Rolling Stones Gettin’ Sticky With It

Author: Jim Johnson

The rolling Stones will perform in Detroit at Comerica Park July 8th.  As is their custom, the Stones performed a tune up show at a small venue in Los Angeles last night.

The word confirming the rumors finally went out Wednesday morning via The Rolling Stones‘ website.

The first show on their Zip Code tour would be a “Los Angeles club show” in 90028 and the Stones would be “playing every song from Sticky Fingers and more.” Although it wasn’t stated, the venue turned out to be the rumored one, the 1,200 capacity Fonda Theater in Hollywood. Tickets went on sale at noon and were sold out moments later. The lucky fans who got them paid five dollars on their credit cards for them — which was then refunded when they picked up their tix.

That was the run up. But the question everyone was asking after the show last night (Wednesday) was, “Will these guys ever show their age?” Sure they look a bit old in the tooth — Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Ronnie Wood and Charlie Watts‘ facial crags are deep and wide — but their sound doesn’t seem to have lost anything at all.

Jagger hit every note and made it look easy, Keith and Ronnie’s guitar “weaving” never sounded sharper and Charlie drove it all in the same un-showy but totally on point way he always has. The usual supporting cast — bassist Daryl Jones, keyboardist Chuck Leavell, backing vocalists Lisa Fischer and Bernard Fowler and horn players Tim Ries and Karl Denson, who replaces the late Bobby Keys — was rock solid.

What’s more, the band seemed to be enjoying themselves tremendously. Jagger regularly chatted with the crowd. He introduced most of the songs, and at one point joked about the celebrities in the Hollywood crowd. “There’s Jane Fonda and her father HenryLady Gaga and Tony BennettMiley Cyrus and Clark GableTaylor Swift and Dean Martin.” (None of them were actually there, although Bruce Willis, James Corden,Andy Garcia, Leonard Cohen, Dave Stewart and Don Was were spotted at the show.)

Although the grand gestures we’re used to from Mick in the stadium and arena shows were toned down and his running around confined to a smaller space, he continues to be the consummate showman. He danced, gestured with his hands, threw punches like a boxer at the crowd, then used his arms to conduct them in a wordless singalong on “You Got to Move.” Keith had a beaming smile on his face whenever he came to the front of the stage to play a guitar lead and Ronnie saluted the crowd back by raising his fists in the air more than once. As the Stones went into “Moonlight Mile,” the final song from Sticky Fingers he joked, “Next year we’ll come back and do the whole of [Their] Satanic Majesties [Request].” He also teased the band’s next show, saying “Sunday we’re going to San Diego to play for…San Diegans.”

The three-song encore began with a tribute to the late B.B. King, who Jagger said had opened for the Stones a number of times. They played his “Rock Me Baby,” a song Ronnie Wood had recorded as the bassist with The Jeff Beck Group back in 1968.

Back in March, Jagger told us he had some concerns about playing Sticky Fingers live, because half the songs are slow, but they did it and are expected to continue to do so throughout the Zip Code tour.

Here’s the set list:

  1. “Start Me Up”
  2. “When the Whip Comes Down”
  3. “All Down the Line”
  4. “Sway”
  5. “Dead Flowers”
  6. “Wild Horses”
  7. “Sister Morphine”
  8. “You Got to Move”
  9. “Bitch”
  10. “Can’t You Hear Me Knockin'”
  11. “I Got the Blues”
  12. “Moonlight Mile”
  13. “Brown Sugar”
  14. “Rock Me Baby” (B.B. King song)
  15. “Jumpin’ Jack Flash”
  16. “I Can’t Turn You Loose” (Otis Redding Song)

Check out this 2003 performance of “Can’t You Hear Me Knockin'”

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