‘Start Me Up!’: Did you get your AARP Rolling Stones concert tickets yet?

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Screenshot 2023 11 28 at 9.44.51 PM
From left, Ronnie Wood, Mick Jagger and Keith Richards will be in Boston May 30 for the Hackney Diamonds Tour, sponsored by AARP! Image/Rolling Stones on Instagram

BOOMER LIFE 1Yes, AARP is sponsoring the Rolling Stones Hackney Diamonds Tour. Talk about knowing your demographics! Having been eligible for AARP for decades, Mick Jagger, 80, Keith Richards, 79, and Ronnie Woods 76, are rolling into Foxoboro’s Gillette Stadium on May 30th. Member of AARP? You have early ticket access! Regular public sales begin December 1st.

 The tour announcement is splashed across the AARP website. Tickets at Gillette, from what I saw, range from $183 for nosebleed tickets to $16,718 on StubHub. This was a concert rescheduled due to Mick Jagger’s cardiac surgery for aortic valve stenosis,  called TAVR, transcatheter aortic valve replacement. A heart valve is replaced through a small incision in the leg artery. And don’t think you have to be financially secure and famous to take advantage of what is considered common surgery for this condition. Hundreds, perhaps thousands, of successful TAVR (Transcatheter aortic valve replacement) procedures have been conducted in New Hampshire. Check out Catholic Medical Center

I, myself, would love to see the Rolling Stones again. The last, and only, time I saw them in concert was September 5, 2002. I remember telling my husband that we had to see them at the time because, gosh, how long would they all be around? The joke’s on me, I guess because here we are 20-plus years later, both Mick and I, and both of us members of AARP (or maybe he’s just an honorary member; I can’t see him reading through its glossy magazine or newsletters.)

Of course, our seats weren’t even close to the stage; thank goodness for those gigantic screens!

If you were at the stadium with me back in 2002, the Pretenders opened for the Stones. I seem to recall the Stones were the first band to perform at Gillette after it opened, adjacent to the old Foxboro Stadium (the name Drew Bledsoe keeps coming to mind). This coming concert marks the band’s fourth visit to Gillette.

Of course, I wasn’t even born (I was in elementary school) when they first started out, but by the time I reached high school, I remember singing along, loudly, with “Brown Sugar” with my high school VBF Janet as we cruised the roads of Northeast Philadelphia in her mother’s 1960 Rambler, just singing our hearts out.

Should you be fortunate enough to score tickets to the May show, you may be interested in what they will be playing at this, the Hackney Diamonds tour. After all, there’s a new album (they still have albums?) to promote!

Thanks to setlist.com I grabbed the October 19 mini-concert set list from the venue, Racket, in New York City that delighted a crowd of just over 600 fans and featured songs from the Hackney Diamonds album and a special appearance by Lady Gaga. 

  1. Shattered  Video 
  2. Angry (Hackney Diamonds) Video 
  3. Whole Wide World (Hackney Diamonds) Video 
  4. Tumbling Dice 
  5. Bite My Head Off (Hackney Diamonds) Video 
  6. Jumpin’ Jack Flash  Video
  7. Sweet Sounds of Heaven with Lady Gaga (Hackney Diamonds) 

The album includes a number of guests who I’m sure won’t be playing at Gillette, including Paul McCartney, Elton John, Lady Gaga, Stevie Wonder, and Bill Wyman. The band now includes Matt Clifford, on keyboards, Darryl Jones, 61, on bass, and drummer Steve Jordan, 66, handpicked by the late Charlie Watts as his replacement (Watts died in 2021 of cancer). Both Watts and original bassist Bill Wyman, 86, who left the band in 1993, appear on tracks recorded in 2019.​​

So, what are Hackney Diamonds? It’s the British slang for the shards of glass left after a scofflaw smashes a window or windshield.  

Said music critic Edna Gunderson of the album for AARP, “For those who doubted the Stones could match the greatness of past glories, ‘Hackney’ will come as a gratifying surprise. It crackles with the familiar grit, tattered pomp, and dirty riffs that built their brand.”

The album’s lead single, “Angry,” even earned a Best Rock Song Grammy nomination.

So, if anyone grabs an extra ticket and is driving (or getting a car/driver) for the show, be sure and contact me. My husband (who doesn’t like them as much as I do, but don’t tell him that) has declined the opportunity to drive down to Foxboro and spend more time parking the car and leaving the venue than the time actually spent at the concert (and I certainly don’t want to drive and park). And really, this has gotta be the last time and opportunity to see the Stones live! (Where have I heard that before!)

I can’t get no satisfaction.


About this Author

Annette Kurman

A native of Philadelphia with baccalaureate degrees in journalism, nursing, as well as an MBA from now defunct Daniel Webster College, Nashua, her endeavors in various roles and industries — as well a very supportive husband — once again bring her to the question of “What do I want to do when I grow up?”