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Rolling Stones kick off 50th anniversary tour
From: BBC          Published On: November 26, 2012, 10:00 GMT
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Rolling Stones kick off 50th anniversary tour

The Rolling Stones performed for two and a half hours

The Rolling Stones returned to the London stage on Sunday night in the first of five concerts to celebrate their 50th anniversary.

Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Charlie Watts and Ronnie Wood were joined by their original bass player Bill Wyman at the 02 Arena.

Richards joked with the audience: "We made it. I'm happy to see you. I'm happy to see anybody."

Guest stars included Mick Taylor who played lead guitar on Midnight Rambler.

Taylor was originally in the Stones from 1969 to 1974.

US singer Mary J Blige also duetted with Jagger on Give Me Shelter.

Ticket prices

"It's amazing that we're still doing this, and it's amazing that you're still buying our records and coming to our shows," Jagger said. "Thank you, thank you, thank you."

He also joked about the controversial price of the concert's tickets.

"How are you doing up in the cheap seats?" he asked fans in the upper rows. "Except they're not cheap seats, that's the problem."

The show began with a brief video tribute from stars including Sir Elton John, Iggy Pop and Johnny Depp.

The band played 23 songs including some of their rarely-played early numbers such as It's All Over Now and their cover version of the Beatles' I Wanna Be Your Man.

They also showed a video montage of their big influences such as Muddy Waters, Bob Dylan and Johnny Cash.

BBC Radio 5 live's Colin Paterson said Jagger's energy "was just frightening".

Comedian Noel Fielding, who was in the audience, told the BBC Richards was "amazing".

"I think Keith played incredibly. Sympathy For The Devil...his lead on that was absolutely amazing," he said.

"Mick came out in a cape which - as always - has got to be a bonus."


The band also played classics such as Paint It Black and Jumping Jack Flash, but they didn't get to perform Satisfaction as they ran out of time.

Still, fans were happy with the performance.

"It was pretty special," said one, adding: "It's not very often you get to see something like that. It was incredible."

Another man who travelled from Australia for the concert said it was "amazing".

"Mick Taylor... What a genius," he added.

Music critic Neil McCormick said the music sounded as good as it did when he first started going to gigs in the early 1980s.

"They really did seem happy to be there," he told the BBC. "There were many moments when they went completely mad."

The series of gigs marks 50 years since the band first appeared in a small London club determined to pay homage to the masters of American blues.

There will be one more concert in London on Thursday, followed by one in Brooklyn, New York, and two in Newark, New Jersey.

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