G is for Gimme Shelter by The Rolling Stones

The Rolling Stones is one of those bands where I probably know more of their songs than I realise, but as they were never a band I grew up listening to, I don’t count myself as a fan.

Gimme Shelter is my favourite song of theirs and not only because it’s pretty much the only one I can name. I love the guitar intro and how it slowly builds with the female vocals joining in. I love the rhythm of the song, and how Mick Jagger’s voice works so well with Merry Clayton’s. I love how the song comes to a close and she almost screams the final stanza. It’s got so many great elements that come together to be one great rock song.

Gimme Shelter has been used in so many films, TV shows and trailers, like The Departed and Layer Cake, that in my mind the song is almost synonymous to gangster films and guys running from the law. I think it’s because it’s got this dark, gritty edge with it that helps me visualise that kind of scenario when listening to it.

For a time, Gimme Shelter was my ringtone, I love it that much, now it’s been replaced by another song that will be featuring in this A-Z Challenge so keep your eyes (and ears) peeled for that!


  1. This is a terrific song, especially the Merry Clayton part. She actually recorded her own version of the song that’s worth checking out.

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