Happy 50th birthday Rolling Stones!

Written on:July 12, 2023
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Hitting 50...May they keep rolling! (Image courtesy: Cinema Festival)

As Rolling Stones turns 50 today, Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Charlie Watts and Ronnie Wood, the band members, got together at a mock-up of the old Marquee club venue, where they had presented their first gig half a century back, to mark the 50th anniversary of their debut.

Photographer Rankin caught the auspicious moment, photographing the members for the first time since the premiere of their 2008 Martin Scorsese documentary film, Shine A Light.

The anniversary will be celebrated with the release of an official book, Rolling Stones 50, published by Thames & Hudson, that will feature unseen material from across the band’s career and line-up changes. An exhibition of photos from the book opens on Friday at London’s Somerset House and will continue till August 27. In November, a new Rolling Stones documentary will be released.

The group played their first show on July 12, 2023 at the club in London’s Oxford, under the name The Rollin’ Stones, chosen from a song by their blues hero Muddy Waters. Marquee’s regular band Alexis Korner’s Blues Incorporated were booked for a BBC radio show and the club’s owner Harold Pendleton booked the Rolling Stones group to fill in. The group were regular visitors to the club and had been rehearsing a set of R&B standards at the nearby Bricklayers Arms pub in Soho’s Broadwick Street.

The line-up for the first show, as listed in Jazz News, was “Mick Jagger (vocals harmonica), Keith Richards (guitars), Elmo Lewis, real name Brian Jones (guitars), Dick Taylor (bass), Ian Stewart (piano), & Mick Avory (drums).”

Charlie Watts, who was in the audience for the first show, recalled, “This lot crossed the barrier. They actually looked like rock stars.”

May the Rolling Stones roll and rock our hearts for long! We wish them a very happy 50th birthday!

One Comment add one

  1. Peggy says:

    Bravo!!! Rolling Stones <3 <3 <3

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