of one of the era's most influential and elusive figures.

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Brian Epstein associate Oldham brought brash enthusiasm to launching the Rolling Stones' long career by carefully creating and promoting them as rock's bad boys, in the process becoming rather a hybrid of Beatles mastermind Epstein and Sex Pistols Svengali Malcolm McLaren. Hyper, manic, occasionally addled and impenetrable, his book, consisting of excerpts from interviews with him, is vintage Oldham and, as rock history from a primary source, significant bilge. Oldham's take on Brian Jones' acquiescence in a plot to replace Mick Jagger early on explains volumes about the deterioration of Jones' relations with Jagger and Richards, and Oldham's ruminations about other gambits give insight into the band's inner workings. The Stones eventually outgrew Oldham, after he had set the tone for what rock promotion would become: thank Oldham, at least somewhat, for the come-ons of acts like Marilyn Manson. Contributions from the likes of Marianne Faithfull and Pete Townshend (oddly obsessed with sexual identities) figure prominently alongside Oldham's, but none of those informants is or was a Stone. Essential Rolling Stones stuff. --Mike Tribby

Publisher's Weekly Review

Oldham is and forever will be best known as the trendy hustler from mid-1960s swinging London who discovered the Rolling Stones and molded their bad-boy tendencies in his own image. After the Stones unceremoniously dumped him as manager during the Summer of Love, Oldham more or less disappeared from the rock 'n' roll mapÄproducing a few artists here and there and living off his past success. But as shown by this delightful cut-and-paste romp (interviews with Oldham spliced together with comments from other hipsters such as designer Mary Quant, the Who's Pete Townshend and writer Nik CohnÄbut, curiously, no interviews with any of the Stones), Oldham's memories are not only sharp, insightful and full of gossip, but also reflect that he has probably forgotten more about the music business in his fast-paced early life than most of his peers can claim to know. The Stones don't appear until halfway through the book, but the pre-1963 material is perhaps the most intriguing part of Oldham's memoir. As he moved from posh schools to '50s lowlife to early '60s social scenes, Oldham probably met every big name and con artist who ever populated London or the south of FranceÄfrom Picasso (from whom he bummed money) to infamous producers Mickie Most and Phil Spector. The wealth of information, details and larger-than-life stories about the London music scene before the Beatles and the Stones that Oldham recounts provides a valuable record of a fertile and fascinating, albeit overlooked, cultural era. At 19, he may have known "nothing about the music biz," as Pete Townshend confirms, but as a "worldly-wise" purveyor of '60s excess who may have blown his mind way back when, Oldham proves today with this hotter-than-hot-for-hard-core-fans memoir that he has never lost his sense or sensibility. 60 b&w photos. (Feb.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

After watching Brian Epstein transform the Beatles from loutish toughs into charming moptops, Oldham took five well-mannered boys and turned them into every parent's nightmare: the Rolling Stones. In the first of an intended "triography," Oldham tells how he went from working for British fashion icon Mary Quant, to becoming a press agent for the Beatles, to eventually becoming the manager and record producer for the second biggest band in Britain. Despite his legendary ego, he defers to passages from friends and associates, who take the story into unwelcome tangents and leave the reader anxious for Oldham's returnÄhis colorful, slang-heavy voice is a hoot. The Rolling Stones do not even appear until more than half-way through, and this installment ends abruptly with the release of their first album. An optional purchase, though Volume 2 promises to cover the band's rise to megastardom, Oldham's split with the Stones, and the launching of his Immediate record label.ÄLloyd Jansen, Stockton-San Joaquin Cty. P.L., CA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.