After nearly 50 years of being the World’s Greatest Rock Band (self-proclaimed), in which they established nearly everything for what a rock and roll band should sound, proving the longevity and relevance of rock music for every critic who said ‘nay,’ and set the gold standard for post-concert debauchery for every band seeking legendary status, the Rolling Stones are rumored to be plotting their retirement.
After one more word tour, that is.
According to British tabloid the Sun, the band is in talks with concert promotion company Live Nation to produce one last go-around before Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Charlie Watts, and Ronnie Wood (the first three have been the group’s core since 1962) put an end to the Rolling Stones for the last time. There has yet to be an official word on whether or not this will be a world tour, but a source close to the band assures fans it will be venues are likely to consist entirely of stadiums and arenas. Furthermore, the band are likely not to begin the tour until next summer, and have dates run through 2012, coinciding with the 50th anniversary of the band’s formation. The source close to the band explained the reason behind the decision: “The band realizes that age is creeping up on them. They want to bow out at the top of their game and not short-change their fans.”
Yes. At the top of their game. Now, when Charlie Watts is on the verge of 70, and the youngest band member is 63. Now would be the time to go out on that high note so many musicians talk about.
In all fairness — and joking aside — there is no word whether or not an album of new material will coincide with this farewell tour. It would seem a revitalizing spirit exists in the bonus tracks that were re-recorded for the Exile on Main Street reissue (“Plundered My Soul” is an excellent example of how classic rockers can still sound fresh and exciting — by not changing a damn thing). Then again, 2005’s “A Bigger Bang” was the band’s 25th album of original material, and if you believe in having nice, well-rounded numbers, “A Bigger Bang” is an album worthy of being a respectable last. There’s no shame in saying that’s is going out at the top of their game, at least in terms of recorded material.
Then again, live concerts have always been the band’s main bread and butter, and no matter what stage their recorded music has evolved to, they have a reputation for putting on an excellent show. Lester Bangs declared Get Yer Ya-Yas Out as the best live album, and who are we to disagree with him (Live at Leeds). Not me. No sir.
So for the sake of all the 14-year olds out there who’s discovered his dad’s album collection, for your sake, I hope you can afford the tickets when the dates are announced. Be sure to read ’em here at the Electric Comic Book!