On this day in music history: July 11, 1994 – “Voodoo Lounge” the twentieth UK and twenty-second US album by The Rolling Stones is released (US release is on July 12, 1994). Produced by Don Was and The Glimmer Twins, it is recorded at Sandymount House (Ron Wood Home Recording Studio) in Clane, County Kildare, Ireland, Windmill Lane Studios in Dublin, Ireland and A&M Studios in Hollywood, CA from September, November 3 – December 11, 1993, January 15 – April 23, 1994. Following the highly successful year long Steel Wheels/Urban Jungle world tour, The Rolling Stones take another extended hiatus, to rest from the road, and for Keith Richards and Mick Jagger to work on outside solo projects. By the Fall of 1993, the band reconvene to record a new album, but this time it is without original bassist and co-founding member Bill Wyman. Then 54 years old and the eldest member of The Stones, its officially announced that Wyman has retired from the band. His replacement is bassist Darryl Jones, formerly a sideman for Miles Davis and Sting. Selected by Jagger and Charlie Watts, Jones fills the position vacated by Wyman, but as a hired hand and is not an official member. With their contract with Sony Music ending in 1991, they sign with Virgin/EMI worldwide. Looking to shake things up, they work with producer Don Was, fresh off his recent successes with Bonnie Raitt and The B-52’s. Sessions begin at guitarist Ron Wood’s home studio in County Kildare, Ireland, before moving to Windmill Lane Studios in Dublin, then A&M Studios in Hollywood in early 1994. Under Was’ guidance, The Stones revisit the sound of their late 60’s and early 70’s work, but cast in a contemporary context. The end result is one of the strongest albums by The Stones in recent years. It spins off three singles including “Love Is Strong” (#2 Mainstream Rock, #91 Pop) and “Out Of Tears” (#14 Mainstream Rock, #60 Pop). The first single “Love Is Strong” is supported by a memorable black & white video directed by David Fincher (“The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button”, “Se7en”), featuring The Rolling Stones as giants making their way around New York City. The clip wins the band their first Grammy Award for Best Short Form Music Video, winning another Grammy for Best Rock Album in 1995. Surprisingly, they are the first actual Grammy wins of the bands career, having previously only received a Lifetime Achievement Award from NARAS in 1986. The Stones support the album with the “Voodoo Lounge World Tour” from August 1994 – August 1995. Issued on a limited basis on vinyl in 1994, it is remastered and reissued as a 180 gram LP in 2018. Currently, the new vinyl reissue is only available as part of “The Rolling Stones – Studio Albums Vinyl Collection 1971-2016” box set. “Voodoo Lounge” peaks at number two on the Billboard Top 200, and is certified 2x Platinum in the US by the RIAA.
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