Cleveland, Columbus Dates Included On Rolling Stones Tour

By NEKESA MUMBI MOODY, AP Music Writer

NEW YORK (AP) - The Rolling Stones (pictured, right) staged an eye-popping

spectacle that drew fans and media from around the globe
-
- and they
haven't even gone on tour yet.

The rockers, whose tours have been among the top-grossing

concerts ever, announced another jaunt around the world in
grandiose fashion Tuesday, circling New York's sprawling Van
Cortlandt Park in a yellow blimp emblazoned with their red
tongue trademark.

"We had a very interesting first-time experience on the

airship," Mick Jagger said after emerging from the blimp. "We had
a really good time on it."

The tour, their first since their top-grossing 1999 tour, will

mark the band's 40th anniversary. It will kick off on Sept. 5 in
Boston.

The band's Web site lists Ohio concert dates in Cleveland at Gund Arena on Oct. 14 and in Columbus on Oct. 20.

When asked why the band was heading out once again -

-
they
haven't even begun working on new material for the album
-
- Jagger
joked: "Either we stay at home and become pillars of the
community, or we go out and tour. We couldn't really find any communities that still needed pillars."

The tour is expected to rake in millions of dollars. The Stones

already hold the record for the highest-grossing concert tour ever
with their 1994 tour, which brought in $121.2 million, according to
Gary Bongiovanni of Pollstar, a concert trade magazine.

"Any year that they have toured, they have produced the biggest

tour of that year," said Bongiovanni.

This time around, the band will play clubs as well as stadiums

and arenas.

Jagger, Keith Richards, Charlie Watts and Ron Wood looked as if

they were having plenty of fun even before the news conference
began. The foursome boarded the blimp at the park and circled the
area for about 15 minutes before landing.

They had even more fun at the news conference, cracking jokes as

reporters asked questions.

When one asked if they would do any songs from the past,

Richards said: "The set list is a bit down the road. It just
depends if we can remember them."

One reporter reminded Jagger about a 1972 comment -

-
made "a
couple of years after I was born," she noted -
-
that he would
rather die than still be singing "Satisfaction" at age 40.

"How old are you going to be and when are you going to get sick

of it?" she asked.

"Who knows if we're going to do 'Satisfaction' on this tour?"

retorted the 58-year-old.

About 300 fans turned out for a chance to see the legendary

band, which formed in 1962.

"I wanted to be able to say that I saw their blimp come down,"

said Kathleen Wieblack, who came from suburban Long Island to the
Bronx.

"I've seen the last three tours," said Richard Bell, who

traveled from upstate New York. "Hopefully I will get tickets to
see them."

Bongiovanni said unlike some aging rock bands, the Stones are

able to outsell more contemporary bands because of "their ability
to still stay vibrant and not be a classic rock act that just goes
through the motions for a great payday."

Tour promoter Michael Cohl said tickets for the first few dates

will go on sale this week. Prices will range from $50 to $100.

Among the opening acts: Sheryl Crow, No Doubt, Buddy Guy and

Jonny Lang.

The group has not released an album since 1998's "No

Security." Jagger put out his own solo disc last year, "Goddess
in the Doorway," which was a commercial flop.

Jagger said they're just beginning to work on the new material

for an upcoming greatest hits disc that will include new songs.

"It's a minor problem," joked Richards.

(Copyright 2002 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)