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Written by Mick Jagger and Keith Richards, "Dancing with Mr. D." is a brooding rocker in line with much of the Stones' funk inspired recordings from the Goats Head Soup era. The song opens with a riff by Richards prominently repeated throughout the song. Jagger's lyrics allude to either dalliance with a succubus orDeath;
Down in the graveyard where we have our tryst,
The air smells sweet, the air smells sick;
He never smiles, his mouth merely twists,
The breath in my lungs feels clinging and thick;
But I know his name, he's called Mr. D,
And one of these days, he's going to set you free
The song would best serve as an introduction to the Stones' studio-based sound of the mid-1970s after the sprawling epic Exile on Main St. Recording began at Dynamic Sound Studios in Kingston, Jamaicaand would continue at Village Recorders in Los Angeles and Island Recording Studios in London. Billy Preston, who had contributed on a few songs with the Stones in the past, would become a heavy collaborator over the next few albums and here performs clavinet. Nicky Hopkins highlights with pianos throughout while Rebop Kwaku Baah and Pascal perform percussion. Mick Taylor performs electricslide guitar as well as bass while Charlie Watts performs drums.