From left, Ron Wood, Mick Jagger, Charlie Watts and Keith Richards of the Rolling Stones perform during their concert at the Rose Bowl, Thursday, in Pasadena, Calif. Photo: Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP
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Rolling Stones get a little piece of Mars to call their own

12 Comments
By ANDREW DALTON

There is now a "Rolling Stones Rock" on Mars, and it's giving Mick, Keith and the boys some serious satisfaction.

NASA named a little stone for the legendary rockers after its InSight robotic lander captured it rolling across the surface of Mars last year, and the new moniker was made public at Thursday night's Rolling Stones' concert at the Rose Bowl.

"NASA has given us something we have always dreamed of, our very own rock on Mars. I can't believe it," Mick Jagger told the crowd after grooving through a rendition of "Tumbling Dice." ''I want to bring it back and put it on our mantelpiece."

Robert Downey Jr announced the name, taking the stage just before the band's set at the Southern California stadium that is just a stone's throw from NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, which manages InSight.

"Cross-pollinating science and a legendary rock band is always a good thing," the "Iron Man" actor said backstage.

He told the crowd that JPL scientists had come up with the name "in a fit of fandom and clever association."

"Charlie, Ronnie, Keith and Mick — they were in no way opposed to the notion," Downey said, "but in typical egalitarian fashion, they suggested I assist in procuring 60,000 votes to make it official, so that's my mission."

He led the audience in a shout of "aye" before declaring the deed done.

Jagger later said, "I want to say a special thanks to our favorite action man Robert Downey Jr. That was a very nice intro he gave."

The rock, just a little bigger than a golf ball, was moved by InSight's own thrusters as the robotic lander touched down on Mars on Nov. 26.

It only moved about 3 feet (0.9 meters), but that's the farthest NASA has seen a rock roll while landing a craft on another planet.

"I've seen a lot of Mars rocks over my career," Matt Golombek, a JPL geologist who has helped NASA land all its Mars missions since 1997, said in a statement. "This one probably won't be in a lot of scientific papers, but it's definitely one of the coolest."

The Rolling Stones and NASA logos were shown side by side in the run-up to the show as the sun set over the Rose Bowl, leaving many fans perplexed as to what the connection was before it was announced.

The concert had originally been scheduled for spring, before the Stones postponed their No Filter North American tour because Jagger had heart surgery.

The 76-year-old showed no signs of poor health or even his age as he danced, pranced and boogied up and down a long catwalk that extended to the middle of the stadium's field.

He did poke fun at his advanced years.

"It's great to be back at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena," Jagger said. "At least I think we've been here before." (They have, in 1994.)

He also said, "We walked up and down Hollywood Boulevard looking for the Rolling Stones star but couldn't find it." (The band doesn't have one.)

And he took a dig at President Donald Trump's recent talk of acquiring Greenland when introducing his bandmates.

"On the drums," Jagger shouted, "Greenland's new economic adviser, Charlie Watts!"

© Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

©2019 GPlusMedia Inc.

12 Comments
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Mister President, "You can't always git wot yuh waant"! (And "Time is NOT on Your Side")

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Ti-i-i-i-ime is on my side. Oh, yes it is!

Man, I can't believe these grandpas are still going so strong after everything they've been through. My father lived a plain, boring and clean lifestyle, and Keith Richards has outlived him living a life of drugs, sex and rocknroll. Life is so unfair.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

NASA has given us something we have always dreamed of, our very own rock on Mars

Quite amusing since it wasn't their's to give...

4 ( +5 / -1 )

They've come a long way since Eel Pie Island, that's for sure.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

These guys are all older than Donald Trump. Just consider that. Actually, as a person who enjoyed the Stones in their heyday, I think it’s almost a kind of insult to their own legacy and to their great music that they still continue to “perform” that music today. My God, leave it alone! Are young people attending a Stones concert now expected to believe they are experiencing anything whatsoever of what the Stones or their contemporaries were 40 or 50 years ago?

Just awful.

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

These guys are incredible.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Ron Wood is younger than Trump, the baby of the band.

I think it’s almost a kind of insult to their own legacy and to their great music that they still continue to “perform” that music today. My God, leave it alone! 

I watched/followed/bought music from the Stones since the 1960's and I'm happy they are still playing and entertaining even if Jagger don't have the same voice has 40 years ago.

Dylan too is still Blowin in the Wind at 78.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Whilst I don't rate their stuff since Undercover of the Night, I don't mind that they're still going. They're doing what they love.

After Thin Lizzy, they're probably one of the greatest rock bands in the history of rock, ever.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Well done to the Stones.

The epitome pf Rock 'n' Roll.

They have been a top band for so long.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

zichiAug. 24 12:22 pm JSTRon Wood is younger than Trump, the baby of the band.

I think it’s almost a kind of insult to their own legacy and to their great music that they still continue to “perform” that music today. My God, leave it alone! 

I watched/followed/bought music from the Stones since the 1960's and I'm happy they are still playing and entertaining even if Jagger don't have the same voice has 40 years ago.

The Stones basically started out as a rockabilly/blues rock band and they morphed it all into hard rock, a feat of far-reaching circumstances. They are one of the most influential and inspiring bands of all time. Their influence has led to several genres of rock - from heavy metal, glam/glitter, punk, funk, new wave, grunge, alternative, even country rock and more. They have still kept rolling, never stopped touring and they've kept on making albums. They have embraced the styles they influenced and other styles that they didn't - psychedelic, folk rock, reggae, disco, soul, and even rap (sort of). Long after their contemporaries have stumbled into dinosaur deaths or have frozen into myth (Beatles) the Stones have kept rolling on and selling out tours. They've outlasted the Grateful Dead, Genesis, Pink Floyd, Rush. Only the Beach Boys have lasted as long, as well a few original rock solo artists.  

When it comes to today's rock'n'roll, many roads lead straight to the Rolling Stones.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

This rolling stone on Mars ain't gathering any moss, is it?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Memoryfix,

Ive attended the Stones most recent 5 world tours and they are incredible - it seems each better than the last.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

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