How The Stones Rolled in Exile
There's no doubt about it, The Rolling Stones plus their wives, ex-wives, girlfriends and children, are having a moment. Recently released, a fascinating documentary called Stones In Exile, about the making of the the band's much-lauded 1972 album, 'Exile On Main Street'. In the spring of 1971 the band reluctantly departed the UK to escape being taxed up to 98% of their income. They took up residence in France. Keith Richards, Anita Pallenberg and their son Marlon settled at a villa called Nellcôte in Villefranche-sur-Mer and this became the venue for the recording of much of the album.
In the documentary photographer, Dominique Tarlé, recounts that he went to the villa for the afternoon and ended up being invited to stay on and take photos, which he did, for six months! Speaking to the New York Times, Tarlé recalled, “A carnival of characters paraded through: Terry Southern, Gram Parsons, John Lennon, even a tribal band from Bengal… dope dealers from Marseille; petty thieves, who stole most of the drugs and half the furniture; and hangers-on, all of them there to witness what was happening."
“A sunny place for shady people,” said Robert Greenfield, the author of a book about that summer of 1971 at Nellcôte with The Rolling Stones.