Jagger copied James Brown’s moves

Mick Jagger says he tried to copy James Brown’s dance moves on stage during the early days of The Rolling Stones.

But while he reveals his attempts had mixed results, it led him to develop his own style.

He tells The Sun: “I tried some of his moves. I did very bad imitations but they were fun. You’re in this phase of your career when you’re 19 or 20 when you’re basically doing cover versions and copying other people. Everybody did it and, if you got any good, you evolved your own style.”

The Stones mainman co-produced the new movie Get On Up – a biopic of Brown’s life and he says The Godfather Of Soul’s influence can be heard throughout the music world.

He adds: “It ripples still. In the early days of hip-hop when nobody cared about sampling, every record had a James Brown scream on it. American DJ Afrika Bambaataa lionised him for a new generation. Everyone in that world knows Brown is considered one of the early groove masters.

The Funky Drummer riff was taken by lots of hip-hop artists, both young and old. Hip-hop artists are getting old – not quite as old as me, though!”

Meanwhile, The Rolling Stones are locked in a legal battle over a £7.9 million insurance claim over postponed concerts. The band were forced to cancel shows in Australia and New Zealand earlier this year following the death of Jagger’s girlfriend L’Wren Scott.

Get On Up launches this weekend in the UK and stars Chad Boseman as Brown. The film also features Dan Aykroyd, Lennie James and Susie Brown.

Scott Munro
Louder e-commerce editor

Scott has spent more than 30 years in newspapers, magazines and online as an editor, production editor, sub-editor, designer, writer and reviewer. Scott joined our news desk in the summer of 2014 before moving to the e-commerce team in 2020. Scott maintains Louder’s buyer’s guides, scouts out the best deals for music fans and reviews headphones, speakers, books and more. He's written more than 11,000 articles across Louder, Classic Rock, Metal Hammer and Prog and has previous written for publications including IGN, the Sunday Mirror, Daily Record and The Herald, covering everything from daily news and weekly features, to video games, travel and whisky. Scott's favourite bands are Fields Of The Nephilim, The Cure, New Model Army, All About Eve, The Mission, Cocteau Twins, Drab Majesty, Marillion and Rush.