The Rolling Stones in Berlin Germany 2022

Two days after the show in Milan Italy back in June, on Thursday June 23, The Rolling Stones announced an additional and final show of the SIXTY tour at Waldbühne Berlin Germany on August 3. The Waldbühne is a natural outdoor amphitheatre with a capacity of 22,000 people. The show sold out in minutes, and on show day, many people tried to get tickets to the show. It was a dream place to see The Rolling Stones, and the show turned out to be a dream show.

There was a direct flight by Norwegian Air from Stockholm to Berlin at noon the day after the Stockholm show. Most of the passengers on this flight were fans who saw The Stones in Stockholm, and they were on their way to the next and final show in Berlin. It was a real Stones flight, and I could see familiar faces and friends all over on that flight. You knew you were heading the right way.

I took the train from my stadium hotel to Arlanda Airport in Stockholm. When I arrived to Stockholm two days ago, I spent almost two hours messing around from the airport, via Arlanda Express, the city center, a metro, then walking around in Solna and Råsunda, then finally arriving to my hotel. Now, on my return, I knew the area, it was a short 10 minutes walk from my hotel to Solna Train station. Then a train to the Arlanda Terminal. Easy, cheap, comfortable. The Norwegian flight was an hour or so late, but I worked on show reports and pictures at the terminal, so I did not bother at all about the slight delay, in fact that delay gave me more time to publish pictures and reports from the Stockholm show.

We landed at the new Berlin Brandenburg airport approx one hour late at 3:10pm. Then I had my “9 Euro Ticket”, valid for regular (not high speed) travel on bus, train, tram and metro in Germany all of August, a fantastic DB promotion this summer, and I did just what Mick said he did at the Stones show in Berlin two days later, he said he paid 9 Euro to get from the airport to his hotel… For me it took two hours, by a slow train, and by a tram, then 10 minutes walk, but it was cheap, and environment friendly. In fact, I have not used taxi or UBER or any other types of car for any travel I have done on my own on this tour, all travels have been by public transportation, cheap, easy, takes a bit time, but you get to see people, how mask mandates have being working, and you get there, no worries about a driver having covid, or a driver who drive to much, or talk too much…

My hotel in Berlin was Hotel Villa Kastania. I booked it as soon as I knew there would be a show in Berlin, and I worked hard on finding a great place, not just a cheap bed but a nice place to stay, to end the tour in a nice and comfortable way. The hotel turned out to be one of my best on the entire tour, and the area was great. It was approx 3.2 km (2 miles) away from Waldbühne, but it was an easy 40 minutes walk, and it was way better that the rooms I had in Stockholm and Paris. I was happy. The room is a home while I am on travel, I needed a “good home” for this show.

Dining the first evening I asked the front desk manager at my hotel about where to dine. He said there were many great places in Berlin City. I told him I was sick of downtown city areas with overpriced busy places with slow service and not so good food, also I did not want to spend the 40 minutes needed to get to Unter den Linden… Then he adviced me of the local Italian style “Ristorante Piccolo Mondo”, just three minutes walk up the Kastanienallee, where I was. I did the walk, and the restaurant turned out to be one of the two best places of the entire tour, same quality as Ristorante Trotter in Milan Italy. Service and food was done seamless, everyone took care of me, even if I was on my own, they served my needs in-between handling two other larger parties. I am not an easy customer, I have special requests, any restaurant is challenged by all my endless food intolerance list, and requests for meals and drinks. The food was outstanding, I managed to return the olives with almost invisible garlic oil (dangerous to me!), no place is safe, I must be on alert at all times. Still, I will remember this place as a great restaurant, well worth travel, if I ever get back to Berlin.

I did two quick daytime trips to Berlin city center. Berlin used to be the largest construction place in the world in the 90’s and on, so many cranes and construction works all over. Now the main train station is finished, the airport is finished, and Berlin is a large and beautiful city. Normally I would walk around in the city for hours, but we are at the end of the tour, I am already tired, and home sick, also, I know it will be very hot on the show day Wednesday evening, I need to slow down, save energy, eat and drink well, typical show preparations. This is the most important show of the tour, everything must be right, and I must be well prepared.

Show day, I meet many friends, also a group of local fans from the German fan club Stonestreff, when we had our pre-show meal at the Bavarian style outdoor restaurant Tiroler Stuben Berlin, just a ten minutes walk away from the Waldbühne venue. The Tiroler Stuben had a great beer named König Ludvig Hell, I knew it from my visit the day before, and I made sure I got plenty of water to drink as well. Then we left for the Waldbühne at around 3:30pm.

There were so many fans and friends I know at this show, just as many as I met in Stockholm. It was almost like a “home show”, so many fans who travel, also many fans I have got to know from Germany over the years, of course. I tried to stay in the shade most of the waiting time, mostly on Ronnie side, as the Keith side was hot hot hot in the sun. The 200 or so steps down from the entrance and down to the pit of the venue were steep, but it seemed that most fans had no problem going down, and after the show, it moved well, even a guy on crutches made it easily back up all the stairs.

The show was magic. The crowd was great. The set list special, with “Fool To Cry”, one of my all time favorites, also several “Exile” songs, including “All Down The Line”, “Rocks Off”, “Happy”, and the more regular “Tumbling Dice”. I was so happy. The show started at 8:44pm, and lasted for 2h 16 min, until the clock ticked a few seconds past the curfew of 10pm, then the final bow, and the highly successful SIXTY summer tour in Europe ended.

This is parts of what I wrote in my Berlin reports:

The Rolling Stones performed their first show at the Waldbühne in Berlin Germany on September 15, 1965. I was ten years old then. They returned to perform four more times at this legendary natural amphi theatre in 1982, 1998, 2014, and now during their SIXTY tour. Three generations on, they still engage, new generations arrive, it’s like an eternal machine of great rock music, still with Mick and Keith from the original lineup, with all the “new kids”, including Ronnie, to support them.

I walked the 185 steps down from the Keith side entrance to the floor of the amphi. It is deep, steep, and old, rock solid stairs. May be the wooden seat benches have been upgraded since 1965, but most of the venue looks like it may have been during the first show back in 1965. What a great place to end the SIXTY tour.


The “final four” songs were stretched to the maximum, we got long versions of “Jumping Jack Flash” and “Satisfaction”. It was like they never wanted to leave the stage. As the clock ticked past 10:00 in the evening, Mick made a nod to Keith, Ronnie and Steve Jordan, and soon after, Keith walked up and finished off the show, a great way to end the tour this summer.

Final bow, Mick slide in between Ronnie and Keith. Mick is leaving the stage first. Keith is sort of standing up front on his own, don’t want to leave. Ronnie is walking back stage, while pointing both hands to the the back of his jacket, with the logo saying “It’s Only Rock’n’Roll”.

For show reports and pictures please see the IORR reports pages:

The Rolling Stones
Berlin Germany
Wednesday August 3, 2022

The Rolling Stones in Stockholm Sweden 2022

Stockholm July 31st was supposed to be the last show of The Rolling Stones SIXTY tour in Europe 2022. From experience I know that things may change, so I kept all of August available, in case there were delays, changes or additions. Luckily the Stockholm show went on exacly as planned, but it was not the last show of the tour, as they added another show, at Berlin Waldbühne in Germany, three days after the Stockholm show.

I went home for a day or so after being on the road for two weeks in Vienna, Lyon, Paris and Düsseldorf/Gelsenkirchen. The return flight to Norway on the day after the Gelsenkirchen show went fine, and same with the flight from Oslo to Stockholm 36 hours later. Oslo to Stockholm is a relatively short distance. In an emergency, i.e. closed airport, strikes, or other travel issues, I can drive the distance it in 6-7 hours. Also, there are several flights. I was never worried about travel to the Stockholm show, like it was a worry for the rest of Europe this summer.

I had my daughter joining me on the show travel to the Vienna show. It is always great to be with family on tour. For the Stockholm show, I was joined by family once more. My oldest son drove with his family the six hours to Stockholm a couple of days before the show, and we spent two days in Stockholm together. We were three generations of my family at the Stockholm show.

Stockholm is a great and beautiful city, with water all over. I have been to every Stones show here for as long as I can remember. Also, I took my sons to Råsunda, to see Queen and Gary Moore way back in 1985, so travel to shows in Sweden is nothing new to us. My first Stones show was in Gothenburg Sweden 1973, and I never missed any Stones shows in Sweden since then.

We did a visit to Grand Hotel, where the Stones stayed, had drinks there, met friends, and then we moved out to our hotel – Quality Hotel Friends, right next to Friends Arena. It was getting warmer, and more fans were arriving the day before the show. I met many many friends from Norway, also from Sweden, and other places around in Europe as well as the rest of the world.

On this tour I have been very careful about not getting Covid, as I have friends who have got Covid, and lost shows due to high fever and illness. I never loose shows, for me it was very important to be in my own tour bubble, limiting the number of close contacts. Usually I am in close contact with 50-200 fans and friends in every city on tours. That would introduce a high risk of Covid, so just like in USA last year, I reduced the number of close contants to a minimum on the SIXTY tour, may be 10-20 close contacts per show/city. This way I reduced the risk of getting covid by 90%. Mask on wherever there were many people, like hotels, travel and so on. Meeting people on tour is always a great part of touring, but I could not take any risks, so touring this year was very different from pre-Covid days, also sort of unfriendly, but I could not take many risks. In Stockholm I could lower my “guard” a bit, meeting more people and close friends, because it was just three days until the last show of the tour – in Berlin.

We spent the show day mostly by the stadium, and at the nearby area Råsunda, resting, dining early, drinking water, preparing for the show. It was hot, but not that hot. We did not know the conditions inside the arena, it turned out it would be very, very hot, almost like at the Lyon show. It was a reminder of the fact that you must always drink a lot of water before entering any venue, because you never know how the situation is inside the venue. As Friends Arena have a closed roof, and not proper ventilation, the temperature got too high, not really comfortable, in fact dangerous for those who did not drink a lot ahead of the show.

This is parts of my report from the Stockholm show:

Having close family with me to the show made it emotional when the pictures of Charlie went up on the screen at the show opening. I have seen this intro fourteen times last year in USA, and thirteen times this year, I got used to it, and since the sadness at the St Louis show, I have learned to live with the band without Charlie on stage. Still, with family around me, all the emotions from the St Louis show got much closer, and when Mick dedicated the show to Charlie, after they had done “Let’s Spend The Night Together”, I realized I still missed Charlie so much.

The venue was very very hot. Dehydration was a danger, so we had to rush over to some water taps near the pit to fill up with water, avoiding any problems during the show. Thanks to the venue for making water easily available!

For show reports and pictures please see the IORR reports pages:

The Rolling Stones
Friends Arena
Stockholm Sweden
Sunday July 31, 2022

The Rolling Stones in Gelsenkirchen Germany 2022

The Rolling Stones SIXTY tour arrived into Germany for the 2nd time this year, when they played a show at Veltins-Arena in Gelsenkirchen on Wednesday July 27, 2022. Germany is their largest market in Europe, often they performed 9, 10 or 11 shows per tour in Europe in the past. This time, with just 14 shows or so per tour, they still do three shows in Germany, finishing in Berlin on August 3. There are so many Stones fans in Germany!

I was on a 14 days ground level travel now. Train from Vienna to Lyon, then train to Paris, and now train to Düsseldorf, which is just 45 minutes away from Gelsenkirchen. We left Paris Gare du Nord at noon the day after the Paris show, and arrived into Düsseldorf four hours later, at 4pm. Then a short five minutes walk to my hotel Mercure Düsseldorf City Center. Train travel from city center to city center is just amazing. No waste of time, fast in and out, and much more relaxing that airports, security controls and all of that. I worked on the Paris show reports on the train all of the four hours, it can not get more efficient. As I walked out of my hotel room soon after being all settled in for the next two days, and went over to the old town in Düsseldorf, I was on time work wise, and I could relax for a bit.

The Ruhr area in Germany has been visited many times by The Rolling Stones. They have been playing in Düsseldorf and Cologne several times, also Gelsenkirchen, also in Oberhausen, just 20 km from Gelsenkirchen. The cities are many, and the fans are plenty.

Mick Jagger said on stage in Gelsenkirchen that this was their 117th show in Germany. So they have played roughly 5% of all their shows in history in Germany – not bad!

After staying two days in Düsseldorf, where The Rolling Stones stayed as well, I moved on to my near stadium hotel – “Stays by Friends Gelsenkirchen”. It was right on the stadium area, just 5 minutes walk to the stadium, and 10 minutes walk to the station of the tram to the city. Perfect place to be, also great service, may be the best hotel 0n the tour so far, especially following the tiny little hotel room I had in Paris.

The design of the Gelsenkirchen tour poster and shirt fascinated me. I was told it was taking inspiration from one of the nearby coal mines. After some research I found out it was taken at the nearby Zollverein UNESCO World Heritage Site. I went over there both on the day I arrived into Gelsenkirchen, also the next day, on show day. It is a large industrial area, with coal mines, factory buildings, all preserved and taken care of, so that future generations may see how all these coal mines in the area were major parts in building the industry and progress at the time.

Show time is getting closer. I walk over to my entrance, and I am inside the stadium soon after. Great show. Great days. Great tour!

For show reports and pictures please see the IORR reports pages:

The Rolling Stones
Gelsenkirchen Germany
Wednesday July 27, 2022

The Rolling Stones in Paris France 2022

Paris France 2012 is ten years ago, that is when they started rehearsing after their break of touring after 2007. Since then they have been touring every year, except for a short break in 2020 during the first year of the pandemic. I got to know Paris well then, also many friends from the Bondy rehearsals in 2012, and also 2014. We got close, and every time I meet my Bondy friends on tour, like this summer, the great memories from those rehearsals return.

There was supposed to be just one show on France, in Lyon. There were shows scheduled in Helsinki Finland July 15, in Warsaw Poland July 27, and Vienna Austria July 23 this summer. When the Russian war in Ukraine suddenly changed the security situation in Europe, The Rolling Stones worked overtime to make the tour work according to their security measures. The Vienna show was moved to July 15, taking over the Helsinki date, and making the date July 23 available for a show in Paris. Then Gelsenkirchen Germany got the Warsaw date of July 27. The Rolling Stones management sure worked overtime, the announcement of the tour was may be delayed a few days, but we got a tour according to their plans.

I took the fast train two hours from Lyon to Paris. It was an easy travel, except for a small incident at the Lyon train station. I arrived by the tram to the station Gare Part Dieu at noon the day after the show. Then they had just closed the station. Lots of police and security, then 15 minutes later a whistle is blowing, then a big bang, and an applause. Somebody had left some luggage unattended, it might be a bomb, so the routine is then to blow it up. Ten minutes later the train station was reopening. All trains were 20-30 minutes late, but no worries, our security was taken care of, and I am used to waiting for hours at airports. Arriving 20 minutes late into Paris was no problem.

My Paris hotel was as usual close to the venue. I stayed in Suresnes, and my hotel was “Mercure Paris Suresnes Longchamp”. Just the name of the hotel is telling it is close by the venue “Hippodrome Longchamp”. Suresnes is a short 3 minutes tram/train ride from “La Défense”, where I stayed for a week or so when The Rolling Stones last played Paris, with three shows at the great U Arena in 2017. My hotel room in Suresnes was so tiny, just 13 m2, i.e. just 120 sqft or so, there was hardly any space for my PC, and the so called double bed was just a little bit bigger than a single bed. Still, I had my “home” for four dates at the same place, twenty minutes walking to the Hippodrome Longchamp. I was happy.

I love the suburbs of any big city. Staying in the same suburb for 10 days in Madrid for the tour start was a joy. Now I had four days in Suresnes. I walked out into the area, and found a great place to dine outside in 10 minutes. Later I found out there were 20 or so dining places and bars in the Suresnes area within 5 minutes walk, I did not need the crowded and overpriced Paris center at all.

My favorite restaurant was L’Entrepôt Saint-Claude Suresnes, it was so great and relaxing, they knew my needs, they had good priced food and drinks, and it was never crowded there, as I liked to keep a distance from other customers, being in a covid bubble on tour. They had fresh fish, great local wines, and also great beers. On show day it got a bit crowded, but I was still able to have a meal there with no waiting time show day at 3pm, which is perfect timing for me.

With plenty of time in Paris, I walked over to the show area in Longchamp a couple of times. It took an hour to work around it, very large area. My walks around it would be very helpful after the show, as we were left out in the dark. More about that later.

The day before the show I did my Paris center trip, took the train to La Défense, then the metro to the center, then walked along Champs-Élysées, did a visit to the Stones hotel Bristol, then took the metro to Châtelet. I wanted to see the church art which was used in the Paris 2022 T-shirt and poster, the church Sainte-Chapelle. It looked so beautiful in the pictures, but the endless queues outside did not look beautiful. My life on this planet is short, I don’t want to queue for a tourist attraction. The only picture I took in Paris center was the first one below, a street cafe – Brasserie, nice to sit there, but may be next time, I returned to my safe and quiet area in Suresnes.

On show day there was a market in the Suresnes center. Lots of people shopping in the market, I was preparing for the show, eating a lot, drinking a lot, making ready. Then at 5pm I was on my way. The queues there were endless. From memory I did remember another entrance, so I left the endless “Entrance 1”, walked ten minutes through a forest path, found the “Entrance 2” queue, which was very very short, and I was into the show area in 10 minutes or so. It helps to do research at venues, where entrances are and so on.

Show time, I had been trying to stay in the shade, luckily the temperature was not as high as in Lyon. It was a great show, once more. After the show I wrote this in my report:

It was a great show, even if they do now stay close to the same set every night, more or less. The show in Paris tonight had the same songs as we got in Vienna, except for two changes, they did “19th Nervous Breakdown”, and Keith gave us “You Got The Silver. I don’t mind having the same set, as long as they play it well and with passion. After all, that is what they have been doing for sixty years, giving us their greatest hits live, then they have spoiled us a few times with club shows and arena shows, but on the big stage, the vast crowds, they play it safe.

I watched the show to the very end. Of course. You can not miss another great version of “Satisfaction”, and you can not miss the joy of seeing all their smiles during the final bow. Some left early, to beat the queue out of the massive area. It is a shame really, that we are forced to attend a show with such conditions. Shame on the organizers, who fool the fans into walking all over with entrance 1 and entrance 2, all being merged into one large bottleneck, and after the show they force us to walk into nowhere, in the dark, without lights. There were big holes in the field as we walked out, it would be so easy to break a leg in the dark. Some did actually. I can still hear the painful tears and screams of a woman who broke her leg in the dark out there after the show, no medics in sight, not in a mile, just a couple of police cars. Twenty minutes later an ambulance passed by, such a shame. I walked back to my Suresnes hotel in an hour, it would have taken 20-30 minutes if they treated us with normal enter and exit options. There are rules as of how to treat animals. I know we go to shows at our own interest, but a minimum of crowd safety should be an absolute requirement – such was not the case tonight.

For show reports and pictures please see the IORR reports pages:

The Rolling Stones
Hippodrome Longchamp
Paris France
Saturday July 23, 2022

The Rolling Stones in Lyon France 2022

The Rolling Stones show in Lyon France Tuesday July 19, 2022 was show number two of my four shows travel not going home, starting in Vienna, ending in Gelsenkirchen, where I would stay on the tour for two weeks, and not even take a single flight. Trains are great, slow, comfortable, and you do not waste time with security, boarding, logistics in and out of airports.

A direct flight from Vienna to Lyon would take a bit less than two hours, but most of my friends on this tour flew through Paris. By car it is a 1200 km (700 miles) drive, taking 12 hours minimum non-stop. There were different train options, through Munich and Paris, but I wanted a scenic route through Austria and Switzerland, also I wanted to minimize travel time. The entire trip would take 17 hours or so, too much for me on one day, so I split the travel in two days, and made a stopover in Zurich, where train change was to happen anyway. That saved me a few hours of “lost” waiting time, and I could enjoy a short evening and a night in Zurich.

My first train left Wien Hbf at 9:20am the morning after the show in Vienna. We should be in Zurich 8 hours later. The first five hours we passed by the Austrian cities Linz, Salsburg, Innsbruck, Feldkirch. I wanted to do a stopover at Bodensee, in Bregenz, a beautiful place I have been to before, but that would have added a few extra hours to my travel, so I stayed on the train. Then the train crossed through Liechtenstein for a bit, and we were in Switzerland. I had worked on my PC doing Vienna show updates for the first five hours, but as we got closed to Zurich, there was so much to see, the mountains got higher, and the lakes nearby were beautiful. As we passed by the Zurichsee during the last part of the day, I just watched the nature passing by as the train approached Zurich, right on time, at 5:20pm.

Next day it was time for two more train trips, passing by the great and beautiful lake “Lac Leman”, a.k.a. Lake Geneva. First three hours to Geneva, then changing trains, and two hours to Lyon Part-Dieu. Then trying to figure out how to get to my stadium hotel, then finally I was at my hotel after two days of travel, at 5pm in the late afternoon.

The Kopster Hotel was just a great place to be, as seen in the picture on top of these pages. It is placed right on the Groupama Stadium area, max two minutes to walk. Even if you are walking through the stadium, it takes you max 10 minutes from the stadium to the room. After the show in Lyon, I made a record I will never break, as it took a total of six – 6 – minutes from I was in the PIT A and watched the final bow, walking fast back to my hotel room.

Lyon was the warmest place on the tour so far. On show day, it was 37 C (100F) in the shade in the city, and indoors the aircondition did not manage to cool down, we had 28 C (82F) most places. I was drinking liters and liters of bottled water, making sure I would not be dehydrated for the show.

The show was great, but I think it was a bit too hot for the band. This is parts of what I wrote about the show in my reports:

It was a brutal day, weather wise. They say the show must go on, rain or shine, so sure they could not cancel, but fans as well as the band did struggle with record temperatures way above +30C (86F) all through the show in Lyon. Daytime Lyon it was around body temperature i.e. 37 C (100F), and it was still that way as the show was on.

Before they did “Start Me Up” Mick was over to Bernard making signals saying he needed backup on the singing. From that song and on Bernard did quite a bit of Mick vocal overlapping. Hopefully Mick is fine for the next show, but having a fan blowing air into your face for two hours sure is not the best for the well being really. There was only one encore, as they did not play “Gimme Shelter”, even if it was on the set list. I guess it was just too much heat, very hard working conditions, the last three songs were done in 21 minutes, and people were taken out to resucue through the show, even before doors opened. Sure it was a brutal weather, but The Rolling Stones did their best, we were all happy.

For show reports and pictures please see the IORR reports pages:

The Rolling Stones
Groupama Stadium
Lyon France
Tuesday July 19, 2022

The Rolling Stones in Vienna Austria 2022

The Rolling Stones show in Vienna Austria Friday July 15, 2022 was powerful and emotional. Mick said they have been performing a total of seventeen shows in Austra. Some of these have taken me to the Alps, to an airfield, to a racetrack, but tonight, luckily, they were back to the city of Vienna, at Ernst Happel Stadion. The picture below is showing the unique moment at the end of the show, a specially invited childrens choir from Ukraine, singing during “You Can’t Always Get What You Want”.

I went home for a short trip after the show in Brussels Belgium. Brussels Airlines were just perfect and on time, and Brussels Airport was perfect, unusual during these busy summer days. Then I took my daughter on a three days Stones trip to Vienna Austria. We were on Austrian Airlines. Again the flight was on time. Oslo Airport Gardermoen was virtually empty, as all the SAS flights were parked due to the SAS pilot strike. I was nervous about our Vienna flight, because a delay would mess up the plans for both of us. A total of 22 out of 34 flights i.e. 2 of 3 flights during the early afternoon were cancelled. I knew the chance of getting another flight to Wien / Vienna was small, very small. Luckily we were on time, and we arrived safely to Vienna during the afternoon the day before the show.

We stayed at the great Hilton Vienna Danube Waterfront, right on the Donau riverside. It is a short ten minutes walk from the hotel to the Stones venue – Ernst Happel Stadium. No need for transportation after the show, no need for worries about queues.

Vienna is such a great city for any tourists. We did the “must do” things, visiting parks, walking the Donauinsel – a long narrow island in the Donau river, crossing the Donau on the bridges a few times, and of course the great and unique St Stephan church. I will let the pictures speak for themselves.

I made a short comment about the show in the IORR reports pages:

While the Stones were off stage, and we waited for the encores, they arranged many microphones at the far end of the stage, Ronnie side, where Sasha and Bernard normally are. Soon we found out what was going on. The Dzvinochok boys choir and Vognyk girls choir group, alongside their choirmaster Ruben Tolmachov, had managed to travel from Kyiv Ukraine by road. Now they were on stage singing the choir of “You Can’t Always Get What You Want”. They all looked so happy, but don’t forget the war, it is so sad, but it was a great gesture of The Rolling Stones to do this very special moment during these difficult days for the Ukraine people. An additional note about the boys in the choir – there were only one boy, the rest of the choir were girls. Even at that age, 15 or so, it seems like the boys are needed back in Ukraine.

The story about the picture below is as follows. The last song of the show – Satisfaction – is just finished. The band is getting together for the final bow. Steve Jordan is sprinting up along the center stage to hand out his drumstick, and he will be late for the large final bow. Ronnie is celebrating the show with Bernard. Mick and Keith embrace each other at the back of the stage. Sure it was a great show!

For show reports and pictures please see the IORR reports pages:

The Rolling Stones
Ernst Happel Stadion
Vienna Austria
Friday July 15, 2022

The Rolling Stones in Brussels Belgium 2022

The Rolling Stones show in Brussels Belgium was four days after the postponed show in Amsterdam. With the current travel situation in Europe, the only natural way was to stay on the tour, and to go by train from Amsterdam to Brussels. The Rolling Stones have been performing in Belgium on most European tours, but often they have been doing shows at the remote festival site Werchter. It is near the city Leuven, but still a long long walk! Luckily they were now scheduled to perform at the King Baudouin Stadium, in the city of Brussels.

Train travel is so easy and pleasant. I left my room in Amsterdam by the ArenA at 11am on Friday July 8, the day after the show in Amsterdam. The train to Brussels left Amsterdam Central at noon, and I was at Brussels Midi by 2pm. One hour later, after a short local train ride, I was all set in my hotel in the center of Brussels. No need for security checks, no need to get rid of water bottles. For sure I will do more train travel on this tour.

I was four days in Brussels, and with the short train ride, I hardly lost any time at all on travel day. For my first two days I was booked at a hotel just two minutes walk from Grand Place – Hotel Warwick Brussels. It is a great classic style hotel, five star, a bit over my budget, but on a 2+ months summer tour, two days in one booking out of total 24 hotel bookings does not make that big difference. I wanted to be right on Grand Place, also close to the train station.

Grand Place is just stunning beautiful. Wherever you look, there are beautiful buildings. No picture may tell how great it is looking, but I will give it a try still. Grand Place is on the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites. Sure it is crowded with tourists, but still, it is a must see. Then I walked the few blocks to where Manneken Pis is.

Manneken Pis is a remarkable little fellow. He is on display just a few blocks from Grand Place, and is one of main attraction in Brussels. The statue was created in 1619, i.e. more than 400 years ago. The original statue is preserved in the Maison de Roi on Grand Place, while the “tourist version” is a replica, still thousands come by to see him every day, some times dressed up in one of more than 1,000 costumes. Two days before The Rolling Stones show, Manneken Pis was dressed up in Stones-cloths! Mick Jagger did even mention Manneken Pis during the show, he said he was going to do some selfies, but somebody had stolen the cloths, so “there goes my Instagram moment”, he said!

After two days in the center of Brussels, I moved on to my “show time hotel”. Total time from leaving my room at the Warwick, taking the tram, walking 15 minutes, then checking in and being all settlet at my next place, it all took just an hour, and I was all set in my next hotel “Ibis Brussels Expo-Atomium”, which is just a 15 minutes walk from King Baudouin Stadium. To get hotel rooms that close to the venue, at a low rate, you need to book fast, if possible before dates are announced. For this tour I was lucky to be able to book most show hotels just in time, so that I could walk “home” to my room nice and easily after the show.

Brussels show day Monday July 11 it is warm day, I rest in my area right next to the stadium most of the day. There was a great Italian restaurant “Heysel Brasserie” just five minutes walk from my hotel, on the way to the stadium. I went there for late lunch and early dinner, in the afternoon, and had two liters of water plus food and desserts, warm weather and standing in the pit for hours do require planning, energy and liquid.

Then walking to the stadium. On our way there, we passed by signs leading the way to a Registration Centre for Ukrainian Refugees in the Expo area. I have been living in a tour bubble since May, but this was a reminder about the real world, it reminded me about the importance of peace, democracy and life in freedom, we should never forget those who do not have the freedom we take for granted.

The show in Brussels was great, they are all at a high standard these days. Then a short walk twenty minutes or so back to my hotel. I drank another liter of water, still hot, then worked until 1am with pictures and editorial IORR show updates. Happy days – it is great to be on tour, even if it can be a bit exhausting!

For show reports and pictures please see the IORR reports pages:

The Rolling Stones
King Baudouin Stadium
Brussels Belgium
Monday July 11, 2022

The Rolling Stones in Amsterdam The Netherlands July 2022

First The Rolling Stones did their SIXTY tour rehearsals at the Ziggo Dome in Amsterdam, The Netherlands during May. Then they returned to Amsterdam to perform a show at the Johan Cruyff ArenA on June 13. The show was cancelled late at 6pm on show day, after doors had opened, due to Mick Jagger testing positive for covid that afternoon. Then the show was rescheduled for Thursday July 7, and they returned for the third time this summer to Amsterdam, following a two weeks stay in London UK.

From now on during the tour, I do not go home to Norway between every show. It is simply too stressful, too much travel, too many delays and cancellations. By staying on the tour, I get an extra day “off travel” every four days. So I arrived from London to Amsterdam with British Airways the day after the 2nd Hyde Park show, and I had four days to stay in the same place, same hotel, Holiday Inn right next to the venue. I was so happy to have some extra time with no travel.

Ever since I was a small kid, I had a relation to The Netherlands. My father was a gardener, and every year, in the fall, we got many large wooden boxes with flower bulbs marked “Hylkema Hillegom Holland”, with bulps of tulips, hyacinths, daffodils, and my favorite the narcissus poeticus, the late blooming beautiful white poet’s daffodil. For me, Holland was all about these flowers, which were planted in sand during the fall, buried in the ground sealed off frost, then taken in to bloom for the holiday seasons, mainly Christmas and Easter times. Later on, I got work which took me to many trips to the Netherlands, including cities as Oldenzaal, Zeist, Enschede, Breda and so on. I became a big fan of the Grolsch beer, not just because of the special bottle, but also because it was a great beer.

I was on my first day in Amsterdam on this tour. Looking out of the metro, on my way to the city of Amsterdam, I noticed a farm with some cows, just two stops from the Arena. I was amazed to see a farm so close to the city center. Next day, I took the metro there, left at the Deuvendrecht station, and looked for the farm and the cows. It turned out it was the farm “Mijn Genoegen of Duivendrecht“, on Rijksstraatweg 186, an old farm, still running. The area was so quiet, I went back there every day to walk, dine at the local restaurant “Lotgenoten Eetcafe”, then I also found out I could take a bus to see the largest old style wooden wind mill in The Netherlands – Windmill De Gooyer.

When I purchased stamps for my postcards to send home from Amsterdam, I got special picture stamps, with five of the important symbols of The Netherlands: A cow, a windmill, a tulip, a bike, and a small narrow city house. I saw a lot of bikes, I saw cows on the farm, I saw both old and modern windmills, and many narrow old style city houses. Unfortunately I did not see any tulips, as their natural season is in the spring, or like we had them for Christmas when they were farmed by my father in the greenhouses. Still, I managed to find a great poster with tulip fields, reminding me of our trip to Keukenhof, where I took my mother and father many years ago. I just love the Netherlands!

Outside my hotel Holiday Inn, we had some seagull nests, and one of the seagulls had three “kids”. Every time I walked the stairs the seagulls watchen me through the window, they were on a low stairs roof on the 3rd floor, well protected from dangers. It was nice to see they were doing great out there, urban life is not just for people, but also for birds.

Show day, the area is so busy, I take the metro the two stops from Bijlmer ArenA to Duivendrecht, order my food and drinks, get served with no delay, then back to the ArenA. Then I am inside the Johan Cruyff ArenA, it is soon show time. As the clock pass six in the afternoon, I think about the same time 24 days ago, when the show got cancelled. This time we get no such message. The show is on, a great one!

For show reports and pictures please see the IORR reports pages:

The Rolling Stones
Johan Cruyff ArenA
Amsterdam The Netherlands
Thursday July 7, 2022

The Rolling Stones in Hyde Park London UK 2022

My first two shows with The Rolling Stones in London UK took place forty years ago during the summer of 1982, when they played their first two shows at Wembley Stadium. Since then I have been so lucky to see all the shows they did in London ever since. According to Mick Jagger they have done a total of 203 shows since their very first show back in 1962. I remember one time at Wembley stadium, one of their 12 shows there, Mick said “It’s great to be home”. Sure that is how it is to see the band on home ground in London. They feel great being at home!

Concerts, work and pleasure have taken me to London many times. When I was younger, and out of money, I would stay at a camping site way out at Abbey Wood, it took forever to get into town (but now it is amazing to know that the brand new Elisabeth Line takes you from Abbey Wood straight into Paddington in half an hour!) Then I moved into the cheapest “no stars” hotels in the Paddington area during the early 90’s. They cost less than 20 pounds per night, and there were bugs in the rooms every time. Then I moved into 1-2 star rooms with no more space than the bed, luggage in the shower, so small rooms. Then as I could afford it, I stayed wherever it was cheap, still no bugs. London have always been expensive and complicated for hotel rooms.

On this tour – SIXTY – there were plans for three shows in London. First two shows in Hyde Park, I would go home between these two shows. Then a “secret” show on July 7, I would stay in London for that one, following Hyde Park #2 show. Then the Amsterdam June 13 show got cancelled and rescheduled, so travel plans changed. Also, travel got more and more disrupted and chaotic during this summer, I had to change plans every time I was on travel.

The first travel to the Hyde Park show #1 went fine. Great show, and I got time to do my usual walks, Hyde Park, Regents Park, The Mitre Pub with excellent Fish & Ships, the rose gardens and the begonia garden of Regents Park, the Italian Garden in Hyde Park, great walks, must do every time, even if my travels were short, in during the evening, walk parks on show day, show in the evening, then travel on next morning. I do know some do party a lot during tours; I can not do that, when you go to every show you can’t live in a constant party zone. I work every day, just IORR takes hours and hours, and I need sleep, plus travel takes a lot of energy too.

My flight home to Oslo following the first show at Hyde Park was at 10:20am in the morning. Scandinavian Airlines – SAS – was supposed to take me home safely and on time. Then as I was on my way to the airport, I was told they were 2 hours late. Ok, it is within limits. Then it got more and more delayed. Eventually they boarded the plane. Then we were stuck in the airplane for 1.5 hours. The pilot told us they had damaged the cargo door during loading, so they needed to repair it. By the time I got home, we were five hours late, and I was exhausted, total travel time 12 hours on what should have been a two hours flight.

SAS pilots were supposed to go on strike Wednesday June 29. I cancelled all my SAS flights for the next weeks, and booked British Airways for my travels in and out of London. BA were on time for my Hyde Park #2 show. I was back to London, back to Stonesland. It does always feel good to be where the Stones are, then you do not miss anything.

I did my same procedures, walking the parks, having fish’n’ships, meeting friends, also trying to keep away from the new Omicron BA4 and BA5 wave, which is peaking in Europe right now. If I get sick I may not go to the show. I haven’t lost a show in ages, I don’t want to put any shows at risk. May be others do not care about Covid, but I do care a lot about the shows, so being social and hanging around with many people on the tour during the BA4/BA5 wave makes no sense to me.

Another great show in Hyde Park, then the half an hour walk through Hyde Park to our hotel in the Paddington area. I wonder if this was the last show they did in London ever. Hopefully not. Probably not!

For show reports and pictures please see the IORR reports pages:

The Rolling Stones
Hyde Park #1
London UK
Saturday June 25, 2022

The Rolling Stones
Hyde Park #2
London UK
Sunday July 3, 2022

The Rolling Stones in Milan Italy 2022

Milan Italy was the first show of The Rolling Stones SIXTY tour following the cancellations of the shows in Amsterdam and Bern. We were worried about the show in Milan, if it was on, how Mick Jagger would feel, his voice, and even the rest of the band. Most worries never happen. The Rolling Stones show at San Siro stadium in Milan Italy on Tuesday June 21, 2022 turned to be such a great show!

The picture above is taken by Richard Ona, Norway, it is the Rolling Stones tour airplane, parked at Malpensa Airport in Milan. It is always great to see this airplane parked as you arrive into a new city, then you know you are at the right place at the right time!

Following the cancellation of the Amsterdam show, and then the cancellation of the Bern Switzerland show next morning, I went home for some days, and then I had a stopover flight back from home into Stonesland from Oslo to Milan Italy the day before the show in Milan. There was just a short 50 minutes time between my first Oslo flight landing in Copenhagen Denmark, and my next flight to Milan Italy was leaving. When my Oslo flight left late, and were even slower incoming, the stress factor just increased. I was running the long distance at the Copenhagen airport from one part of the terminal to another, and luckily I made it for my Milan flight!

I left home in Norway at noon. Then I landed at the Milan Malpensa airport at 7:30pm. A train ride to Milan Cadorna station, then the metro to a station near my hotel, and I was all set at my hotel room by 9pm. Travel do take time these days.

My hotel Antares Hotel Rubens was located 2 km from San Siro Stadium, a short 25 minutes walk. It was a great four star hotel in a quiet area of Milan. I asked the front desk about advices for a good “Il Forno” pizzeria and restaurant. They gave me advice to go to Ristorante Trotter on Via Rembrandt 56, a short 5-10 minutes walk. It took some time until I found the place, but once I found it, I realized this was a great and unique place. At 10pm in the evening, it was still packed, in fact all tables were taken, except for one, I got seated. The Pizza Funghi was excellent, may be my best ever Funghi Pizza, and the place was a seafood heaven, too bad it was closed daytime on show day, but I have to return there some day, never been to such a great restaurant food, amazing service, amazing food quality, all local guests except for me, being a tourist.

My visit to Italy was so short, just one day and two nights. I wish I could stay in Milan for a week, as I love the food, and the weather was so great, +34 C or so daytime, and around +30 C evening, i.e. 85-95 F most of the day and evening. But … the show must go on … I have to return to Italy for a holiday some time when the tour is over.

On show day at daytime I took the metro the few stops from my place to the Milan center near the Duomo. Then I walked through the amazing Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II – such an amazing and beautiful way to enter the Duomo square. Then of course the Duomo, such a great view, a must see during any visits to Milan Italy.

Then it was afternoon, time to get to the show. The evening was warm and great, the show was great, one of my favorites of the tour, I am so glad they made it to Italy on this tour.

For show reports and pictures please see the IORR reports pages:

The Rolling Stones
San Siro stadium
Milan Italy
Tuesday June 21, 2022