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Rolling Stones, The/Exile on Main street The Stones


I picked up a excellent copy of Exile in a $1 bin today .The vinyl & sleeves were like they hadn't even taken them out of the cover . The cover had been pinned up on all 4 corners and was clean and crisp I paid $30 last year for a first pressing from a friend of my sons at a good ol boy discount , it was for my son. How can I tell if this is a fist pressing . His friend is no longer with us or I could check with him. Thank you in advance for your help in this matter.

Hello and thank you for your question.

With regard to U.S. pressings of Exile on Main Street, the easiest way to distinguish a first pressing from all subsequent non-contemporary pressings is to look at the design of the cover.  Only the first pressing had what's known as a 'unipak' design.  This means that the cover opens like a book, but has a pocket which is open at the center.  Essentially, the two discs and thick inner sleeves are in a pocket which is closed by a thin cardstock flap.  All subsequent pressings in the 1970s and '80s had a standard gatefold cover where each disc had its own pocket and both opened on the right side.

In other words, take a look at the cover while it is closed.  If you can pull out the discs (with or without the inner sleeves) without opening the cover like a book, it's a later pressing.  If you need to open the cover like a book to have access to a pocket where the discs are, then it's a first pressing.

If you have any additional questions, please feel free to ask.

Rolling Stones, The

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I'm here to assist in answering any of your questions related to official vinyl record albums by The Rolling Stones. This includes all places on earth where Stones record albums were produced (including Chile, Iran, Colombia, and many more). Guided by a personal collection and database featuring albums from nearly every corner of the globe and every official pressing of US LP for public use, promotion-only, and unissued projects. Feel free to request information about any aspect from basic identification to thorough evaluation and everything in between such as country of origin, date of release, approximate valuation, matrix information, stampers, mothers, codes, re-issues, alternate pressings, alternate takes, best press sources, alternate sources of particular songs, and whatever else for both covers and discs. Answers are honest, legitimate, and are most often based on information gathered from my own collection and direct experience. Though I specialize in LPs, my knowledge extends to singles and EPs. Expect no plagiarism and no fabricated facts to cover-up lack of knowledge. If I don't have the answer for you, I'll give you another source to review or offer a quote with proper credit.


Over 20 years collecting records of The Rolling Stones from around the globe. I own hundreds of variations of album covers and discs, several of which are otherwise unidentified in other sources. My public online articles, reviews and overviews have been quoted and otherwise referenced in countless websites (including this one by other 'experts').

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