This article is part of a series of reviews of Rolling Stones books that were published in 2013.
Mick Jagger has often been described as the business mastermind of the Rolling Stones, but Prince Rupert Loewenstein (who was the Stones' chief financial adviser from 1968 to 2007) has often been credited with helping save the Stones from financial ruin. The Stones signed some bad business deals in the 1960s, and Loewenstein was part of the team that helped the Rolling Stones climb out of the proverbial quicksand and build a thriving financial foundation that serves the band well today.
So now that Loewenstein has written his memoir (just like dozens of former associates of the Stones have also told their tales in their own books), you would think that it would be a fascinating, behind-the-scenes look at how the Stones built one of the biggest financial empires in rock and roll, largely because of touring and merchandise. But in Loewnstein's memoir "A Prince Among Stones: That Business with the Rolling Stones and Other Adventures," he seems more concerned about perpetuating snobbery among the classes (as if people with royal titles are automatically "better" than those who do not have titles) and pretentious name dropping rather than give an engaging account of what it was like to be part of the Rolling Stones' inner circle for all those decades.
Jagger has already publicly slammed this book, perhaps because Loewenstein describes Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards in more flattering terms than he describes Jagger. That obvious preference for Richards is not the biggest flaw of the book. The biggest flaw of the book is that Loewenstein likes to brag about what an interesting life he has led, but the way he tells his life story is far from interesting. It's downright boring.
Many Rolling Stones fans and people in the music business already know that Loewenstein was instrumental in cleaning up the Stones' messy financial quagmire. But if this book really wanted to deliver what its title teases, Loewenstein would have cleared up any rumors or given insight into what each of the band members' relationship with money is really like.
Any Rolling Stones fan who might want to go through the endurance test of reading this book should be warned that you have to weed through one dull tale after another before getting to anything remotely resembling a story about the Rolling Stones that is told with heart. It's like an over-rated meal that has very little substance and just isn't cooked very well, no matter how much someone drones on and on about the chef's great lineage, the history of the china on which the meal is served, the credentials of the architect who designed the restaurant, and all of the famous people who ate at the restaurant.
You don't need Loewenstein's book to tell you that Richards is extremely passionate about music and witty. You don't need Loewenstein's book to know that Jagger is extremely ambitious and intelligent. And you certainly don't need Loewenstein's book if you're looking for engaging stories about "adventures" (a misleading word from the book's title) with the Rolling Stones.