The Rolling Stones - Under My Thumb - 1966

Under My Thumb by The Rolling Stones is a classic rock song released in 1966. It has been a subject of both acclaim and controversy over the years due to its lyrics, which some listeners interpret as reflecting a misogynistic viewpoint. Despite this, the song remains a significant part of The Rolling Stones' catalog and rock history.

The Rolling Stones

The Rolling Stones, formed in London in 1962, are one of the most enduring and influential rock bands in history. Their music blends rock, blues, and a variety of other genres, contributing to the development of rock music as we know it today. With members like Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Charlie Watts, and Ronnie Wood, the band has created timeless hits that continue to resonate with audiences worldwide.

About "Under My Thumb"

"Under My Thumb" appeared on The Rolling Stones' album Aftermath in 1966. The song showcases the band's experimentation with different sounds, including the use of a marimba played by Brian Jones, which gives it a distinctive musical texture.

Lyrics and Interpretation

The lyrics of "Under My Thumb" describe a power shift in a relationship where the male narrator gains control over a previously dominant female partner. This theme has sparked debates on its portrayal of gender dynamics.

Musical Composition

Musically, "Under My Thumb" is noted for its catchy melody, rhythmic marimba riff, and bluesy rock feel. It exemplifies The Rolling Stones' ability to blend traditional rock instruments with less conventional ones to create a unique sound.

Interactive Tasks

Quiz: Questions on the song

What year was "Under My Thumb" released? (1966) (!1970) (!1962) (!1972)

Which Rolling Stones album features "Under My Thumb"? (Aftermath) (!Beggars Banquet) (!Let It Bleed) (!Sticky Fingers)

What unique instrument is featured in "Under My Thumb"? (Marimba) (!Sitar) (!Harmonica) (!Piano)

Who was the lead vocalist of "Under My Thumb"? (Mick Jagger) (!Keith Richards) (!Charlie Watts) (!Ronnie Wood)

What theme does "Under My Thumb" explore? (Power dynamics in relationships) (!Love and peace) (!Political unrest) (!Personal freedom)

Quiz: Questions on the Performer

In what year was The Rolling Stones formed? (1962) (!1958) (!1965) (!1970)

Which of the following is NOT a member of The Rolling Stones? (!Mick Jagger) (!Keith Richards) (!Charlie Watts) (Ronnie Wood)

What genre is most associated with The Rolling Stones? (Rock) (!Jazz) (!Pop) (!Classical)

Which Rolling Stones album was released first? (Aftermath) (!Sticky Fingers) (!Exile on Main St.) (!Some Girls)

How is "Under My Thumb" musically distinctive? (Use of the marimba) (!Inclusion of a full orchestra) (!Electronic synthesizer) (!Acoustic solo)

Quiz: Questions on the lyrics

What does "Under My Thumb" metaphorically describe? (A shift in relationship power) (!A day at the races) (!A journey through cities) (!A celebration of freedom)

Which of these is a recurring theme in "Under My Thumb"? (Gender dynamics) (!Environmental conservation) (!Historical events) (!Technological advancements)

How have critics often interpreted the song's lyrics? (As reflecting misogynistic views) (!As a critique of government) (!As an ode to peace) (!As a narrative on fame)

Which instrument's sound is central to the song's unique feel? (Marimba) (!Guitar) (!Drums) (!Bass)

What is the tone of the song's lyrics according to some interpretations? (Controlling) (!Optimistic) (!Reflective) (!Sorrowful)


Year of Release 1966
Album Aftermath
Unique Instrument Marimba
Lead Vocalist Mick Jagger
Theme Power dynamics in relationships

Open Tasks


  1. Explore other songs by The Rolling Stones from the same era as "Under My Thumb": Create a playlist and describe how each song reflects the musical and cultural context of the 1960s.
  2. Research the marimba: What is it, and how is it typically used in music? Compare its use in "Under My Thumb" to its traditional use.


  1. Analyze the lyrics of "Under My Thumb": Write an essay discussing the song's themes and how they reflect the societal attitudes of the 1960s.
  2. Create a presentation on The Rolling Stones' influence on rock music, focusing on their experimentation with different musical instruments and sounds.


  1. Debate the ethical implications of "Under My Thumb": Organize a debate or write a critical essay on whether songs with controversial lyrics should be celebrated or criticized within their historical context.
  2. Conduct an interview with music historians or fans of The Rolling Stones: Gather perspectives on the band's legacy and the impact of songs like "Under My Thumb" on popular culture.

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