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LONDON — London’s infamous live-music curfew struck again Sunday night when The Rolling Stones performed their first major concert in more than five years at the O2 Arena here, forcing the band to drop “Satisfaction” from the encore list it had prepared for the 50th anniversary gig, according to a report.
The Telegraph reported that the band was scheduled to complete its 2 1/2-hour gig at the venue with the 1965 crowd-pleaser, but dropped it due to local rules that require performances to finish by 10:20 p.m. on Sunday, with time for a “quick” encore after that. That effectively means sets must end at 10:30 p.m.
Representatives for the O2 Arena and owner AEG Live couldn’t immediately be reached for comment midday Monday.
As reported, Mick Jagger and company earned positive reviews for the concert in front of 20,000 fans, which kicked off a brief tour that will include another London performance, a show in Brooklyn and two in New Jersey.
The Stones had been scheduled to start the first concert of their 50 and Counting tour at 8 p.m. but hit the stage shortly before 8:30, according to the Telegraph. Late in the show, Jagger said out loud onstage that the band had better “get a move on” due to the noise curfew. The band finished with its classic “Jumpin’ Jack Flash,” but fans had expected “Satisfaction” as well.
This summer, the London curfew rules made headlines when Bruce Springsteen and Paul McCartney had their microphones cut off while playing “Twist and Shout” during the encore of Springsteen’s show in the British capital’s Hyde Park after running late. “When did England become a police state?” longtime Springsteen guitarist Steven Van Zandt tweeted after the incident, and Springsteen made fun of the curfew during performances elsewhere in the days following the interruption.
The Telegraph also said that thousands of fans were left stranded after the Stones concert because the local subway line was closed at around 11:45 p.m.
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