Notes on Exile On Main Street

Three miscellaneous notes on the great 1972 Rolling Stones album

The Butter Queen was real

The lyrics to “Rip This Joint” include the line “‘Cross to Dallas, Texas with the Butter Queen”. The Butter Queen was a real person. She used a stick of butter for sex acts. Here’s more information on her.

Three Ball Charlie

Three Ball Charlie is the guy with three balls in his mouth on the Exile on Main Street cover. His picture has also been on t-shirts. He was a side show performer.

The Exile on Main Street album cover and postcards

The album cover and interior contents were designed by John Van Hamersveld (born in Baltimore. He designed many album covers including Magical Mystery Tour by the Beatles.

The picture is of a small poster signed by John Van Hamersveld of part of a billboard advertising the album when it was released. The poster was in color.

Here are two articles on it:

Cover Story – The Rolling Stones’ “Exile on Main Street”, with artwork by John Van Hamersveld

The impact of John Van Hamersveld’s artwork on The Rolling Stones’ ‘Exile on Main Street’

The photographs on the outside are by Robert Frank. The postcards use photographs by Norman Seeff.

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