Rolling Stones celebrate 50th, hint about tour

Thu Jul 12, 2012 3:44pm EDT
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By Josie Cox

LONDON (Reuters) - Half a century after their first live gig on London's Oxford Street, Mick Jagger, Keith Richards and the rest of the Rolling Stones marked the band's 50th anniversary by launching a new book, a photographic exhibition and hinting about a tour.

As part of the festivities guitarist Ronnie Wood told Reuters in an exclusive interview that the Stones are set to reveal their plans for future live gigs this week.

"What we do is live in hope and hopefully this week we'll unfold some plans," Wood said, adding that the band had recently spent a number of days rehearsing in a studio in New York and that getting together was like "being back at school".

Richards said this week that the Stones have met up for "a couple of rehearsals", but would not go so far as to say when the quartet comprising himself, Jagger, Charlie Watts and Wood would be performing in public again.

"We're playing around with the idea and had a couple of rehearsals - we've got together and it feels so good," Richards told Britain's publicly funded broadcaster the BBC.

The 65-year-old Wood, who joined the Stones in 1975 to replace Mick Taylor, also refused to rule out the possibility of a return appearance by Bill Wyman -- bass guitarist for the band from 1962 until 1993.

"I saw him last week and he was in top form, rocking," Wood said. "We also did a rehearsal with him a few weeks ago. It's like he'd never been away."

The exhibition of photos at London's Somerset House and the accompanying book track the rise of a group of fresh-faced British boys who played their first gig at Oxford Street's Marquee Club in 1962, became the scourge of the establishment in the 1960s, the titans of 70s music and finally the elder statesmen of rock and roll in the 21st century.   Continued...

The Rolling Stones' Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Ronnie Wood and Charlie Watts (L-R) pose in front of The Marquee Club in London in this handout photograph received by Reuters on July 11, 2012. The picture was taken by photographer Rankin to mark the fiftieth anniversary of the Rolling Stones' first ever live performance on July 12, 1962 at the iconic venue on London's Oxford Street. An exhibition of photos from Rolling Stones 50 will be held at London's Somerset House from July 13 to August 27. REUTERS/Rankin/Handout