Earlier this month the Rolling Stone announced they would be releasing a box set of their famous album ‘Goat’s Head Soup’. The most exciting part of the news was that, included on the album would be a previously unreleased collaboration with Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page. Even though the set is not due out until Sept. 4, the band gave everyone a teaser by releasing the Page track ‘Scarlet’ today, July 22.
The track was originally cut in October 1974 and it features Richards and Page on guitar and Traffic’s Ric Grech on bass. It is a signature expression of the Stones during that early 70’s era, full of layered textural guitars with a distinct grit and infectious groove. It has an earthy feel along with catchy hooks and a sing-along vibe.
Richards recalls the circumstances that led to the collaboration. “My recollection is we walked in at the end of a Zeppelin session. They were just leaving, and we were booked in next and I believe that Jimmy decided to stay. We weren’t actually cutting it as a track; it was basically for a demo, a demonstration, you know, just to get the feel of it, but it came out well, with a lineup like that, you know, we better use it.‘”
In 1975, Page spoke to Rolling Stone magazine about the track stating that he thought the Stones were going to release it as a B side on one of their singles. “It sounded very similar in style and mood to those Blonde on Blonde tracks,” Page said. “It was great; really good. We stayed up all night and went down to Island Studios where Keith put some reggae guitars over one section. I just put some solos on it, but it was eight in the morning of the next day before I did that. He took the tapes to Switzerland and someone found out about them. Keith told people that it was a track from my album.”
Mick Jagger also weighed in on his times jamming with page. “I remember first jamming this with Jimmy and Keith in Ronnie’s basement studio,” he said. “It was a great session.”
In addition to the Page collaboration, the Goat’s Head Soup box set will also feature previously unreleased tracks “Criss Cross” and “All the Rage”, as well as rare demos, alternate takes and mixes and a concert taped in Belgium previously released as “A Brussels Affair”.
This summer, the Stones had been planning a tour of United States football stadiums but the pandemic forced them to postpone their dates. Instead of playing live, they took to the studio putting out a single called “Living in a Ghost Town”, the first new music to come out of them since 2012.
The box set is currently available for preorder and promises a restoration of the music in all its glory and more. Check out the track and mark your calendars for the Sept. 4 release.