Andrew Loog Oldham began working as a young publicist in London in the early 1960’s, just as the British music, fashion and social scene were starting to explode. He was first an assistant to designer Mary Quant and then helped to promote The Beatles for Brian Epstein. He was just 19 years old when he went to see a relatively unknown group called The Rolling Stones. Before long he was their manager, producer and is generally credited with creating their “bad boy” image.
He left the Stones in 1967 and continued his work in the music business with his label Immediate Records which had a stellar roster of artists including Small Faces and The Nice.
In recent years he has published several entertaining autobiographies and memoirs, the latest is called Rolling Stoned. Currently he can be heard daily as a disc jockey on Sirius/XM’s Underground Garage sharing his vast knowledge of the music he presents and offering insights and opinions that are wonderful to listen to.
I spoke with Andrew in October 2012 when he came to WFUV to promote “Charlie is My Darling” a cinema verite film that chronicles the Stones on tour in Ireland in 1965. Finally completed more than 45 years after its original filming we get to view the Stones backstage and on-stage with some amazing footage I had never seen before. As part of the informal backstage rehearsal scenes, Mick and Keith sing bits of assorted Beatles’ songs along with working on new songs they’ve recently written.
I had always wondered how and why the Stones had come to record and release Lennon and McCartney’s “I Wanna Be Your Man” as their second single. I asked Andrew about his reported chance meeting with John and Paul in London’s Leicester Square and he filled me in on the details