There’s a special strain of British rock legends who just refuse to quit. Instead, they carry on delivering stellar shows for their legions of adoring fans across the decades, weathering tragedy and loss together as well as number one hits and record-breaking achievements. Many of them already hold places in various Halls of Fame and with good reason – these are the ones who refuse to give up, refuse to back down and never say die.
The Rolling Stones
Perhaps one of Britain’s most enduring and accomplished rock & roll bands of all time is the Rolling Stones. Formed back in 1962, only two original members remain touring with the band, but they are perhaps one of the most famous musical partnerships in the world: Mick Jagger and Keith Richards. From their beginnings in the South of England and then through the loss of band members, personal heartbreak and international scandals, these two have played on.
The Rolling Stones members have been visible trendsetters for much of what makes rock & roll the much-loved institution it is today. From straightforward classics like ‘(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction’ to lesser known bluesy tracks like ‘Casino Boogie’, the Stones have always sung about fast living and a glamorous lifestyle. Much of their subjects have transformed in recent years to become online endeavours, like the thrilling titles of PokerStarsCasino, the extensive library on Spotify, and the dating opportunities of Tinder. Despite all of these changes, the Stones manage to remain relevant and strike a chord in the hearts of all who listen to them.
The band hold the record for second highest grossing tour of all time with their mid-Noughties ‘A Bigger Bang Tour’ and show no signs of settling down yet. In 2016 they joined other rock legends such as Bob Dylan, Paul McCartney and The Who at Desert Trip rock festival in the US, before embarking on the worldwide ‘No Filter’ tour a year later. Having already played to half of Europe in 2017, this year sees them finish off that leg of the tour before moving on to perform a series of star-studded dates in the UK.
The fact that the Stones have been in demand from the moment they started out until the present day – a career spanning some 56 years – shows that they hold a timeless and wide-reaching appeal. Comparatively new stars like Liam Gallagher, Florence Welch, Elbow and James Bay are queueing up to join them for their up-and-coming UK dates, and a strong fanbase means that all those dates will sell out. The Stones truly are the kings of touring, and long may they continue.
Despite the tragic death of frontman and creative force Freddie Mercury in 1991, Queen continue to tour and bring their particular brand of rock to fans around the world. With the 2012 appointment of vocalist Adam Lambert, the band embarked on a new era. With Lambert in tow, they have performed at illustrious events and venues like the London 2012 Olympics, MGM Grand Hotel and casino, and in 2016 set off on a Summer Festival Tour.
Formed in 1970, the classic line-up has remained the same over the years, with the regrettable loss of Mercury. The band’s lasting appeal lies in their unique mix of poignant lyrics, tenacious guitar riffs and nostalgia for a time that many of their newer fans won’t remember. However, this only adds to their allure as they are now masters of their craft and still give 110% to every performance.
Proof of their continued popularity can be seen in the 78 sell-out dates for their 2017-18 world tour, playing across the USA, Europe and Oceania. This year sees them play shows across central Europe before returning to good old Blighty for massive events held at the O2 Arena and Wembley Stadium. They won’t be resting for long after the end of this mammoth circuit, as they next take up a residency at Park MGM in Las Vegas. The band will play 10 exclusive shows at the venue, where guests can enjoy watching the superstars in an intimate space.
Since they first burst onto the music scene in 1964, The Who have been in high demand. Their confident attitude and visionary concept albums earned them a place in rock royalty and a lasting position in the British musical landscape. Whilst the band did split in 1983, they have reformed several times over the years leading to revivals of Quadrophenia, Tommy and other beloved material.
Despite sadly losing two of the original members, the prowess of remaining members Roger Daltrey and Pete Townshend has attracted big names to act as a touring band with them. These include renowned figures like Zak Starkey (son of Beatles drummer Ringo Starr), Simon Townshend (talented sibling of brother Pete), and Frank Simes (platinum record awarded musician). The ease with which The Who’s name attracts such talented musicians to play with them is testament to their continuing influence and relevance in today’s world.
2018 sees Tommy performed once again across the USA by Daltrey and the band, drawing crowds old and new to see this monumental album live and in full. Tommy has had a significant effect on the rock and roll scene since its controversial release in 1969. This may be the only chance you get to see it up close and personal, so don’t get fooled again and grab the opportunity before it’s too late!