1969. The Rolling Stones are about to kick off their European tour. The band’s looking for some new art work for the tour poster. Their record label Deca comes up with several designs, but Jagger and co are not impressed and they decide to call in the Royal College of Art in London to ask if they know a suitable student that could come to their aid. (Photo credits: The Rolling Stones)
That’s where Jagger meets student John Pasche. He decides to give him the assignment to design the tour poster. Pasche created the 1970 Rolling Stones poster with a big cruise ship and the car. Fun fact: a fellow student from Pasche, Storm Thorgerson, was working for another great British rock band at the same time: he designed Pink Floyd’s The Dark Side Of The Moon.
The birth of ‘Tongue and Lips’
Jagger was so pleased with Pasche’s work that he asked Pasche to design a new logo for their upcoming studio album too. Mick Jagger gave him a image of a Hindu Goddess Kali, known for her long and pointy tongue, and told Pasche that he ‘liked the look of it’. Pasche wanted to design something that was both anti-authority and provocative, just like The Stones were. That’s when he came up with the “Tongue and Lips” design. Jagger loved the cheeky design and paid Pasche astonishing amount of £50. The logo first appeared on the album insert sleeve of their album Sticky Fingers.
‘Tongue and Lips’ would later become one of the most iconic bandlogos of all time. After The Stones copyrighted the logo, Pasche received a share of the royalties rights. He later sold the original art work to London’s V&A museum for $92,500. He never thought that the British rock band would use the logo for this long: “I’m still amazed by how popular it is. I still get emails from people saying, ‘I’ve just had the logo tattooed on my arm.'” (The Guardian)