Theater in London is old but famous. Charlie Chaplin has performed here before. Seating is tight, with red velvet folding chairs, and the stage is quirky decorated with two chandeliers that appear to have fallen from the ceiling, they’re so askew. On the left side of the stage are three purple velvet armchairs. And all the time you only think: three. That’s the number of the Rolling Stones left today. Strictly speaking, one of them, Ron Wood, isn’t even a charter member, but the other two, Mick Jagger and Keith Richards. So two of them are left over from the early days. Brian Jones died young, Bill Wyman retired, and Charlie Watts died two years ago.

Then┬áthe Rolling Stones appear from behind, three men, very agile and still laughing, as if they had just broken away from a pub counter that they were about to return to. All three are dressed in black, Mick Jagger is, as always, the bubbly one, asparagus-thin, dancing, the chief singer and anyway the chief stone. Ron Wood is a bit more relaxed and goofy, while Keith Richards, in his hat and sunglasses, seems relaxed, as if he’s only there because other people told him he should be there.

Access to all STERN PLUS content and articles from the print magazine


Already registered?