19th Nervous Breakdown (The Rolling Stones)

4 FEBRUARY 1966


The Rolling Stones released ‘19th Nervous Breakdown’ on this day. It reached #2 in both the UK and US charts, and was the fifth-best-selling single of 1966 in Britain.

Like a lot of their music at the time it carried something of a harsh message aimed at a woman. In fact they released a whole string of such songs since 1964s 'It's All Over Now' (see ‘The Last Time’, ‘Under My Thumb’, 'Play With Fire', 'Heart of Stone', 'Time is on My Side', 'Have You Seen Your Mother, Baby...', 'Mothers Little Helper') or complaining in general (‘Satisfaction’, ‘Get Off My Cloud’, 'Paint it Black'). This was, no doubt, a deliberate attempt to foster a certain image.

This song has some interesting sonic touches, such as the dive-bombing bass lines.

The live performance of ‘19th Nervous Breakdown’ shown in the video above is from the Ed Sullivan Show in 1966.

B-side: 'As Tears Go By' (UK); 'Sad Day' (US)
Recorded: 3-8 December 1965, RCA Studios, Hollywood
Released: 12 February 1966 (US); 5 February 1966 (UK)
Highest chart position: #2 (UK and US)
Length: 3:56
Label: Decca
Writers: Jagger/Richards
Producer: Andrew Loog Oldham

19th Nervous Breakdown (The Rolling Stones)

'You're the kind of person you meet at certain dismal, dull affairs
Center of a crowd, talking much too loud, running up and down the stairs
Well, it seems to me that you have seen too much in too few years
And though you've tried you just can't hide your eyes are edged with tears

You better stop, look around
Here it comes, here it comes, here it comes, here it comes
Here comes your nineteenth nervous breakdown

When you were a child you were a treated kind
But you were never brought up right
You were always spoiled with a thousand toys but still you cried all night
Your mother who neglected you owes a million dollars tax
And your father's still perfecting ways of making sealing wax

You better stop, look around
Here it comes, here it comes, here it comes, here it comes
Here comes your nineteenth nervous breakdown
Oh, who's to blame, that girl's just insane
Well, nothing I do don't seem to work
It only seems to make the matters worse. Oh, please

You were still in school when you had that fool who really messed your mind
And after that you turned your back on treating people kind
On our first trip I tried so hard to rearrange your mind
But after awhile I realized you were disarranging mine

You better stop, look around
Here it comes, here it comes, here it comes, here it comes
Here comes your nineteenth nervous breakdown
Oh, who's to blame, that girl's just insane
Well, nothing I do don't seem to work
It only seems to make the matters worse. Oh, please

When you were a child you were treated kind
But you were never brought up right
You were always spoiled with a thousand toys but still you cried all night
Your mother who neglected you owes a million dollars tax
And you father's still perfecting ways of making sealing wax

You better stop, look around
Here it comes, here comes your nineteenth nervous breakdown'

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