In Denmark Street, central London, it is still possible to get close to where it all really started for the Stones, in terms of their greatest recordings. To record their first album, in January 1964, they gathered for five days with their managers at Regent Sounds studios, a cramped spot in the heart of Tin Pan Alley, then the centre of the British music publishing industry. Regent was relatively cheap, not being connected to a major label, and the rumour is that the Stones management never paid for the studio time there. Who knows? It’s all “slipping away”, as Keith Richards put it in the ballad of that name. I doubt the remaining Stones, other than archivist and founding bass player Bill Wyman, can remember much about Regent Sounds.
Having headlined last weekend’s newsletter “Calm down on Covid” there was a cosmic inevitability to me testing positive this week. And so it turned out.