by Magnus Shaw The Rolling Stones, eh? Mick done up like a teenage spiv, Keith with a scarf round his head. Ronnie all pipe-cleaner legs and hair dye and great grandpa Charlie pattering away and looking bored. Charging a king’s ransom for tickets, hawking irrelevant new singles and rasping their way through the same old stories in yet more interviews. What an embarrassment! What a joke! Who needs ’em, eh?
Well, actually, you do. And I do. We all do.
For far too long The Rolling Stones have been a scapegoat for our prejudices – carrying the can for our awkwardness around older guys playing rock and roll. At some point this fine band crossed an ill-defined line which somehow took them from swaggering cool to laughing stock – a position as ludicrous as it is unfair. While The Beatles are rarely spoken of in anything less than tones of hushed awe, the Stones are mocked and pilloried for no greater crime than carrying on after their northern contemporaries evaporated.