It’s shaping up to be a major fall for the Rolling Stones. In addition to recording new music in Paris last week, the band will play its first shows since 2007 later this year to celebrate its 50th anniversary. Rolling Stone has learned the band is planning two shows at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center to happen before the end of the year. “This was accomplished in a Navy SEAL-like operation,” a source familiar with the deal tells Rolling Stone. “No one I knew whispered a word of this before yesterday.”
Billboard reported yesterday about the Brooklyn shows and added the band will also play two shows at London’s O2 Arena in November with Virgin founder Richard Branson and Australian promoter Paul Dainty promoting the gigs. A spokesperson for the Stones declined to say the London and New York shows were confirmed.
The band gathered to record two new songs for an upcoming box set last week at Guillaume Tell Studios near Paris, where they also recorded new tracks for 2002’s 40 Licks set a decade ago. “Had fun in the Paris studio this week!” Mick Jagger tweeted with a photo surrounded by Telecasters, Stratocasters and harmonicas. “I’d love to get some tracks down and see what songs we’ve got,” Keith Richards told Rolling Stone before the recording sessions. “And that goes along with part of getting the band back together and getting things moving. So I’d love to cut some tracks, yeah.” Asked if he saw himself writing one-on-one with Jagger again, Richards said, “I have no doubt.”
The Stones also rehearsed songs from their entire catalog in the New York area in April. “That was a great time,” Richards said. “I thought I’d be quite rusty, after all we hadn’t done it for a while, in five years or something. And amazing to hear it sounded as fresh as you could hope for. It was a great week.”
The final day of those rehearsals were filmed for Crossfire Hurricane, a film spanning the band’s entire career to premiere November 15th, directed by Brett Morgen (The Kid Stays in the Picture). “Nobody has put the story together as a narrative,” Morgen told Rolling Stone earlier this year. “We’ve been looking under every rock going through their archives. It will be music never heard before, and I’ve conducted 50-plus hours of interviews so far. By the time we’re done, they will be the most extensive group interviews they’ve ever done.” At the time, Richards told Rolling Stone, “He told me 80 percent of the footage has never been seen before, which amazes me. I didn’t know there was that much around.”
Additional reporting by Steve Knopper