Retrospective: The Rolling Stones

Retrospective: The Rolling Stones

Iconic moments made by the British rockers

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Image: Jazz In Photo
Image: Vintage Fine Art Prints

As the legendary British band touch down in Abu Dhabi for the first time, the Rolling Stones will kick off their '14 On Fire' tour at the du Arena, Yas Island this weekend

As the longest performing rock band of all time, the Rolling Stones have greatly influenced not only rock and roll, but the entire music industry throughout the decades.

Beginning as part of the 'Brit Rock Invasion' of the 1960s, the act soon became known simply as the 'Stones' and took on a personality that saw them deemed the 'bad-boy' band of the era, with wild behaviour echoed by provocative music and many a party tale to boot.

After five decades together, the Rolling Stones have amassed ten consecutive gold albums and now, the band are rolling into Abu Dhabi for the first time in their quite epic history.

Buro 24/7 takes a look back at some key moments in the style-setting career of Mick Jagger and co.


The Beginning

When the Beatles hit international stardom in 1963, the Rolling Stones were right on their heels. While the former became known as the good-boy band, influencing pop rock, the Rolling Stones became known as the alternative option.

Rolling stones dubai

Rolling stones dubai

In the early 1950s, Keith Richards and Mick Jagger were school classmates in Kent, England, until Jagger went to a different school. Nearly a decade later, their friendship was rekindled after a chance encounter at a train station, when Jagger was on his way to the London School of Economics where he was studying accounting, and Richards was commuting to Sidcup Art College where he was studying graphic art. Jagger had a couple of Chuck Berry and Muddy Waters records under his arm – including the latter's song Rollin' Stone – when they met, and talk quickly turned to music. They discovered that Jagger had been singing in underground clubs in London while Richards had been playing the guitar since the age of 14.

The pair were joined by guitarist Brian Jones, pianist Ian Stewart, drummer Tony Chapman and bassist Dick Taylor, before later formations saw various musicians join and leave, including Bassist Bill Wyman, guitarist Ronnie Wood and drummer Charlie Watts join the band. Jagger and Richards friendship created a core partnership that has kept the Rolling Stones together for decades... 

The Stones

An early formation of the Rolling Stones: Charlie Watts and Mick Jagger (centre), plus Keith Richards (right) remain to this day


The Seventies

During the 1970s, the band made many musical milestones which include the album Get Yer Ya-Yas Out! The Rolling Stones in Concert staying at number one in the American Billboard Charts for 16 weeks, and various world tours throughout the decade. It was also the era when Mick married Bianca Pérez-Mora Macias – after meeting at a party after a Rolling Stones concert in France in 1970 – and she soon became his first wife. They became an iconic celebrity couple of the time on the fashion party circuit, with Bianca being closely associated with New York City's nightclub Studio 54 and a good friend of Andy Warhol. The pair have one daughter together, Jade Jagger. 

Rolling stones dubai

Mick and Bianca Jagger marry in 1971

Rolling stones dubai

Mick and Bianca Jagger marry in 1971

Rolling stones dubai

Mick and Bianca Jagger

The pair separated eight years later when Mick famously married American model Jerry Hall, the mother of Elizabeth, James, Georgia May and Gabriel. Jagger also has two other children from different relationships before, and after, his highly publicised marriages.


Friends in the Media

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Mick Jagger and Keith Richards appear on the cover of Rolling Stone magazine in 1997

The relationship between band mates and founders of the group, Mick Jagger and Keith Richards has been frequently described as 'love/hate' by the media over the years. Richards himself said as part of a 1998 interview: "I think of our differences as a family squabble. If I shout and scream at him, it's because no one else has the guts to do it or else they're paid not to do it. At the same time I'd hope Mick realises that I'm a friend who is just trying to bring him into line and do what needs to be done." 

Later Richards, along with Johnny Depp, tried unsuccessfully to persuade Jagger to appear in Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides – alongside Depp and Richards. Johnny Depp has often cited Richards as the inspiration for his character of Captain Jack Sparrow.   


The Super Bowl XL

By 2006, the veteran Brits were behind one of the best-known acts on the planet, and took to the famous American Super Bowl halftime stage in front of a stage set built to look like the Stones' iconic lip licking logo, for a 12-minute compilation of tracks that featured Start Me Up, Rough Justice and the classic (I Can't Get No) Satisfaction.


Glastonbury 2013

Last year, marking just over fifty years in business, the Rolling Stones thrilled festival goers in Great Britain by pulling off "one of the greatest rock and roll sets that Glastonbury has ever seen," exclaimed critics, as the band played to more than 100,000 revellers on the Pyramid Stage.

The Stones

Mick Jagger's stage costumes are designed by his current partner, fashion designer L'Wren Scott

The Stones

It was also the year that Jagger joined Instagram. One of his first shares was of the luxury camping experience in a chic 'Yurt' tent at Glastonbury. In further proof of their adaptation to the industry after over half a century, the band also has its own, very active, social media accounts – its most recent addition being a shot of the foursome arriving in Abu Dhabi this week, ahead of their landmark show in the UAE capital this weekend. 

The Stones

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