Reasons to Live in London: The Rolling Stones and London

Last week, in celebration of Spice Girls Week, we looked at some of the premiere music venues in London, and uncovered some unknown tidbits about their history. This week, the Rolling Stones, another iconic British group, hit London for two gigs as part of their 50th Anniversary tour. So today we’re going to dive in to their history as a band, looking at the venues, hotspots and property in London, which any Stones fan ought to know:

The Formation

A lesson to all of us about the wonders and possibilities of taking public transport, rather than drive ourselves around. Though technically in Kent, at Dartford train station, Mick Jagger and Keith Richards would meet each other by chance, having previously gone to the same school together. Jagger happened to be holding some records, so the subject of the conversation turned to music, leading to Richards joining Jagger’s band at the time, soon after. Just goes to show what can come about from a train journey.

The First Gig

On July 12th 1962, the Rolling Stones performed for the first time at the London Marquee Club, located then in Oxford Street (Westminster, London). The club would relocate to Soho during the 60s, where other great names would grace the stage, like The Who and David Bowie. Many progressive and groundbreaking genres saw their seeds sewn in that building; perhaps though, none as influential as the rhythm and blues-inspired “bad boy rock” of the Stones.

Where To Eat

Carnaby Street celebrates the Rolling Stones turning 50

If you’re in town for The Stones and you need somewhere to eat, there’s no more suitable place than former bassist Bill Wyman’s Sticky Fingers restaurant, located in the affluent Kensington area. If you’re a fan of your meat, this is the place for you, and is the ultimate haven for any fan of the band. Memorabilia adorns the walls; so while you dine, you can take in the history of the band. Incredibly instagrammable.

Where to Shop

Few bands would take over an entire street when they’re in town, but then the Stones are no ordinary band. Take a trip down to Carnaby Street to see the specially themed-decorations, as well a shop specifically selling merchandise for the band – a perfect opportunity to stock up for the fan you know. The area has a special resonance with the band, as this is where they practiced early on, all those decades ago. It’s just another reason to live in London; the city is brimming with culture right on your doorstep, and always popping out the next big things in music, film and art. Who knows how big that band playing in front of 10 people near you, will become?

 

 

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