The Rolling Stones were formed as a band in 1962, and while they have had a few members come and go, they are still currently performing as a band.
"Beast of Burden" is credited as being written by Keith Richards and Mick Jagger of the Rolling Stones. The music and some of the lyrics were written by Keith Richards, while Mick Jagger filled in the verses. The song was released in 1978 on the Some Girls album.
Mick Jagger said of the song, "Lyrically, this wasn't particularly heartfelt in a personal way. It's a soul begging song, an attitude song. It was one of those where you get one melodic lick, break it down and work it up; there are two parts here which are basically the same." The song can be seen as allegorical, with Richards saying in 2003, "When I returned to the fold after closing down the laboratory [referring to his drug problems throughout the 1970s], I came back into the studio with Mick... to say, 'Thanks, man, for shouldering the burden' - that's why I wrote "Beast of Burden" for him, I realize in retrospect."
In 2004, Rolling Stone magazine ranked the song #435 on their list of "The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time" and #433 on the 500 Greatest Rock and Roll Songs of All Time.