On July 12, 1962, The Rolling Stones played their first show together as “The Rollin’ Stones”.
Their story begins with a guy named Alexis Korner, who loved the blues. His band, Blues Incorporated, played a regular gig at the Marquee Club in London in the 60s. Korner and Blues Incorporated actually gained quite a following as people traveled across England to see his band.
This is where our favorite leader comes in. Korner secured a gig to play a live BBC broadcast, leaving the venue with one seat empty. Mick Jagger, who occasionally played with Korner’s band, was lucky enough to fill that spot. Korner offered Jagger the chance to perform after seeing Keith Richards, Brian Jones and Jagger perform with pianist Ian Stewart. The trio agreed to play but ran into immediate trouble.
They had no name. However, upon consideration, they created The Rollin’ Stones after Muddy Water’s track, “Rollin’ Stone”. (Read the full story behind the band’s name HERE). The other problem was that they didn’t have a strong composition. A preview article for the gig advertised the lineup as Jaggers, featuring Richards and Jones, Pretty Things guitarist Dick Taylor and Kinks drummer Mick Avory. However, there was even an argument over the drums during the first concert. Avory said it was actually his friend Tony Chapman playing, but other members said they couldn’t even remember if there was a drummer playing at all.
Clearly, the first performance was a success as the Marquee Club became the Stones’ home base for the first two years of their career as a band. Taylor was eventually replaced by Bill Wyman, and former Blues Incorporated drummer Charlie Watts joined the band. And, the rest as we know it is history.
Discover the Rollin’ Stones setlist during this first evening at the Marquee Club.
“Kansas City” by Wilbert Harrison
“Honey, What’s Wrong” by Billy Fury
“Confessin’ the Blues” by Chuck Berry
“Bright Lights, Big City” by Jimmy Reed
“Dust My Blues” by Elmore James
“Down the Road Apiece” by Chuck Berry
“I Want to Love You” by Charles Smith
“I’m a Hoochie Coochie Man” door Muddy Waters
“Ride ‘Em On Down” by Robert Johnson
“Return to the USA” by Chuck Berry
“I Feel A Little Lonely” by Jimmy Reed
“The Blues Before Sunrise” by Elmore James
“Big Boss Man” by Jimmy Reed
“Don’t Stay Out All Night” by Billy Boy Arnold
“Tell Me You Love Me” by Fats Domino
“Happy Home” by Elmore James
Photo by Helmut Newton