Unreleased Mick Jagger & Carly Simon Duet Discovered 46 Years Later
The best-known collaboration between Carly Simon and Mick Jagger is her classic song “You’re So Vain,” which features uncredited backing vocals from the Rolling Stones frontman. (Once you notice it’s him chiming in on the second chorus and after, you won’t be able to unhear it.) But it turns out that wasn’t the only time the two icons worked together. A duet, recorded in 1972 but never released, was recently discovered on a tape owned by a collector of Stones memorabilia named Matt Lee, the Associated Press reports.
The song, apparently called “Fragile,” is a “slow love ballad” with Jagger on lead vocals, according to the AP. The story points to a 2016 Rolling Stone interview with Simon in which she discusses having recorded it:
Simon spoke about the lost duet in an interview with Rolling Stone magazine about two years ago, saying the tape of the recording had been lost for decades.
“We had this little back and forth at the piano for about an hour,” Simon says in the Rolling Stone interview, published 11/29/2016, according to the magazine’s website. She also sang a line of the song from memory, “Funny, funny, funny, funny, funny, How love can make you cry.”
That matches with Lee’s recording, except Jagger and Simon appear to sing “change” instead of “cry.” Jagger does most of the singing, with Simon adding some harmonies.
“Fragile” sits at the intersection of multiple streams of unreleased Stones lore. If you recognize the lyrics, it might be because a snippet of the song can be heard in Cocksucker Blues, the 1972 documentary about the band’s U.S. tour of the same year, supporting Exile on Main Street. For years, the film itself was difficult to see, after the band fought its release, obtaining a court order imposing severe limits on when and how it could be screened. (It famously includes scenes of cocaine and heroin use.) It’s unclear yet whether the recording of “Fragile” with Simon will ever be available to fans, or if Matt Lee will keep it for his own use as an extremely cool party trick.