Through the Past, Darkly (Big Hits Vol. 2) is The Rolling Stones' second official compilation album, released in 1969 shortly following Brian Jones's departure from the group and subsequent death. The album was released by Decca Records in the UK and London Records/ABKCO Records in the US.
In September, Through the Past, Darkly (Big Hits Vol. 2), dedicated to Jones, appeared with an octagonal-shaped album cover. Because their first "Big Hits" compilation had been released in separate formats, with the Aftermath-era material appearing only on its UK edition, the American edition of "Big Hits Vol. 2" included hit singles from the "Aftermath" period.
The British track listing included the more obscure "You Better Move On", from The Rolling Stones' self-titled 1964 debut EP and "Sittin' on a Fence", an Aftermath outtake originally released in 1967 on the US-compiled Flowers album. In addition to those songs, many tracks, notably single-only releases, were collected for the first time on a UK Rolling Stones album: "Let's Spend the Night Together", "Ruby Tuesday", "We Love You", "Dandelion", and "Honky Tonk Women".
Both versions of Through the Past, Darkly (Big Hits Vol. 2) proved to be popular releases, reaching #2 in the UK and US with enduring sales.
The name of the album is a play on a line from the KJV translation of I Corinthians 13: "For now we see through a glass, darkly, but then face to face...", but it is more likely the Stones intended a homage to Ingmar Bergman and his 1961 film Through a Glass Darkly.
In the inside flap of the album, there is a anonymous poem chosen by Jones, which reads: "When this you see, remember me, and bear me in your mind. Let all the world say what they may, speak of me as you find."
In August 2002 the US edition of Through the Past, Darkly (Big Hits Vol. 2) was reissued in a new remastered CD and SACD digipak by ABKCO Records.
The British version was again made available to the public as part of a limited edition vinyl box set, titled "The Rolling Stones 1964–1969", in November 2010. It was also re-released digitally at the same time.
The Rolling Stones are an English rock band formed in April 1962 by guitarist and harmonica player Brian Jones, pianist Ian Stewart, vocalist Mick Jagger and guitarist Keith Richards. Bassist Bill Wyman and drummer Charlie Watts completed the early lineup.
Jones initially led the band, but Jagger and Richards assumed band leadership after becoming prolific hit songwriters and after Jones became increasingly erratic. In 1969 Mick Taylor joined the band on guitar shortly before Jones' untimely death. Since Taylor quit in 1974, guitarist Ronnie Wood has been with the band. Stewart was taken from the official lineup in 1963 to continue as the band's road manager and occasional keyboardist until his death in 1985. Wyman left in 1990 and was replaced by Darryl Jones as the primary bassist.
The Rolling Stones were first popular in Europe and became popular in North America during the British Invasion of the early 1960s. The Rolling Stones have released 22 studio albums in the United Kingdom (24 in the United States), eight concert albums (nine in the US) and numerous compilations; and have album sales estimated at more than 200 million worldwide. Sticky Fingers (1971) began a string of eight consecutive studio albums reaching number one in the United States. Their latest album, A Bigger Bang, was released in 2005. In 1989 the Rolling Stones were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and in 2004 they ranked number 4 in Rolling Stone magazine's 100 Greatest Artists of All Time. In 2008, Billboard magazine ranked the Rolling Stones at number ten on "The Billboard Hot 100 Top All-Time Artists", and as the second most successful group in the Billboard Hot 100 chart.
After signing to Decca Records in 1963, the band changed their name from "The Rollin' Stones" to "The Rolling Stones". Band members and others often refer to the band as "The Stones".
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