The Rolling Stones: Staples Center 5/3/13

I must say that I bought tickets to this show with great trepidation, mostly wanted to make sure that the kids got to see them before they finally called it quits. Lo and behold they delivered a spectacular show, actually amazing, easily one of the greatest shows I’ve ever witnessed. From start to finish they were on fire. What an open with the UCLA Marching Band entering from the rear of the arena playing Satisfaction, into a video presentation with testimonials to what the Stones meant to people, and finally, the PA announcer, “ladies and gentleman, The Rolling Stones”.

Then it was “hey, hey, he, he, Get off of My Cloud”. From there the hits just kept coming. Clearly this is a “best of” show, with I believe one new number mixed in there, but every number going back to the mid-60’s was fresh and vibrant. Mick at 70 hasn’t really lost one step, still as energetic as always, still dancing and prancing, Keith and Ronnie were both at their best last night, Charlie, was Charlie, all of the supporting musicians, Leavell, Keyes, Jones, back up singer Lisa Fisher, were amazing.

Highlights, after Get off of My Cloud was “The Last Time” which was dripping with irony, if it is, they are going out with gusto.  “Gimmer Shelter” with Mick trading vocals with Lisa Fisher was incredible, I still maintain that Gimme Shelter possesses the greatest open of any rock song ever, will always send chills down my spine. Gwen Stefani coming out to duet with Mick on “Wild Horses”, Keith Urban guesting and tearing it up with Keith and Ronnie on “Respectable”.  But without a doubt the greatest guest slot was former Stone Mick Taylor joining the band for “Midnight Rambler”, no song, to me, embodies the Stones like Rambler, and Taylor was just shredding the air with his guitar. A phenomenal number. A fantastic “Sympathy for the Devil”, the first live performance ever of “Emotional Rescue”,  Keith getting his usual two turns at the mic and tearing it up on “Happy”.

3 encores, the first being incredible, with the Cal. State Northridge choir lining both sides of the stage to accompany the band on “You Can’t Always Get What You Want”. Just beautiful.

Hard to say what they didn’t play, all of the classics were there, “Honky Tonk”, “Brown Sugar”, “Start me Up”, “Tumbling Dice”, “Miss You”, they were all there.

Glad I went.

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