There has been a lot of talk of UFOs in the news lately. If we, as humans, ever need to teach visitors from other galaxies about who we are and what we like, we’ll have to let them hear the Rolling Stones. They were first called “The Greatest Rock and Roll Band in the World” back in 1969. Only six years into their career, the Stones had arguably earned the superlative even then. They truly are Earth’s quintessential rock group. Maybe even the whole universe.
The Rolling Stones have been the entertaining the world for over six decades and they’re still at it. The iconic band is set to release its 31st studio album on Friday, October 20th. Hackney Diamonds is their first collection of new material in 18 years. The Stones’ core of Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, and Ronnie Wood all perform on the 12-track album. Two of the tracks include their late drummer Charlie Watts since they were recorded in 2019. The other 10 tracks feature drummer Steve Jordan, whom Watts selected as his replacement. The group’s original bassist, Bill Wyman, also plays on one of the new songs. If that weren’t enough, the album includes guest performances from Lady Gaga and Stevie Wonder. This Throwback Threesome takes a brief look at how the Stones got rolling.
Mick and Keith
The story of the Rolling Stones really begins in 1950, when Mick Jagger and Keith Richards became classmates and childhood friends in Dartford, England. Four years later, Jagger’s family moved five miles away. However, Mick and Keith were reunited when they bumped into each other at the Dartford railway station in 1961. They quickly realized they had a common interest in American blues and early rock & roll music. They soon put together a band called the Blues Boys with bassist Dick Taylor.
The Blues Boys Get Rollin’
In the spring of 1962, Jagger, Richards, and Taylor met a band called Blues Incorporated, which included guitarist Brian Jones, drummer Charlie Watts, and keyboardist Ian Stewart. That summer, Jones, Jagger, Richards, Stewart, and Taylor played their first show as “The Rollin’ Stones” at the Marquee Club in London. In December of that year, bassist Bill Wyman was hired to replace Dick Taylor, who went back to art college. The classic line-up of the Rolling Stones, with Charlie Watts on drums, played for the first time in public on January 12, 1963. They put out their first single, a cover of Chuck Berry’s “Come On,” in June of ’63.
The Rolling Stones Forever
In the 60 years since their first release, the Rolling Stones have been with us all along. Through every decade, every high and low. Even as members of the group came and went, the Stones endured. Brian Jones died in 1969. Mick Taylor was there from 1970 to 1974. Ronnie Wood joined in ’75. Bill Wyman left in ’93. Charlie Watts passed on in 2021 at the age of 80. Mick, Keith, and Ronnie continue to carry the torch and still sound good doing it. The aliens will love them!