After much unsubtle hinting by guitarist Keith Richards, the Rolling Stones have confirmed the first four dates of their 50th anniversary tour, entitled 50 Years and Counting, and have also hinted that retired band members Mick Taylor and may be returning to the fold.
As AntiMusic notes, the band announced the news when they posted a video on YouTube which was accompanied by the following message: "The most eagerly anticipated concerts of 2012 are announced today as the greatest rock 'n' roll band, The Rolling Stones, confirm their long awaited return to the stage with four spectacular arena shows in London and New York. Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Charlie Watts and Ronnie Wood at last revealed their return to live work exclusively via this video.
As the crowning glory of their on-going 50th anniversary celebrations, the rock icons will play to thousands of fans at London's O2 Arena on November 25 and 29, and then across the pond to perform at the Prudential Center, Newark, near New York, on December 13 and 15."
Mick Jagger ends the video by teasing "maybe a few friends will join us", with regard to who those friends are, the band's @Grrregory twitter account has speculated that they will include "Mr D, Mr G, Mr J, Mr R, Mr W & Mr W. Maybe even Mr W & Mr T. Definitely Mr L, Mr F, Mr J and Mr K.", with Mr's W & T possibly referring to Wyman and Taylor.
The new dates have already been causing some controversy though, because of the high ticket prices that are being charged. As Classic Rock reports, the cheapest entry to the O2 shows will cost £106 including booking fee, while standing room tickets are £406 per person. In an interview with the BBC, Keith Richards had stated "I just want to do some shows and I don't want to charge over the bloody top."
The band is expected to make £16 million from the four shows, with each band member earning £1 million from that.
Excited by the Stones' return, or put off by the high ticket prices? Let us know in the comments.