Thursday, February 07, 2008

Ahmet Ertegun is the new Meredith Hunter

Shine a Light, the new Rolling Stones concert film directed by Martin Scorsese, opened the Berlin Film Festival and got a nice review from Todd McCarthy in Variety, who notes:

“The arc of the Rolling Stones’ evolving reputations -- from rock ‘n’ roll’s bad boys to its most beloved and resilient granddaddies -- can be traced by the most prominent guest stars in their early and late-career concert films: the Hell’s Angels in ‘Gimme Shelter’ and former President Clinton and family in ‘Shine a Light.’”

The arc and aura might also be reflected in the body count. Gimme Shelter leads up to the infamous 1969 Stones concert at the Altamont Speedway outside Oakland, and captures the murder of concertgoer Meredith Hunter, stabbed to death in front of the stage by the Hell’s Angeles security force.

Shine A Light is built around a 2006 Stones show at New York City’s Beacon Theatre and, McCarthy notes, is dedicated to music executive Ahmet Ertegun, "who, at 83, took a bad fall at the recorded concert and died shortly thereafter.”

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