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Thoughts on the Rolling Stones 2003-2018
Saturday, 5 August 2006
The North American Tour 2006
Mood:  chillin'
Well, Stones fans in North America are now furiously planning their own fall tours with the Stones...at least I am. They made a few additions and changes in the scheduling since it was first announced last week, but luckily it didn't affect the shows I plan to attend. I already have some hotels booked and flights booked. Both those things tend to go up in price rapidly, especially hotels when a city gets wind that the Stones will be in town. In 2002, I paid $120 for a room in Chicago, that now costs $250! Same hotel. Although the price of my flight went down. Of course our Stones ticket prices went up too, even though Cohl said he dropped prices. Anyway, my tentative plans for the fall include: Boston, Louisville (which isn't announced yet as of today), Chicago, Atlantic City, Oakland, Phoenix and Las Vegas. I think seven shows should make up for the 4 I missed in Europe due to cancellations eh? And maybe, the Stones will return to Europe in 2007...so perhaps Amsterdam or something will be in my future then. Right now, I am just looking forward to opening night in Boston Sept. 20 and how about some set changes you guys? Come on, throw us some rarities boys!

Posted by blue_lena at 6:11 PM EDT
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Friday, 16 June 2006
Idiots on Stones Message Boards
Mood:  irritated
I have been online in the Rolling Stones internet community since 1995...which is very near the inception of the first Rolling Stones chat room. The first RS chat room I visited was an AOL chatroom, and I encountered even back then, a bunch of know it all mean spirited folks who couldn't answer newbie questions without belittling them. I took that as a lesson and left AOL and went to Stones World, the first chatroom outside AOL on the world wide web. Remember, these were the OLD days, LOL. There I made friends with some people in 1996 that I am still friends with right now, 10 years later.

My lesson from AOL was that even though I know a ton about the Stones, I am always willing to answer questions from people who don't...happily and without berating them. After all, anyone can be a fan, but not everyone is a die hard fan like myself. And there was a time that I didn't know anything about the Stones as well (hard to believe I know). Before 1996 I didn't even realize there were other die-hard fans like myself.

In May 1997 we held the first Rolling Stones internet fan gathering in Cleveland, OH at the Rock N' Roll Hall of Fame. Nine women and one guy (lucky man) met for a weekend of partying and Stones music. This was virtually unheard of in those days, as we were total strangers driving and flying to Cleveland from PA, OH, DE, NJ, CA & Canada! Most people's families asked "how do you know it's safe?" or "how do you know these people won't rob or kill you?" But we all survived & had a fantastic time. So much so that we all met many times afterwards on various Stones tours starting several months later with Bridges to Babylon.

Anyway, in those days, there weren't many Stones message boards and by 1998 I had met so many of the online folks during the tour that on the several boards that existed I knew just about everyone and everyone was friendly to each other. We talked mostly Stones, but we could talk off topic and talk shit too because we all knew each other in person.

Stones World eventually folded and our little group moved to Voodoo Lounge where we stayed for quite sometime. This is where the rifts first began & making a long story short some people left that board siding with one person and moving to another board called Backstage, while others chose to stay. Eventually Voodoo Lounge also folded and everyone headed to Backstage. And eventually flaming and flights began there too as the board grew with more and more fans. And then Backstage folded as well. By then, there were other boards coming along like Shidoobee, IORR, Stones Planet, RS.COM...and zillions of smaller boards like my Yap Yap Keith board.

One thing though became common, most boards could not prevent the childish behavior that some adults continually engaged in. Which, was and still is, bashing people on a public forum simply for the sake of doing it.

Does it make them feel big? Important? Who knows. They do it because they get a rush out of making someone mad with no recourse. Nine out of 10 of these people would probably never say to someone's face what they say online. Online they are anonymous and that's what makes it easy. And sad.

I learned early on that fighting back is not worth it. I did it a few times, and it dragged on and on and in the end of course, no one won. A few years ago I was personally attacked on a public forum with many nasty unthruths related to Keith and the Stones and the fan club.

At that point I left message boards for good for quite a while. It really wasn't worth it.

So now, several years later, new tour, I decided to make my way back onto a few boards. One of which is our own Stones Planet, which is safe because we can edit it. But I have also been on the official board at RS.COM, which recently is full of garbage and hateful comments too. I've posted on Shidoobee here and there. Most recently I joined IORR for the first time.

When I post these days it's usually because I have information to share with other fans that I feel is important or else I have been asked to get the word out about something. This time I was spreading the word to fans about 2 different Stones related things-the TOTA' 75 book by Genesis Publications and Blondie Chaplin's new solo cd that is due in July.

Wouldn't you know that within a week or 2 of joining a new board I have already encountered several rude or childish remarks related to my posts. I typically do not respond to rude posts, but I did tonight, very diplomatically. We'll see what the rude poster says tomorrow, but I am sure it will be something even more rude, as is usually the case. And I won't respond again.

Having said that, I was at the same time relieved to be welcomed to the IORR board by several fans, which was nice.

In the end, Stones fans have the Stones in common, but that doesn't mean we'll all agree, nor do we have to. It also doesn't mean we'll all like each other and we don't have to in order to like the same band. For as many idiots as I've encountered over the years, I have met or spoken online with 100x as many great, generous, fantastic people. I have made some lifelong friends.

And for tonight, that's the end of my endless diatribe on Stones message boards. May the good natured fans outweigh the bad!

Posted by blue_lena at 11:21 PM EDT
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Saturday, 3 June 2006
Keith is Ready to Tour Again!
Mood:  a-ok
KEITH RICHARDS IS GIVEN THE ALL CLEAR TO GET BACK TO WORK

AS STONES ANNOUNCE NEW ITINERARY FOR EUROPEAN SHOWS



Press Information – Friday, 2 June 2006



With the news that Keith Richards has made a complete recovery from his accident and is ready to return to the concert stage, The Rolling Stones have unveiled today their re-vamped European Tour Schedule.



Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Ronnie Wood and Charlie Watts will now kick off their ‘A Bigger Bang’ European Tour at the world famous San Siro Stadium in Milan, Italy on Tuesday, 11 July 2006.



There will be 21 stadium dates in 11 countries across Europe and these shows will be all the Stones will be doing in the summer of 2006. Concert promoters CPI/TNA have made every effort to accommodate fans in as many countries and cities as possible.



The new tour itinerary is as follows:



Tues 11 July Milan Italy San Siro

Fri 14 July Vienna Austria Ernst Happel Stadion

Sun 16 July Munich Germany Olympiastadion

Wed 19 July Hannover Germany AWD – Arena

Fri 21 July Berlin Germany Olympiastadion

Sun 23 July Koln Germany Rhein – Energie Stadion

Fri 28 July Paris France Stade de France

Mon 31 July Amsterdam Holland Amsterdam Arena



Thurs 3 Aug Stuttgart Germany Gottlieb-Daimler Stadion

Sat 5 Aug Zurich Switzerland Dubendorf Airfield

Tues 8 Aug Nice France Le Palais Nikala

Sat 12 Aug Porto Portugal Estadio do Dragao

Mon 14 Aug Valladolid Spain Estadio Jose Zorrilla

Wed 16 Aug El Ejido Spain Estadio Santo Domingo

Sun 20 Aug London UK Twickenham Stadium

Tues 22 Aug London UK Twickenham Stadium

Fri 25 Aug Glasgow UK Hampden Park

Sun 27 Aug Sheffield UK Don Valley Stadium

Tues 29 Aug Cardiff UK Millennium Stadium

Fri 1 Sept Bergen Norway Koengen

Sun 3 Sept Horsens Denmark Forum Horsens



All tickets purchased for previous itinerary are valid.



The Rolling Stones concerts that were originally scheduled to take place in Barcelona, Madrid, (Spain) Brussels (Belgium), Gothenburg (Sweden), St Petersburg

(Russia), Brno (Czech Republic), Warsaw (Poland), Athens (Greece), Zagreb (Croatia), and Frankfurt (Germany) are POSTPONED. Concert promoters are in the process of

rescheduling these cities and there will be news of these shortly. They ask ticket holders to hold on to their tickets and await further announcements.



The 2006 Rolling Stones Concerts in NURNBERG & LEIPZIG are CANCELLED.



Michael Cohl, The Rolling Stones World Tour Promoter, commented ‘’ We are delighted to announce the Stones tour is back on track and thank all the fans and ticket holders for their patience. We have put in as many shows in as many countries as was feasible. This is still going to be the most incredible rock show ever’’



Keith Richards added ‘’ Excuse me, I fell off of my perch! Sorry to disrupt everyone’s plans but now - It's FULL STEAM AHEAD! Ouch!!"’’



The Rolling Stones A Bigger Bang European Tour is presented by American Express.

Rolling Stones World Tour 2005/2006 is promoted by Concert Productions International and The Next Adventure and produced by WPC Piecemeal Inc.


Posted by blue_lena at 4:23 PM EDT
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Saturday, 13 May 2006
Support Keith-Wear Your Stones Stuff!
Mood:  lyrical
Many Stones fan sites on the net have come together to inform their members to wear their Stones/Keith shirts to support Keith in a massive get well effort. Many fans around the globe have been doing so all week already-tongues are in abundance out there! As are skull rings! I am headed to the Pirates baseball game tonight here in Pittsburgh and will definitely be supporting Keef! Hat, shirt & skull ring...he is, after all, the most famous Pirate!

Posted by blue_lena at 3:08 PM EDT
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Wednesday, 10 May 2006
Keith Out of Hospital!!!!
Mood:  happy
Finally some good news on Keith!

I just got word from Fran Curtis (stones publicist) at 7:45 pm EST tonight (May 10) that Keith was discharged today from the hospital! Here is her statement:

UPDATE ON KEITH RICHARDS


Keith Richards was discharged today from the Ascot Hospital in Auckland, New Zealand. He will be an outpatient returning to the hospital for check-ups.

Fran Curtis – Rogers & Cowan



All the best to ya baby and stay well!!!!!

Posted by blue_lena at 8:44 PM EDT
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Tuesday, 9 May 2006
The Hand of Fate
Mood:  down
Keith. Every day we get a new rumor from the press. Stick with Stones Planet and the Keith Shrine for the official word from the band and don't believe everything you read or see on TV.

The official statements from the band's PR office are posted on Stones Planet and my Keith News Page here. Fran Curtis has been giving updates daily.

Tonight's most disturbing rumors say Keith may have suffered brain damage from undergoing TWO, not just one operation. Fran Curtis denies that and said this tonight:


"Keith Richards did not undergo a second operation. The first and only operation was done on Monday, May 8, and was 100 percent successful," the band's statement said. "There was no brain damage. He continues to improve as expected." Fran Curtis, Stones Publicist, NYC.

Now, what is strange is that something possessed me in late March to decide against going to the start of the European Tour, which had been my original plan all along. I wanted to see Barcelona, Madrid, Brussels and Paris. The flights were very expensive, which was one factor in my decision, however, for me to say I am not going to a show due to the price would be uncharacteristic of me! But I did, and when I said I wasn't going, I figured in the end there would be some good reason why I made that decision.

Keith made my decision clear when he fell out of the tree, had surgery, and forced a postponement of the start of the tour. Uh, thanks Keith, I guess. Not really, poor Keith. But I do find it quite funny in a bizarre way that had I not made that decision I would have had an entire European trip booked for 2 people in 3 countries, including airfare, train travel and hotels...and it would not have neen refundable. I would have been screwed. I would have had to go to Europe for a vacation and NOT see the Stones. And, although I like going to Europe for vacation, doing it that way would have royally sucked.

So now, as I sit praying for Keith's full and speedy recovery, I can't help but wonder what role the Keithian Gods (as we call them) played in my odd decision not to go to Europe. Saved me a bundle.

Get well Keith, love ya baby!!!

Posted by blue_lena at 9:41 PM EDT
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Saturday, 6 May 2006
Keith, Isn't That Just Like Him?
Mood:  a-ok
Now that Keith has been declared as A-OK by the Stones camp, here is a commentary by Scott Paulsen of WDVE radio in Pittsburgh, that is quite funny!

Isn't That Just Like Keith?

May 3, 2006

Scott Paulsen



There goes Keith, falling from a tree. Isn't that just like him?



There are certain celebrities who, when strangeness befalls them, create no surprise. Whether it's because of their personalities, the circle of acquaintances they frequent or past histories of adventure and mayhem, when oddball things happen to some celebrities, nobody is surprised.

Let me give you an example.

Keith Richards was admitted to a hospital in New Zealand the other day for treatment of a concussion. This caused some interest and reaction, mostly because Mr. Richards, in addition to being a famous rock star, is 62 years old. Anyone of that somewhat advanced age who receives a concussion is newsworthy. What amazes me is the fact that when the explanation of how Keith bopped his head became public, no one flinched. In fact, most people took it completely in stride, as if it was an everyday happening and completely expected.

He fell while trying to climb up a palm tree on the island of Fiji.

Had this happened to your next-door neighbor you would still be telling the story to total strangers you met at the store. “Hi, you don't know me, but wait until you hear about this! My neighbor (who's 62, mind you) is in the hospital with a concussion. You wanna know how he got it? He fell out of a palm tree! In Fiji! He was climbing it!”

Unfortunately for Keith, most people are not surprised to hear about his accident. In fact, most folks who recognize the name probably think it's quite normal for him to fall while climbing for cocoanuts.

When word filtered ‘round the globe about the ‘Stone's space walk, no one flinched. It was almost as if we expected it. Eventually, we all figured, it would happen. It was only a matter of time. You know Keith.

Even after the news turned grim and reports aired that, rather than a “mild concussion” as was first reported, Keith in fact has suffered some more complicated problems from the fall, it is still being sloughed off as if another one of his wacky gags.

Toss a TV from a hotel room.

Endure a drug bust.

Have your blood changed at the local Quickee Lube.

Word comes this week that the fall is, indeed, more serious than first reported. The latest news, being reported in Great Britain, is that Keith is suffering from a brain hemorrhage and has been scheduled for an operation in which doctors will drill a hole into his skull to relieve some pressure from excess blood build up.

That crazy Keith.

There he goes again.

Having his skull drilled.

Isn't that just like him?

Bet he was high.

Because he has survived seemingly a road-to-ruin lifestyle, Keith remains nearly indestructible to many of us. Nothing can hurt him. Nothing he does surprises us. He is the chicken little of rock.

There are others.

Robert Downey, Junior. Billy Bob Thornton. Angelina Jolie. Michael Jackson, somewhat. Steve Irwin, the crocodile hunter. That guy that runs the Virgin company. Lance Armstrong.

The late, great Jim Morrison was such a chicken little celebrity that there are many who still think the cat's alive somewhere. He didn't die. He staged the whole thing.

That crazy Mr. Mojo Risin.

There he goes again.

Faking his death.

Isn't that just like him?

Bet he was drunk.

Remember a couple of years ago when Jimmy Buffet crashed an airplane? Back in 1996, Buffet stuck his two-seater airplane nose-down into water. It wasn't a seaplane. The runway was over there, on the land. Jimmy suffered some pretty serious injuries and came dangerously close to drowning in the surf.

People's reactions?

That crazy Jimmy Buffet.

There he goes again.

Crashing his plane.

Isn't that just like him?

Bet he was drunk and high.

I guess, as Dad used to say, you make your bed, you sleep in it. (Interestingly enough, I never saw my father ever make a bed. He slept a lot, though.) If you create a persona of balls-to-the-wall survival, when the real world comes cascading down around you and fate serves you up a heaping helping of bad fortune, nobody's going to blink twice.

There isn't much in the way of sympathy for the Devil.

And it's all in the perception.

John Denver crashes a plane and everybody is shocked. “We didn't even know he could fly!” Jimmy Buffet crashes a plane and it's as if it happens everyday.

There will come a day (hopefully not too soon) when the death of Keith Richards will be reported. It will probably be of something very common, like cancer or heart failure.

No one, of course, will believe it.

Keith would never die like that.

On the other hand, if one day your local trusted news reporter comes to the screen to announce that Mr. Richards, former Rolling Stone, succumbed after being trampled by a pack of wild water buffalo while attempting to retrieve his Zippo lighter that had fallen from his pocket while on safari, not only would we all believe it, but we'd all have the same reaction.

That crazy Keith.

There he goes again.

Dying.

Isn't that just like him?

Posted by blue_lena at 10:27 AM EDT
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Saturday, 29 April 2006
Get Well Soon Keith...and Stay Out of The Trees!
Mood:  accident prone
Keith seems to have this habit of falling off/out of things when on break from tours. Remember the infamous library incident during Bridges to Babylon when he broke a few ribs falling off the ladder in his library? Hey Keith, maybe climbing is NOT for you man! So, now, being on break in Fiji, at an exclusive resort there, Keith climbs a palm tree (after a coconut perhaps?), and apparently has fallen and suffered a concussion. Keith! Don't scare us like that. You know what that does to your fans when we read unconfirmed reports from new media in Fiji saying "Stones Guitarist Hospitalized". Jeez. You have a European Tour to start in mere 28 days! Anyway, I wish you Keith darling the best, and hope you recover speedily from your concussion and that you received no additional injuries. Keith is said to be in a hospital in New Zealand as a precaution, with Patti by his side. Talk some sense into your husband Patti...climbing coconut trees...oh my.

Posted by blue_lena at 6:39 PM EDT
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Wednesday, 5 April 2006
RIP Nikki Sudden
Mood:  sad
Nikki Sudden died in NYC last Sunday at the young age of 49. He had just finished a show at the Knitting Factory the evening before. At least he was doing what he loved, playing music. I did not know Nikki well, in fact I had only met him twice in person and we corresponded by email. We met in London in 1999 outside the record shop were we were queueing for Stones tickets to the secret club gig at Shepherd's Bush Empire. Then again in 2003 in Amsterdam where he was busking at the Leidseplein before the Stones show. He was a Keith Richards fan. He was a member of Stones Planet fan club and received our fanzine. He was a brilliant songwriter and musician who never got the recognition he deserved. His last album Treasure Island was superb-Mick Taylor and Ian MacLagan guested on it. I had fully hoped to finally catch one of his live gigs once he made it back to the US. He made it back, then he died. I never got to see him play. Sad. My condolences to his parents, who also lost their other son, a musician, Nikki's brother, Epic Sountracks, in 1997. Maybe Nikki and Epic are jamming together now. The music lives on, we only wish we'd have gotten to hear a lot more of it made. Thanks for touching my life with your music Nikki. I listened to Treasure Island in the car all week..stay bruised, stay beautiful. RIP.

Posted by blue_lena at 9:29 PM EDT
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Friday, 10 March 2006
This Place Is Empty...
Mood:  blue
Well, I have returned from Las Vegas and LA, two fabulous Stones shows...and quite possibly the last two shows of the North American Bigger Bang Tour for me. I have seen 19 shows so far this tour, and I hope to see at least one more in Europe...hopefully more than one. But, with 2 shows left in the US as of tonight...Ft. Lauderdale on Sunday and Radio City Music Hall on Tuesday, this looks like it may be it for me. It's always depressing when your "own" tour comes to an end, no matter how fabulous it was. From the press conference in May '05 until March '06 there was always a "next one" to look forward to...but now, "what's next?" is more like it.

I'd like to thank the following people from the bottom of my heart, without whom this tour's many adventures & souvenirs would not have been possible:

Shelley, Elizabeth & Cindy at SLO

Bill Bolton & Keith Richards

Blondie Chaplin

Tim Ries

Chuck Leavell

Tony Russell

Preston Snyder

Clive Haynes

My partner in crime, "E"

And anyone else I forgot to mention specifically!

Posted by blue_lena at 10:40 PM EST
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