UPDATED WITH MORE DETAILS AND AUDIO: 50 unreleased Rolling Stones tracks have suddenly appeared online. Why? And how?

Over the weekend, 50 unreleased Rolling Stones songs stretching back over almost 60 years appeared online. No one seems to know where they came from, either.

The collection goes by the name Fully Finished Studio Outtakes and the songs are spread out over three CDs. The tracks include material with founder Brian Jones back in the 60s, tracks with Mick Taylor in the 70s, and stuff recorded with Ronnie Wood. The audio quality is astounding, too. Any of the songs is release-ready.

There are some theories about what’s going on. First, it was a hacker attack on some online repository of Stones material. Second (and much more likely), this was a leak of some sort by an insider. And third, this is secret pre-emptive leak by the rightsholder(s) of these songs in an effort to extend copyright of what were formerly unreleased bootlegs.

One of the most fascinating songs is a version of “It’s Only Rock ‘N’ Roll” featuring Ronnie Wood before he joined the band along with David Bowie. Both Ronnie and Bowie were erased from the final release–Bowie because of some weird contractual conflicts.

Some of the songs are brand new to even veteran Stonesologists: “Hands Off,” “Curtis Meets Smokey,” “Troubles A-Coming,” “20 Nil” and “Every Time I Break Her Heart.”

It appears that 500 factory-fresh CDs were pressed and are selling for £50. I’m guessing that they’re already gone.

No official response from The Stones yet.

UPDATE: A few of the tracks arrived in the digital version of an unmarked paper bag overnight and they do sound terrific. Here’s the artwork.

Note that the fine print credits this to Black Frisco Records (BFR 101-103) and that it was created for the Rolling Stones Fan Club.

And if you want a listen, go here while you can.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

11 thoughts on “UPDATED WITH MORE DETAILS AND AUDIO: 50 unreleased Rolling Stones tracks have suddenly appeared online. Why? And how?

  • March 9, 2021 at 2:32 am
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    Already on filesharing networks. Thanks for the heads-up.

    Reply
  • March 9, 2021 at 9:47 am
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    If I know Mick, someone is getting sued somewhere…

    Reply
  • March 9, 2021 at 10:08 am
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    Ronnie’s parts and David’s parts were not erased, they were not included in the final mix. If they were truly erased, they wouldn’t exist…

    Reply
  • March 9, 2021 at 1:42 pm
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    I just ordered it. We will see if I actually get a copy.

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    • March 9, 2021 at 6:50 pm
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      Hi Judy, Where did you find your copy?

      Reply
  • March 9, 2021 at 11:49 pm
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    I downloaded the entire 50 songs.Probably saved a few hundred bucks imo.

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    • March 13, 2021 at 2:35 pm
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      Me too. Considering how ruthless Jagger has been with royalties, he must be going crazy. Ask Marianne Faithfull or Mick Taylor

      Reply
  • March 10, 2021 at 12:06 pm
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    Lots of good songs in there! On Strictly Memphis, sounds to me like Bowie is singing there too, could it be? Mick and Bowie collaborated on Dancing in the Street in 1985 and Strictly Memphis has a similar vibe, to my ear anyways!

    Reply
  • March 11, 2021 at 10:11 am
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    It sure sounds like Mick’s more current voice has been added to nearly all of the tracks – even the one supposedly from 1962!

    Reply
  • March 20, 2021 at 1:38 pm
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    I doubt it’s an official release-unless you think “Cherelles” was misspeled on purpose-gotta be a Jap origin thing

    Reply

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