Rolling Stones Logo

Rolling Stones logo

Designed for mere £50, the iconic Hot Lips logo has been in use for almost half a century. The original draft was sold to a London museum for $92,500.

Meaning and history Rolling Stones Logo

history Rolling Stones Logo

The idea of branding a music band with a single logo was a somewhat novel approach in 1969. Probably that was one of the reasons why Decca, the label with which The Rolling Stones worked at the time, did not put too much effort into developing the band’s badge and left Mick Jagger dissatisfied with it. So, Jagger decided to have this job done by someone else. He visited the Royal College of Art final degree show and spotted the designs of Jon Pasche, who was just a student back then. The musician gave Pasche his instructions and had the job done in just a fortnight.

rolling stones lips logo

The Rolling Stones logo, which has been referred to as “Tongue and Lips” or just “Hot Lips,” first appeared on 1971’s Sticky Fingers LP. It became an icon immediately, so the Rolling Stones have never changed it.

Inspiration behind the symbol Rolling Stones

symbol Rolling Stones

Jagger explained Jon Pasche that he wanted the logo to resemble the Hindu goddess Kali. One of the characteristic features of the goddess is an impressive mouth with a tongue sticking out. Jon Pasche claimed that the idea of a mouth symbol sprang to his mind the very moment he saw Mick Jagger in person for the first time. He mentioned that it was just impossible not to spot the musician’s lips and mouth, his most prominent visual features.

rolling stones tongue logo

Also, both Pasche and Jagger appreciated the sexual connotation behind the design, as well as its anti-authoritarian attitude.

How much did the emblem Rolling Stones cost?

emblem Rolling Stones

Jon Pasche reportedly received as little as £50 (about $77) for the Rolling Stones logo. However, when the Stones saw the emblem, they were impressed by it so much that they paid him extra £200. That was not the only bonus the designer received for the job. He worked with the band for the following four years, became known in musical circles and found a lot of customers here, from Paul McCartney and The Who to Jimi Hendrix and Judas Priest, to name just a few. Eventually, he sold the original draft or the Hot Lips logo to the London museum V&A for $92,500.

Font of the Rolling Stones Logo

Font Rolling Stones Logo

Although The Stones have a unique logo, they do not actually possess a distinctive wordmark, so the name of the band can be given in a variety of typefaces.

Color of the Rolling Stones Logo

Color Rolling Stones Logo

The initial design was black-and-white, but as soon as it became the official logo, it was colored red. It was probably the most logical color choice, not only because red is the natural color of human lips and tongue, but also because it is the color of passion and rebel.