The concert promoter of the Rolling Stones suggested four years ago that the band would be skipping Levi's Stadium on future tours, due to all of the hassles and last-minute rules it said the City of Santa Clara imposed on them. But they're coming back next year, anyway.
You may recall that an August 2019 concert by the Rolling Stones was one of many that has blown past Santa Clara's 10 p.m. curfew, and the curfew-blowing has, over the years, become pretty standard for big acts. (The curfew is 11 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays, but Taylor Swift still managed to blow past that twice this past summer.)
The curfew itself wasn't the biggest issue the Stones had on that 2019 tour stop. Concert promoter John Morrison penned a letter to stadium management directly after the show, asking, "Do you not want touring shows anymore?" and adding, "The impression I and many others in the industry have, is your facility is getting so restrictive and dysfunctional, it’s no longer worth the effort to play there due to the myriad and random rule changes."
Morrison cited the last-minute cancellation of some pyrotechnics ("when our pyrotechnician has done countless shows in the stadium as well as across America for numerous artists, without incident, only to be told if he disobeys the demand from the fire department he would be subject to black listing from the state," Morrison said), and a last-minute demand by the city that the tour's structural engineer be flown in to inspect the stage at an expense of $6,000. All of this amounted to unnecessary "micro-managing," Morrison said.
The band's security coordinator, Michael Wozniak, separately told the city, "The touring industry has made note of the difficulties and uncertainties presented by the City and eventually will just skip your market."
Former City Manager Deanna Santana — who was fired from the job last year amid controversy over her $448,000 salary and the city's $27 million in debt — blamed the Stones' issues on the 49ers, who she said brought several problems to the city's attention at the last minute.
Now, as NBC Bay Area reports, despite all that, Levi's is the final tour stop listed on the Stones' new Hackney Diamonds Tour (sponsored by AARP). They're planning to play Levi's on July 17, 2024, after 14 other stops in the U.S. The tour kicks off April 28 in Houston.
Tickets for the tour go on sale to the general public on December 1, and for AARP members on November 29.
The tour is in support of the band's new studio album Hackney Diamonds, their first since 2005's A Bigger Bang.
The Stones' No Filter Tour, which is the one that came through Santa Clara in 2019, was cut short by the pandemic and some 2020 dates were canceled. Since then, the Stones' drummer, Charlie Watts, died in 2021 at age 80.
Last month, the band did a surprise show in New York City, at a venue called Racket in Chelsea, with Lady Gaga joining them on stage, in celebration of the new album's release.
Photo: Ronnie Wood, Lady Gaga, Mick Jagger, Steve Jordan and Keith Richards perform during The Rolling Stones surprise set in celebration of their new album “Hackney Diamonds” at Racket NYC on October 19, 2023 in New York City. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for RS)