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Rolling Stones Kick Off 50th Anniversary Concerts with Star-Studded London Show

Rolling Stones
Samir Hussein, Getty Images

“Good to see you all. Good to see anybody,” quipped guitarist Keith Richards from the stage of the Rolling Stones‘ first 50th anniversary arena show — but the pleasure was the audience’s during a 150-minute set that included a number of the band’s greatest hits, as well as appearances from former Stones, famous friends and the London Youth Choir.

The band took the stage at London’s O2 Arena Sunday night (Nov. 25) for the first in a brief run of dates timed to celebrate their five decades together, breaking a five-year concert hiatus in front of a sellout crowd of 20,000. “We made it,” frontman Mick Jagger told the audience, adding, “What’s even more amazing is that you’re still coming to see us…we can’t thank you enough.”

The Stones made it worth the fans’ while with a 23-song set list that kicked off with the 1963 single ‘I Wanna Be Your Man’ and ended with a pair of encores (‘You Can’t Always Get What You Want’ and ‘Jumping Jack Flash’). In between, the band welcomed the return of guitarist Mick Taylor — who left the band in 1974 — and bassist Bill Wyman, who announced his departure in December of 1992. The show also boasted cameos from Mary J. Blige, who added her vocals to ‘Gimme Shelter,’ and legendary guitarist Jeff Beck, who appeared on ‘I’m Going Down.’

The band’s Twitter account shared details for fans who weren’t able to attend, offering photos and assorted links, but that’ll be small comfort to those still holding out hope that the Stones will expand their itinerary to include a full-fledged world tour. As Richards told Rolling Stone last month, that could very well happen: “My experience with the Rolling Stones is that once the juggernaut starts rolling, it ain’t gonna stop. So without sort of saying definitely yes — yeah. We ain’t doing all this for four gigs!”

Next: Top 100 Rolling Stones Songs

Watch the Rolling Stones Perform ‘I Wanna Be Your Man’

Rolling Stones Set List Nov. 25, 2012

‘I Wanna Be Your Man’
‘Get Off My Cloud’
‘It’s All Over Now’
‘Paint It Black’
‘Gimme Shelter’ (with Mary J. Blige)
‘Wild Horses’
‘All Down the Line’
‘I’m Going Down’ (with Jeff Beck)
‘Out of Control’
‘One Last Shot’
‘Doom and Gloom’
‘It’s Only Rock and Roll’ (with Bill Wyman)
‘Honky Tonk Woman’
‘Before They Make You Run’
‘Happy’
‘Midnight Rambler’ (with Mick Taylor)
‘Miss You’
‘Start Me Up’
‘Tumbling Dice’
‘Brown Sugar’
‘Sympathy For The Devil’
‘You Can’t Always Get What You Want’
‘Jumping Jack Flash’

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