NEW YORK — The Rolling Stones announced Tuesday the first 32 dates of a 40th-anniversary world tour that would put most of today’s twentysomething rock acts to shame.
The year-long tour, unveiled at a lavish news conference at Van Cortlandt Park in the Bronx, kicks off at Boston’s CMGI Stadium on Sept. 5. It will include a mix of stadium, arena and small theater and club dates, including shows at the Wiltern Theater in Los Angeles and Gotham’s Roseland Ballroom.
Ticket prices for the North American leg will range from $50 to $90 for stadiums, and from $50 to $150 for arenas, clubs and theaters with select “Gold Circle” tix going for as much as $300. After that, the Stones will head abroad, playing dates in Europe, Latin America, Asia and Australia.
Announcement promises to be a boon for a live-music industry blighted by a dismal economy and nervous fans following the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11.
The group already holds the all-time record for a one-year North American gross — a staggering $121 million for 1994’s “Voodoo Lounge” tour, according to tourbiz publication Pollstar. The last time the group went on the road in North America, for the final leg of their “Bridges to Babylon” tour in 1999, they pulled in $65 million.
“Pretty much any year the Stones have gone out has been their year,” said Pollstar editor Gary Bongiovanni.
The Stones’ touring band comprises original members Mick Jagger, Keith Richards and drummer Charlie Watts, plus Ron Wood and hired hands bassist Darryl Jones and keyboardist Chuck Leavell. Opening acts for various legs will include Sheryl Crow, Buddy Guy and No Doubt.
Toronto-based promoter Michael Cohl will put on the show, with help from live-event behemoth Clear Channel Entertainment, which is also co-sponsoring a ticket pre-sale through a new online initiative with music retailer Sam Goody.