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"The Spider and the Fly"
Song by the Rolling Stones
from the album Out of Our Heads (US edition)
A-side "I Can't Get No Satisfaction" (UK)
  • 30 July 1965 (30 July 1965) (US)
  • 20 August 1965 (UK)
Recorded 13 May 1965
Studio RCA, Hollywood
Genre Blues
Length 3:38
Songwriter(s) Jagger/Richards
Producer(s) Andrew Loog Oldham
Out of Our Heads (US edition) track listing
"Play With Fire"
"The Spider and the Fly"
"One More Try"

"The Spider and the Fly" is a song by English rock band the Rolling Stones first released on the US version of their 1965 album Out of Our Heads. In the UK, it was released as the B-side to "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction".

The song was written by Mick Jagger and Keith Richards, presumably influenced by Mary Howitt's 1829 poem of the same name.[citation needed] The lyrics speak about what the band, especially the leader, will do after their gig is over:

'Sittin' thinkin' sinkin' drinkin'
Wondering what I'll do when I'm through tonight

Smokin', mopin', maybe just hopin'
Some little girl will pass on by

Jagger explained in a 1995 interview with Rolling Stone, "I wasn't really that mad about it, but when you listen to it on record, it still holds up quite interestingly as a blues song. It's a Jimmy Reed blues with British pop-group words, which is an interesting combination: a song somewhat stuck in a time warp." [1] In an AllMusic review, Mike DeGagne describes it as one of their earliest attempts at country music.[2]

It features early use of the Rolling Stones' "ancient form of weaving" by guitarists Richards and Brian Jones.[citation needed][further explanation needed] Jagger performs harmonica on the recording while Jack Nitzsche provides percussion and keyboards.

The Stones have performed "The Spider and the Fly" twice on tour, in both 1965 and 1966 and during their 1995 leg of the Voodoo Lounge Tour. A studio reworking of the song was included on their 1995 live album Stripped.

In 1996, the song was recorded by blues-rock guitarist Kenny Wayne Shepherd (with featured harmonica playing by veteran bluesman James Cotton), and included in the soundtrack for the movie, "Michael". It was recorded by blues artist John Hammond on his 2003 album Ready For Love and Roland Van Campenhout on his 2003 album Lime & Coconut.


  1. ^ "Jagger Remembers". Rolling Stone. Dec 14, 1995 (accessed 26 April 2007).
  2. ^ DeGagne, Mike. "Rolling Stones : The Spider and the Fly, Song Review". AllMusic. Retrieved 1 August 2014. 


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