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Rolling Stones Featured in ‘Mad Men’ Plot

The Rollings Stones
George Stroud, Getty Images

Despite the series taking place in the ’60s, rock music has barely featured in the stories of AMC’s ‘Mad Men.’ But on Sunday (April 1) night’s episode, the world’s greatest rock and roll band were an integral part of one of the subplots.

Early in the show, which is set in the summer of 1966, Don Draper, Creative Director and partner of ad agency Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce, and his wife Megan had dinner with Raymond Geiger, an executive at Heinz. Geiger suggests that Draper try and convince the Rolling Stones, who will be performing in New York that weekend, into re-recording ‘Time Is on My Side’ as ‘Heinz Is on Your Side.’

Draper and Harry Crane, the head of SCDP’s television department, go backstage at the Forest Hills Tennis Stadium with the hopes of meeting manager Allen Klein. After being told that the group had not yet arrived, Don bribes the bouncer to be allowed in when they do.

While waiting, they encounter a couple of young women, Jo and Cecillia, who are also trying to meet the group, albeit for other reasons. Convinced that the older men in suits aren’t narcs, the girls offer joints to the men, with Harry partaking while Don sticks to good old-fashioned tobacco.

Eventually, Cecillia is able to get only Harry into the dressing room, leaving Don alone with Jo. The 40-year old Draper, unable to comprehend why the kids today go crazy for this rock n’ roll music, pries Jo for information as to the appeal of the Stones. She tells him of her love of Brian Jones, and refers to herself as ‘Lady Jane.’

Shortly thereafter, Harry resurfaces, claiming that his pitch was successful, waving the contract. But before they could celebrate, the band arrives. Harry learns that the signature on the contract was for opening act, the Trade Winds, a band from Providence, R.I. who had a few minor hits in the mid-’60s.

‘Mad Men’ creator Matt Weiner’s famous attention to detail was on full display. As it turns out the Stones did play the Forest Hills Tennis Stadium in Queens, N.Y. on July 2, 1966. And, as Don tells Jo, the Rolling Stones, in fact, did record a jingle for Rice Krispies several years earlier in Great Britain.

Watch a 1964 Rice Krispies Commercial With Music by the Rolling Stones

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