It was not the massive stage, the spectacular light show nor the 1,300 kilos of audio gear that ensured the immortalization of March 25 2016. It was The Rolling Stones, accompanied by hundreds of thousands of fans, rocking and rolling an unforgettable Havana night.
The legendary British rock band enthralled those who attended their unprecedented free concert at the Havana Sport’s City complex for more than 2 hours.
Even though railings had been removed in anticipation of a large crowd, the site still proved small and fans filled surrounding streets and mounted rooftops to sing along together to rock classics such as Jumping Jack Flash, Midnight Rambler and Gimme Shelter.
The charismatic Mick Jagger did not renege on the promise made in his opening words to the crowd: “Hello Havana, we are here at last and this will be an unforgettable might”.
Speaking in good Spanish throughout the show, Jagger also said, “Thank you Cuba for all the music you have given to the world”.
Keith Richards, who sang You Got the Silver, the first song recorded by the band, featuring an exclusive Ronnie Woods vocal solo, said that it was incredible that the Stones were here.
For Sympathy for the Devil, Jagger appeared on stage under the incredible lighting in a red and black feathered cape to exorcise his “evil”.
He praised the local crowd for being “so cool”, using local Spanish slang saying, “Yes, you’re in the zone” and “what a sweet crowd”.
‘We’ve been having a great time here in Havana’ Jagger said, and another euphoric cheer followed from his fans.
He dedicated Angie, one of the band‘s more melodic hits to “the romantic Cubans” and, assuring the huge crowd that they were great singers he followed with a Miss You induced dose of melancholy.
He confessed that although he had relished traditional rice and beans, his highlight had been dancing Cuban rumba in the Casa de la Música.
In Out of Control demonstrated the power of his duet with Keith Richards on guitar, with whom he supposedly has off stage issues.
If the crowd was charmed by hearing live solos by Richards and Woods for the first time, the almost convulsive jolting of Jagger made them dance.
At one point during his onstage comings and goings, the lead artist grabbed a Cuban flag and draped it over his shoulders.
The Entrevoces choir was the Cuban ensemble that joined the Stones for You Can‘t Always Get What You Want, a rendition also accompanied by a chorus of thousands.
The crowd, from all over the island and from a multitude of other countries including celebrities such as Richard Gere, Naomi Campbell and Shania Twain, chanted Cuba, Cuba, Cuba.
An epic Satisfaction finale drained the last iota of energy. Jagger said that in the past it had been difficult to access their music in Cuba but that they were here now playing in this beautiful country.
Havana was the last stop on the bands Olé Tour of Latin America, having been to Chile, Argentina, Uruguay, Brazil, Peru, Colombia and Mexico.Share on FB Share on TT